Roberto Loiederman's article, "Living and Working [Il]legally in America" (Sept. 8), achieved its desired results. The Jewish guilt arose in me with each passing word like hot gases about to blow off the top of a volcano.
How can I deny illegal Mexicans and others illegal entry into this country, when some of my own people have done the same thing? It was a very clever way of making me see my own racist tendencies that apparently Loiederman and the editorial staff at The Journal wanted me and other Jews who think like me to see.
It doesn't matter how you try to explain it, some thickheads just will never get it. This is not about race; it is about sovereignty.
This issue is about the giving up of America and all its values and culture. It is about the transformation of that culture into something else, into something foreign.
We have millions of illegals who are draining our resources in this country. Public schools, emergency rooms, city services, to say nothing of the more hazardous conditions on public roads because nonlicensed and noninsured drivers are big problems, especially here in Southern California.
Loiederman must understand that America cannot support Mexico's poor. It is estimated that 15 percent of Mexico's workforce is now living in the United States.
For Loiederman to point to his own background to try and cloud the all-important issue of open borders is a travesty as an American and as a Jew. Once again, I shake my finger at The Jewish Journal and tell you that you ought to be ashamed of yourselves for supporting such positions.
Republicans and Democrats
Shame on the Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC) for making the outrageous and ridiculous assertion that Democrats are "turning their backs on Israel." (Republican Jewish Coalition ads in Jewish Journal, Sept. 8)
It is bad enough for them to deliberately distort the facts. But it is even worse when it is done as part of a reckless strategy to politicize support for Israel -- a strategy that will have negative, long-term consequences for the vital U.S.-Israel relationship.
I readily acknowledge that President George W. Bush, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and many other Republicans have been reliable friends of Israel. But they have been no better friends than the vast majority of Democratic leaders -- including President Bill Clinton, Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid and House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi -- all of whom are unwavering supporters of the Jewish state.
The RJC chose to feature former President Jimmy Carter in their political ads, but notwithstanding his comments to the contrary, he is an outlier on this issue and does not represent the mainstream of Democrats. Even more ludicrous is the notion that Cindy Sheehan speaks for any meaningful number of Democrats on the subject of Israel.
If Democrats wanted to sink to the RJC's level, we could just as easily trot out statements made by a number of prominent Republicans and claim that the GOP, therefore, is hostile to Israel.
In the increasingly polarized American political system, support for Israel is one of the few issues that remains truly bipartisan. This gives Israel confidence that no matter which party occupies the White House or controls the House and Senate, America will always be committed to Israel's security and right to exist free from terror.
The RJC is making a conscious effort to destroy that bipartisan consensus in the pursuit of illusory, short-term political gains. But they are not acting on behalf of Israel when they set one party against the other. This cheap ploy will inject uncertainty into the U.S.-Israel relationship and ultimately make Israel less secure.
If Republican leaders really care about Israel's well-being, then they should renounce the RJC's dangerous campaign and devote their energies to strengthening the longstanding, bipartisan consensus on supporting Israel.
Rep. Howard L. Berman
Does the outrageous ad from the Republican Jewish Coalition ("The Democratic Party Just Abandoned Joe Lieberman," Sept. 15) imply that Larry Greenfield and his compatriots would've supported Lieberman had he won the Democratic primary?
As a liberal who strongly supports Israel and equally strongly opposes the war in Iraq, I resent the portrayal of me and others like me as Democrats, who by voting against Lieberman, would abandon Israel. Can partisan politics in our country get much uglier?
When I was growing up, the term "Jewish Republicans" was an oxymoron. They did not exist.
Now I see in The Journal advertisements for the Republican Jewish Coalition, wherein they castigate Neville Chamberlain as the great appeaser, which he no doubt was. However, they fail to mention that he was the leader of the British Conservative Party, and together with his Foreign Minister, Lord Halifax, were extremely friendly with Hitler.
This party, the Conservatives, was of the same ilk as America's Republican Party, which was adamant in keeping America out of "Europe's War," as they were wont to call it. Well, they can't change history, no matter how they try.
Syd H. Hershfield
It is time for thoughtful Jews who want to preserve Western civilization and Jewish culture and learning for their children and grandchildren to realize that appeasement emboldens our Islamofascist enemies. Appeasement was interpreted as weakness by the Nazis and millions died.
We are fighting a pernicious global enemy that wants to destroy America, Israel, democracy and freedom. We will win this battle only if we understand that our vicious enemy has declared war on us.
We need to understand that the Islamofascists will only respond to strength and commitment. The RJC's Neville Chamberlain advertisement appropriately speaks to this issue. The choice is clear. Either support candidates of either party who condemn Islamofascism and reject appeasement or be prepared to answer to the words of Edmond Burke that evil triumphs only when good men do nothing.
We have inherited a treasure from the past, and it is our responsibility to pass it on to future generations. The appeasement of the left will lead to the death of all that we hold dear.
Dr. Michael A. Wienir
Shame on me for not writing in response to the first group of ads supporting the Republican Party in recent editions.
I would, however, like to reply to Joel Geiderman and Larry Greenfield of the Republican Jewish Coalition of California. Among all the many issues facing our great nation, they chose to reach out to "moderates" of both parties to review and approach the issues of who is better on national security, economic growth, medical liability and tort reform, welfare and entitlement reform, energy independence and education.
While it is up to each of us to decide the big question of who is better on national security, there is no doubt that the president and the GOP-led Congress initiated, conducted and continue to support a war in Iraq that was based on wrong premises.
Yes, let's please review openly and substantially the issues you have brought up and other issues, too, like the quality of our environment; the quality of public education; freedom to have science move us forward, instead of being held back by the far-right wing of certain versions of Christianity and their interpretation of their version of their Bible; freedom for all people, gay or straight, to live and pursue happiness, and so much more.
I am confident that, overall, Democratic principles will win out over time vs. the divisive and deceitful attempts by you and others of your party to win over Jewish voters.
Congratulations to The Jewish Journal for printing the wonderful Torah portion by Rabbi Karen Deitsch ("Within Us," Sept 15). With her insight, Rabbi Deitsch brings us the ancient words of Deuteronomy and with clarity applies them to the present. Rabbi Deitsch writes with modern-day humor and brings to your readers the knowledge of the Jewish sages of old.
Marina del Rey
I wrote a letter to The Jewish Journal that I thought was too critical (and frankly too caustic) to be printed ("Chamberlain Ad," Letters, Sept 15). The Jewish Journal surprised me -- They printed it word for word in the pole position in the Letters section. The Journal again earns my respect for this display of candor in the face of criticism.
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