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October 31, 2014 / 7 Heshvan, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘NJ’

Events In The West

Wednesday, July 11th, 2012

On Wednesday, August 1, Dayan Aharon David Dunner will be the featured speaker at L.A.’s Siyum Hashas at the downtown Music Center Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. There will be a hookup with the tens of thousands of men at the national siyum in New Jersey.

More Summer Learning: Beth Jacob San Diego’s SEED program begins on Sunday, July 22… L.A.’s Anshe Emes will hold their annual Chofetz Chaim SEED program beginning at the end of July… The Valley Torah High School Alumni Association kollel continues through Monday, August 6.

Shul Update: After a protracted and controversial struggle, Chabad of North Hollywood, located in the Sherman Oaksarea of the San Fernando Valley, succeeded in obtaining approval from the Los Angeles City Council to proceed with the expansion of their current facility.

LA JOLLA, CALIFORNIA

Mazel Tov – Bas Mitzvah: Baila Ertel, daughter of Rabbi Shmuel and Chaya Ertel.

Mazel Tov – Wedding:Michael Denise to Michal Backer.

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA

Mazel Tov – Births: Moshe and Shifra Hager, a daughter (Grandparents David and Judy Hager)… Rabbi Dr. Raphy and Miriam Hulkower, a daughter (Grandparents Walter and Joann Hulkower)… Rabbi Eliezer and Beracha Cohen of Lakewood, NJ, a son (Grandparents Rabbi Gavriel and Grace Cohen; Rabbi Shlomo and Robin Goldberg)… Avrohom and Chany Stern of Lakewood, NJ, a son (Grandparents Rabbi Eli and Robin Stern)… Lavie and Amanda Klein, a son (Grandparents Shmuel and Tzipporah Klein; Isaac and Ahouva Shapiro)… Rabbi Avrohom and Russi Morgenstern, a daughter… Yoily and Leah Rosenberg, a son (Grandparents Meyer and Raizy Brief)… Shmuli and Ruti Berger, a daughter (Grandparents David and Carol Berger)… Zev and Naamit Nagel, a son (Grandparents Ronnie and Cheryl Nagel; (Great-grandparents Jack and Gitta Nagel).

Mazel Tov – Bar Mitzvahs: Samuel Ellenhorn, son of Joshua and Edith Ellenhorn… Mickey Cooper, son of Dr. Aharon and Odelia Cooper… Yossi Schlesinger, son of Fred and Clarisse Schlesinger.

Mazel Tov – Bas Mitzvah: Sivan Platt, daughter of Dr. Arthur and Yaffa Platt.

Mazel Tov – Engagements: Shimmy Bayer to Leeor Nahum… Ronit Derovan, daughter of Norman and Wendy Derovan, to Daniel Gorenshtein of Brazil… Tova Jacobs, daughter of Dr. Jerry and Ahuva Jacobs, to Moshe Lerer of Teaneck, NJ… Daniella Weiss, daughter of Isaac and Joyce Weiss, to Shami Reichman of Toronto.

Mazel Tov – Weddings: Phillip Marcus, son of Norman and Florence Marcus, to Pamela Kleinman… Avigdor Kessler, son of Hessel and Miriam Kessler, to Ariella Tzion… Batya Rotter, daughter of Dr. Arnold and Leah Rotter, to Gidon Winter of Melbourne, Australia… Daniel Kosberg son of Stephen and Miriam Kosberg, to Barrie Zigman, daughter of Arnold and Rosalie Zigman of Long Beach, CA… Tali Okrent, daughter of Dr. Derek and Batsheva Okrent, to Ted Smolar… Ilana Kellerman, daughter of Drs. Jonathan and Faye Kellerman, to Jordan Moss… Adam Silverstein, son of Neil and Leslie Silverstein, to Rena Kolom of Lincolnwood, IL… Daniella Wasserman, daughter of Steven and Karen Wasserman, to Eli Hami, son of Brouria Hami and the late Yosef Hami… Melissa Gellman, daughter of Meir and Robin Gelman, to Mark Genet.

