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“Everyone has a name given to them by their parents, or in my case, my sister. My name, Ortal, was given to me my older sister simply because she loved the name. it was however rather bland, and as a child, I recall envying the other Ethiopian children who had Amharic or Tigrinya names.
I distinctly remember the time in high school when I signed my name on an exam as Mebrahti, which means Light in Tigrinya. It sounded a lot nicer to my ears than Ortal.
Many Ethiopian-Israelis have a birth name as well as a “new” name given to them by the Interior Ministry, school administrators or kindergarten teachers. Names are a symbol of our aspiration to integrate into the local landscape, to be part of the social fabric.
The State of Israel urged its immigrants to change, and they indeed accepted upon themselves the local pattern of names, language, culture and worldview. They accepted but they were not accepted in return. The disparity between them and Israelis whose skin is white can be felt in almost every aspect of our lives: education, employment, police brutality and even Avera Mengistu, rotting in Hamas captivity in Gaza.
But lately there has been an awakening among the Ethiopian community in Israel, they are returning to the practices of their homeland: weddings that are performed by Kessoch (Ethiopian clerics), reclaiming traditional ethnic names and a general Ethiopian cultural awakening.”
JJ Editor's Daily Picks
"THE CAPTURE of the last territory controlled by the Islamic State on Saturday was far from a final victory over the movement, as U.S. commanders and diplomats were careful to emphasize."
"How a Gay Teen, an Internet Nazi, and a Late-Night Rendezvous Turned to Tragedy. When self-loathing meets the new age of online extremism."
"Benjamin Netanyahu ignored the intelligence operations of Beijing and Moscow for too long. Now, the Israeli government is finally paying attention, but it could be too late."
"Former Nick Jr. kids are now reckoning with this all-grown-up intrepid explorer, whose obstacles are a lot bigger than Swiper the Fox. And that is a hard pill to swallow."
"At the end of last week, the three-month Treasury bills' yield rose above the yield for 10-year Treasuries for the first time since 2007, prompting warnings that the U.S. is headed for recession later this year or in early 2020."
"A team of researchers from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev and Technion-Israel Institute of Technology attempted to answer some questions about voting with the help of artificial intelligence (AI)."
"The experts I spoke with all said that the internet had changed the way conspiracies spread, but conspiracies, both dangerous and petty, have always been with us."
"Pop culture today is obsessed with the battle between good and evil. Traditional folktales never were. What changed?"
"Trustful parents allow their children as much freedom as reasonably possible to make their own decisions. They trust their children’s instincts, judgments, and ability to learn from mistakes."
"Arugulagate. In 2007, Barack Obama was in Iowa, speaking as a presidential hopeful to a group of farmers who were worried about the stagnation of their crop prices while America’s grocery bills continued to rise."
"To say that information exists in and of itself is akin to speaking of spin without the top, of ripples without water, of a dance without the dancer, or of the Cheshire Cat’s grin without the cat."
"Ted Cruz replaces the Democrats’ muddled manifesto with a clear and unequivocal exploration of the hatred of Jews and its particular evils."