If I were to confess a strong dislike for Canada, I would be considered ‘anti-Canadian’. If I were to say that I disliked the United States, I would be considered ‘anti-American’ and if I were to say that I disliked Israel, I would be considered ‘anti-Semitic’. Whoa! What? Not a chance.
According to the Encyclopaedia Britannica, a Semite is “..a person speaking one of a group of related languages, presumably derived from a common language; Semitic. The term came to include Arabs, Akkadians, Canaanites, some Ethiopian and Armanaean tribes including Hebrews. Semitic tribes migrated from the Arabian Peninsula circa 2500BC to the Mediterranean coast, Mesopotamia, the Nile Delta…in Phoenicia…in Sumer…and Palestine.”
According to the Wikipedia, “The term Semite means a member of any of various ancient and modern Semitic-speaking peoples originating in the Near East, including; Akkadians (Assyrians and Babylonians), Eblaites, Ugarites, Canaanites, Phoenicians (including Carthaginians), Hebrews (Israelites, Judeans and Samaritans), Ahlamu, Arameans, Chaldeans, Amorites, Moabites, Edomites, Hyksos, Arabs, Nabateans, Maganites, Shebans, Sutu, Ubarites, Dilmunites, Bahranis, Maltese, Mandaeans, Sabians, Syriacs, Mhallami, Amalekites, Palmyrans and Ethiopian Semites.
Now that is a lot of different peoples to dislike, and since I had to look up many of the above mentioned people just to find out who they were, I cannot be guilty of disliking all of them.
If I were to use the same logic that supports today’s headlines which scream ‘Anti-Semitism on the rise!” and applied it to disliking Canada, I would be guilty of disliking Cree, Blackfoot, Dene, Iroquois, Crow, Dakota, English, French, Asian, South American, Arabic or any other of the dozens of tribes, cultures and language groups that make up Canada. I will save my usual ‘colonial’ rant that I give to ignorant Europeans who say that the history of North America began with the white man.
So! Next time I say that I do not like the stand or actions of the country or government of Israel; you will know that I am not referring to any of the thirty-odd Semitic cultures listed above. I am referring to all people of every race, creed and colour who say that the history of the Mediterranean coast west of Jordan began in 1948.