PALO ALTO, CALIFORNIA

Mazel Tov – Births: Dan and Beth Nash, a daughter (Grandparents Carl and Sharon Nash)… Jay and Israela Kimche, a son (Grandparents Eli and Yona Sternheim)… Josh and Devorah Walker, a son.

Mazel Tov – Wedding: Michael and Elana Wenacour.

SAN DIEGO, CALIFIORNIA

Mazel Tov – Engagement: Jessica Attia, daughter of Albert and Mazu Attia, to Aaron Wolf of England.

Mazel Tov – Wedding: David Goode to Rifkah Krolikowski.

SAN FRANCISCO, CALIFORNIA

Mazel Tov – Birth: Shai and Robin Attia, a son.

Mazel Tov – Wedding: Heshy and Chaya Fried.

VALLEY VILLAGE, CALIFORNIA

Mazel Tov – Birth: Avi and Debbie Erblich, a son (Grandparents Baruch and Leah Erblich; Leslie and Michelle Levin of Las Vegas).

Mazel Tov – Bar Mitzvah: Aaron Mamelak, son of Dr. Aaron Mamelak.

Mazel Tov – Weddings: Ariella Tzion, daughter of Yonaton and Liora Tzion, to Avigdor Kessler… Dina Ackerman, daughter of Zoltan and Martha Ackerman, to Moshe Franklin of NY.

DENVER, COLORADO

Mazel Tov – Bas Mitzvah: Talya Schreiber, daughter of Alan and Judy Schreiber.

Mazel Tov – Wedding: Nurit Hirsch, daughter of Dr. Fred and Pia Hirsch, to Matt Rotbart, son of Dr. Harley and Sara Rotbart.

SEATTLE, WASHINGTON

Mazel Tov – Birth: Gavriel and Avigayil Rudnick, a daughter (Grandmother Ruth Hyman).

Letters To The Editor

Wednesday, July 11th, 2012

Inaccurate Characterization

In his July 6 “Charming Nation” column, Dov Shurin wrote that the only death caused by Saddam Hussein’s Scud attacks on Israel during the 1991 Gulf War was that of a man who suffered a heart attack – a man Shurin characterized as an opponent of Shabbat road closures.

The truth is that man was not someone who opposed any Shabbat laws. He was a fine, Orthodox, God-fearing Holocaust survivor who had seen most of his family killed in Europe. His heart gave out when the Scuds started falling and air raid alarms were sounded.

He happened to have been a friend of mine and it was very disturbing to read Shurin’s claim that he had been against Sabbath observance.

Amy Wall
New York, NY

The Times Already Lost It

Re “Is the Gray Lady Losing It?” editorial. June 29):

The question really should be “When did the gray lady lose it?” While certain sections of The New York Times continue to be credible, the news, editorial and op-ed pages lost any credibility years ago. The motto of the Times should be changed to “All the news we choose to print” from “All the news that’s fit to print.”

Those looking for accuracy and balance should turn to a paper like the Wall Street Journal.

Nelson Marans
Silver Spring, MD

The Roberts Decision

Reams of analysis and debate will doubtless be generated in response to the incoherent and inexplicable legal finding by Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts validating Obamacare (“Not the Supreme Court’s Finest Moment,” editorial, July 6).

The 2,700-page bill was passed through bribery, intimidation and funding falsehoods, though no one in Congress actually read it. Former speaker Pelosi’s (in)famous diktat “we have to pass the bill to find out what’s in it” speaks to the hubris of the Democrats in Congress.

This mammoth legislation is the harbinger of an anticipated flood of new regulations to be administered by thousands of new bureaucrats enforcing the new rules still being written.

As for Chief Justice Roberts, his decision to deliver such a convoluted decision will set back the Supreme Court’s reputation for years.

Fay Dicker
Lakewood, NJ

Handful Of Fanatics

Re “Haredi Men Arrested in Yad Vashem Vandalism” (news story, June 29):

Neturei Karta is a small (albeit vocal) group that is in no way representative of the haredi community as a whole.

