Up & Coming Weekly

February 21, 2023

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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Page 19 of 24

WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM FEBRUARY 22 - 28, 2023 UCW 19 Jan. 27 was International Holocaust Remembrance Day, established 17 years ago by the United Nations. Jew- ish communities tend to put more em- phasis on Yom HaSho'ah [in April], in Hebrew "Holocaust Day," which was inaugurated in 1951, just 6 years after the collapse of Nazi Germany and the liberation of their concentration and death camps spread across Europe. Beyond being older, it may make sense for the Jewish community to have a unique day for commemorat- ing the Holocaust, which includes its own religious elements. Yet, there may also be a value in an annual occasion dedicated to its recognition and edu- cation under the auspices of the nearly universal international organization of nations. Being in February, and coming just two weeks after Martin Luther King Day, we Americans find ourselves in the midst of Black History Month. Our nation, even before its founding, has had a long, complicated, and far too often profoundly troubling history with those of African heritage. We continue to wrestle with the chal- lenges caused by what is frequently referred to as America's original sin. Undoubtedly, there is real value in recognizing both the many, usu- ally unappreciated, contributions of African Americans to our nation, as well as in understanding the historical reality and ongoing suffering caused by slavery and its aftermath, which has impacted not only the Black commu- nity, but whether we realize it or not, the United States as a whole. At its best, times dedicated to re- membering, highlighting, and better comprehending the suffering endured by any group, should help us not only to improve our understanding of them, but also to recognize and re- spond appropriately to all who suffer. Alarming to me, especially since I perceive it to be on the rise, is the seeming need among some in the Jew- ish and Black communities to debate whose suffering has been the greatest. And this debate is shared by other communities, here and around the globe, who also have experienced too much suffering. But, it is a pernicious and point- less exercise. It is impossible to settle definitively such an argument. Even worse, I find it perverse for anyone to want to win the battle for the greatest suffering. Yet most disturbing to me is the accompanying implication of this absurd competition, which minimizes the suffering of another community if I can "prove" that my community has suffered more. No one has a corner on the market of suffering. ere is plenty of suffer- ing here and around the world, now and in the past, and we should have sufficient compassion for all who suffer, without feeling the need to quantify the depths of someone's pain before we will deign to accord them a morsel of sympathy. It is true that different cases of suf- fering may require different approach- es to attempt to alleviate them. It may even be true that in a world with finite resources, we may have to make hard choices about how and when to al- locate the resources we do have. But, we should care about everyone's suf- fering, whether or not we are always yet in a position to deal with it as we would like. Let us never undermine the reality and genuineness of pain and suffer- ing; whether our own or anyone else's. We are all entitled to compassion and caring; and we should both give it and accept it freely. e nature of humanity seems that one or another form of suffering will always be with us. Yet, let us also make it the nature of humanity that we always seek to combat suffering, to the best of our ability, wherever it exists. FAITH Everyone's suffering is real by RABBI DOV GOLDBERG RABBI DOV GOLDBERG Comments? Editor@upandcom- ingweekly.com. 910-484-6200. Now Open! At AmeriHealth Caritas North Carolina, we believe in helping communities stay well. Find the support you need to get healthy — and stay healthy. Enjoy these benefits at no cost to you: • Health screenings • Cooking classes • Exercise classes • Job search assistance • Food pantry 4101 Raeford Road Fayetteville Helping you achieve your goals for a healthy life. A Medicaid managed care health plan. Learn more at www.amerihealthcaritasnc.com, or call 1-855-375-8811.

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