One testified with his words. Samuel Hilton, a Holocaust survivor, sat in the witness chair and described how he lived through the liquidation of the Warsaw Ghetto.
Others testified with their presence.
A dozen recent emigres from the former Soviet Union, also Holocaust survivors, occupied the last two rows of the spectators’ section and listened reverently to Hilton. Most wore Jewish stars, made from yellow paper, on their blouses.
by Lawrence Cohler-Esses |
Like the candidate, the audience was Orthodox and likely to be staunch in its defense of Israel. So Noach Dear lost no time in making his pitch explicit.
“We have how many shomer Shabbos politicians?” he asked the Sunday morning bagels-and-cream-cheese crowd gathered to hear him at the Young Israel of Far Rockaway last month, using the term for Sabbath observers. Touting his campaign to represent them in Congress, Dear urged, “This is a way to contribute to the community.”
Just months after Susan M. of the Bronx underwent triple bypass surgery following a heart attack, she was threatened with eviction and a cutoff of her phone, gas and electric service.
“I didn’t know where to turn,” said the 58-year-old widow.
Susan, whose husband died of cancer 20 years ago, leaving her with two small children and no life insurance, said she was physically unable to return to her secretarial job and had no savings.
Catherine Abate, one of four candidates seeking the Democratic nomination for state attorney general, has a varied 25-year record in administrative positions, including city probation commissioner, chair of the state Crime Victims Board, deputy commissioner of the state Division of Human Rights and city corrections commissioner. She was elected to the state Senate in 1994, representing parts of central and lower Manhattan.
Miriam Bram heard about the Holocaust at home all her life. Three of her grandparents are survivors.
She learned the facts in high school, and visited the death camps last year in Poland.
This week, during her summer vacation, Bram’s Holocaust education continued — on the 15th floor of the U.S. Federal District Court in lower Manhattan.
Bram, 18, a sophomore at Stern College for Women, attended the denaturalization trial of Jack Reimer, a Ukrainian-born retiree accused of concealing his activities as an SS guard during World War II.
Should a Jewish research center set aside a prayer room adhering to the standards of one Jewish denomination? The question has generated a debate between secularists and religionists over the multimillion-dollar renovations at Manhattan’s Center for Jewish History.