CUNY And Anti-Semitism (I)
Re “Critics Slam CUNY Response to Campus Anti-Semitism” (front page news story, March 18):
When he witnessed the outbreaks of anti-Semitism during the Dreyfus affair, Theodor Herzl was shocked that it could happen in a country as civilized and as progressive as France. If this could happen in France, he reasoned, it could happen anywhere in the world and his conclusion was that Jews would be protected from this scourge only if they had a country of their own.
Today’s rise in anti-Semitism in Europe and even in some parts of the U.S. offers clear proof that Zionism and Israel are just as important and necessary as they were back in 1895.
CUNY And Anti-Semitism (II)
City University of New York Chancellor James Milliken stands in the unenviable position of having to strike a balance between protecting the free speech rights and academic freedom of the CUNY campus community on one hand, and, on the other hand, the protection of personal safety and CUNY property.
In deciding where to balance between the two imperatives, the chancellor needs to take into consideration that events such as those that recently transpired on CUNY campuses have historically led to increases in violence against Jews and others. Also relevant is that anti-Semitic graffiti tends to appear with greater frequency and intensity following such events.
Milliken and other CUNY officials need not take refuge behind the mantra of free speech and academic freedom when CUNY’s own Policy on Acceptable Use of Computer Resources specifically prohibits the use of “CUNY Computer Resources to engage in abuse of others, such as sending harassing, obscene, threatening, abusive, deceptive, or anonymous messages within or outside CUNY,” and provides for the discipline of those who violate such policies.
It is highly likely that CUNY computer resources were used to promote incidents such as the recent hatefest at Hunter College; if so, then CUNY has much at its disposal to take meaningful and visible actions against the offenders.
Kenneth H. Ryesky, Esq.
Petach Tikva, Israel
The Value Of Full-Service Shuls
I read Rabbi Dovid M. Cohen’s “My Semicha – Revoked and Revitalized” (op-ed, March 18) with interest and a smile of recognition at the various challenges pulpit rabbis and their shuls face, especially economic. But when he bemoaned shuls repeatedly soliciting funds rather than remaining a “spiritual haven,” I sighed “halevai” – if only.
As the former rabbi of a financially strapped synagogue and a current OU liason to many shuls, I’m sure Rabbi Cohen understands the conundrum: there are, tragically, too many shul-goers who regularly attend and enjoy kiddushes and programs but don’t pull their financial weight, leaving frustrated congregational leaders to place the burden on fewer members.
Rabbi Cohen says he and others are gravitating to less demanding shtiebels. OK, but he and others need to understand that when they need a full-service shul, it will be there only if enough people recognize that these institutions are the essential building blocks of any Jewish community.
New York, NY
Think Rationally, Republicans
Republican voters need to count to ten and think rationally. We have good reason to be enraged at our own party leaders, having been deceived by them time and again. However, electing for president a billionaire who took advantage of this corrupt system to enrich himself is not likely to solve the problem.
This can be compared to hiring a master bank robber to put an end to bank robberies. Trump has given massive support to this cesspool. Just as he used the economic system to gain wealth, he is now using the political system to gain power.