May 28, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

To the Editor:

Thank you so much for sharing Rabbi Sytner’s beautiful and inspiring article (“Finding the Strength to Care,” July 25, 2015).

I am personally aware of this story in Israel and the situation is incredibly difficult (as is the fundraising on Daniel’s behalf). Thank you for helping get this story out. If you have any further contacts or individuals, friends or just klal Yisrael members who might be able to help, please continue to share in this mitzvah by spreading the word!

Much appreciation,

May Klal Yisroel hear of no more Tzaar,

C. Schwartz

Israel

To the Editor:

I want to thank the Jewish Link and particularly Maxine Dovere for the wonderful article “Honors, Concerns Characterize CUFI Summit,” (July 23, 2015). Of the many of my quotes in the press this was the most accurate and kind and for that I want to extend my deep appreciation to Maxine.

Shalom and warmest regards,

Irving Roth, Director

Holocaust Resource Center

Temple Judea of Manhasset

To the Editor:

Last week’s edition of the Jewish Link discussed a community meeting that took place at the Rodda Center in response to the church shooting in Charleston (“Teaneck Safety Meeting Held in Response to Charleston Shooting,” July 23, 2015). It is a good thing that this has sparked concerns in the community about the safety of our citizens when they are in houses of worship, but the solutions offered are alarming. The solutions are to (1) call somebody with a gun; and (2) pray that they get there in time to help. It is not my intention to minimize the importance of working with law enforcement in order to determine what steps we can take in order to best protect ourselves, but the pink elephant in the room that our politicians and police do not address is the benefit of having armed civilians in our houses of worship in order to defend against events that our vigilance does not prevent.

There have been too many incidents not to take security in our houses of worship seriously. But it is naïve to think that the sole solution to these threats is to improve vigilance in order to speed up law enforcement response time. If there was ever an active shooter, or shooters, in any house of worship in Teaneck, the massacre would be over by the time there could be an adequate response by law enforcement to defuse such a situation. The first response will be from individual police officers who happen to have been on patrol and likely not be equipped to enter into a church or synagogue with active shooters. It would take many more minutes for enough qualified police officers to assemble a SWAT team to arrive, and by the time SWAT arrived, the massacre would either be over or it would be a hostage situation. It would be exponentially worse if it was an organized terrorist attack that targeted multiple houses of worship simultaneously, because those police resources would have to be divided.

The only immediate response that could reasonably be expected to effectively respond to an active shooter or terrorist situation would be armed congregants. Dillon Roof selected a group of people in a church because he knew they would be unarmed and thus unable to defend themselves from him. He likely would have been killed long before there were nine people dead if one of those individuals was armed. The dangers of creating gun-free zones should be evident by the disproportionate amount of mass shootings that have happened at places where individuals were not permitted to carry firearms and thus were defenseless victims. Gun-free zones are a failed experiment.

Synagogues, churches and mosques should have the right to consult with private security firms in order to determine the best way for them to ensure the safety of their congregants, and our local politicians need to advocate that our representatives in Trenton banish any laws that inhibit these security plans. Taking action that puts any potential murderer on notice that we are armed and anybody who attempts to harm us may be shot would at least create a chance that a potential murderer would move on to an easier target, which likely would be a church or synagogue that touts itself as a “gun-free zone.”

Working with law enforcement to try to identify the crazed gunman before he becomes an active shooter is an important part of what our security should be, but only a part. We need the right to implement security as we best see fit with the help of, rather than interference by, our politicians or local law enforcement.

Michael Reich

Teaneck

To the Editor:

As a student of history in general, and of Jewish history in particular, there is one important thing that I have learned. When a leader of a movement driven by ideology promises to do something, as outrageous as this something may sound, they will surely try to do it when in power. This was true in the time of the Crusades, in the time of Khmelnytsky, in the time of Hitler, and it is true in the time of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the self-proclaimed Caliphate.

The ADL, and its head Mr. Foxman, made the Holocaust into a religion similar to Judaism, where one may not dare comparing God to anything, let alone another deity. Similarly, no one can dare compare the Holocaust to any other thing, let alone other factual or planned genocides, whether Jews or others are the victims.

Mr. Huckabee stated the obvious and clear similarities between the USA’s abandonment of Israel when signing the treaty with Iran. The parallels between this treaty and the Munich Accord are obvious and clear. Yet the ADL, being the loyal pet dog of the Democratic party, takes the party line and attacks Mr. Huckabee for speaking the truth.

Let me please share with you a personal point of view. When I came to this country, I did not really understand the political arena and did not clearly know which opinion to choose in many public debates. But it took me a relatively short time to discover a few Jewish luminaries, Mr. Foxman included. Whenever I am not sure what to do, all I have to do is to look at those luminaries and safely choose the opposite opinion.

Sorry Mr. Foxman and the ADL, you do not have the unified support of the Jewish community.  Many of us in fact support Mr. Huckabee. When you issue statements, please do not misrepresent them as the opinions of the Jewish community. Or at least make sure to clearly state that you do not represent me.

Zeev Atlas

Teaneck

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