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May 25, 1979 - Image 2

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1979-05-25

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2 Friday, May 25, 1919


Purely Commentary

Community's Responsive Record Confronted With Basic
Obligations ... Educational Needs Retain Priority ...
Duty to the Retarded Emerges as a Most Serious Cause

Jerusalem Day, May 25

Jerusalem Day has been proclaimed a holiday on the Israeli calendar. It will no doubt influence
observances in Jewish communities throughout the world.
The reunification of the Holy City, the liberation of the City of Peace from Jordanian domination under
which Jewish rights were suppressed, marked the beginning of a new era for Jerusalem. Now the liberation
is a day for festivity. It also becomes a time for renewed efforts on the part of the American Jewish
community to induce American recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
During the visit of President Jimmy Carter in Jerusalem it was reported that the President had made
the comment that the United States does not recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital. Whereupon Prime
Minister Menahem Begin said: "What is the capital of Israel?"
That's the point! There are the friendliest relations between Israel and the United States. Yet the
official exchange of communications between the two countries is via an unrealistic American embassy in

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Tel Aviv.
Before he became President, Gerald Ford advocated Jerusalem's recognition as Israel's seat of state.
He was then among the major Zionist advocates in this country. Under State Department influence, when
Have mercy, 0 Lord, and return to Jerusalem, Your city;
he became President, his tune regrettably changed.
Jerusalem Day is the time to renew the campaign for realism, for recognition of Jerusalem's status by
May Your Presence dwell there as You promised.
the U.S. The Arab pressures need to be resisted in such a campaign.
Rebuild it now,. in our days and for all time;
Is there sufficient sentiment in Congress in support of this effort? How could it be otherwise if the
members of Congress are pragmatic enough to know that where Israel's parliament sits, where the Knesset
Re-establish there the majesty of David, Your servant.
functions, where the major government offices are, there is the center of activity that a nation calls its
years ahead? If it isn't then leadership is blind to realities. I am, he needs more love than others because of his birth
The Greater Detroit school system is undergoing a defect. I am giving it to him." That's the community's duty
Mato r Community Obligations:
, change.
An able superintendent, Dr. Jay Stern, has turned to the somewhat afflicted.
Defense for Educational

to the Washington Day School as his future directorial post.
Perhaps the term retarded should be abandoned and
Priorities, Dignity for Retarded
something like moderately slow or impeded worker or ac-
Greater Detroit's Allied Jewish Campaign, the conclu- The new directorial selectee will, hopefully, match his de-
tivist should be substituted for what has become an objec-
is to
be assumed that the sincerity expected from tionable condition. But with the retention of the term, the
s ion of which must await the enrollment of hundreds of - votion It and
be counted in the great arked
fund Detroit's Jewish leadership will apply pragmatism to plan- role of this community's Association for the Jewish Re-
ning now demanded in a changing era involving the educa- tarded and related movements should receive all possible
raising effort,
success. Now comes the time of put ting into action the
obligations entailed in the philantropic tasks. Israel, as the tional processes. There are duties not to be shirked.
There is another need already receiving community
The efforts here already are getting better support,
chief beneficiary,
love of
by her
the protectors.
Israelis' kinfolk
in the
There attention which must be treated responsibly. It is that of
thanks to the devotion of those engaged in the existing
movement. The Jewish Community Center cooperates with
are educational institutions which must receive additional the retarded, the young as well as the adult. They are
support. There are the social services. The industries need numerous, larger in numbers than is suspected. They are the association for the retarded. The Jewish Welfare Fed-
encouragement, and that's where the Israel Bond plays a the human element that can not help itself and must have
eration must, eventually, include this task in its organized
the attention of the functioning communal organizations.
program and should welcome the functioning association
Shocking occurrences in some areas, where homes as a community agency.
The home front needs a great deal of attention. The
education needs never diminish, and the duties to them have been set up for the so-called retarded, make their
That the interest in these efforts is expanding is evi-
demandpriorities. It would be an ostrich act of hiding one's problem a serious issue. As in Troy, where inhumanity of
if the new conditions affecting the educa- man to man was demonstrated, it became evident that denced in many actions undertaken in religious and com-
head in the sand to be ignored. there are people who fail to understand that there are 'nullity ranks, as indicated in the special article below by
in educational opportunities are people who are less capable, who must be treated with Ben Gallob about a residence for the retarded in
tional system were
everything! — assuming
for the
the maximum
children, the community will lose the right kindness, who need the love of fellow man and who must be South Orange, N.J. Anything —
such responsibilities should be treated with commenda-
indifference, treated
There must be a sense of shame in the Troy area where tions, and the usual skillful treatment of an important
to talk ab out and to worry over aimilaton,
intermar r iage and many
evide nce, in contrast with the subject by JTA's editorial staff member Ben Gallob earns
type of education provided must be considered very seri- an inhuman spark was
evi denced elsew here. In the a ppr eciati on
ously. If the day school offers chief comfort then it must be pride in justice and
ere is another aspect of services for the retarded that
in educational needs. But it would be foolhardy Ma anolia subdivision of Southfield, as in the neighbor-
the three
— classes for youn chil-
y have been needs encouragement
the riorit
-ds where two homes for retarded alread
to say that the afternoon school system is approaching hoods
n, t he retarded slow learners at Congregations Bnai
abandonment. The more limited provisions in schooling established in Detroit and in Oak Park, there is a sense of dre
Temple Beth El and Temple Israel . The major edu-
will remain in demand and they must be given new neighborliness with the retarded and a sense of pride in the Da vi d,
knowledge that humans are humans, not to be abused or cational groups in the community should not ignore them
and should provide adde d support fo r them
htest mistreatment.
strengt h, whatever the planning.
The low birth rate — it is reportedly lowest among subjected even to the slig
The needs outlined are not ima gina ry. They are not
Jews today — is certain to affect the Jewish school system. There is the instance of a football team which numbers
hey are community-dimensioned. They
The student enrollments already are declining. Is this two brothers, one retarded. The brother who drew the latter limited to a fw. T
ig nored.
threat to the Jewish school part of the planning for the into the team commented: "He plays well, he is as shou

