Aly Raisman became the first U.S. woman to win gold in the floor exercise apparatus final at the Olympics after being awarded the bronze on balance beam. She did her routine to the Jewish folk classic Hava Nagila and the crowd went wild -- cheering, stomping, and clapping to that crazy Jewish beat. Righteous!
All the pandering to savages and ugliness directed at the Jews and Israel at these embarrassing Olympic games was washed away by a young Jewish girl in a single, glorious moment. Spectacular.
Were it not for young Aly and her wedding dance/bat mitzvah accompaniment, the Munich dead may have never gotten their due.
“I am Jewish, that’s why I wanted that floor music,’’ Raisman said.
“I wanted something the crowd could clap to, especially being here in London.
“It makes it even much more if the audience is going through everything with you. That was really cool and fun to hear the audience clapping.’’
Raisman’s eyes opened as wide as the gold medal she would win when the judges announced her score of 15.600 points after her mistake-free routine.
Her top finish was the first by an American woman in the Olympic floor exercise, and the win gave Raisman her second gold medal. Raisman admitted the 40th anniversary of the Munich Games made her “hora” gold even more special.
“She is a focused person,” said Rabbi Keith Stern, spiritual leader of Temple Beth Avodah in Newton Centre, Mass., where the Raisman family are members.
“She’s very proud and upfront about being Jewish. Neither she nor her family explicitly sought to send a message. But it shows how very integrated her Jewish heritage is in everything that she does.”
Stern said he remembers picking up young Aly from preschool, and never imagined she’d be some sort of megastar.
He described the US team captain as a big sister-type who is a mother hen to all her younger siblings.
“I can’t wait to have her at the temple to talk about her experience,” he said.
“I know her sister’s bat mitzvah is coming up, so maybe I’ll catch up with her then.”
Stern said that he, too, was stunned by the IOC’s refusal to hold a moment of silence.
“I’m happy to hear any other explanation,” Stern said. “But short of some racist grudge somebody is holding, I can’t figure out why it would be a terrible thing to do.”
Stern said he watched the routine and was blown away. Even so, he said he is more proud of Raisman’s gold mettle than he is of the new jewelry around her neck.
“I have to say, the statement just warmed me to the very depths of my being,” Stern said.
He compared it to the iconic black-power, raised-fist protest made by track stars John Carlos and Tommie Smith on the medal stand at the 1968 Mexico City Games.
“They’re not going to forget that,” the rabbi said. “I certainly won’t.”
(Read more in the NY Post)
"Palestinian Murderers, Israeli Athletes and an American Gymnast" J. Christian Adams
The International Olympic Committee has refused to memorialize the murder of Israeli athletes at the 1972 Olympics in Munich. The reason isn’t hard to guess. The images of discord, where athletes from muslim countries either leave the field, or where officials from Islamic nations bluster at the inappropriateness of such a tribute, would be shameful and disgusting to sane people around the world. Such evil and inhumanity is best kept under wraps if you want to pretend it doesn’t exist.
In some parts of the world, murder remains as fashionable as it was in parts of Germany in 1943.
Enter one gold medal winning American gymnast – Aly Raisman.
Her floor routine was accompanied by the folk song “Hava Nagila.” She said the choice wasn’t intentional, but was quick to add, “the fact it was on the 40th anniversary [of the Munich murders] is special, and winning the gold today means a lot to me. If there had been a moment’s silence, I would have supported it and respected it.”
C.S. Lewis wrote about the ongoing battle between lightness and dark, and that everyone is a participant whether they know it or not. Courageous acts by individual people are necessary to keep the dark at bay, whether a Marine in a desolate Mideast hell, or a gymnast with the courage to say what needs to be said, even if the IOC doesn’t.