On the one hand, from a haredi perspective the Holocaust is seen as just another chapter in the history of persecution, albeit more efficiently executed and more recent. That is why haredim generally do not observe such commemorations as the Warsaw Ghetto anniversary, subsuming it instead in the general mourning on Tisha B’Av. This does not, however, mean haredim in any way approve of such offensive vandalism as was perpetrated by this handful of fanatics.

On the other hand, there is certainly a feeling in the haredi community that a wholly exaggerated cult of the Holocaust has become a sort of substitute religion for those estranged from Torah Judaism. Haredim object to this negative definition of one’s Jewishness by reference to the hatred of others rather than pride in one’s heritage.

Only someone completely prejudiced against haredim could consider these nutcases as being in any way representative of the greater haredi community – but unfortunately such an attitude is all too common.

Martin D. Stern
Salford, England

Making Our Own Choices

As the brouhaha over the Internet continues, I would like to make a few comments to those who vehemently oppose the Internet in Jewish homes.

New York City is home to many Jewish institutions but also, lehavdil, to a number of obscene and lewd establishments. Should Jews be prohibited from living in New York because they might be tempted to frequent such places?

We can use our two legs to take us to perform mitzvos, but we can also use our two legs to take us to commit aveiros. Shall we cut off our legs because they might take us to sinful places?

Unfortunately, we don’t live in a vacuum – but we do have the ability to know the difference between right and wrong and the strength, imparted to us by our parents and teachers, to follow a moral and ethical way of life and to make the correct choices for ourselves.

Pesach-Yonah Malevitz
Los Angeles, CA A

Shabbos In Midwood

Teaching Our Community To Fish

Thursday, June 7th, 2012

Mr. Stein (not his real name) saw his career hit a dead end three years ago when the market went sour. As a commercial real estate broker, he and his wife, Devora, then a student studying toward her degree in social work, knew something had to change quickly if they were to survive financially. Friends and family members had suggested they open their own business, but the Steins had no money to invest in the project. They had no credit and the money they borrowed from relatives went directly to day-to-day living.

That’s when they contacted the Emergency Parnossa Initiative (EPI) and the OU Job Board and began the process of transforming their lives.

“This loan has enabled us to pick up a sinking ship,” said Mrs. Stein. “We are a beautiful family with a new direction and new energy to keep trying to build our lives.”

The OU Job Board and EPI collaborate to bring financial security to members of the Jewish community through job placement, interview training, and skill-enhancing seminars and webinars. Most notable is the EPI’s Business Gemach (free loan) program, which offers matching loans, up to $25,000, to individuals who propose a viable business plan and prove their know-how at a formal presentation. Once the proposal has been accepted, EPI provides mentors who are knowledgeable in that field to help with advice and business direction.

Like the Steins’s enterprise, many of these businesses are not just surviving, they’re thriving. The Steins opened a clinic to service people with mental health issues, and their largest client currently boasts eighty nursing homes. Other loan recipients have created businesses in industries including construction, vacuum cleaners, cash machines, publishing, wigs, Judaica, clothing, gluten-free products, pizzerias, school uniform manufacturers, gymnasia, and day care services.

An EPI loan enabled Mordechai and Elisheva Rosen of Far Rockaway, New York, to pursue their dreams of opening a women’s clothing store geared toward an Orthodox clientele. As a young couple they simply didn’t have the financial ability or support to launch a business.

With sufficient capital from an EPI loan to begin their venture, the Rosens opened Fame. Two years later, the Cedarhurst, New York store has become a popular outlet for women’s apparel. “We are now able to support ourselves in a dignified manner,” said the Rosens. “It’s an amazing feeling.”

More than simply finding jobs for those out of work, EPI works to build a robust financial infrastructure within the Jewish community.

“OU President Dr. Simcha Katz told me how enamored he is with this aspect of EPI,” said Rabbi Zisha Novoseller, executive director of EPI. “These loans result in parnassah (income) for the owner and the people they hire. They are building Jewish communities with the stability they bring.”

