(photo credit: REUTERS)
A little annoyed...
With regard to “Netanyahu’s comments on Wall ‘not truthful and not respectful,’ says Conservative leader” (November 16), alone among Diaspora Jewry there is a large, vociferous segment of American Jews who seem to think they have the right to tell me how I should live my life.
Surprising as it might seem to this segment of Americans, most Jewish Israelis – even “Anglos,” of which I am one – are not American citizens and have never been to America. We live in Israel. We pay income tax to our government, which does not have any money of its own but distributes the money we pay in taxes. Our children go to the army, where they defend us from our enemies.
We vote in the general elections to democratically elect the government we desire. The government that is elected may sometimes not be the government we voted for, but that is democracy.
(By the way, we are told on numerous occasions that Israel is a Jewish democratic country.) Those of us who wish to do so can pray in one of the thousands of synagogues of our choice in a variety of different customs, or in none.
We are the guardians of historical Jewish sites that have been holy to our people for millennia.
Now, along come some Americans who do not pay taxes, do not vote in our elections and do not send their children to serve in the army to defend us, and they wish to tell us how to live our lives, how to pray at our holy places, how to govern ourselves and how to “make peace” with our enemies! Some American Jews join or establish organizations that hate their own kith and kin under the guise of “human rights” (rights for others and not for Jews) and campaign for the destruction of the Jewish state and, by extension, the Jewish people.
I am beginning to feel a little annoyed.CYRIL ATKINS
Beit Shemesh... and a plea
With regard to “Time to end Netanyahu’s political cowardice: Enact the Kotel compromise” (Center Field, November 15), Gil Troy mounts a fierce attack on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for shelving the compromise made for the Western Wall. I would suggest that Prof. Troy turn his righteous indignation toward those who clamor for a separate place for their egalitarian, pluralistic, liberal prayer.
Why, for heaven’s sake, can’t there be just one place on the face of this Earth where all Jews of all stripes can pray together? Men on one side and women on the other? Jews from over 100 countries representing global diversity can pray together – only one, quite small but vocal, group insists on shattering the unity and harmony of the Kotel’s spiritual experience.
“Who is like Your people, Israel, one nation in the Land?” Conservative and Reform Jews can express themselves in all their houses of worship in whatever way they choose. Here in the Land of Israel, they should set aside their differences and join us all – at the Kotel. Hassidim, Mitnagdim, Ethiopians, Kurds, Hungarians, Polish, Breslovers, Chabad, Carlebach, etc. can pray together.
Why not our egalitarian brothers and sisters? Don’t go off to the sides on your own. It’s lonely there.
The writer is a rabbi.
Kashrut and hygiene
How very refreshing that Tzohar and Emunah are proposing to impart an understanding of food technology and production in their courses for kashrut supervisors (“Tzohar, Emunah offer new course for female kashrut supervisors,” November 15).
I am sure that I’m not alone in suffering food poisoning repeatedly from kosher-approved meals served at events and restaurants under the current kashrut regulations – which completely ignore food hygiene rules. It would be very nice to eat out in Israel without the almost inevitable food poisoning.
These days, all we hear about is random acts of violence.
I so miss the days of random acts of kindness.REBECCA RAAB