Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Potential Energy


I was reading an article called Secrets of a Disappointed Life by David Harris. I mostly talks about how he learned from things about his father; how his father was a teen intellectual wunderkind scientist in Austria before he had to flee the Nazis.

Mr. Harris thought about his father's lost life, the loss of his potential as a great chemist or physicist. And, reading this, I thought about the macrocosm; I thought about how much potential the world has lost, not just because of the Holocaust, but because of all the potential lost when, throughout the centuries Jews were limited in what fields they could go into (for example, Benjamin Disraeli had to convert to Christianity to get into Parliament), Jews were kept from educational institutions, Jews were killed just for being Jews.

I wonder why people are so worried about us that they feel the need to keep us down. I wonder why they don't want to benefit from Jewish brains. I wonder how many Freuds, Einsteins and Salks never had the opportunity to rise to their highest potential because they were born in Syria or they had to flee from the Nazis or they were silenced by the Inquisition. I wonder how much the world has lost in brainpower by dismissing our contributions, by suppressing our creativity, by limiting us. I wonder if the world will ever learn, if they will ever understand what they are giving up by hating Jews and not accepting us for what we are.

And when I do, I wonder where this world would be if prejudice in general didn't exist and no boundaries were put on people and their potential.