Rabbi Novoseller, a former business executive, knows all about giving. Descended from a long line of chassidic rebbes, he says acts of kindness are in his genes. “We’re in the business of helping Jews,” he said. So when some prominent businessmen offered to fund EPI, he immediately went to work.

Sometimes, loan applicants are directed to Rabbi Novoseller from the OU Job Board, where they’ve either looked for a suitable job or been coached for a career path. Often, Michael Srulie Rosner, international director of the OU Job Board, will connect these entrepreneurs with others in the industry to give them a leg up once EPI has granted them a loan. And with EPI offices housed in the OU’s headquarters in New York, an alliance of this kind can, and does, produce vast results.

“The networking we’ve gained from the OU Job Board and Srulie in particular has been invaluable to these people,” said Rabbi Novoseller.

But it’s not only young businesspeople who request loans. Many middle-aged and older members of the work force have been facing financial adversity and are motivated to start their own companies. And with many years of business experience and a more mature way of thinking, they are prime candidates for loans, said Rabbi Novoseller.

In the nearly three years since the gemach’s inception, EPI has awarded 77 loans, which are backed by guarantors. Only one beneficiary has defaulted on a loan, and in total they provide employment for more than 300 individuals. A few companies have already surpassed one million dollars in sales. Being associated with EPI has also opened doors for people who need to demonstrate that someone has faith in them and their business model. After a new company receives a gemach loan from EPI, family and friends are often more forthcoming with further loans needed to grow the business.

November Bout in NJ: ‘True Arab’ Pascrell Vs. ‘America’s Rabbi’ Boteach

Wednesday, June 6th, 2012

It appears that the “Arab” candidate in the Democratic primary for the New Jersey 9th congressional district has won. Congressman Steve Rothman, a victim of the downsizing of New Jersey’s delegation following the 2010 census, was handed a defeat by fellow Democrat, Congressman Bill Pascrell, ending his more than a quarter-century career in elected office.

“I hope to be of service to my community and my country,” Rothman told his dejected supporters Tuesday night. “I don’t believe I’ll be running for political office ever again.”

Shortly after Rothman’s concession speech, the 75-year-old Pascrell came out to greet his hundreds of jubilant supporters at the Passaic County Community College gymnasium, with the tune of the theme from “Rocky” adding a final boxing match metaphor to a primary campaign that resembled warfare more than an election.

Parcell’s staff actually refer to themselves as “fighters.” And Parcell sounded like a war-weary general last night when he said, pumping both fists in the air: “As a lifelong Patersonian, my parents always told me not to start fights but to know how to finish them. Tonight, we did just that.”

On Monday, an Arabic campaign poster supporting Pascrell urged the “Arab diaspora community” to “elect the friend of the Arabs” and billed the race as the most important election in the history of the Arab community (See “Arabs Attacking Jews in NJ Primary” for detailed coverage of the Rothman vs. Parcell fight).

The same pro-Parcell poster called on New Jersey residents to “Vote for a true Arab.”

In the other corner, ready to face the “True Arab,” is self-proclaimed “America’s Rabbi,” Shmuely Boteach, who topped two opponents to become the Republican candidate in the new 9th Congressional District, declaring that he would begin his campaign by meeting Wednesday with officials in Israel to talk about human rights abuses by the Syrian government.

Take that, True Arab…

Rabbi Boteach was leading with 57 percent of the vote, with 90 percent of precincts counted by 10:30 p.m. Tuesday. He defeated Hector Castillo, a semi-retired doctor from Paterson, who had 30 percent of the vote, and Blase Billack, a pharmaceutical science professor from Saddle Brook who had 13 percent of the vote.

Boteach tweeted his followers (all-caps in the original): “BERGEN RECORD JUST CALLED ME AND TOLD ME THANK G-D I WON THE PRIMARY. I AM HUMBLED AND GRATEFUL TO G-D ALMIGHTY AND ALL OF YOU!!!”

