Letters | Underdog Status and Nation-State Law


An Underdog No More?

The editor’s pre-Rosh Hashanah column addresses a subject I have thought much about for many years (“Getting Off the Sidelines and Playing Well,” Sept. 6). People love to root for the underdog and will support the underdog against all odds.

In 1967, when Israel won the Six-Day War as the underdog against all attackers, everyone in my high school cheered in sympathy. Today, Israel is no longer the underdog, and now the Palestinians receive all of the cheering, support and political benefits of achieving underdog status.

The current lawmakers from the earlier era supported Israel for decades. Future lawmakers who now have this changed perspective are going to feel very differently going forward. This has worried me for a long time, and I see the effects beginning to show.

Ina Asher | Merion Station

Nation-State Law a Necessity Today

I take umbrage at a recent letter to the editor regarding Israel’s Nation-State Law (“Nation-State Law Runs Counter to Israel’s Ideals,” Aug. 30). The author states that the gist of the legislation is “Arabs will not replace us,” then goes on to compare it to Richard Spencer and white supremacists.

The author could not be any further from the truth in his analysis, and a simple reading of the text would prove that. The law simply states that Israel is the historical homeland of the Jewish people and then lays out concretely what that means. It outlines state symbols such as the flag, national emblem, anthem and the status of the Hebrew language as official (but continues to give Arabic special status for Israel’s Arab citizens). The law protects Israel as a refuge for Jewish immigration and development. It continues the recognition of Jerusalem as the capital, and recognizes Jewish holidays and Shabbat, as well as Israel’s Memorial Day and Independence Day.

Of note, nowhere in the law is there any mention of any change in the rights of Israel’s non-Jewish citizens. Israel remains fully committed to full and equal rights for all of its citizens. However, in this era when many nations would very quickly deny Jews the same right to self-determination (Zionism) that every other independent people around the world enjoy, it is necessary to have this law to make it clear that the Jewish state is here to stay, and “will not be replaced.” 

Ira R. Sharp | Jenkintown


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