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October 28, 1988 - Image 6

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1988-10-28

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

EDITORIAL

Complacency

The winds of change are blowing across the Soviet Union. The
world watches with interest as Mikhail Gorbachev's glasnost and
perestroika — openness and restructuring — give hope to the Soviets
and the people of the world that a new regime will ease tensions
both inside and outside Soviet borders.
But have we been lulled by these events?
Yes. Immigration of Soviet Jews has increased in the last year,
ostensibly with fewer roadblocks than in the past. But Soviet
discrimination against the practice of Judaism and higher
education quotas for Jews — to name just two areas — continue
unabated. Gorbachev may have the right idea, but old habits die
hard.
So imagine our surprise that the Moscow Circus is coming to
the Jewish-owned Palace of Auburn Hills, and that Jewish-owned
Farmer Jack's supermarkets are promoting the appearance by pro-
viding half-price tickets to the public. And after several years of in-
formation picketing at Soviet entertainment performances in Detroit
and Windsor, the Jewish Community Council's Soviet Jewry Com-
mittee is still deciding how to respond to the circus.
Last December, more than 1,000 Michigan residents participated
in the massive Soviet Jewry demonstration in Washington, D.C.,
showing our solidarity with the two million Jews of the Soviet Union.
Have we forgotten so quickly why we traveled to Washington 10
months ago?

Tuesday, it would be "a major disaster" for Israel and the prospects
of peace.
This new strategy is an effort to boost Peres and his Labor par-
ty, but whether or not endorsements from Hussein and the PLO will
succeed with Israeli voters remains to be seen. Peres has acknowledg-
ed his role in helping to orchestrate Hussein's television appearance.
While Shamir criticized Peres for introducing an Arab leader into
the Israeli election process, Peres responded that if it will help the
cause of peace it should be supported.
Of course there is a good chance that the Peres effort, which has
been clumsy, may backfire. How many Americans would vote
Democratic next month if Mikhail Gorbachev came out in support
of Michael Dukakis?
Peres must have figured that the risk was worth it, or necessary,
but it will be the Israeli people who will decide whether they want
to hold firm with Likud or explore trading land for peace with Labor.
Surely they will make their choices based on what they think is best
for them, their families, and their country, and not on whether Arafat
and Hussein approve.

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Israel And • • Arafat?!

With only a few days left until Israel's national elections, voters
familiar with Shimon Peres and Yitzhak Shamir are now confronted
with a new face in the campaign: Yassir Arafat.
The Palestinian Liberation Organization and its leader are try-
ing to influence Israel's election, urging Arabs and Jews to vote for
"the forces which represent the real peace choice" or face the pro-
spect of war. Arafat's message comes close on the heels of King Hus-
sein of Jordan's appearance on "Nightline" last week, where he
asserted that if Shamir's Likud party wins a decisive victory next

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LETTERS

Countless Programs
Bring Jews Together
On Oct 6 my family and I
and hundreds of other
families like ours attended
the "Knowing Noah" pro-
gram at the Jewish Com-
munity Center.
It was a thoroughly en-
joyable, fun-filled day for all of
us. Your paper, the Federa-
tion's Jewish Experience for
Families and the Jewish
Community Center are to be
commended for sponsorship of
this event.
I wish that the speakers,
writers and program
developers who spend so
much effort analyzing the
issues that divide our corn-
munity would attend a pro-
gram like this. They would
see that, thanks to the above-
mentioned sponsors, the
Neighborhood Project and
other fine organizations,
there are now countless pro-

6

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 28, 1988

grams that bring Jews from
all walks of life and
background together right
here in our neighborhoods.
At the . "Knowing Noah"
program, I saw a balance of
Orthodox, Conservative,
Reform and unaffiliated
families having a good time
together.
Let's not focus on that
which divides us. Let's sup-
port and encourage the
groups and organizations that
sponsor these events.

Rabbi E.B. Freedman
Administrative Director,
Yeshivath Beth Yehudah

Coach's Comments
Not Accurate
As the highest ranking of-
ficial of the Jewish faith in
the Royal Oak Youth Soccer
Association (ROYSA), I take
offense and am embarrassed
by the comments of Mark
Phillips in "Observant

Kickers," (Oct. 21).
While he is correct about
the ROYSA making accom-
modations so that Jewish
children can play after atten-
ding religious services, the
association does not condone
its players "kicking-ass" after
services. The whole purpose
of the ROYSA program is to
teach youth soccer in a friend-
ly environment; it is not
designed to cause a schism
between Jew and non-Jew.
The children from Oak Park
and Berkley who play in the
ROYSA program are from all
races and religions. No one is
favored over another and
every child is treated equally.
The tenor of Mr. Phillips'
comments, however, gives a
false impresion that Jews
receive special treatment. It
simply is not true.
Because of this false im-
pression, I publicly apologize
to those players and parents
of the Christian, Moslem and

other faiths who read or
heard of the article. Mr.
Phillips' quoted statements
might have been his own
thoughts, but they certainly
were not those of the ROYSA.

Sheldon G. Larky
Vice President,
Royal Oak Youth Soccer Association

Civil Liberties Get
Little Media Notice
There is one aspect of the
current presidential cam-
paign relevant to American
Jews which has received little
attention in the media, as far
as we have observed. Civil
liberties and the separation of
church and state are of para-
mount importance to Jews in
the need for a never-ending
effort to protect our existence
as a minority in an over-
whelmingly non-Jewish coun-
try .. .
In the current campaign,
we need to ask ourselves

about the positions of the two
candidates on issues such as
school prayer, religious
displays on public property,
detention of people without
trial (preventive detention)
and enforced oaths.
It is clear that Michael
Dukakis, and not George
Bush, is supportive of posi-
tions on these issues which
help protect us all. It could be
argued that each of these
matters is only a minor
threat. But these things,

Continued on Page 12

Let Us Know

Letters must be concise,
typewritten and double-
spaced. Correspondence
must include the signa-
ture, home address and
daytime phone number of
the writer.

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