A few moments later, having released his caps-lock, the winning Republican tweeted: “I also called Hector Castillo and Blase Billack to thank them for a spirited campaign and wish them every blessing for the future.”

The New NJ-9 is a largely Democratic district, but the grueling primary campaign between two Democrats whose ethnic affiliations, real or imagined (Rep. Bill Parcell Jr. is the grandson of Italian immigrants), have introduced Jewish-Arab tensions into the race.

As a result, Republican Boteach might benefit from Jewish voters’ anxiety about the local forces behind his Democratic rival’s campaign and either stay home or vote Republican.

Check this space for updates…

Arabs Attacking Jews in NJ Primary

Tuesday, June 5th, 2012

It began after the state of New Jersey after the Garden State lost one congressional seat and its redistricting commission put Democratic Congressman Steve Rothman’s hometown of Fair Lawn into the same district as Republican Congressman Scott Garrett.

Rothman decided to avoid a costly war against Garrett, and opted instead to challenge fellow Democrat Bill Pascrell from Paterson in the Blue District 9, where much of Rothman’s former district was relocated (57 percent of the new district is from Rothman’s former district, and 43 percent from Pascrell’s).

Rothman actually had to move back to Englewood, where he used to be the mayor in the 1980s.

Now, with the race between the two fellow Dems who used to be best of friends getting to the finish line on Tuesday, many in New Jersey fear that it has given rise to the first bona fide Jewish versus Arab competition, and an ugly one at that. As Adam Kredo in the Washington Free Beacon put it, the battle “has transformed into a troubling ethnic brawl.”

Kredo quotes a veteran campaign strategist who told him: “For the first time in recent American political history, we are witnessing a proxy battle between supporters and detractors of Israel, and it’s playing out in the Ninth District of New Jersey.”

On Monday, an Arabic campaign poster supporting Pascrell urged the “Arab diaspora community” to “elect the friend of the Arabs” and billed the race as the most important election in the history of the Arab community.

The full poster.

The full poster.

The Jewish Press online’s own Iran-born cartoonist Salome Worch (“The Adventures of JooJoon”) who translated the poster for us, said it called on New Jersey residents to “Vote for a true Arab.”

According to the Beacon, Rothman has avoided the temptation of joining the ethnic brawl, and focused instead on his congressional record.

Josh Block, a Democratic strategist and former spokesman for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, told Kredo that, in his opinion, “Rep. Rothman has run an issue-oriented campaign, focused on progressive values domestically and abroad, including his strong pro-Israel credentials, among other things. Rep. Pascrell, however, has implicitly endorsed odious attacks on Rothman’s religion and commitment to the United States. These claims are reminiscent of canards regularly bandied about by White Supremacists and anti-Semites.”

Recently, 15 Orthodox synagogues in the district urged their members to switch party affiliation—frummies in Jersey have long since turned red—and vote for Rothman in Tuesday’s primary.

Dr. Aref Assaf, president of American Arab Forum and a resident of NJ-9, wrote in NJ.com: “…If it is Kosher for Orthodox rabbis to preach to their members on political candidates, then it must be Halal for Muslim Imams to do the same. We will soon find out if Muslim religious leaders will reach out to their respective congregations. Imams, like rabbis, wield disproportionate leverage in and uncontested access to their congregations.”

The candidate most likely to benefit from this war between Democratic brothers is another frequent contributor to the Jewish Press online, Rabbi Shmueli Boteach, who is running on Tuesday seeking the Republican nomination. In a meeting with the Jewish Press online editorial board, Boteach said he had a lock on about 36 percent of the Republican votes in the primary, well ahead of the rest of the field.

But as districts go, the new NJ-9 will not be an easy arena for the good rabbi come November.

But he couldn’t help adding his own five cents’ worth to the debate on the other side, with a call to the warring sides to love one another again.

“Congressman Rothman, was it really necessary to put out a mailer that said of Pascrell, “With friends like this, who needs enemies?” Was it essential to say of your fellow Democrat that he is guilty of peddling “UGLY… BASELESS… CRAP.” (Your own emphasis.)

