It is sometimes easy to forget that we live in a world where kindness abounds. The news is dominated by stories which can lead one to think that — to reverse Dr Pangloss — everything is for the worst in this worst of all possible worlds.
But, for every racist political leader, terrorist and criminal, there are many more people going about their lives with unremarked and entirely normal decency.
Last week, for example, there were any number of families offering a place at their Seder to strangers and the lonely. It is what we do — and would not usually warrant mention.
But, as we report, the custom took on a digital twist this Pesach with journalist James Masters’s “Share My Seder” initiative, helping people as far away as New York and Milan who had nowhere to go.
The rise of technology is often seen as a problem to be dealt with; this shows how the impact of technology lies in what we make of it. It is up to us to shape the future.
To pursue the same theme, if the appalling assault on Osher Band in Ashkelon shows humanity at its worst, the response by more than 50 rabbis and religious leaders in Israel is welcome.
The 15-year-old transgender pupil had been bullied for months before being attacked — and was pilloried by her own school.
Now, a group of rabbis from across the religious spectrum have made clear that such “baseless hatred” violates the Torah. Our own Chief Rabbi has spoken in similar vein but there remain too many rabbis who are driven by intolerance.