THE JEWISH NEWS
Cooling Off In A Hot Summer
Incorporating. The Detroit Jewish, Chronicle commencing with issue of July 20,. 1951:
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C.ARML M. SLOMOVITZ
Sabbath Scriptural: Selections
This Sabbath, the fourth day of Elul, 5726, the folTowing. scriptural selections will
be read in o:ur synagogues:.
Pentateuchal portion, Deut. 16:18-21:9; Prophetical portion•, Isaiah 51:12.-52:12.
Licht Benshen, Friday, Aug. 19; 7:09 p. at.
XLIX No. 26
Aug. 19, 1966
Legislation on the Right to Pray
holding the beauty of God's nature, when putting:
Illinois' Senator EverettDirksen is an
on a new garment, upon hearing good. tidings,—
unusual man. He usually has a sense of
in short, there is virtirallY no aspect of human
humor. His dry but incisive wit attracts atten-
experience that a Jew is not bidden to sanctify
tion, draws laughs, gains him: the admiration
with prayer.. There is,. therefOre,- nothing inappro-.
and friendships that have elevated him to
priate, from a Jewish religious point. of view,. and.
tempi leadership. That is why it is all
we might add, from, a Constitutional point of view,:
in a student reciting private prayers. during the
the more puzzling why the down-to-earth
course. of his - school day, provided. he. does not
Republican leader should have undertaken
obstruct or impede the normal school program.
to put Grr the spot so many members of: the
United States Senate by his proposal to legis-
PUblic prayer is an entirely different. matter Popular. Autobiography
again.. Let us: be clear about the natUre of the
late an the. right to pray, who is to pray, when
problem. The: difficulty- IS not the location as such,
one is to: pray, whether one is to ask him or
nor is it essentially what some critics have pre-
any one else whether or not to pray or where
judicially clescrilied as. "routine,.. formalized,
mechanical recitation". In Jewish tradition, pub-
If it were not faced. wits such serious-
lic prayers can be recited virtually anywhere
ness, there would be something funny about
(though the synagogue is its most appropriate. set-
When "Trial and Error,'° the autobiography at Dr.. Chaim Weiz-
the measure—S. J. Res. 148—which is in
ting). Our prayers, not unlike the public prayers
effect a constitutional amendment to assure
of most other faiths, are formalized both as to mann,.. ERA president, first made its appearance in 1949; it at
content and manner of recitation. This is neces- once, assumed the role of a classic. It was a revealing account of the
the right to: "voluntary" prayers: in our
sarily so, for prayer is the singular expression. of life of one of world.jewry'S greatest personalities; it was history com-
schools. His proposal is especially threatening
a particular faith community, shaped and formed
b e c a u s e it is the first such effort to
by, and giving expression to a unique historital bined with dramatic- experiences: entailing many of the world's most
tamper with the Bill of Rights and to intro-
encounter with the Divine. For this very same ffleinguished people;.. it- was an: account of Zionism and . Zionist trials
duce a change in the first 10 amendments to
reason, however, it is an act of gross religibus ant. tribulatiOns and a. the emergence of the State of iSraei.
the Constitution. It has been called "mis-
insensitivity to involve in such a deeply sectarian
This book retains the status aC a classic, and as such it now gains
chievous" and one Washington correspondent,
experience children of differing faiths. This kind
Kenneth Crawford, writing in Newsweek, an-
of indiscriminate and superficial religiosity leads new stature with its reappearance as a paperback published by Schocken
to a trivialization and desecration of _genuine wor- Books WI Park, NY 16). The fact that the republished paperback,
ticipates that Senator Dirksen may succeed
in forcing some of his colleagues to support t ship.
appearing, in its entirety as in the original work, contains an intro-
him because they wail: "How can we vote
This,. then, is the religious' ground, as ffis- duction by Abba Eban, president of the Weizmann Institute in. Rehovot
tinguished- from the political, on. which we base: and now Israel's Foreign Minister, gives this, work an added quality.
against prayer?" But Crawford also main-
our opposition to sectarian prayers in the public
tains: "Some of the .Republican leader's col-
schools. It is on this same ground that we would
leagues go so far to suggest that he is press-
"Weizmann's power lay in
oppose non-sectarian prayers.. Prayer that is not
ing his amendment to punish them for past
rooted in specific faith and in distinctive religious._
that the needs of Jew-
transgressions against his commandments.
commitment is a meaningless,. empty exercise.-
ish: history must ultimately prevail against mountainous obstacles
They complain that he is not doing, unto them
Does- this mean. that God and religion are to
of rationality . . . His triumph had been in the arena of diplomacy.
as he would have them do unto him."
be banished from our national life, or that the
he knew that the final verdict would be decided in more
It has also been suggested that Senator
religious foundations of this national life are being
fields. He implored the powerful Jewries, with only
Dirksen is carrying on a .vendetta with the
challenged? The answer is' clearly and emphati-
partial success, to turn their minds away from diplomacy towards
U. S. Supreme Court, having stated: "I do
cally "no!" We are- in fact a predominantly re-
ligious people in our origins and in our traditions.
the concrete forces which alone gave diplomacy its content. The
not intend to let nine men tell 190 million
As clergymen, we seek to make religion an even
Americans, including children, where and
Balfour Declaration and the Mandate for Palestine were no more
more effective part of our society's life than it
when they can say their prayers." This is just
than opportunities . . . Everything depended on whether they
is. Certainly, there is room in American life for
the point that has been amply clarified in
could be replaced by a geographical reality more substantial than
Supreme Court decisions—that such rights
themselves ... . Weizmann's task was to convert a prospect into
commitment. But this spiritual heritage and this
are not to be tampered with. But Senator
religious character is to be attributed to the Amer-
reality, a. generous vision into a solid fact .. .
