Letters

Day School Cooperation

01/24/2012

Our colleagues and friends at the YU Institute for University-School Partnership are to be commended for training school administrators and leadership to compare their school’s finances against Jewish day school benchmarks (“Day Schools Saving Millions In New Efficiency Effort,” Jan. 13). The open sharing of previously guarded information will help each school make wise financial decisions in pursuit of each school’s sacred mission.

Need Day School Transparency

01/24/2012

In the article “Day Schools Save Millions in New Efficiency Effort” (Jan. 13), the author highlights how new “benchmarking” efforts have “resulted in substantial savings of tens of millions of dollars for nearly 40 Jewish day schools across the nation,” hardly an insignificant sum, even in the context of academic finances.

Good Intentions Hurting Jerusalem

01/17/2012

There are currently an estimated 9,000 ghost dwellings in Jerusalem that are owned by foreigners (“Jerusalem Is Becoming A Ghost Town,” Jan. 6). The average vacant, shuttered home is twice the size of the average apartment occupied by Israeli families. Hence, in effect, there are 18,00 units that are unavailable and unaffordable to real Israelis.

Doubling the real estate tax is a joke, as that tax, even doubled, is extremely low compared to real estate taxes in America. 

Affordable Jerusalem Housing

01/17/2012

Your article on the lack of affordable housing in Jerusalem offered an evenhanded review of the issues (“Jerusalem Is Becoming A Ghost Town,’” Jan. 6). As a Queens resident who owns an apartment in Jerusalem, I can reiterate the sentiment that it is absurd to expect a large number of absentee owners to rent their Jerusalem apartments to strangers.

Part-Time Residents Helpful

01/17/2012

The article “’Jerusalem Is Becoming A Ghost Town’” (Jan. 6) does not consider the facts that the part-time residents have invested huge amounts of money in Israel. We pay taxes, we pay maintenance fees, we pay insurance, we keep accounts at local banks, we support the airlines, silver and art shops, and charities for Israel. We love Israel and support it politically, economically and any other way possible.

To single out Jews who buy apartments in Israel and live there part time is not right.

Bring Them Home

01/17/2012

Thank you for your excellent editorial regarding the latest delays in bringing the remaining Ethiopian Jews to Israel (“Why The Delay In Ethiopian Jewish Aliyah?” Dec. 30).

I would like to raise my voice to cry out at the injustice of this delay, at the discrimination of this delay and at the sorry excuses the Jewish Agency has created.

“A possible shortage of beds” for incoming Ethiopians at Israeli absorption centers as a reason for cutting numbers admitted each month from a meager 200 to a paltry 110?

Lack Of Leadership

01/17/2012

Though I am acutely aware of polarization within the Jewish community, I was particularly distressed by Michele Chabin’s report on haredi extremists attacking schoolgirls because of their “immodest” dress (“In Beit Shemesh, Modesty Wars,” Dec. 30). 

Need For Sensitivity

01/17/2012

The news these last few weeks from Beit Shemesh about some people spitting at little girls, calling girls zonot (prostitutes), physically attacking other people and throwing stones at them is disconcerting to say the least.

When we accidentally drop a siddur (prayer book) or a sefer (holy book), we kiss the sefer. Does the siddur or sefer feel anything? Clearly the act of kissing the siddur is meant to inculcate within us a sensitivity that should translate into the respect we need to show to another human being.

Bride’s Choice

01/17/2012

Menachem Rosensaft’s opinion piece on ultra-Orthodox Judaism’s need to be more open-minded (“Ultra-Orthodox Judaism Need Not Be Closed-Minded,” Jan. 13) makes some valid points, but also a misleading one.

Unfair Portrayal Of Haredim

01/17/2012

I find the coverage of recent events regarding the haredim extremely biased and one-sided (“Beyond Beit Shemesh,” Jan. 6).

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