November 1, 2001
Hello, my name is successful professional, social activist, community leader, major UJF donor and Jewish alcoholic ("Dirty Little Secret," Oct. 12).
Last week I attended The Jewish Federation's Addiction Conference. This week I arranged to enter a 30-day in-patient treatment program for substance abuse and addiction. Next week, God willing, I will be on the steps toward recovery.
Thank you Cheri Morgan, Annette Shapiro and others for sharing your stories; as well as to the physicians and clergy for the extra push I needed to seek treatment.
Thank you Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles for providing the platform to publicize that alcoholism and all addiction is a nonsectarian disease; not the giant Jewish shonda that has inhibited me from getting help until now.
Name withheld by request
I am deeply saddened that my friend and colleague, Rabbi John Rosove, has decided to leave the Muslim-Jewish Dialogue of Los Angeles ("Why I'm Leaving the Dialogue," Oct. 26).
There is no excuse for the deplorable articles in the Minaret. To the extent that the authors and editors of the Minaret's commentaries are themselves dialogue participants, they can and will be held accountable for their irresponsible actions. But without a dialogue, there is no possibility that they will ever be meaningfully educated about the enormity of their offense.
As for the foolish and offensive comments of Salam Al-Marayati, he has personally apologized for these remarks in private meetings, and publicly reiterated that apology in no less a forum than The New York Times. Al-Marayati has also reaffirmed in print that he accepts the right of the State of Israel to exist next to a Palestinian state.
It is vital that lines of communication remain open between Los Angeles' Muslim and Jewish communities, especially during these critical times. We are all in this together. That is why we will keep talking. It is also why we intend to work to broaden the scope of our dialogue to include more representatives from both of our communities. As we do so, we hope Rosove will consider rejoining us.
Daniel Sokatch, Executive Director, Progressive Jewish Alliance
I share the disappointment of other Orthodox leaders in America and Israel that Rabbi Uri Regev of the Religious Action Center chose to compare Orthodox leaders with the Islamic fundamentalists who attacked the World Trade Center and the Pentagon ("Reform Leader Angers Orthodox," Oct. 26).
I wish he would have used the opportunity presented by unprecedented attacks against American and Israeli targets to unify rather than divide.
Rabbi Meyer H. May, President, Rabbinical Council of California
I do not think that ultra-Orthodox Israelis can be equated with terrorists, but I can understand Rabbi Uri Regev's frustration.
I believe that the ultra-Orthodox present a greater threat to the State of Israel than any outside force. A democracy would not force its non-Orthodox citizens to leave the country in order to become legally married. And the ultra-Orthodox divisively accuse all other practicing Jews of destroying Judaism.
Martin J. Weisman, Westlake Village
I am a second-grade teacher in LAUSD. Protecting children from toxic chemicals at school is great ("Toxic Crusaders," Oct. 19), but, as usual, the devil is in the details.
LAUSD has not just banned toxic pesticides, but also cleaning products and dog and cat repellents.
Yes, children will no longer be exposed to toxic chemicals at school. Instead, they now will be exposed to toxic germs from other children on surfaces at school, leading to more absences and worse illnesses.
Or-Li Wallace, Valley Village