“Congressman Pascrell, did you really have to say of your fellow Democrat, ‘I lived in Paterson all my life. I didn’t have to move. You moved twice. If you’re such a progressive, why didn’t you take on the leader of the Tea Party instead of your ‘friend’ Bill Pascrell.’”

Letters To The Editor

Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012

History Repeating?

I found Abraham Rabinovich’s account of the lead-up to the Six-Day War (“An Unintended Conquest,” front page essay, May 18) extremely moving. What was most compelling about the piece – in addition to its depiction of the great valor of Israel’s soldiers – was the lesson that in the final analysis, Israel must take ultimate responsibility for its own security.

As Rabinovich reminds us, the U.S. counseled patience and promised Israel military support if it were attacked. Maybe the Johnson administration would have fulfilled that promise, but the outcome of the war was dramatically determined by Israel’s decision to follow its own lights.

Indeed, Rabnovich’s account of President Johnson’s pressure on Prime Minister Eshkol “to desist from military action in order to give the international community time to resolve the problem” sounds very much like the situation today with regard to U.S. policy on Iran.

Michael Zilber New York, NY

Seeing Both Sides

The controversy over the Tal law is generating more heat than light (“Israel’s New Coalition Government Showing Early Strains Over Tal Law,” front page news story, May 18).

Opponents of deferments for yeshiva students need to address the fact that most Western countries, including the United States, have similar rules for religious school students. They should also explore how a Jewish state that bases its legitimacy on Divine Providence could place restrictions on the right to study God’s Torah or abandon the concept that learning Torah mightily contributes to Israel’s security.

They should also reconsider their complaint that haredi youth do not have their lives disrupted the way non-haredi youth do when they serve in the army. After all, haredi youth are essentially stagnant in terms of secular careers and so generally do not compete for jobs with non-haredi young people.

On the other hand, it’s hard to quarrel with parents of Israel’s non-haredi youth who ask why their children should be put in harm’s way while their haredi counterparts are not.

Cynthia Niss (Via E-Mail)

Doctoring Documents (I)

Kudos to The Jewish Press for continuing to shine the spotlight on President Obama’s insistence on playing fast and loose with our country’s laws and traditions (“Doctoring Documents Postscript,” editorial, May 18). The mainstream media obviously aren’t interested and other Jewish publications are seemingly afraid of being perceived as too critical of Obama.

Keith Adler Sacramento, CA

Doctoring Documents (II)

It is surely the height of hypocrisy and hubris for Obama administration officials to engage in such nefarious – if not actually illegal – actions of “scrubbing” all references to “Jerusalem, Israel” in Bush-era documents and arrogantly assuming they can get away with it.

The incontrovertible mendacity in this flagrant attempt to deny Israel’s valid 3,000-year-old claim to Jerusalem and the deliberate falsification of government records should elicit harsh criticism from all quarters.

Fay Dicker Lakewood, NJ

Wait And See

Now that Prime Minister Netanyahu has established himself as the leader of a coalition that for the present holds 94 out of the 120 seats in the Knesset, it will be important to see what his agenda will be and whether the parties on the right as well as members of his own Likud Party will endorse or reject that program. Certainly the addition of a split Kadima Party with limited prospects for maintaining its 28 Knesset seats was a boon not only to Netanyahu but to Kadima, which was facing a very uncertain electoral future.

For the future, it will be important to note whether the party platform of Kadima becomes secondary to that of the Likud or shares equal status. Israeli voters, while giving Kadima a slight numerical advantage over Likud, veered to the right in the 2008 elections granting the conservative parties control based on a more forceful approach to negotiations and further enlargement of Jewish cities and towns beyond the temporary pre-1967 armistice lines.

The first test of the new Netanyahu coalition will be its attitude toward the “settlements.” The second will be whether it chooses to weaken its negotiating stance vis-à-vis the Palestinian Authority. And, finally, the third will be its response to the Iranian nuclear bomb program. Then and only then will we know whether the security of Israel has been enhanced or diminished by the formation of the coalition.

