February 7, 2008
Election coverage, CAMERA, illegals, Goldberg, Spinka, Auschwitz
That old joke has no place in your paper (Cover, Feb. 1). Jews, like everyone else, should be voting for who is best for the country; not who is best for the Jews.
In addition to being wrong, it is grist for the mill of anti-Semites.
What is good for the country is good for everyone, including the Jews.
It is important that you printed Andrea Levin's (of CAMERA) piece clarifying the dangerous illusions of Rob Eshman's take on Sabeel, Ateek and All Saints Church ("CAMERA, Sabeel and The Jewish Journal," Feb. 1). Could we get Ms. Levin to take over the job of Editor of the Journal? It would definitely be an act of pikuach nefesh [preservation of life], big time.
I was away and just got around to reading your Jan. 25-31 issue ("Butt Out"). I believe it deserves a Pulitzer Prize. Eshman's gutsy editorial, Gorenberg's golden words and an array of fabulous articles by authors who represent a broad scope of Jewish and non-Jewish thoughts and actions that impact local and global issues. Great job!
Martin J. Weisman
I write to thank Rob Eshman for your "Butt Out" editorial in the Jan. 25 edition of The Journal.
As you have on many occasions before, you have made an eloquent pitch for engaging in dialogue with those with whom we disagree. Sabeel, and the North American Friends of Sabeel may stand for many things that are controversial in the Jewish community, but surely it is the prerogative of All Saints Church to host them and enable us to know -- rather than speculate on -- their position.
The question that is tougher for me is: am I also obligated to listen to the views of CAMERA?
So here we have it. Two blatant Israel bashers (if not outright anti-Semites) are getting together, and Eshman -- being the watchdog of free speech he is -- orders the Jews to "butt out" for daring to speak up! Those pesky CAMERA Jews should shut up, unless of course, they agree with Eshman's worldviews.
I'm ashamed to admit that under the cover of the night, and away from the watchful eyes of The Jewish Journal, I sometimes read CAMERA's forbidden stuff. Please, Mr. Eshman, don't be angry with me.
Come to think of it, CAMERA is terribly needed in here, perhaps now more than ever.
La Canada Flintridge
As you note, there is a threat to Christians in the Middle East from Islamic attacks against them. Downplaying this threat as a Christian problem misses the point that neither Jews nor Christians are acceptable for some in the Islamic world. Ateek and Sabeel are so consumed with their anti-Judaism that they do not see that the seeds of their own destruction are sown with the potential destruction of Israel. Criticizing Israel without criticizing the Palestinians is at the root of CAMERA's objections to the efforts of the liberal churches sponsoring Sabeel.
Samuel M. Edelman
Dean, College of Arts and Sciences
The American Jewish University
Illegal aliens are tax consumers ("Immigration: Time to Share the Heavy Lifting," Feb. 1). According to a recent report by State Assemblyman Chuck DeVore, member of the California Budget Commission, it costs Californians $10.5 billion a year to educate, medicate and incarcerate illegal aliens.
Aiding and abetting, hiring and exploiting illegal aliens is a federal offense punished by a fine of $3,000 per illegal and six months in prison.
Having spent years living and working in Mexico and witnessing first-hand how they treat strangers, travelers and "illegal aliens" that just happen to make it to the northern border region, and that includes the vast majority of the civilian population, I have no sympathy with their so-called plight here in the U.S. The "good" rabbi may want to rethink his position regarding his desire to play with the American people under the guise of Judaism.
Dr. Leonard I. Antick
I disagree with the notion that we should find a sensible way to give the illegals citizenship. The ones that snuck across our border will have to go home or be sent home. The ones that overstayed their visas will have to come forward and be checked out, fingerprinted, DNA, and made sure [they] haven't committed a crime here, then possibly pay a fine and go to the back of the line.
Should Israel Care?
While it is Israel's prerogative to negotiate Jerusalem's municipal boundaries, Diaspora Jewry should have a right to veto any proposal to relinquish places at the core of Jewish history, namely the Old City, archaeological City of David and Temple Mount ("Why Should Israel Care What We Think About Jerusalem," Jan. 25).
First, if Israel surrendered security control over the Temple Mount, it would leave the safety of visitors there or to the adjoining Western Wall to the mercy of Palestinians who, in the past, have bombarded Jewish worshippers with rocks and boulders at the slightest pretext.
Second, it would undermine the very reason for having a Jewish state in the Middle East. The Temple Mount is not only the holiest site in the world for Jews, but also a singular national symbol and a testament to Israel's historical right to exist.
Finally, it would invite an irreparable archaeological crime and an assault on history itself. Archaeologist Eilat Mazar has reportedly uncovered the foundations of King David's royal palace in the City of David, and the Temple Mount may contain not only the remains of the temples, but also biblical-era archives, temple artifacts, and perhaps even the Ark.
These are not just Israeli concerns -- they are concerns for all Jews.