The Internets have been fairly abuzz after publication of a letter by right-wing firebrand Baruch Marzel’ urging Israeli supermodel Bar Rafaeli not to marry her on again, off again, on again beau, actor Leonardo DiCaprio. In that letter, Marzel, writing on behalf of Lehava, an organization he runs to help Jewish women extricate themselves from relationships with non-Jewish men, urges Rafaeli not to marry DiCaprio. Marzel writes:
“It is not by chance that you were born Jewish,” wrote Baruch Marzel in a letter he sent Refaeli through her mother (and that promptly appeared in the press). “Your grandmother and her grandmother did not dream that one of their descendants would one day remove the family’s future generations from the Jewish people. Assimilation has forever been one of the enemies of the Jewish people.” … This isn’t personal, wrote Marzel, who was careful to open his letter stressing that he “has nothing against Mr. DiCaprio, who I have no doubt is a talented actor.” Still, he implores Refaeli: “Come to your senses, look forward and back too â€” and not only the present. Don’t marry Leonardo DiCaprio, don’t harm the future generations.”
Won’t someone think of the
children bubbes? Oh the humanity! The problem here isn’t that a concerned individual has taken upon himself to urge a Jewish woman not to marry a non-Jew. People do that all the time. The problem is that this exhortation has received international attention. Ignoramuses the world over believe that Judaism is racist! Never mind that the desire to avoid mixed marriage has nothing to do with race, one can hardly find any place that this has been reported where there aren’t a significant number of comments deriding Marzel for his racism.
The other problem is that Marzel is in fact a racist! Lehava does not seem to be concerned with Jewish men bedding gentile women. Marzel himself claims to have been the right-hand man of Meir Kahane, acting as a spokesman for the American rabbi’s Kach organization for ten years until it was outlawed in Israel for being racist and branded in the US as a terrorist organization.
So yes, by all means if I could send out a personal message to Bar, please don’t marry Leonardo DiCaprio. Mixed marriages are fraught with complications and celebrity marriages are already complicated enough as it is (especially judging by how often you and Leonardo break up)! Of course your children, should you have any, will be fully Jewish, but Bar, will they even identify as Jews once they become adults? Never mind that Marzel nut job. Never mind your bubbes. Don’t marry Leonardo because it’s in your best interest not to.
Oh and also because Leonardo is reportedly gay. You really want to spend the rest of your life as Leo’s beard? Wow. What a waste of your uhm… assets that would be.