Letters, the Week of April 21, 2016

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Readers share some complaints about Exponent op-eds and stories.

Divisive Discourse Op-ed Not So Divisive
Daniel Bacine’s thoughtful and well-reasoned op-ed about the Jewish community’s public discourse on Israel is accompanied at the end by a disclaimer (“Divisive Discourse on Israel,” April 7). It states that the views expressed in the article are the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Exponent.
They should.
Steven Barrer, M.D. | Huntingdon Valley
Exponent Should Battle Loaded Terminology
The “Divisive Discourse on Israel” op-ed (April 7) cited a number of Jewish homeland delegitimizing expressions, starting with “Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank,” used by some in our community, with which the author rightly declared himself “troubled.” We should all feel troubled.
The Exponent’s own editorial (“The Human Rights Smoke Screen,” April 7) cited even more deeply delegitimizing expressions applied to Israel by U.N. organizations — such as “occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem” — with which we should be even more deeply troubled.
Our Jewish Exponent, among its other functions, is our community’s voice in the media realm, which is saturated in reporting on Israel, with Israel-delegitimizing expressions. Its editorial concluded its lament over “blaming of Jews for the miseries of the Middle East” by asking, “When will it end?” It won’t before we, as a community, combine in active effective efforts to end it. The Exponent’s role in this is to contest the mainstream media’s loaded lexicon of anti-Israel pejoratives.
Jerome R. Verlin | Elkins Park
Questions on Quote
I was extremely angered upon reading a quote in the article “Holocaust Survivor Tells Story to Barrack Students” (April 7).
First, my parents were Holocaust survivors, and my mother was a Hungarian Jew. The quote I am referring to, “The Germans were decent. I mean, they didn’t kill me. I wonder today how did we all survive,” is offensive and should have been left out of the article.
It is hard for me to imagine a Holocaust survivor saying the “Germans were decent.” And to say today, “how did we all survive,” when close to 80 percent of Hungarian Jews were killed by the Germans is hard to fathom.
For a Jewish survivor to say it, for a Jewish journalist to include it and for a Jewish newspaper to print it is inexcusable.
Jack Bleiman | Moorestown, N.J.

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