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Letters Week of June 22, 2011
Weiner's Downfall Should Be Wake-Up Call for Jews
Not long after the exodus from Egypt, we were given a code by which to live our lives, a code that was to distinguish us as a moral and ethical people. Before there was a Diaspora, it was a cultural imperative to study, learn and live by this code.
Once exiled, however, we gradually made a transition from the study of Torah to the study of secular subjects. While the contributions of the Jews to the advancement of science, art, literature and the overall quality of human life are well-documented, there have been consequences to this shift in priorities.
The downfall of Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-N.Y.), while it represents a tragic loss of support for the state of Israel, should, more importantly, be a wake-up call for the people Israel (Cover story: "What Does Weiner's Downfall Tell Us?" June 16).
Weiner's demise is not about our embarrassment; nor is it about our collective desire to remain innocuous. His downfall is evidence that this Congressman lost his moral compass long ago, and it is a clarion call to all of us to re-evaluate whether we, as a people, have been true to our mission.
Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young had the right idea -- at least in song -- when they wrote: "You, who are on the road, must have a code, that you can live by ... " We Jews have been "on the road" for millennia. Our GPS is the Torah, Pirke Avot and our sacred writings. It may be time for us to stop and ask for directions.
David M. Seltzer
President Has Turned Away From Jewish State
I am a voter, I am an American and I am completely frustrated by the media attention given to our current president.
While growing up, I would hear from the office of the president in a weekly radio communication.
Fast forward to this president, in the news daily, spewing words of hope, change and praise. It makes me wonder when he has time to actually work!
I have seen the shift against Israel by this president since he backtracked on his promises for peace and ongoing support of our Jewish homeland. In his latest speech on the issue, he called for the battle lines (also seen as a buffer to maintain peace) to be returned to the original offenders of the war.
I do not find this president to be very presidential. I cannot support any of his actions. I cannot in my mind justify following a man who is openly against me as a representative American or as a Jew living in the Diaspora.
I'd like to ask the Jewish Exponent to stop giving him media attention as often and as much as it has to this time.
Make him earn our respect through action and deed as every president has before him. I'd ask the mainstream media to do the same.
Things are bad here in the United States, so let's stop the blame game and get something done.
Actions speak louder than words. Make the Arab population bring peace to the table. Then, and only then, can a future of peace be negotiated by any president.
Another Plaque Needed Near the Liberty Bell
Your article on the Liberty Bell was very interesting (Cover story: "Liberty Bell Rings Out With a Whole New Timbre," April 21).
An additional and relevant fact about which the Jewish community should be proud is that in late August 1752, there arrived from London on the faithful Myrtilla (in Hebrew "Hadas") a bell -- the famous Liberty Bell.
The Myrtilla was one of the three ships owned by Nathan Levy, one of the founders of Kahal Kadosh Mikveh Israel. Many tourists who come to see the Liberty Bell are not aware of this fact -- nor of the other important Jewish contributions to the cause of the American Revolution.
If we could convince the National Independence Park Administration to erect a plaque stating this information, an important enhancement will be made.
Rabbi Albert E. Gabbai
Congregation Mikveh Israel, Philadelphia