web analytics
November 25, 2014 / 3 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance
Blogs
Sponsored Post
IDC Herzliya Campus A Day on Campus

To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.



Security and the Belt

At the door to the building, I put my purse and a bag on the guard's table...but he wasn't looking at them. He was looking at me...and down at the belt.
belt and guard

Add to that, I was dressed “strangely”. My shoulder doesn’t tolerate cold – I’m wearing a lose fitting black shawl…on a bright, sunny, warm day because otherwise my shoulder can hurt deep inside. A shawl or a large coat can hide so much…and I have a strange belt.

The fact that my arm is braced to my body was hidden by the shawl…all he could see is loose-fitted clothing and a strange looking belt around my torso.

Not enough to confirm – but enough to ask. Enough to stand out. Enough to hesitate. Not enough to raise the alarm. It was all there in his eyes. I don’t fit profile…but it’s possible…anything is possible and you don’t bet with people’s lives. “What’s the belt?”

“I had shoulder surgery,” I explained quickly. “I had a tear in my shoulder and…” In that same instance, I knew what he was thinking, wondering. And as I spoke, desperate to make it clear, I realized I was already wasting my time – my voice is American despite being here 20 years. My Russian/Polish ancestors have given me skin that is shades lighter than my brothers and sisters who moved here from Arab lands and lighter than the skin color of some of my cousins who have sometimes come to blow themselves up. It isn’t racism; it is reality. It is profiling but it saves time and lives.

My explanation makes sense because it is truth and it puts back in order the image he sees before him – a belt for medical reasons…yes, that’s what it looks like. She was sick…or hurt, and so she wears a shawl for warmth, even on an impossibly warm, sunny, beautiful day, in the center of Jerusalem.

“Refuah shalyma,” he answered with a smile. It is a traditional Jewish response to someone who is hurt or sick – you should have a complete recovery.

I thanked him and walked slowly to my office. It bothered me that I had put that question, that hesitation in his mind. Was he facing a suicide bomber that broke profile? I know, I can imagine, the parts of his brain fighting each other – she looks one way, but has the belt…she’s wearing a shawl…ah, American accent, Jewish, speaks Hebrew, an explanation…no threat.

It never occurred to me that the belt would be questioned and in a while, I’ll be glad it was. But I’ll be happier when I can take it off completely and blend back into the obvious.

Visit A Soldier’s Mother.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

3 Responses to “Security and the Belt”

  1. Rina Gray says:

    In Israel it's better be safe, than sorry.

  2. Tzirël Shâffreñ says:

    A dose of reality. The world worries about how the poor Palestinians have to go through checkpoints and how dehumanizing it is and how it makes movement so very difficult. But somehow the world conveniently forgets that we, too, have to go through checkpoints and guards everywhere because of the ever present threat of suicide bombers targeting civilians. They made their beds by constantly attacking us (read the history of the region). But we, too, have to pay the price. It's akin to civilians having to put up window bars and alarms and motion sensors and have civilian patrols because of increased crime, and the criminals complaining that they are being profiled and inconvenienced.

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Posted to Twitter in Ferguson, MO by St. Louis County Police: "Bricks thrown at police, 2 police cars burned, gun seized by police. Tonight was disappointing."  Their motto is, "To protect and serve."
Pro-ISIS Group Says ‘Use Ferguson Flames to Fuel Terror in America’
Latest Blogs Stories
Doug Goldstein

Find out how to set goals and take better care of your finances.

Does this look like a scene where Israeli police might have shot "two Palestinian civilians," as CNN claimed?

As events over the last couple of weeks amply demonstrate, the status quo isn’t working out either

Australian Ambassador to Israel ran to the hospital in J’m to visit the wounded and to donate blood

Kafiyeh in Ferguson

Those celebrating violence with “No Justice No Peace” signs are opposed to both justice and peace.

Pop quiz: The shortest book ever written? “Palestinian History and Positive Contributions” text book

We are the continuing generations from our Father Avraham who was given this Land by our L-rd.

When a country supports ($) the PA or Gaza or “recognizes,” “Palestine,” they promoting terrorism.

There is no question whatsoever that Odeh was behind the fatal bombing of a SuperSol market in 1969

As we Jews returned to the Holy Land and prayed at our holy sites, forces fighting holiness came too

Channel 10 TV published on Sunday a poll they commissioned asking Israeli Arabs a rather straightforward but important question:

Today”s discussion: “The effects of current geopolitical situation around the world on investing.”

According to PM Netanyahu, the bill would enshrine full equality under law to all Israeli citizens.

Master Sergeant Zidan Saif (Zt”L) a Druze from the Galilee, was shot and killed saving Jewish lives.

President Rivlin’s recent statements are only half right, and that’s why he’s completely wrong.

This is our song “Learn to Love;” May joy and light be restored to Jerusalem speedily in our days.

I have a dream…President Obama will go to that prison, Pardon Jonathan Pollard and set him free

More Articles from Paula Stern
candles on tracks

I love that most of my kids don’t actually read this blog – it gives me a freedom.

KL Majdanek. Mglisty paŸdziernikowy poranek 2008

The smell may be gone, but the air remains poisoned by the hatred.

My son continues to move slowly towards the army while working to complete his final year in high school.

It’s a strange feeling to known that a missile is flying towards your country and there is nothing you can do about it.

I’ll start by explaining that in Israel, a common phrase is “yehiye b’seder” – it will be okay.

At one point the Dr. asked me if I was famous because of the blog…

There are ashes that remain in the ovens, ashes piled into a mountain in Maidanek.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/a-soldiers-mother/security-and-the-belt/2013/10/14/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: