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Parshat Korach

07/01/2022 09:15:58 AM


Rabbi Benjamin Samuels

Parshat Korach is both a match and a mismatch for the 4th of July weekend. Korach’s declaration of independence and failed rebellion outlines a contrasting narrative to the successful rebellion and independence of the American colonies. This coming Monday, the 4th of July, we will celebrate the 246th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence. It was only on September 17, 1787 that 39 of the 55 delegates of the Constitutional Convention affixed their signatures to the Constitution of the United States. The Bill of Rights followed on October 2, 1789, featuring the first 12 amendments to the Constitution. The last amendment - the 29th Amendment - was passed on May 20, 1992. The United States of America began as “These United States,” referring to the original thirteen colonies. Over the almost two and a half centuries since our independence, we have developed into “The United States,” counting 50 states and 14 territories. Our country’s grand experiment in democratic governance has never been easy, and has been beset by acrimonious politics from the very beginning. And yet, despite the deep divisions that sometimes seem to imperil our union, and the significant national challenges we face at this moment in history, this coming Monday we celebrate the freedoms we enjoy, and affirm the importance of our democracy. The long arc of the history of The United States of America has bent towards freedom and justice. Patriotically celebrating the 4th of July honors this trajectory.

Shabbat Shalom and Happy 4th of July, Rav Benjie

Wed, February 28 2024 19 Adar I 5784