Letters the week of July 9, 2015


Readers address the imapct of InterfaithFamily, applaud the Exponent for covering the Noam Chomsky / Drexel story and comment on being Jewish and supporting the Democratic Party.

Appreciate Interfaith’s Impact
In “One for the ‘Nones’ ” (June 25), the editor refers to Steven M. Cohen saying that “objection to intermarriage” is a “community-sustaining position.” We beg to differ. The Jewish community is growing in substantial part because more interfaith families and their children are identifying as Jewish, as the recent Pew survey — also cited by the editor — recognizes. Welcoming those families — not objecting to their marriages — is what is community-sustaining. Fortunately, the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia, and other Federations around the country, agree and support our work to engage interfaith families in Jewish life in welcoming Jewish communities. 
Rabbi Robyn Frisch | Director, InterfaithFamily/Philadelphia
Rabbi Mayer Selekman | Chair, InterfaithFamily/Philadelphia Advisory Council
Jodi Bromberg | CEO, InterfaithFamily
A Chomsky Hit and Miss
I applaud the new editorial staff of the Exponent for dealing with the decision by Drexel University to award an honorary degree to Noam Chomsky. It is refreshing to see that you are not hesitant to deal with these types of issues and to serve the local Jewish community. The Op-Ed piece by Abraham Miller was enlightening and illustrated, in part, to your readership that Chomsky has a history of being hateful against Israel and, to some extent, Jews.  What is remarkable and diminishes the value of the piece is the decision by the Exponent to allow the president of Drexel University to also post an “editorial” in which he states, “I believe Drexel’s decision to award him a degree was justified.” He goes on to say what a wonderful place Drexel is and how Drexel “will never compromise its support of their Judaic Studies program and academic partnerships with Israeli institutions.” This sounds like the apologist who says, “But I have many Jewish friends.” The Exponent took a small step forward when you decided to address this issue but you took a major step backwards when you invited President Fry to write his apologetic justification for the decision to honor Chomsky and you failed to write your own editorial condemning the decision by Drexel to honor him.  
Michael Saewitz | Bala Cynwyd
A Wake-Up Call
How much duplicity from President Obama does it take to open your eyes? The traditional leftist tilt of American Jews has been against the best interests of the American Jewish community and Israel for at least a generation. The intrusiveness of big government, the corruption of the IRS, the chaos in the wake of the Obama-Clinton failed foreign policy, capped by the traitorous capitulation to the Iranians, the budget busting deficits — all seriously undermine the strong America that has been the shelter of liberty for the world. Please stop conflating tikkun olam with the Democratic Party platform. Please stop proclaiming your commitment to Jewish values when you have not the slightest interest in anything Jewish which does not serve your leftist agenda. Democrats by faith, Jewish by accident of birth is your real identity. March in your parades, be green, be gay, be pro-BDS, but do not insult your co-religionists by pretending to be someone you are not. You are not committed to Israel, you are not committed to American values and you are not Zionist. You undermine the strength of America and Israel as you proclaim your solidarity with every ragtag Occupy Wall Street, J Street, Jewish Voice for Peace, Hamas-loving loudmouth who surfaces. You have made “social justice” a curse, and you have strengthened the hand of our enemies at home and abroad.
Louis B. Rappaport | Fort Washington


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