Jewish Journal

Letters to the Editor: Foie Gras ban, JCC closures, being a mensch

Posted on Jun. 13, 2012 at 3:05 pm

Praise for Ban on Foie Gras

In the June 8 Graduation section, I read about an 18-year-old young lady who helps rehabilitate abused horses and is moving into a nursing program with the goal of becoming an orthopedic surgeon (“Healing Others, and Herself”). I am so proud of our community and its compassionate heritage.

On the other hand, I am appalled to read on the “Foodaism” page, regarding the ban of foie gras, that several chefs claimed “the ducks like to be engorged,” thus defending cruelty by claiming the victims enjoy it (“Duck Liver and the Sixth Taste,” June 8).

The article also tells us chefs “resent being told by non-chefs what they can and can’t serve.” Chefs don’t like to be force-fed rules? Ducks and geese don’t like to have pipes rammed down their throats two or three times daily to be pumped so full that some have died from ruptured organs and others can barely stand due to their engorged livers. Two rescued from a leading foie gras producer were being eaten alive by rats because they could not move.

Hats off to California! Welcome, and long live the ban.

Marilyn Russell
Los Angeles

Closure of JCCs Is a Real Loss

As someone who until last week worked at the Milken JCC building for the Jewish Free Loan Association, I was witness to the demise of the vibrant programs for seniors and the nursery school. Those children represent our future no less than the jFed generation (“Fueling the jFed Generation,” June 1). That Federation could have saved the JCCs and chose not to breaks my heart. Travel to any city, especially smaller ones, and the JCCs are the communal center for people of all ages in the community. How sad that a city like ours cannot boast of thriving Jewish centers.

I am happy that New Community Jewish High School will have a beautiful new home, but what a price our community has paid. Whether it is the fault of the JCCs or Federation is really irrelevant. We should be embarrassed and ashamed by all of this.

Pearl Taylor
Sherman Oaks

First, Be a Mensch

The article “Dear Graduates” (June 1) by Rabbi Michael Gotlieb was wonderful. Notwithstanding his sagacious advice to new graduates, I would add one other thought: The ultimate degree or appellation that one can earn is “mensch” — a title that “good Jews” strive to attain their entire lives. The benefits and rewards of earning the title mensch far outweigh any degree awarded by any educational institution.

Michael Waterman

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