NJ Home for Disabled Designed as Stepping-Stone to Community


(Copyright 1979, JTA, Inc.)

A residence, described by
its sponsors as the first of its
kind in the U.S., has been
opened in South Orange,
N.J., to provide a living and
training environment for
minimally-disabled young
adults. The project is called
JESPY House — for Jewish
Special Young Adults.
At the start of April, six
young adults — three men
and three women aged 19 to
27 — were residents in
JESPY House. Mrs. Murray
J. Plishtin, of Livingston, a
member of the board of the
women's division of the
United Jewish Appeal, and
one of the co-chairman of
the project, spelled out the
goals, mechanics and
financing of the project,
which is not a project of any
established Jewish organ-
Mrs. Plistin said the
young adults for whom
JESPY House had been de-
veloped have learning dis-
abilities described as de-

layed development in any
one or all the normal proc-
esses of speech, reading,
writing, arithmetic or other
areas. She explained this
delay may be due to brain
dysfunction or emotional or
behavioral disturbance,
stressing that the problem
was not the same as mental
retardation, because it is
limited to specific areas and
is not "across-the-board."
Such young adults, she
reported, have generally
not progressed socially
or emotionally beyond an
adolescent level. She
added such young adults
can, with proper supervi-
sion, develop functional
skills so they can take
care of themselves in
travel, purchasing, mak-
ing a home and acquiring
training for jobs which
would not be too great a
challenge for their
Residents of JESPY
,House, present and future,
are chosen "because of their
' potential to master basic

life skills" needed for an in- Hebrew, or to sing certain
dependent lifestyle, "in- portions or to have a de-
cluding shopping, cooking, layed Bar or Bas Mitzva."
She said that the hope
cleaning, menu preparation
and budgeting." Conserva- of the sponsors was that
tive standards are the basis when a resident had mas-
for such JESPY House tered skills for indepen-
rules, such as a ban on dente — after a
smoking on the Sabbath, maximum residence of
and keeping kosher, Mrs. four years — he or she
would be able to leave
Plishtin said.
The religious atmosphere JESPY House, to live
for the residents is viewed either alone or with a
as therapeutic, Mrs. roommate and function
Plishtin reported, in the as a member of society,
sense that for young people, turning back to JESPY
"whose ego has been badly House staff for occa-
bruised, who have a very sional counsel as needed.
low self-image," religion She reported JESPY
can provide "a tremendous House is within walking
therapeutic backdrop." distance of two Conserva-
She added that one of the tive synagogues and one Re-
religious norms of JESPY form synagogue and resi-
House is to educate the resi- dents are encouraged to
dents as to what Judaism attend them. She said that,
means — "at their own for obvious reasons, the
level" — but that will de- lives of the young residents
velop only "after we are have had a "dearth" of
thoroughly familiar with Jewish content.
She reported the project
the intellectual competence
of the individual and we will had initially been proposed
then decide if we should by Dr. Morton Siegel, direc-
seek to motivate him to read for of the education depart-

merit of the United evaluation, sheltered work-
Synagogue of America, the shops, job placement and
association of Conservative other services to the resi-
congregations. An ad hoc dents. She said several
committee was formed to other programs are availa-
explore its feasibility. ble, their selection depend-
Carol and Stephen R. ing on the talents and
Goodman, experts in special wishes of the resident and
education, direct JESPY what the parent can afr
House. Mrs. Plishtin said to spend for speciali._ _
the Goodmans provide vocational training.
The JESPY House faculty
much more than psycholog-
ical counseling, adding that members have a variety of
they teach and are role functions. The resident staff
models for acquisition of members teach the skills of
needed skills by the resi- daily survival and Judaica.
An intern from Yeshiva
She said the Goodman University's Wurzweiler
Work is
team has access to other School of Social work at
sources, such as a pro- doin g her field
gram of the Planned Par- JESPY House. There are
enthood Association on outside experts who "are
ei r
e who
mp l o, y a i ns g t h the
sex education for handi- will be employing
capped persons. There is residents
a common area at JESPY their jobs.
House for such pro-
grams, as well as for "in training schools will be
house" meals, planning taught such abilities as
sessions, creation of mimeographing, making
shopping lists and re- change, carpentry, typing,
lated activities.
There is also a profes-
She said the local Jewish
Vocational Service offers sional advisory committee.

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