Letters Week of Oct. 18, 2007

What Has Abortion Got to Do With the Presidency?
Jonathan Tobin's column, "Can the Center Hold?" (A Matter of Opinion, Oct. 4), is correct, but depressing.
Have these anti-abortion zealots who would refuse to support Rudy Giuliani contemplated what a Hillary Clinton victory would bring for a rash of issues of real consequence to them — not to mention her record along her unprincipled march to power?
Moreover, the office of the president has almost nothing to do with abortion rights other than to appoint Supreme Court justices.
There is already a conservative majority on the court, with no imminent retirements in sight. Moreover, Rudy has promised to appoint conservative judges.
Lawrence Mayer
Professor of Political Science
Texas Tech University
Lubbock, Texas

Cracow Culture Festival: It's Good for the Jews!
The Jewish Exponent's article on the Jewish Culture Festival in Cracow (City & Suburb: "Jewish Culture, Now a Polish Phenomenon, Takes Center Stage," Sept. 27) did not adequately discuss the great benefits to the Jewish community in Poland and in the United States from the festival and the educational activities there, as well as those by our organization, the Friends of the Jewish Culture Festival in Cracow.
They can and do produce changes in our knowledge of our roots in Poland, in addition to our consciousness that all efforts that educate Poles and Jews of our shared history and culture remain in the interest of Jewish communities in Philadelphia area and elsewhere.
Michael Steiman
Friends of the Jewish Culture Festival in Cracow

Are We Doomed to Repeat the Mistakes of the '30s?
Iran has threatened to destroy Israel, and the world is silent (Cover story: "Iranian President Riles the Streets of New York," Sept. 27).
In the 1930s, Great Britain and France permitted Hitler to rearm Germany, disregarding his plan to wipe out Jews, in addition to his hatred of Russia. This blindness would cost the West dearly.
Unfortunately, world leaders have forgotten that horrible mistake and its consequences.
Again, the Jews — in the form of the State of Israel — are the victims of aggression and hatred. The world ignores war and terror against Israel, and blames it for acts of self-defense.
Muslim backers of terror groups are not stopped by the West, whose excuse is that we need oil.
The same results that occurred in the 1930s could be repeated in the near future unless terrorism is stopped. With modern weaponry, including nuclear technology, being made available to the Islamists, the entire West is in danger.
Only a strong Israel can help the West defeat terror.
Henry Lotto

New History Museum: A Place for All Americans
Recent news coverage connected to the groundbreaking ceremony of the long-anticipated expansion of the National Museum of American Jewish History on Independence Mall has unleashed an important discussion about the museum's importance and function (Cover story: "History Museum Digs In for the Future," Oct. 4).
Conceived as part of the Bicentennial celebrations here in Philadelphia more than 40 years ago, the museum is actually part of an older tradition that stretches back to a parade marking the adoption of the Bill of Rights in 1789, in which area Jews proudly participated, and the Centennial celebrations of 1876, when the local Jewish community rallied to make it clear that American Jews had a significant place in society "under law" equal to all other groups in this country.
The impulse behind those historic celebrations and the founding of the new facility is all about American Jewish patriotism, civic pride, and a devotion to the ideals of democracy, liberty and justice for all.
In other words, the key term in the name of the new entity — and the ultimate reason for its precise location and massive funding — is "American."
In that sense, the museum can serve as a true point of unity for our diverse Jewish community, and as a venue for other ethnic and religious communities, in celebrating and examining the ideals, realities and challenges of society.
Rabbi Lance J. Sussman
Keneseth Israel
Elkins Park

Nice Museum, but How About a School With It?
We were at the groundbreaking ceremonies for the new National Museum of American Jewish History, and were impressed by the scope of plans and the projected impact of the museum (Cover story: "History Museum Digs In for the Future," Oct. 4).
However, we couldn't help thinking how much greater an impact would be achieved if the plans included an on-site Jewish day school functionally integrated with the museum.
Jack and Sandra Jacobowitz

'Postmenopausal' Insult Deserves an Apology!
I've run singles events in the Philadelphia area, and so I know that it's not an easy task trying to get people out to these events. Individuals of all ages are finicky and hard to please.
However, I was shocked and appalled by Roy S. Gutterman's recent column (Single & Mingle: "No-Shows, and Those You Don't Want to Show Up at All!" Oct. 4).
To single out "postmenopausal women" — and then to go on and write that "I could almost understand why Milt would want to avoid these ladies" — is insulting and humiliating.
Marsha Hyman


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