Letters To The Editor

Wednesday, May 16th, 2012

Asifa Ignores Jerusalem Much time, money and resources are being poured into the May 20 asifa at Citi Field designed to warn Klal Yisrael about the dangers of the Internet.

Ultimately, as the symbol and motto for this gathering indicates, its purpose is to ensure that the “machaneh” – camp – of Israel remains holy.

It is therefore incredible to me that the organizers have so woefully neglected the paradigm of the “holy camp” – the holy city of Jerusalem. This is especially grievous because this gathering will take place on the 28th of Iyar – Yom Yerushalayim – when, 45 years ago, Klal Yisrael and the world witnessed the miracle of the liberation of Jerusalem by the Israel Defense Forces, with the help of the Almighty.

Sadly, there is not one word in the publicity literature for the asifa or its tentative program that indicates an awareness of the sacred aspect of 28 Iyar. If all that comes out of the asifa is a condemnation of modern technology, with no appreciation for the opportunity we have to daven at the Kotel under Jewish jurisdiction – a dream realized for the first time after close to 2,000 years of exile – then this gathering will have amounted to a berachah levatalah. Doniel Z. Kramer (Via E-Mail)

A New Song (I) I was enthralled by Rabbi Yaakov Rosenblatt’s beautifully written call to spiritual arms (“A New Song,” front page essay, May 11).

Individuals can cut through all of the cobwebs of modern day living by always anticipating whether their conduct will be a Kiddush Hashem or, chas v’shalom, the opposite. When you think about it, it is a perfectly logical way to direct one’s life on the right path. Avraham Reich (Via E-Mail)

A New Song (II) As someone of the same generation as Rabbi Rosenblatt, I enjoyed his well-articulated viewpoint. It is indeed a good question: What will our children contribute to the world, and how will they be skilled enough to do so? My Flatbush upbringing was similar to Rabbi Rosenblatt’s, but with a twist.

My father attended Torah Vodaas for elementary school and then went to Yeshiva University where he obtained an undergraduate degree as well as semicha from RIETS. After he served as a chaplain in Fort Dix during the Vietnam War, he went to Baruch for an MBA in finance.

My mother attended Bais Yaakov of Williamsburg and raised six children. From the beginning we were raised knowing we would all attend college; in our house it was a given. In a time when many girls did not go on to pursue graduate degrees I was encouraged by my parents and grandparents and then by my husband to keep going.

It is possible to have a foot in both the Jewish and the secular worlds, but it takes work. My secular education in yeshiva was far superior to that of my brothers. If we are going to live in this world we need to do so by providing both our girls and our boys with a strong Hebrew and English curriculum.

I practice in a town a mile away from Rutgers University and I have many professors from all walks of life as patients. I am able to engage in intelligent discourse with them because of my strong yeshiva and secular background.

We are scared of sending our kids out of their hermetically sealed yeshiva bubbles into the real world for fear of their being influenced by the secular culture. It is indeed a valid fear. But I found that my beliefs were strengthened in college and graduate school because they had to be tested. Hashkafa starts at home and is hopefully reinforced in yeshiva. We need to supply our children with the proper educational tools to be able to function in the world at large and create the Kiddush Hashem Rabbi Rosenblatt alludes to in his article. Dr. Chani Miller Highland Park, NJ

Doctoring Documents (I) I think the Obama administration’s tampering with past records to bring history into line with its policies is one of the more important stories in years (“Doctoring Official Documents,” editorial, March 11).

This is especially so since what was in those records was highly relevant to a current case now in the United States Supreme Court and prior to that in lower federal courts. However, I’m not sure I agree that the Sandy Berger scandal supports your claim that what the Obama administration did rises to the level of a crime. Berger, the national security adviser to President Clinton, was already out of government when he pilfered documents while the Obama administration had custodial oversight of the documents a staffer or staffers apparently altered. Stanley Hurvitch (Via E-Mail)

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/letters-to-the-editor/letters-to-the-editor-93/2012/05/16/

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