Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Where does Nathan come from?

There was an interesting comment at the tail end of posts to my comment about "Freedom of Speech."
The writer asks about my background, and rightfully so. It's important to know a person's history in order to understand how and why they react to a situation.
I'm the product of a Jewish father who married a Christian, against the will of his strict Orthodox parents. My parents eloped. My mother was eventually accepted into the family.
We have no record of any remaining relatives in Ukraine, due to the Soviet pogroms of the early 1900's. My father was strongly affected by the horrors of World War II, and made it clear to my siblings and me that intolerance and hatred have no place in this world.
My parents joined a fundamentalist Christian movement in the early 1950's, excited by the concept of sharing that was presented by the movement's founder. Sadly, the founder died and his sons have turned the movement into what has all appearances of a cult.
We left the movement about the time it was changing, and have not been allowed to communicate with friends we left behind.
After settling in Connecticut, my parents marched in protest of the Vietnam War, and my father led the legal battle to allow a syngagogue to move into the town where I grew up.
While doing a photography promotion, my wife and I traveled across America for eight years before our only son was born. We've been in 46 states, and have seen how  people across America all have the same desire for family and a safe refuge.
I believe this gives me good insight into tolerance and oppression. Perhaps this will give our readers some insight into my reasons for standing up to the actions of Prata and the present town council.
Nathan Tsukroff