It has become a truism of Jewish community life in recent years that students are on the front line, facing verbal and occasional physical abuse of the kind that few adults ever have to endure. But one element of student life has moved beyond campus; hate speech is becoming ever more usual in public discourse.
The once outrageous has become the commonplace, and the level of insulting rhetoric directed at Israel and - by default - the Jewish community has become respectable in some quarters. The JC's pages have become a depressing litany of record as, day by day, the unsayable is said and no-one so much as flicks an eyelash in protest. A great weariness of spirit can be detected as yet another attack - whether in the form of Peter Kosminsky's lamentable TV series, The Promise, or the bile spouted by Lib Dem peer Lord Phillips, or the loathsome animosity peddled by Christina Patterson in Wednesday's Independent, to take just some of this week's examples - batters the once proud confidence of British Jews. This country is our home. It gave many of our parents and grandparents refuge from unspeakable horrors. Just what will it take for the establishment to lean over its parapet and conclude that the situation has gone beyond what a civilised democracy should accept?