Birthright For Middle Schoolers


Our eighth grade recently returned from a transformational two-week Israel trip through our school and with Ramah International. As a head of school (K-8) and Israel trip educator, my dream is to start a new division of Taglit [Birthright Israel] or find a way to start an independent model with Ramah or another trip provider based on the successes we see. Your article “Boost for Birthright Funding” (Jan. 21) is inspiring me to think about liberal Jewish education in the future: it has to be Israel-centered.

Leave It To Israelis


In “Threats To Israeli Democracy” (Opinion, March 11), Letty Cottin Pogrebin exhorts American Jews to decry measures by the Knesset, which is trying to get better control of scores of NGOs, who are trying to undermine Israel and aid its delegitimization from within. She brands these measures as McCarthyite. She also criticizes Israel’s wish to have a loyalty pledge of allegiance to Israel as a Jewish state. She believes that Israeli democracy is being destroyed by these and other measures.

Open Expression



I was so pleased to read Gary Rosenblatt’s column, “Advocacy Gone Awry” (March 15). I have personally felt the anguish of being dubbed anti-Semitic and anti-Israel because in a number of recent communications I have expressed my frustration with the continued expansion of settlements in the West Bank and Prime Minister Netanyahu’s lack of pushing the two-state solution.


JCCWatch Responds


It is wrong for The Jewish Week to marginalize the efforts of JCCWatch.org and the growing group of Jews who refuse to allow their communal organizations to twist their support of Israel and embrace those groups who look to hurt Israel (“Advocacy Gone Awry,” Editor’s column, March 18)

Against Boycotts Of Israel And Israelis


Martin Raffel, project director for the Israel Action Network, was quoted extensively in Stewart Ain’s article, “Consensus Seen Taking Shape On Boycotts” (March 18).

On Day School Tuitions


In response to Steven Burg’s opinion piece, “Don’t Make Summer Programs ‘Luxury Items’” (March 4), please don’t contribute to making yeshiva day school into a luxury we can no longer afford.

Scholarships to yeshiva day schools are paid for largely by increasing the tuition for full-paying parents, to the tune of several thousand dollars per student. Since this contribution to the scholarship fund is involuntary, it is made with after-tax money, like the rest of the tuition payments.

Being Offered A Synagogue


Regarding your article, “Wanna Buy A Historic Shul In Poland?” (March 4), almost 15 years ago I joined approximately 100 family members and friends — survivors of a shtetl in Galicia (now Ukraine), along with their children and grandchildren, from North America and Israel — on a journey to dedicate a monument in the killing field where their Jewish community was finally and completely liquidated. Or so the Nazis and their local henchmen thought.

Admires Lipner


I was very saddened to read the article about Ohel and the issue of mandated reporting (“Abuse Case Tests Ohel’s Adherence To Reporting Laws,” Feb. 25).

I ran the Ohel Sexual Abuse Program for almost two years, and this was never an issue then. Our esteemed lawyer, Harvey Jacobs, would always provide expert advice on what cases needed to be reported and the rabbinic posek [decisor] would concur and provide a heter [permission] if necessary. There was no contradiction, and each side worked together.

Saddened By Ohel Story


As an Orthodox mental health professional I was saddened to read the article, “Abuse Case Tests Ohel’s Adherence To Reporting Laws” (Feb. 25). After I graduated from the Silver School of Social Work at New York University nearly two years ago, I was fortunate to be offered employment at well-regarded agencies and hospitals throughout the metropolitan area. I intended, however, to seek work at a Jewish organization that served its community and people in need.

Immigration Needs


Thank you for your coverage of the recent gathering of Jewish and Muslim young leaders to discuss how our two communities can work together to further a more just and equitable immigration system (“Young Jewish, Muslim Leaders Join On Immigration Issues,” March 11).

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