July 12: Disturbing article

The Post libeled a great man with six decades of Jewish leadership. “Resignation” is different in implication from what really happened.

July 11, 2013 23:27
3 minute read.

Letters 370. (photo credit: REUTERS/Handout )

The party’s over

Sir, – One night last week my house was broken into and my husband had to chase the burglar out while my children slept in the next room. This has become a regular occurrence in our neighborhood of French Hill.

Over the past year there have been increased attacks on residents here by people from the nearby neighborhood of Isawyia.

Just before the burglary of my own apartment, another apartment in my building was broken into and everything was stolen. The week before, a child was hit by a car and the driver drove back to the safety of Isawyia. The same week a young girl was attacked on her way home from school. The week before that, five fires were started on Shabbat, including in a children’s park. In addition, the neighborhood is constantly being tagged with graffiti that says “Isawi.”

The list goes on and on.

Our community has organized a neighborhood watch, contacted local media and even reached out to several members of Knesset. But the question remains: Where is Mayor Nir Barkat? Elections are just around the corner. Although there are still no concrete challengers it is widely known that Barkat is going to need the votes of the mostly secular French Hill and nearby Pisgat Ze’ev.

In a recent conversation a Barkat supporter told me about the great things the mayor has done for the city. The list included the marathon, the Old City light show and the Formula 1 event. These are all nice, but a mayor’s primary responsibility is to ensure the security and safety of the city’s citizens.

Instead of spending money on such grand affairs and city-wide parties, why not put a security guard at our park, close the entrance to Isawyia that flows into French Hill, or install security cameras at every corner? I have spoken to dozens of families here about the upcoming election, and the most important issue to them is the security of their families. They hold Barkat personally responsible for failing this neighborhood.

The residents feel they have been abandoned.

If Barkat does not do something fast, I believe he will lose the election.

The party is over. It is time to act now before someone else is seriously hurt.



Disturbing article

Sir, – I found the article “Resigning YU head admits failures over sex allegations” (July 2) disturbing.

The Post libeled a great man with six decades of Jewish leadership. “Resignation” is different in implication from what really happened.

At 85, Rabbi Dr. Lamm “retired” as scheduled by contract three years earlier.

The article summed up the substance of his brilliant career by pointing to a story about sexual abuse that he was informed of 30 years ago, when reporting standards were entirely different.

To hold him to a standard that did not exist at the time is intellectually dishonest.

Lamm had the courage to publically express remorse. Read his words, as they are stirring, elegant, heartfelt and wrenching.

He stands up like a man, a Jewish leader, and shows that we have no doctrine of infallibility. Would that all our leaders act with such grace and humility.

We should know that Lamm saved YU from bankruptcy and placed it on sound financial ground.

He wrote hundreds of scholarly articles and books, one of which is the defining treatise of modern Orthodoxy. He brought Talmud studies to Stern College so women could study Jewish texts, publicly and respectfully engaged students at the Reform movement’s Hebrew Union College, and participated in Limmud so the voice of Orthodoxy would be heard by non-Orthodox coreligionists.

I trust the Post will cover the real story of Rabbi Dr. Norman Lamm, a true giant in our time.


The Editor responds: The story was written by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, and not by a Post reporter.

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