Letters Nov. 2, 2017


Reasons not to expand settlements beyond barrier

The op-ed “New Trump pressure against settlements is worrisome” (Voices, Oct. 19) states that “friends of Israel” 1) should be concerned about the administration’s push back against settlements and 2) appreciate the administration’s ambivalence to the two-state solution.

As a friend of Israel, I do not agree with either of these two statements. There have always been different strains of Zionism but one fundamental pillar was that the Jewish people have the right to self-determination in a Jewish democratic state. This was embraced by David Ben-Gurion (Labor Zionism) and Ze’ev Jabotinsky (Revisionist Zionism).

Because of simple demographics and math, Israel cannot be both democratic and Jewish if it includes all of the West Bank. I do agree that settlements are not in themselves the obstacle to peace, but expanding beyond the barrier 1) makes Israel less secure, 2) puts the Israel Defense Forces at greater risk, 3) degrades IDF morale and 4) makes Israel less democratic.


Stop settlement expansion beyond the barrier not for the benefit of the Arabs but for Israel.

I believe that writer Stephen Flatow’s religious Zionism is in fact anti-Zionist because it kills the dream of a Jewish democratic state.



NFL relies on good will of community for profits
I read the op-ed “Taking a knee, standing up for justice,” (Voices, Oct. 19).

It seems to me that the writer completely missed the point. The National Football League is a profit-making organization that relies on the good will of the community to sell seats.

Obviously justice is important, but if it doesn’t make a profit, the NFL will not serve as a vehicle to secure justice. Colin Kaepernick should have thought of that before he, and others, took to their knees.



What does the contract say?

“Taking a knee, standing up for justice,” by Rabbi David L. Abramson (Voices, Oct. 19), was enlightening. However, it was not relevant to the issue of “taking a knee.” This is an employment issue and nothing more. The professional athlete must abide by the terms of the signed contract.

If an employee wishes to keep his/her job, then the decision of the employer must be honored. The athletes can do whatever they want on their own time, but not on the playing field.


Silver Spring

A poor translation

Regarding your editorial “Harvey Weinstein is not a Jewish issue” (Editorial, Oct. 19), the phrase “a shanda far di goyim” does not mean a shanda for the goyim. That does not even make sense. Why would it be a shame for non-Jews?

The phrase means a shame before (in front of) goyim. Aside from the mistranslation,

I agree that the Harvey Weinstein situation does not constitute an embarrassment for Jews.

Note, too, that hashtags are not used on Facebook, but on Twitter. You’d have been better off using the term social media since you did not know where or what hashtags are.



Conservative movement intermarriage and rabbis

The article on Conservative rabbis and intermarriage (“Conserva-tives double down on intermarriage,” Oct. 26) defines the problem with the Conservative movement in the 21st century, by example of how their rabbis are treated, as well as their members and potential members when it comes to marriage ceremonies.

I am truly shocked that a Conservative rabbi cannot even attend an intermarriage ceremony.



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  1. Harvey Weinstein DOES constitute an embarrassment for the Jews. As does Ratner, Wieseltier, Weiss, Tobak, Halperin, etc. The Jewish Community needs to address this.


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