One possible approach to the notion of exceptionism is to do something that we Jews are so very good at: love critically.
“We are tired and we are hurting.” This heartrending statement is one I heard over and over again from our siblings of color; in the media, on the internet and in real life, as I find myself listening and reading and sitting with the force of this reality today.
There’s a Dutch saying ‘er op of er onder!’, which translates literally as ‘on top of it or underneath’, meaning that we will either succeed gloriously or fail spectacularly but we need to give it everything we’ve got because the time is now.
The cruelty and mystery of Leviticus 18:22 and 20:1 cannot be understated. Embedded among cultic taboos circumscribing forbidden intimate relations in Parashat Acharei Mot, and juxtaposed with verses exhorting ethical conduct in K’doshim, stands the prohibition against ‘offering up offspring to Molekh’.