News and Commentary

REMER: It’s Time For Jews To Take Up Arms
Jews praying at the Western Wall inside the Old City in Jerusalem. Wednesday, 14 March 2018, in Jerusalem, Israel.
Artur Widak/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Anti-Semitism is on the rise in America: Shootings, stabbings, swastikas painted on buildings and sidewalks, and a Democratic Party that condones anti-Semitic views constitute the new normal in what was once an incredibly safe country for Jews.

Two weeks ago, there was a targeted shooting in New Jersey, which claimed the lives of two Jews. This week, a man walked into a Chanukah party in Monsey, New York and stabbed numerous Jews. Attacks, especially in the Tri-State area, are happening in what seems like a daily occurrence.

However, it’s apparent that far too many American Jews are merely waiting for the wolves to strike.

Unfortunately, many American Jews believe that anti-Semitic attacks will not — simply CANNOT — happen to them. They don’t believe a murderous gunman will enter their synagogue. They don’t expect to be stabbed or beaten on the streets. They don’t expect it — but it’s happening with increasing frequency.

So, I ask this question to the Jews of America who think this way: When did we become sheep? What happened to our David versus Goliath mentality?

Jews have a history of being fierce warriors and not backing down from a fight. Here are some biblical examples:

  • Abraham battled four kingdoms and was victorious.
  • The Jews fought the Amalakites and were victorious.
  • The campaigns of Joshua.

You don’t like the biblical ones? Here are some more modern-day Jewish heroes.

  • Mordechai Anielewicz (leader of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising).
  • Abba Kovner (leader of the Vilna Partisans).
  • Eli Cohen (Mossad spy).
  • Mickey Marcus (American colonel who helped win the 1948 war for Israel’s independence).

There are numerous examples of Jews standing up to adversity and not being afraid of a fight. Jews have a long and storied history of being fierce warriors — not vulnerable sheep.

Jews around the world just finished celebrating Chanukah, which is not merely a holiday about presents, oil, dreidels, and latkes. Chanukah, fundamentally, is a holiday about liberty. It’s a celebration of a band of freedom fighters who won back our religious freedoms from a larger and highly trained military. This holiday is celebrated because Jews took up arms, fought for their Jewish identity, and won.

In other words, we defeated the anti-Semitism of the Seleucid Empire.

It is well past time for modern-day Jews to follow in the footsteps of their forebears and take up arms. Jews need to fall in line, not to the gas chambers, but under the banner that reads “Second Amendment supporters.” It is time to embrace and take advantage of the right enshrined in the Second Amendment. Purchasing a firearm, learning to use it, and training with it will help ensure you and your family or community are safe.

Don’t rely on the police or government to protect you. Don’t rely on the security guard standing in front of your synagogue. Be your own guardian.

Let’s take it one step further with what may sound controversial to some: STOP RELYING SOLELY ON PRAYER!

There is a famous latin phrase that reads, “Si vis pacem, para bellum.” If you want peace, prepare for war.

How did Jacob prepare for his encounter with his brother, Esau?

He sent gifts and prayed. He also prepared for war.

Jacob split his family into two different camps in order to spare one if Esau were to attack. What can we learn from this? You must put in the hard work and find the appropriate balance between personal effort and trust in God!

I’m a Jew who carries a firearm. I write about guns for a living. I know many Jews from all walks of life who hate firearms and believe that guns have no place in society.

But how is exercising my Second Amendment right to help ensure my family’s safety any different than what Jacob did?

The answer is that there is no difference.

When Goliath threatened the Jews, a young David took up arms. David explained to King Saul that as a shepherd, God delivered him from the “paw of a lion and the paw of a bear”; and now, God will deliver him from Goliath. Although David prayed to God for deliverance, he also prepared for battle.

It says in I Samuel 17:40: “And he took his staff in his hand, and he chose for himself five smooth pebbles from the brook, and he placed them in the shepherds’ bag which he had, and in the sack, and his slingshot was in his hand, and he approached the Philistine.”

Good conquered Evil.

Another example is seen in II Samuel 1:18, after the death of Saul. David laments, “And he said to teach the sons of Judah the bow. Behold it is written in the book of the just.”

David understood that with Saul gone, the Jews would need to learn how to fight if they were to survive.

We can’t rely solely on prayer to ensure our safety. Don’t take that to mean that I don’t believe in prayer. On the contrary, prayer isn’t only important, but is integral to survival. We must pray constantly that we be delivered from evil.

But God gave us the natural right to self-defense that is constitutionally enshrined in the Second Amendment. It’s time for Jews to embrace it.

Get a firearm and learn how to use it.

There is a very famous phrase that states, “God made man, but Samuel Colt made them equal.” Firearms are equalizers. I understand that many Jews are afraid of firearms and don’t want them around. But it’s time that you educate yourself. Lastly, it’s time to stop believing that it can’t happen to you; it can happen in your synagogue, on the streets, or in your local market.

Arm yourself. Train. Become proficient. Survive.

“Never Again” means nothing if you are not willing to do something about it.


Yehuda Remer is an author of numerous children’s books on Second Amendment education and the founder of The Pew Pew Jew Brand.  You can follow him on Instagram and Twitter @thepewpewjew.

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