Letters to the Editor Week of July 7, 2005

It’s Getting Hot in Here: Series a Timely Reminder I applaud the Jewish Exponent for including a discussion of global warming in its excellent series on environmentalism (Cover story: “Love Your ‘Mother,’ More Than Before,” June 23). Global warming is a pressing environmental and social-justice concern that our elected officials are just now taking to heart.

In late June, the U.S. Senate passed a historic resolution, sponsored by Sen. Arlen Specter, acknowledging that global warming is serious enough to require mandatory pollution reductions. The next step is to ensure that the resolution’s promise to pass comprehensive pollution-reduction measures will be met.

I hope that the Exponent will continue to cover this important matter, so that we, as concerned citizens, can follow the progress of this legislation.
Marjorie Curtis-Cohen
Chair, Social-Action Committee
Reform Congregation Keneseth Israel
Elkins Park


Israel-Basher’s Charges Create Deafening Silence

Jonathan Tobin’s column “Still Blaming the Jews?” (A Matter of Opinion, June 23) pinpoints what’s clearly a growing concern for those of us who follow Israel, and are aware of the growing distance on the issue initiated by much of the left within the Democratic Party.

I watched the House Democratic Party members’ mock impeachment hearing on C-SPAN, and assessed it in much the same way as Tobin did.

Listening to the venom pouring from former intelligence analyst Ray McGovern — to the delight of Rep. James Moran (D-Va.) — did not shock me.

What did disturb me was to observe the muted silence of Rep. Jerry Nadler and Rep. Nita Lowey, both from New York. Neither of these two Jewish supporters of Israel made any effort to ask obvious questions, such as for proof to support the allegations.

If these members of Congress are unwilling to defend the rights of Israel and, by association, all Jews, then it’s certainly easy to understand how many Jews have been able to comfortably shift to the Republican Party.
Phillip Remstein
Lafayette Hill

Opinion’s OK, but Don’t Flaunt Your Political Bias

The Jewish Exponent, which represents the entire community, should be nonpolitical and nonpartisan in its approach to politics.

There are Jewish Democrats and Jewish Republicans. If there were no Republican Jews, we would have little reason to expect favor from Washington when Republicans are in power.

Yet Jonathan Tobin makes no excuses for his support for the Democrats by stating in his column (A Matter of Opinion: “Still Blaming the Jews?” June 23) that Democrats “must be considered the odds-on favorites to recapture the White House in 2008.”

A gratuitous statement like that reveals a lot about a person’s politics.

In fact, it reveals Tobin’s wishful thinking. He’s entitled to his own opinion, but it’s out of place to publish such a comment in a newspaper meant to represent the entire community.
Harry Shooster
Pompano Beach, Fla.

First, Accountability; After That, Aid Will Come

In “Righteousness Comes Cheap” (A Matter of Opinion, June 30), Jonathan Tobin underscores a key weakness of international-aid programs: the inability to manage corrupt leaders and governments that impede the aid money from reaching their people so they can line their own pockets.

The U.N.-sponsored Iraqi oil-for-food scandal is just the latest debacle typifying this immoral behavior.

What we can learn from the Iraqi scandal and current African aid programs is that short of replacing these leaders, the international community needs to rethink how fiscal support should be offered and controlled — from start to finish — before adding more money to an already broken process.

Accountability can, and must, be integrated into the process first.

This is where Live 8 promoter Bob Geldof can make a real difference.

Helping to determine how to better manage the distribution of international aid so that people in need really get it all is an objective worthy of Geldof’s extensive attention and influence.
Joe Burak

Celebs Give Third-World Thieves a Pass

It’s hard not to laugh at the Live 8 concert, and I enjoyed Jonathan Tobin’s column about it (A Matter of Opinion: “Righteousness Comes Cheap,” June 30).

Do celebrities like Bono and Bob Geldof have any idea that $40 billion was stolen or squandered by the most corrupt regimes and biggest thieves in the Third World?

Then, the bankers at the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and the African Development Bank who failed to pay attention when they first made the loans — and lied about how good the loans really were — weren’t exposed or prosecuted.

And lastly, Americans have to pay for this historic bailout once again.
Jerry Daren
Mount Joy, Pa.

Gut Feelings About Live 8: Right on the Money!

Having read Jonathan Tobin’s column (A Matter of Opinion: “Righteousness Comes Cheap,” June 30), I realize that my annoyance at being inconvenienced by the Live 8 concert was actually justified.

In my gut, I felt there was something not quite right about this concert’s aim of canceling Third World debt and directing more money to failed governments.

Thank you for putting that feeling into a clear context.

Perhaps the other gut feeling I’ve always had about Israel needing to be less dependent on aid and paying her bills faster is also on the money.
Zach Weiser
Lower Merion



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here