By LETTERS TO THE EDITORPublished: JUNE 15, 2016 19:49Advertisement
Orlando massacreI realize that this letter might appear insensitive, but with so many people jumping on the “We are Orlando” bandwagon, I would like to offer sympathy without approving of homosexuality or, conversely, implying that the attack was God’s judgment.I would also like to offer a few words of advice to the LGBT community: Stop trying to thrust your lifestyle down my throat.After years of persecution, your way of life is now being flaunted in the theater, on film and, increasingly, on TV in my own home. If you wish to be a lesbian or homosexual, that is your right, but please don’t expect me to approve of it, even if the western media portrays your lifestyle as normal and acceptable.To me it is not.The Orlando massacre shows how intolerant some are for another’s way of life, but with the LGBT community, that intolerance seems to have been twisted 180 degrees; it now appears that I am considered an intolerant homophobe because I have more traditional moral values.The LGBT campaign appears to be winning approval from society through media manipulation.It’s effective, but that doesn’t mean it’s right.BOB KNIGHT Modi’inHackles raisedWhile the general thrust of your June 14 editorial “Islam’s challenge” is acceptable in calling on Islam to reform itself, I doubt that there are many Islamic clerics among your regular readership. However, the opening sentence – “Was [Orlando gunman] Omar Mateen’s distorted understanding of Islamic faith the motivating factor behind his horrific act of violence?” – raised my hackles.I do not think your editorial writer is an Islamic scholar, so he cannot determine that Mateen’s understanding of Islamic faith was distorted. In fact, as the editorial points out, many Islamic countries that base their legal system on Shari’a law call for capital punishment for homosexual activity.This is yet another case of a politically correct statement being factually fatuous.STEPHEN COHEN Ma’aleh AdumimWhen the American Methodist Church decided to support the BDS movement, did your editorial writer call it a “distorted understanding of the Christian faith?” Is he perhaps a decisor of the Islamic faith, or is it that he blindly follows US President Barack Obama’s line of thought?DAVID STEINHART Petah TikvaGlick and gunsIn “Is ISIS a GOP franchise?” (Column One, June 14), Caroline B. Glick sinks to a new abyss of disgrace when she says that “maybe if guns were easier to come by, [Orlando gunman Omar] Mateen’s victims would have stopped him as soon as he started firing.”There have been more civilian US gun deaths than in all of America’s wars combined.Assault weapons are not used for hunting, only to murder people.Since the assault weapon ban was lifted in 2005, there have been more shootings than in the previous 30 years.There are already enough guns for every man, woman and child in the US. The notion that there should be privately owned, defensive assault weapons carried into a nightclub of LGBT revelers is an insane non-starter – where there is drinking, there could be drunken quarrels.Gun control works. In France there have been attacks, but they were internationally coordinated by sophisticated smugglers of weapons and coordinated plotters.No disgruntled, obscure French loser fallen into the thrall of extreme Islam could just go to a local shop and buy an assault weapon.Glick supports presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, who, in a fit of his own dangerous insanity, called for President Barack Obama to resign. It is Trump who is dangerous and should be dumped forthwith by the GOP.JAMES ADLER Cambridge, MassachusettsDoes Caroline B. Glick really believe in a society where a potential terrorist, known to the authorities, can walk into a shop and purchase handguns and assault rifles? And is it pure coincidence that Omar Mateen chose a gay nightclub out of so many venues in Orlando as his target? Glick’s latest column surpasses even her usual Republican partisanship and hysteria. What an empty life she will have come January 17, when US President Barack Obama is no longer around to be denounced – unless, of course, the electorate ignores her advice and votes for a rational human being rather than Donald Trump.ALAN GOLD NetanyaLosing the ‘ultra’ Avi Shafran objects to the term “ultra-Orthodox,” comparing it to outdated terms like “Negro” because it is “inherently pejorative” (“Time to trash ‘ultra,’” Comment & Features, June 14).But the terms can’t be compared – you can’t choose your race, but you can choose your beliefs and lifestyle.I, too, have beliefs. One is that the ability to defend oneself is an honorable quality. So is the desire to provide food for one’s family without exploiting other people. But we cannot choose our beliefs if they are manifestly at other people’s expense.The term “ultra-Orthodox” exists to distinguish it from the more modern Orthodox.In addition, Rabbi Shafran claims that the ultra-Orthodox live “as all Jews once did.” Does he mean that Jewish life began in 17th-century Poland?HELEN LEVENSTON JerusalemAvi Shafran avers: “What matters is one thing only: we don’t like being called ‘ultra.’” Well, what matters to me when dispatched to the scene of a traffic accident in the Beit Yisrael quarter of Jerusalem, and arriving in an official squad car and dressed in the uniform of the Israel Police, is being called “Nazi” by some of those haredim he claims are “among the dedicated defenders of Israel against its enemies.”Am I the enemy?JOEL KUTNER JerusalemTwo-state solution Hundreds of thousands of civilians are being killed, and the world seems to ignore these horrendous crimes against humanity.Instead, everyone appears to be obsessed with the two-state solution.Politicians and diplomats use words they do not really mean, and the Arabs have never honored their agreements.Why don’t the world players try to stop all the killing? They should stop playing the game of the emperor’s new clothes and wasting their time on something that will never come to fruition.CHARLES MEISELS JerusalemAppeal for information I am writing a book on the service of Israelis in the British Merchant Navy in World War II. I have discovered many names and ships in the log books kept at the British National Archives, but am lacking photographs of these men, and stories of their lives during their wartime service.This includes those who were killed aboard the torpedoed Har Zion, and on other ships as well, of course.I want to give the Israeli men, and some women, too, a higher profile in the book, so I need surviving families in Israel to send me photos and stories. All contributions will be acknowledged in the book, as is customary.Please email material to email@example.com. This is a final chance to tell the world what our men did in this branch of the British forces in World War II, which is largely forgotten and even unknown.MARTIN SUGARMAN London The writer is an author and the archivist of the Association of Jewish Ex-Servicemen and Women of the UK.
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