The natural, instinctive, human reaction to this news is an instant tsunami of Dad Jokes. But I’ll leave all the lazy “give him a hand” and “hope this has a happy ending” hackery to Schefter’s Twitter followers. To my way of thinking, this deserves better. I’m taking a Big Picture view of this one.
The Jews invented a great word that use sparingly and only when the person deserves it: mensch. It’s defined as “a person of integrity and honor.” Mr. Kraft is a mensch. And as one of his fellow mensches Albert Einstein once famously put it, “Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.”
Think of the outrageous dichotomy going on here. On the one hand, you’ve got this man leading a trip to the Holy Land. This spiritual journey to what is basically the high school of all the world’s major religions. Bringing with him a tour group with the kind of social and ethnic diversity you only see in college brochures and Benetton ads:
And being given one of that nation’s highest honors. The kind of thing normally reserved for people like Einstein or Oskar Schindler. And he’s handing the million dollars in prize money right back to the country that awarded it to him, to fight hatred.
Now let’s contrast that to what’s still going on in Florida. Because as this internationally renown philanthropist is being celebrated on sacred soil for the works he does, he’s still being prosecuted by small-minded career politicians down in America’s Dong. He and other citizens are still victims of illegal videotaping from blindly ambitious corruptocrats who were looking to make a name for themselves. He’s still being threatened with release of those tapes. Media outlets are still suing to get their greedy fingers and eyeballs on those videos.
Meanwhile, I’m still waiting for a call back from the spokespeople from two of these prosecutors who couldn’t shut up about the case when it first broke, Martin County Sheriff William Snyder:
… and State’s Attorney David Aronberg:
And when the phone don’t ring, I’ll know it’s them.
It’s just outrageous to think you can be applauded around the globe for all the work that you do to impact people’s lives in a positive and spiritual way, and still have to defend yourself against slimy, opportunistic hicks abusing their power.
But enough of that. This shouldn’t be a time for anger, hard as that may be. This is a time to honor the newest recipient of the Jewish Nobel Prize, my close personal friend, Mr. Kraft. Mazel Tov! L’Chaim!