Letters


A Challenge to J Street

In its April 4 issue, the Forward reported that some Philadelphia Jewish officials objected to the March 27 screening of our film, “The J Street Challenge,” in the City of Brotherly Love (“Tough Road for J Street as It Bids for an Official Place Within the Communal Tent”). We are perplexed. We made the film to air and debate J Street’s views on Zionist policy and its unprecedented approach to our community’s relationship with Israel.Read More


A Bubble Not Burst

Martin Buber tells the story of Rabbi Levi Yitzhak of Berdichev. Before Passover, the great rabbi was inspecting the local matzo factory to make sure it was kosher. Afterward, he said, ”This factory is not kosher.” When the shocked factory owner said, “We have followed all of the laws of kashrut,” the rabbi explained: “The women in this factory work from early morning until late at night. They are laboring too long and too hard. They are not being paid fairly for their labors.”Read More


Dialogue, Not Diktat

A column from March 21, “Only One Way To Change Hillel: Leave,” contains some gross inaccuracies that need to be corrected.Read More


No Conclusive Evidence on Circumcision Rite and Herpes

By Daniel Berman, Brenda Breuer and Awi Federgruen

The Forward suggests the metzitzah b’peh circumcision rite should be curtailed because it may lead to herpes. It is misguided in its medical and policy claims.Read More


Abandoned

In two recent columns, on November 16 and December 21, J.J. Goldberg has written of the Senate coalition that consisted of Southern Democrats and conservative Republicans from the prairie and mountain states that blocked efforts to admit Jewish refugees in the 1930s and 1940s.Read More


True Help

In his recent piece “Who Benefits From Service Trips?” (November 16), Brent Spodek highlights an issue that has long troubled many of us in the Jewish volunteer world: Sometimes service-learning trips for Jews in their 20s and 30s focus more on cultivating “effective Jewish citizens” than on working with communities that could benefit from volunteer service.Read More


Not Stepping Back

The December 21 front-page story on the American Jewish Committee inexplicably repeated an egregious error that the Forward published one year ago.Read More


Not Critics

We were surprised and disappointed by the headline and thrust of your article (“Israelis Stunned By Lack of Help for Sandy Victims,” November 23).Read More


More Than Giving

As a social work advocate, I was delighted to read Joel Berg’s article, “The Ethics of Street Giving” (November 16).Read More


Action, Not Talk

As a Jewish climate activist, I was pleased to see the tight causal linkages drawn by the Forward between climate change and Hurricane Sandy in the November 9 editorial “Sandy’s Lessons.”Read More





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  • This is what the rockets over Israel and Gaza look like from space:
  • "Israel should not let captives languish or corpses rot. It should do everything in its power to recover people and bodies. Jewish law places a premium on pidyon shvuyim, “the redemption of captives,” and proper burial. But not when the price will lead to more death and more kidnappings." Do you agree?
  • Slate.com's Allison Benedikt wrote that Taglit-Birthright Israel is partly to blame for the death of American IDF volunteer Max Steinberg. This is why she's wrong:
  • Israeli soldiers want you to buy them socks. And snacks. And backpacks. And underwear. And pizza. So claim dozens of fundraising campaigns launched by American Jewish and Israeli charities since the start of the current wave of crisis and conflict in Israel and Gaza.
  • The sign reads: “Dogs are allowed in this establishment but Zionists are not under any circumstances.”
  • Is Twitter Israel's new worst enemy?
  • More than 50 former Israeli soldiers have refused to serve in the current ground operation in #Gaza.
  • "My wife and I are both half-Jewish. Both of us very much felt and feel American first and Jewish second. We are currently debating whether we should send our daughter to a Jewish pre-K and kindergarten program or to a public one. Pros? Give her a Jewish community and identity that she could build on throughout her life. Cons? Costs a lot of money; She will enter school with the idea that being Jewish makes her different somehow instead of something that you do after or in addition to regular school. Maybe a Shabbat sing-along would be enough?"
  • Undeterred by the conflict, 24 Jews participated in the first ever Jewish National Fund— JDate singles trip to Israel. Translation: Jews age 30 to 45 travelled to Israel to get it on in the sun, with a side of hummus.
  • "It pains and shocks me to say this, but here goes: My father was right all along. He always told me, as I spouted liberal talking points at the Shabbos table and challenged his hawkish views on Israel and the Palestinians to his unending chagrin, that I would one day change my tune." Have you had a similar experience?
  • "'What’s this, mommy?' she asked, while pulling at the purple sleeve to unwrap this mysterious little gift mom keeps hidden in the inside pocket of her bag. Oh boy, how do I answer?"
  • "I fear that we are witnessing the end of politics in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I see no possibility for resolution right now. I look into the future and see only a void." What do you think?
  • Not a gazillionaire? Take the "poor door."
  • "We will do what we must to protect our people. We have that right. We are not less deserving of life and quiet than anyone else. No more apologies."
  • "Woody Allen should have quit while he was ahead." Ezra Glinter's review of "Magic in the Moonlight": http://jd.fo/f4Q1Q
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