Bobbi Fiedler, who rode an anti-school busing platform to political prominence, stood out as the potential vanguard for Jewish conservatives when The Jewish Journal profiled her as its first cover story in February 1986. The Journal recently caught up with the still-active Fiedler, 69, between civic activities.
The High Risk Nonprofit Security Enhancement Act of 2004 currently before Congress would allocate $100 million in grants and up to $250 million in government-guaranteed loans for security improvements to nonprofit organizations in 2005, with similar amounts in 2006 and 2007, along with $50 million in grants to law enforcement.
Two years after the USA Patriot Act became law, Jewish groups are still searching for the balance between law enforcement and civil liberties.
The passage of the legislation in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks divided Jewish groups who were ambivalent about the legislation from allies in the civil-rights community that immediately sought to have the law revoked.
The central reason for the Jewish groups' hesitancy to defend civil liberties -- one of the causes Jews generally champion -- is that the act's provisions were designed to target groups viewed as hostile to Jews.
There's enough work to go around for everyone in teaching tolerance and diversity to law enforcement in California, according to the Anti-Defamation League and the Simon Wiesenthal Center.