August 11, 2017: Camp and flag

Jerusalem Post readers respond to this week's news.

Letters (photo credit: REUTERS)
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Camp and flag
My kids attend Camp Solomon Schechter (although they were not there when the camp raised the flag of the Palestinian Authority). In addition, my wife sits on the camp’s board.
Like Gil Troy (“Waving the Palestinian flag over a Jewish camp is like waving a KKK hood in a black church,” Center Field, August 9), I, too, was dismayed by the presence of a flag representing an organization that incites and rewards terrorism. Making matters worse, the incident occurred just one week after the slaughter of the Salomon family in Halamish.
Troy’s description of the PA is spot on. His assessment of many Jewish leaders and religious and communal organizations that seek to ingratiate themselves with enemies of Israel is, sadly, true of some institutions in the Pacific Northwest. But it is not true of CSS or its director, Sam Perlin.
CSS is an invaluable institution in this part of the country. The camp is unabashedly Zionist. The curriculum is geared toward forging bonds with Israel and strong Jewish identities. For many kids, the few weeks they spend there each summer are their only connection with Israel and Judaism.
The important role that CSS plays in the Pacific Northwest is directly attributable to Perlin. He and his family can be counted on to defend Israel’s image and reputation in a part of the country where it is often unpopular. As Troy acknowledges, the “camp staffers apologized for their amoral misfire.”
As we head into the month of Elul, it is incumbent upon all of us to judge the camp and its leaders based on the totality of their work, not a single “misfire.” It’s time to stop piling on.
Bringing down an important institution and a decent man would constitute a Pyrrhic victory. Destroying CSS would leave hundreds of Jewish kids in the Pacific Northwest with no connection to Judaism or Israel.
Seattle, Washington
Cartoon critics
Regarding your August 9 political cartoon showing US President Donald Trump saying he’ll call Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on his “cell phone,” and then showing the prime minister answering on a public phone inside a jail cell.
Okay. We know your cartoonist doesn’t like Trump or Bibi, but you are insulting your readers with this repetitive, sophomoric and uninspired dribble.
I have been a reader of your paper for over 30 years. Never missed a day.
Your cartoon is outrageous and deceitful. You need to apologize to your readers.
Paying to pray
I am perturbed by the writer of “It’s too expensive to be Jewish” (Comment & Features, August 6) and by one of your readers writing in response.
It is expensive to go anywhere, whether it is a play, a movie or a rap concert. It is all part of the course of living, and I am sorry that the synagogues these families attended have been so inconsiderate. Most synagogues I have gone to are very welcoming and would never humiliate anyone for monetary reasons.
The Great Synagogue here in Jerusalem welcomes everyone, and even though seats are sold for the High Holy Days, anyone who comes early enough can take a seat until the seat holder comes. No one is required to pay to attend services, and many people come to enjoy the magnificence of the prayers.
I don’t know what has gotten into some people. We all need prayers to God. We all need a minyan – 10 people – to pray together. We all need the sense of togetherness that prayer in a minyan gives us. So my advice is to try another synagogue and don’t think that being Jewish is too expensive.
Pray with your fellow Jews and give to the synagogue when you can because giving is a Jewish tradition. Realize that any house costs money to maintain, whether it is a personal one or a communal one.