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September 20, 1968 - Image 2

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1968-09-20

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Purely Commentary


There won't be many areas in hu- celebration and at our religious serv-
man relations that will be missing ices.
in the experiences certain to face us
in 5729. Politically, economically, so-
Our probleMs have not reduced
cially, religiously, racially—the inter- during the past year: they have mul-
ests involving all peoples, all faiths. tiplied. Anti-Semitism has not been
all nationality groups will be on so eliminated: it has been revived by an
overwhelming an agenda that it will element so bigoted that the lie of the
lire the tact, the knowledge, the Middle Ages is reaffirmed as a newly-
dedic, 'on of people properly equip- discovered crusade.
ed to deal with the issues to guide
The tragedy is that the deluded
mankind along roads of peace, secur- New Left, some elements in the Black
ity, amity among individuals and na- Community, the propagandists among
t ions.
Arabs, have joined forces in attacks
Recognizing the immensity of the on all Jews, with Israel as the inno-
problems, we may as well be prepared cent central cause of the hatreds that
have endured among the ignorant
for a variety of eventualities.
This nation must deal with the masses who crave for a scapegoat in
effect: of a continuing war in Viet- their venom.
Hopes that human prejudices
nam, with the urgency of arms limita-
tions, with the Communist threats, would vanish have faded rather than
with the Russian invasion of Czecho- flourished, and our difficulty is that
slovakia and the imminence of trouble instead of dedicating ourselves to the
in Romania, with the Middle East and advancement of high cultural values
the freedom of the seas. The heft' we must constantly strive for an as-
President of the United States will be surance that the truth will be known
confronted with these-and many other and thus we are, too often, compelled
issues, and the wisdom of our fellow to fill assignments requiring respons-
citizens will be tested when they are es to libels. *
called upon to elect a genuine liberal
In this election year we are taxed
and a man who has been tested as one
of experience. knowledgeability, back- with the serious duty of assuring the
survival of our democratic way of
ground rooted in humanitarianism.
life, of preventing the collapse of
common sense and of the injection
The events that will develop on the of methods that could bring us to
foreign spheres and those involving the brink of destruction as a factor
the domestic needs—the civil rights in defense of basic decencies in inter-
principles, the war on poverty, the re- national relations. If we are not
duction of crime and the enforcement careful, elements that are bent upon
of law—will, naturally, affect all in- making a police state out of a great
dividuals, and the Jewish community country will succeed.
will be deeply involved in the emerg-
It has been threatened, and that
ing evolutionary processes.
threat must be relegated to oblivion;
On all the issues we have enumer- the candidates advocating such poli-
ated, Jewish citizens may be as sharp- cies must be repudiated- so over-
ly divided as are all the citizens of whelmingly that never again should
this land, except that we are, as a unit, we hear talk tantamount to Nazism.
committed to the basic ideals of our
There is cause for pleading with
derhocratic system which demands the American electorate to be very
equal rights for all regardless of the discriminating in this election year
color of their skins; we are, as one, in and to make certain that those who
the ranks of those striving to eliminate have already dared say they would
want to provide for the less fortunate like to turn over this nation to the
irf our midst; we are for peace and we police should get the proper reply
pray that the most urgently desired from the American people.
resu4ts of national efforts will lead to Of course, we want protection, we
an end to war and to a speedy return desire enforcement of the laws, there
of American youths from battlefronts. is need for order, but not under
the banner of either the swastika
There are the specific Jewish \ ob- or the hammer and sickle. And
ligations for which we seek the coop- those who would deny rights to op-
eration of our non-Jewish fellow-citi- pressed and at the same time en-
zens. In the struggle for peace we in- force compulsive ways in dealing
clude 'the Middle East and we earn- with the peace-enforcement responsi-
estly hope that prejudices will vanish, bilities have no place in our society.
that there will be a recognition of the
grave threats to the security of an en-
Because we must defend the demo-
tire people on the shores of the Medi- cratic rights of all, we have no way
terranean and that all people of good of preventing some of the anti-Semit-
will may be counted in the ranks of ic outbursts, even in this great land of
the defenders of an Israel that strives freedom and justice. While we had
for security and is compelled to de- hoped that our chief interests will be
fend itself endlessly against efforts in the educational fields, we are corn-
to destroy it. pelled to place emphasis on the civic-
While seeking a cease-fire in Protective factors.
Southeast Asia, we are compelled, on
Out of it all there always emerges
a sacred ,period of our inaugurating the responsibility to strengthen our
the spiritual Jewish New Year, to cultural bastions. We must fortify the
plead with the nations of the world to school so that the child should be well
take into account the fact that a cease- protected with knowledge to face all
fire. had been called on Israel's bor- eventualities in life—as Jew and as
ders and that Israel's neighbors are citizen.
constantly breaking it, resorting to all
That is why the continuing de-
types of weapons imported from the mand is that priorities in our com-
Soviet Union and Communist China, munal interests should be given to
in procedures aimed at destroying education. That is why there is so
life, at attacking children in their much concern that the teaching pro-
school yards, in vandalizing and bomb- fession should be elevated to the high-
ing setlements whose peace is always est ranks, that there should be a large
temporary as long as bitterness reigns measure of dignity for those who
across their borders.
teach our children.
While rededicating ourselves to
peace and harmony, to faith in the
The problem of enrolling the abl-
need to assure the perpetuation of est of our yOuth as prospective teach-
human values, on the sacred days of ers remains among the leading chal-
Rosh Hashana, we are compelled to lenges to us, to our community—to
think in terms of the military defense the Jewish and to the secular school
the Israelis are forced to utilize every systems, and we must not shelve this
moment of their lives. This remains a need into insignificance.
depressing factor in our New Year
Once again, our concern is with

