A Special Woman
Re “My Mother, Irene Klass – 10 Years Later” (Nov. 27, page 12):
My father, Cantor Samuel Goldman, a”h, was employed by The Jewish Press for nearly 30 years and, during that time, my family and I became rather close with Rabbi Sholom Klass and his lovely rebbetzin, Irene.
Her ability to recall names of friends was nothing less than astonishing. I fondly remember visiting the Klass home in Manhattan Beach and, as the rabbi shared Talmudic sagacity to guests, we would always schmooze with Irene. She would ask us how our immediate family was doing, mentioning the name of each member – from my brothers and parents to my son David.
It was her proclivity for chesed, though, that I continue to ponder today in a world where seemingly, and sadly, everyone is only concerned for himself.
In Shakespeare’s play, Macbeth, when the king thanks one of his soldiers for saving his life, the soldier answers, “There if I grow, the harvest is your own.” Thank you, Rebbetzin Klass, for your unparalleled guidance to my family and me.
Ronald Neal Goldman
The Charts Are Misleading
Tom Woods’ column last week featured graphs purporting to show that mask wearing has no effect on the spread of Covid-19.
But he’s conflating mask mandates with mask wearing. Just because there’s a mask mandate doesn’t mean people are complying with it.
Does Dr. Woods think Covid-19 magically spreads from person to person? Airborne diseases enter the body primarily through the nose and the mouth. It stands to reason, then, that measures that reduce the outflow or inflow of disease-laden air will reduce the spread of these diseases.
It’s unfortunate that so many people choose to reject and ridicule scientific findings on topics like disease control and climate change. Science is about gathering data and drawing conclusions based on it. It’s regrettable that when conclusions don’t suit people like Dr. Woods, they push them aside.
Far Rockaway, NY
It’s Not ‘Farfallen’
I am ever mindful of the late Prof. Salo W. Baron’s rejection of “the lachrymose [i.e., tearful] theory of Jewish history.” We mustn’t forget that periods of intense persecution and suffering are often followed by periods of recovery and great heights of creativity.
So although we may be entering a dark period of leftist control of government through which we will have to grit our teeth, joy among us will emerge anew once this era is over.
Ed Yitshaq Levenson
Delray Beach, FL
A Student of Rav Avigdor Miller?
Last week, letter writer Yaakov Stern writes (about me), “Mr. Greenberger, in his heart of hearts, must be aware that the race is lost, but he won’t concede because he’s a disciple of Rabbi Avigdor Miller who proclaimed that the Democratic Party is essentially evil.”
First, I never read any of Rabbi Avigdor Miller’s sefarim or books, and although I attended two or three of his lectures, I don’t recall him making any political comments. Indeed, until I read Mr. Stern’s letter, I didn’t know Rabbi Miller had even spoken about politics.
Obviously, then, I am not a disciple of this great rabbi. But you don’t have be a disciple of any rabbi to understand the depths of evil to which the Democrats/leftists have sunk. All you need is a half a brain.
People often gloss over the Russian collusion investigation without fully realizing what it entailed. It involved ruining people’s lives, falsifying documents, committing perjury, destroying the livelihoods of families, and more. All this was perpetrated by Democrats – knowing full well there was no justification for any of it. This is precisely what evil is!
And how gullible or dishonest does one have to be to believe that these very same Democrats ran an honest election? There is no doubt in my mind that this election was rife with massive fraud, possibly even with the knowledge of Biden. That might explain why Biden was so unusually complacent during the campaign.
Bringing to justice the people or organizations responsible for election fraud is in the interest of everyone – regardless of whether it impacts the election results. I’m in favor of the investigating even if Trump’s chances of remaining president for another four years are less than his chances of winning an election in Botswana against President Mokgweetsi Masisi.
Remembering the Good Ole Days
Every week, I look forward to reading Arnold Fine’s column entitled “I Remember When!” I get a good chuckle.
But since almost every column stars Arnold Fine’s younger brother Berel, why not change the title to “I Remember Berel”?
Keep up the good work.
Los Angeles, CA
What’s the Point?
I believe most voters didn’t cast their ballots for Biden. This election was a fraud, and if we ignore all the illegal activities that took place, we won’t have a republic. The lesson everyone will take away is that dishonesty pays – just like it does in China, Russia, and other totalitarian countries.
This election has left me with a bitter taste for politics. I’m not the only one. People won’t vote in the future. Why vote when there is so much fraud and dishonesty?
The reason President Trump won in 2016 is because the Democrats didn’t think he had a chance, so they didn’t rig the election. This time, though, they were prepared.
George Floyd in a Holocaust Museum?
I urge readers to contact the Holocaust Memorial and Education Resource Center in Florida and protest its decision to feature an exhibit on the death of George Floyd.
To host an exhibit on a man who died in police custody in a museum devoted to the attempted genocide of the Jewish people is to distort and demean the memory of six million Jews. There are many good places to host a Floyd exhibit; a Holocaust museum is not one of them.
The museum’s address is 851 N Maitland Ave. Maitland, FL 32751, and its phone number is 407-628-0555.
Rabbi Dr. Bernhard Rosenberg
When I saw the blurb on page 1 last week highlighting a feature (“Is It Proper?”) on the priority a frum Jew should give to learning sefarim like Koheles, Shir HaShirim, and Iyov, I was very eager to read it.
I like learning these sefarim, but I work and have a family, so my time for learning isn’t infinite. If I learn these sefarim, I cannot learn as much Chumash, Gemara, or halacha. I was hoping, therefore, that this feature would give me some clarity.
Unfortunately, I came away disappointed. Instead of answering the question, the rabbis essentially danced around it.
Quebec Is Hardly ‘Ugly’
Re “Last Seven Days in Israel” (Nov. 27, page 14):
While Rabbi Ben Packer may disagree with Quebec’s decision to allow family Christmas gatherings while barring Chanukah gatherings during the Covid-19 pandemic, there is no reason to resort to name-calling as he does in describing Quebec as “ugly and stupid.”
Quebec is actually a very beautiful part of Canada, and Montreal has a thriving Orthodox/chassidic community. It is a province where the government funds the secular education of Jewish day schools and yeshivot and where, unlike parts of Brooklyn, chassidim are not the targets of harassment in the streets.
A Great Chazzan
There is so much to say about Cantor Daniel Gildar, z”l, who passed away last week. His superb musicianship. His deep knowledge of nussach hatefillah, his understanding of the traditional cantorial art, his unique talent in following cantorial improvisation, his constant support of cantors at the beginning of their careers.
Danny, as we lovingly called him, was a superb pianist with outstanding technique. He applied his knowledge of classical music towards our art, thus raising the level of chazzanut to new heights and appreciation.
Danny and I cooperated many, many times in concerts. For part of the concert, he would sing while I accompanied him on the piano and during the other part I would sing while he played. When he accompanied me, he loved inserting his own ideas in the music, making me feel excited and desirous of giving my best interpretation to the piece.
Danny will be missed by cantors all over the world and by lovers of the holy music of our holy prayers. May his memory be a blessing to all of us.
Cantor Joseph Malovany
New York, NY