mailbox with the number 12 on it in front of some shrubbery.
Photo by TanteTati

The JN Got it Right

It is truly wonderful that our community is large enough to offer different educational options for families with different types of Jewish affiliation. However, I am disappointed that two heads of school and eight observant families saw the need to become defensive about their schools in response to the Jewish News’ statement that Orthodox children cannot be expected to attend non-Orthodox institutions and programs.

Unfortunately, their statements were unnecessary and misguided, as the JN’s statement did not say that Orthodox families could not choose to send their children there, but rather said that Orthodox children could not be expected to attend those programs.

The accuracy of that statement is reinforced by the fact that (only) eight families signed the letter, but there are hundreds of Orthodox families who choose other options for their children, largely (but not exclusively) because most Orthodox families do not want their children to be taught that adherence to traditional Halachah (Jewish law) is only an option rather than a requirement mandated by God.

It is admirable that those schools make all families who choose to go there comfortable, but that does nothing to refute the accuracy of the statement made by the JN that Orthodox children cannot — and should not — be expected to attend a non-Orthodox program. This time, the JN got it exactly right, and I applaud you for giving an honest, realistic assessment of the future demographic breakdown of our young population and the resultant needs and demands that we will face in both our Orthodox and non-Orthodox institutions.

Joseph Greenbaum

What Spurred Anti-Semitism?

I re-read Mr. Jacobs’ Nov. 8 column a few times, thinking I had somehow missed his analysis of how Donald Trump’s inflammatory language had spurred the rise of anti-Semitism in the U.S. But the column implied (although he claims otherwise) that the ramblings of Farrakhan were the primary inspiration for the white supremacist Tree of Life murderer. I’m willing to bet that’s not the case.

And although “Sarsour” has become a buzzword, nobody except those who are immersed in political news and opinion knows who she is.

I remain gobsmacked at the glaring omission of the real influence behind the catastrophe that our country has become.

­Cynthia Brody
Beverly Hills


  1. Applesauce, Cynthia Brody. The idea that Trump is anti-Semitic or supports those who are lacks any real foundation…certainly he’s the most pro-Israel president in history, for one thing. And given things like Obama ascribing opposition to his Iran deal as due to “lobbyists,” “outside influence,” and “donors,” it’s a bit rich to see the rise in anti-Semitism put on him.

    You’d be surprised but a lot of people who aren’t “immersed” in politics know who Linda Sarsour is…she was a chief sponsor of the Women’s March, for example, she has made no secret of her overt anti-Semitism, and if there’s any substantial movement on the left to deny her opportunities to spread her views, I’ve missed it. I’d also suggest that, say, Farrakhan drawing 15,000 supporters to his recent Detroit rally, who applauded enthusiastically when he called Jews “termites,” might contribute to a climate of Jew-hatred.

    It was amusing in a grim sort of way to see a march allegedly for women’s rights led by an ardent advocate of sharia.

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