Faith in a New Year Regardless of
Accumulating Tensions and Problems

By Philip


the youth. While striving to retain be stopped in the best interests of

boys and girls in Jewish classes after
Bar and Bat Mitzva and confirmations,
there is cause for the agony that is
created by a lack of interest in Jewish
needs and in the life of our people
among the collegiates.
We- are in agreement with those
who maintain that emphasis must be
placed upon the primary school: like
the wise Jesuitical teachers who say
"give me the child of 5 and 6 and I
don't care who has him afterwards,"
we must concede that if we provide a
good education for youngsters from
the ages of 5 through 13 we may have
some assurance that they will retain
a loyalty to Jewish traditions. Yet,
even those who had been well trained
Jewishly somehow forget their past
the moment they enter the highest
ranks of their studies in the univer-
sities. How are we to combat such in-
difference? It is a problem that mag-
nifies itself and solvents until now
have been inadequate.
Surely, this remains among the
chief problems facing us as we become
more deeply rooted in the democratic
ways of our country.
One of the most serious responsi-
bilities facing our communities—and
we sense it more than 'ever now in
our own—is the elevation of the
teaching profession, the high status
we must give to our teachers, the
need to create a major role in our
midst for the select who are train-
ing our children.
We must begin with a due respect
for the teacher. a Next to the parent
in the home, it is the teacher who
exerts the greatest influence upon
the child.
There is justified cause for us to
feel that most of our teachers are
dedicated to their profession and
therefore to our community. We be-
gin by trusting the school, and we
proceed by placing confidence in -the
teacher and in the calling he has
chosen. That status must be placed
on the highest level, regardless of
obligation to him by the community.
If we have • good teachers, we
will have a good generation of upcom-
ing youth. An assurance of a better
day in parent-child relationship lies
in our hands, in the manner in which
we protect our school system by as-
suring a dedicated teaching staff.
The teacher's role in our commun-
ity will be a subject that will tax
our considerations in the years ahead
because of what is happening in our
school system, because of the revolts
in which teachers' views are vital,.
because there is flight from that pro-
fession, and it is an escape that must


generations to be trained properly.
Dr. Albert Einstein, in "The World
As I See It," .a volume that even
now, 30 years after it was published,
retains value for those seeking wise
advice, stated:
"Academic chairs are many, but
wise and noble teachers are few."
But there is another bit of advice
not to be ignored. In the "Sef er
Hasidim" there is this notable dec-
"There are three teachers: parents,
instructors and comrades."
There is implied here also the men
and women in the community who
form a sort of a leadership, a class
of baalebatim, who share responsi-
bility for proper educational systems.
This is primarily true of the Jewish
community—and in this community
of ours it is vital that teachers work
hand in hand with the baalebatim to
assure solidity for our schools, the
best curricula, the highest types of
school system which, next to the
home, must be viewed as the great
fortress' in the struggle for Jewish
It is now being reiterated that af-
fluence is the cause ill our cultural
decline. But if our youth rebels
against it, if the young people are fol-
lowing the path of the ultra-liberal,
why should this be a root cause of our
troubles — except that the freedoms
lead many of •the youth to paths of
mixed marriages and of abandonment
of religious affiliations?
If ever there was a challenge on
this score, it is now, and the spiritual
leaders , have never before been faced
with greater demands for wise ap-
proaches to serious situations.
Yet, we also must concede that
not all is gloomy, that in an environ-
ment of freedom there is the oppor-
tunity to overcome obstacles and that
we must look to the future with faith
and with confidence that the good in-
tentions of all peoples will conquer
the evil and that strivings for advance-
ment will emerge victorious in the
long run.
There is indestructibility in the
democratic way of life, and there is
the survivalism of Jewry that is un-
The New Year 5729 must, there-
fore, be welcomed in a spirit of su-
preme confidence that the roads to
freedom and to justice will be cleared,
that humankind will proceed on a road
of creativity and not destructability.
And with humankind we look forward
to days of glory for the. Jewish spirit,
perpetuating the ideals of a sacred
heritage linked so closely with the
highest standards of American demo-

The President's Rosh Hashana Message

The White House this week issued the following Rosh Hashana
"To my fellow Americans of the Jewish faith, I send my warmest
wishes for health, happiness and spiritual refreshment on this eve
of the High Holy Days.
"According to a sacred tradition, this is the time when Jewish
people reconsecrate their covenant with God. Each -man accounts for
his deeds and thoughts of the past year and dedicates himself to the
obligations and responsibilities of the year ahead.
"It is a time for meditation on the pest and prayer to God for
the strength and ability to do what is right in the future.
"For our nation this year has brought ,both joy and sadness. We
have reaped promising harvests in the vineyards of justice and brought

succor to the needy in 'otir midst. But we have much •to do before we
can say, in good• conscience, that all Americans live as brothers, that
no man lives in want.
"I have faith' that the day will come when this beloved land will
know in fullness the true blessings of juFtice and equality. And I
have faith that Americans of Jewish faith will continue to do their
share in helping us reach this desired destiny. •
"For the years ahead, I hope that all Americans today may be in-
scribed in the Book of Life—so that all may work in unity to help

bring God's blessings to our country."

2—Friday, September 20, 1968


THE Damn* Awn


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