I live in a very multicultural area, and my new friend at uni and I had a convo at the library and we did one of those friend group ethnic background things, it got to me and I said I’m jewish, she said that’s cool I’m a atheist, I said I’m also a atheist.
She seemed confused and said that’s impossible, if ur Jewish you can’t be a atheist, where do Jews even come from?
Anyway I tried explaining to them, I thought I was making progress over the past year , my other friend was saying it’s like being a atheist Hindu, and I tried to tell him more like atheist Indian…
but we talked about Einstein today before we had a big math final, and how cool his name was and then one of them said his last name is German, and I said, no his last name is jewish. They all looked at me like I was stupid and said , yes he was a Jewish German, so his name is German. I tried explaining they are wrong, but then one of them asked if I’ve ever been to temple, and I said no and she called me a hypocrite. (I’ve been to temple ~4-6 times over all, I’m also vp of my campus jewish students association).
These are my friends and I would like them to understand, but it’s also how most ppl on my campus are like, (we have a very small Jewish population)
For example, last year I was studying in my dorm after coming back from a Jewish event, and I had my kippah on (I only wear at jewish events / on way to them) and my Roomate and her friends came in and this kid asked why I was wearing a “Jew hat, you can’t be jewish you have red hair”, and I was talking to someone who at the time I considered a friend about it and , my x friend agreed with them “you really shouldn’t be wearing a kippah, ur not jewish ur a atheist”
How would you recommend going about this the next time it happens?
I tried comparing the Jewish ppl to Greeks and Egyptians and asked them if someone could be Greek and not worship Zeus or Egyptian and not believe in RA, but then they asked if I thought someone could be ethnically Christian, and I said no and they compared it to that.
I mind a little as a few of the times I went home and cried over the forced identity conflict (which isn’t a conflict I am a Jewish person and a atheist)