Letters, the Week of March 31, 2016

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Readers discuss kvetching, reproductive rights and Obama.

Ignore the Whining   
I just want to let you know that I think you are all doing a fabulous job.
I see the kvetching in the letters you publish about all sorts of things from complaining about the bagel reviews and other nonsense, and just want to tell you that you are doing great work covering national and local news of importance to the community.
Great reporting on the Mandell campus issue. It is around the corner from us and we never would have known of the plans, not that we have a problem with them.
Keep up the good work and ignore the kvetching and whining.
Jeffrey Plaut | Elkins Park
Tyranny by any Other Name
This is in response to the letter of Rabbis Stern and Rosenbloom, “Standing Strong on Reproductive Rights” (March 10), in which they support forcing religious institutions to provide reproductive health care services for their employees.
Even without such employer-provided services, the employees in question will have no problem exercising their rights, reproductive or otherwise. Many doctors and pharmacies will gladly provide them. The question is who pays for it. The rabbis apparently feel that your rights are violated if you have to pay for a service that you desire. Your rights require your employer to pay for it. Nor should we be deceived by the “third party ruse.” It is little more than an optical illusion. The employer is still paying. And if paying for it would outrage the employers most-deeply held religious convictions, well too bad for them. The government will coerce them to do it.
Precisely to prevent this type of governmental tyranny is the reason the First Amendment was established, but defending other people’s religious liberties is, apparently, low on the rabbis’ priorities. We Jews have had more than enough experience with governments that had no qualms about forcing people to violate their convictions. It is one of America’s glories that she has always avoided this snare, but with the type of precedents that Rabbis Stern and Rosenbloom endorse, we may be witnessing its end.
The day may yet come when the government will force them to violate their religious convictions. When that happens, I doubt if the good rabbis will so blasé about religious freedom.
Myron Anton | Rhawnhurst
Israel Better off Under Obama
Donald Trump in his address to AIPAC declared that Barack Obama was the worst president for Israel. Unfortunately, his statement received a rousing cheer. But during his term in office President Obama was instrumental in getting funding for the Iron Dome missile defense system that has been credited with destroying 75 percent of the missiles directed against Israel from Gaza. Obama supported additional funding to upgrade the system after the Gaza war.
President Obama also vetoed any attempt to give the Palestinian Authority a permanent seat at the United Nations. He also rejected resolutions condemning Israel for human rights violations.
One question for my Jewish Republican friends: In his eight years as president what did George W. Bush do for Israel?
Marvin Bograd | East Windsor, N.J.

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