I want to thank Rabbi Gerald Zelizer for acknowledging and accepting in his Opinion piece, “Making A Place For Non-Jews In Our Synagogue” (Feb. 21), all the good ideas that I presented at the Conservative movement’s think tank on kiruv (Jewish outreach).
I’d like to commend Sid Schwartz for his opinion piece criticizing censorship in the Jewish community, especially around matters regarding Israel (“Limiting Debate On Israel Will Only Hurt Us,” Feb. 7).
Your Feb. 7 article, “For Orthodox Women, Catch-22 on Tefillin,” ends with a quotation that suggests that the reason Orthodox women have little to no interest in wearing tefillin is that “Not only is it a huge undertaking, but there is so much cultural animosity towards it, why would you do it?”
The opinion piece by Dov Zakheim and Steven Bayme (“Not A Proud Moment for the RCA,” Feb. 7) is an unfortunate work of fiction that seeks to promote one of The Jewish Week’s favorite canards – that Avi Weiss is protecting “Modern Orthodoxy” from the “senseless and arbitrary actions” of the “Haredi Chief Rabbinate”, and that the Rabbinical Council of America (RCA) is to blame for “failing to censure” those of its members who expressed negative opinions about Avi Weiss.
Ben Harris’ nuanced portrait of Pete Seeger (“He Hammered Out Justice,” Jan. 31) sparked this recollection.
In 1958, my senior year at Columbia College, I had a brief but beautiful encounter with Pete Seeger. A folk-song aficionado, I organized the Columbia Folksingers Club in conjunction with several Barnard women. Our weekly gatherings on a Friday afternoon hit near nirvana with a guest appearance by that legendary troubadour, the Pied Piper of folk music, forever-young Pete Seeger.
Thank you so much for the overview of the Jewish Academy of Suffolk County STEM program, which includes our multiple University partnerships (Education Supplement, “Suffolk Day School Engineering A New Curriculum,” Jan. 17). We strongly believe that STEM is not just a good public relations piece for the school — it is in fact the best way to prepare students today for the world of tomorrow. I do hope your coverage will encourage other day schools to pursue this route in order to best serve their student body.
Kudos to Rabbi Charles Rudansky for his Opinion essay, “To Hope: Hospice Care in Line with Jewish Tradition” (Jan. 17). It immediately rekindled my appreciation for the rabbi and the palliative care and hospice teams. Both my parents were patients in the program(s), and were fortunate to receive the compassion, dignity, and care that they did. They were warmed in their hearts by visits from Rabbi Rudansky, and the he shared many special occasions with my parents and family while they were in his care.
There was no implied threat in the statement by Secretary of State John Kerry that Israel may be subject to a larger international economic boycott than is now in process if the peace talks do not make progress (“Kerry Adds Fuel To BDS Fire,” Editorial, Feb. 7, “Boycott Fears Bubbling Over Amid SodaStream Controversy,” Feb. 7). Kerry’s statement will not increase the likelihood of enlarged boycott. He simply described the potential for the economic implications if the status quo continues to be the status quo.