Martin Peretz’ Yom Kippur Atonement in The New Republic

Remember in early September when Marty Peretz, the publisher of The New Republic wrote:

But, frankly, Muslim life is cheap, most notably to Muslims. And among those Muslims led by the Imam Rauf there is hardly one who has raised a fuss about the routine and random bloodshed that defines their brotherhood. So, yes, I wonder whether I need honor these people and pretend that they are worthy of the privileges of the First Amendment which I have in my gut the sense that they will abuse.

Now (yesterday), on the eve of Yom Kippur, this from him:

This is the eve of Yom Kippur, or the Day of Atonement. Introspection is the order of the day. The Jewish tradition divides sin into two categories, sins against God and sins against man, and insists that God can forgive the former but not the latter, because only the sinned against have the power to absolve the sin. This is why the asking of forgiveness is an act of supreme importance in this season. I myself have much to ask forgiveness for, and much of this asking will be done in private, as is appropriate. But there are sins that are committed in public, and in this past year I have publicly committed the sin of wild and wounding language, especially hurtful to our Muslim brothers and sisters. I do not console myself that many other Americans at this moment are committing the same transgressions, against others. I allowed emotion to run way ahead of reason, and feelings to trample arguments. For this I am sorry.

May all who fast tonight and tomorrow have (as Americans Jews say) an easy fast — but not too easy, because the contemplation of one’s flaws and culpabilities is a difficult task, and I wish us all luck with it.

Almost all comments to the latest words from Peretz on The New Republic site are favorable. This one caught my attention because it is the way I feel:

Thank you for posting an unambiguous statement of regret. I was looking for the subscription info so I could cancel my subscription when I saw this post. So very glad that I now feel comfortable continuing my subscription.

Read all the comments here: Martin Peretz Apologies For The Sin Of Wounding Language | The New Republic

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