Letters to the Magazine: March 27, 2020

readers of the Jerusalem Post Magazine have their say.

Letters (photo credit: PIXABAY)
(photo credit: PIXABAY)
A tremendous thank you for a most uplifting read this past weekend (March 20). The Magazine lifted our souls and our spirits. There were articles with recipes for comfort food and ways to keep energized, or relax with wine. Dr. Batya Ludman provided us with suggestions to help cope with the current situation. Nechama Goldman Barash, Rabbi Shmuel Rabinowitz and Rabbi Nathan Lopes Cardozo each gave messages to elevate our souls. Most of all, Charles Ticho’s “The bar mitzvah that almost wasn’t” left us with a message of hope for the future, in that he fulfilled his dream of a bar mitzvah 70 years later.
I plan to keep this issue to refer back to it often during this difficult period.

Regarding “Reaching across the aisles” (March 20), kudos to Toby Klein Greenwald on writing a very interesting and informative article – on many fronts.
Firstly, it took one away into a world apart from the addictive, all-inclusive world of coronavirus.
Secondly, it brought us back to the very sad plight of Jonathan Pollard.
It was educational and eye-opening to hear about the two very different MKs and their unity for the plight of Pollard. Personally, it was redeeming for me, the knowledge on Shulamit Aloni – in that I was totally unaware of this aspect of her past, and it definitely opened my eyes to what I already knew of her in a totally different light.
“The lioness roars” insert was very heartwarming and meaningful, especially for a fan like myself who has enjoyed all the fabulous productions that Toby Greenwald and the Raise Your Spirits Theater staff had performed in the past.
There is always something to glean from wonderful writers like Klein Greenwald. Toby has definitely given us a nice escape from our reality, while engaging on a historical trek back in a very different time than we are in now. One feels pride for our past representation around the world and can still feel the pain today of unfortunate results.
We should also be cautioned not to think that we always know what everybody is about on the outside and in the media, but there certainly is usually more to a person than meets the eye. This awakens us to the current reality we are all in presently, where there are different levels of disappointments, sadness and pain within our own homes and way beyond.
It also calls on us to remember what we do have and how much we need to be grateful for. We have strengths and powers within all of us to accomplish many different things. We need to heed the calling and seize the opportunities that call upon us to do so.

In times of danger to our society – and the current coronavirus pandemic is one – it was more than heartwarming and uplifting to read Barbara Sofer’s story of Holocaust survivors whose child was born on the vessel Knesset Israel on its perilous journey to pre-state Israel (“Born on the high seas,” March 13).
Obviously, the Israel of today is a completely different kettle of falafel. We are generally spoon-fed with today’s luxuries and count among us some who are currently moaning about the restrictions this invisible enemy is placing on us. We would do well to reflect on the past generation, who bravely endured devastating hardships.
No doubt this latest scourge is taking us into new territory and is most serious, but in acting responsibly it is to be hoped that we will come out of this a stronger, more caring society (and perhaps these traits are something even our politicians might catch).
Tel Aviv

Columnist Brian Blum writes:
Regarding Barry Newman’s response to my March 13 column “Is ‘Jewish fear of the other...’” (Letters, March 20) – what a difference a week makes! When I wrote the article, I was – like many Israelis at that point – frustrated by the flurry of new coronavirus rules and regulations. As more data became available, however, my own views pivoted to be mostly in alignment with Newman’s. I agree that what I called “draconian” one day became highly “prudent” the next. And while I still think Israelis can pull through the next weeks or months by viewing the COVID-19 threat as “viral terrorism,” the traditional Sabra response to “keep living life normally with only minor adjustments” clearly no longer applies. I wish all of us health and safety.