Dirksen would, contrary to the expressed
ican society as such, and decidedly not to the
Continuing his- characterization, indicating that Weizmann's total
views of many religious leaders and of the
American state as such.
consecration to: the great Zionist task was rewarded by his. followers
major religious organizations, bypass the
It is unfortunate that the entire'Dirksen "with an awed. respect," Eban states that "his relations with his own
First Amendment and introduce a new order scheme
tends not only to challenge the Su- people rested on. an utter and unbroken intimacy of contact. He probed
negating basic American principles separating preme Court
and its oft-reiterated rulings in every fiber of Jewish sensitivity: He knew his people M. their many im-
church and state.
support of the separation principle, but would perfections, and in: the redeeming moments of grandeur ... "
A joint statement by the Synagogue additionally shatter an established American
Eban says. of the eminent leader that "his liberal captaincy created
Council of America and the National -Com- tradition and wouldintroduce government a climate of tolerance of ideals,, hospitable' to criticism and conducive
munity Relations Advisory Council, in oppo- rule in permitting the injecting of religious to a broad dispersion of varied energies .. .
sition to the Dirksen amendment, indicated ideas into the public school system, also lead-
that the proposal now before the U. S. Senate ing to the injection of religion in state af-
itself that is of the u
"would place the force of government behind fairs. The hope of the defenders of the separ-
importance. Weiznitann's life--his. childhood, his student dk,,,
prayer," and presented the following as the ation idea is that. Senators will not be forced
Switzerland, his struggle to overcome Jewish opposition to Zio.o,_„
Jewish traditional attitude on praying:
ism, the story of the issuance of the Balfour Declaration , — all lead
into a role of ruling on prayer as such, under
ups to the years when he emerged as the leader in world. Jewry,
Jewish tradition., not unlike most other re-
pressure of "who can vote against prayer?",
respected' in. the non-Jewish. world, listened. to, yet confronted with
ligious traditions, knows of two kinds of prayer:
but will recognize that in a free society the
the problems that made the struggle so difficult.
private prayer, and public prayer. There is hardly
a place or activity that in Jewish ,tradition ren- right to prayer is sacred and unabridged
He. was. the. mart of great dignity and. charm and it was reflected
ders private_ prayer inappropriate. A Jew is bid-
alt of his, dealings.. His life's, story describes the many dealings with ,
amendment will introduce an abridgement in
den to recite private prayers before he eats or
non-Jews, with those who- responded with warmth and friendship and/
drinks, on the completion of his meals, on be-
the antagoniSts who stood in the way of fulfillment of the Jewish )
Let's Make Detroit Safe for All Citizens
Firm Steps by Detroit's police, whose
fairness has been commended by Negro lead-
ers, have assured a check on violence and a
warning that the type of lawlessness that has
disrupted the peace of a number of Ameri-
can communities will,not be tolerated here.
The prompt action by Detroit's law-enforcing
apparatus is part of a pattern—of the desire
of the people of this city to see justice en-
acted in human relations and at the same
time to make certain that rioting and race
violence should be checked.
The position of Negro leadership, of the
religious ministers and others in their midst,.
coupled with the desire of our community to
assure equality for all and the best educa-
tional and recreational opportunities for. the
Negro youths, 'are contributing factors irk a
situation that should make Detroit an exam-
ple for other cities.
We had a sad lesson in 1943, when-whites
rioted against Negroes and there was a heavy
toll , in lives and properties. It was inexcus-
able then and anything akin to it now,
whether it is Negroes battling whites, whites
attacking Negroes. or people fighting among
themselves, must be Viewed as un-American,
inhuman and contrary to the basic ideals of
our community and our land.
All citizens must work jointly to prevent
racial strife, to introduce the necessary bene-
fits to guarantee the equality of all citizens,
to eliminate strife and suspicion. By striving
for the highest goals consonant with Ameri-
canism, we can make our community safe
all wad are example to others.
Wetzmann's 'Trial and Error'
in Paperback, With Eban Essay
The. JEWS who: apposed him, and those who worked - with him; the
obstacles that arose, the dreams: that were accompanied, by heartaches
are part of. this man's life which, adinittedly, not only was filled
with trials, but. was accompanied by errors that stem from dreams
beckoning t became realities.
It is the personal life, too, that is of major interest in this
classic book that will be referred to, by those seeking information
about the history of the last two generations of Jews ., for genera-
tions to come. The sorrows occasioned by the loss of a son who
died in the service of his. country (Great Britain) and the sad-
nesses: that often. overwhelmed him, prove deeply moving in this
account of a rich lifetime.
The service. to Jewry emerges here in all its glory.. This is the
story of. Chaim W'eizmann who. was statetT„ eloquent when the, occasion
required it--although the- autobiographer certainly does not boast about
personal matters in: his account of his own life—and self-sacrificing in
the creation of the movement to it the homelessness of his people.-
; A great service is rendered by the issuance of Weizmann's "Trial
'and 17.1pror" as a paperback, making, it available to larger masses of a
'new generatinn Of interested readers; Not Jews' alone, but people of all
faiths Will find this book of immense interest:.