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June 14, 1991 - Image 12

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1991-06-14

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

LETTERS

RAMON
LOMBARTE

Lithographs

Join the many notable European
collectors and major museums
around the world by stepping
into the refreshing and realistic
works of internationally renowned
Spanish artist Ramon Lombarte.
Each of his personally drawn
lithographs are hand-signed
and available now at Linda
Hayman Gallery.

"Sunday #14 11 o'clock p.m."

THE ART OF SOPHISTICATION

From original art and sculpture to fine art prints, unique table
top pieces and custom museum framing, Linda Hayman
Gallery caters to the most sophisticated taste. Yours.

- DAMT
11 .1 N

VIAN

R

A

Y

32500 Northwestern Hwy., Farmington Hills, MI 48334 932 0080

-

Jewish News T-Shirt Offer

Please clip coupon and mail to:

Yes! Start me on a subscription to The Jewish
News for the period and amount circled below.
Please send me the T-shirt.

JEWISH NEWS T-SHIRT
27676 Franklin Road
Southfield, Midi. 48034

NAME

This offer is for new subscriptions only.
Current subscribers may order the T-shirt for
$4.75. Allow four weeks for delivery.

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One)

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ADDRESS

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For
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There Will Be An Annual Meeting
of the

JEWISH VOCATIONAL SERVICE

for the purpose of electing officers

on June 20, 1991 from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm

at THE SOMERSET INN
2601 W. Big Beaver Road, Troy, MI

12

FRIDAY, JUNE 14, 1991

ND ff

IN THE

Lessons From
Population Study

The article on the 1990
National Jewish population
Survey (June 7) discussed a
number of social trends
within the Jewish communi-
ty. However, the trends were
evident decades before the
study's publication.
American Jewry is becom-
ing ever more secularized and
assimilated, with fewer
delineations between Jew and
gentile. The consequence of
the accelerating movement
toward assimilation is ap-
parent in the marked growth
of intermarriage and the drift
away from the conversion of
the non-Jewish spouse in the
situation of mixed marriages.
At the same time, the
survey showed that Jewish
adults usually define
themselves in terms of
membership in a cult _ ural or
ethnic group rather than a
faith community. Yet, this
means of self-identification
runs counter to assimilation
and the great American
"melting pot."
The result of the struggle
between the forces of
assimilation and ethnic iden-
tification is clear from just
one of the study's findings.
Less than 50 percent of
children with one or more
Jewish parents are being rais-
ed as Jews, with the figure
decreasing to 28 percent in
the case of mixed marriages.
The same issue of The
Jewish News contained a
story about a mother whose
child attends a local middle
school. The woman supported
the school's multi-cultural
programs as well as teaching
her son respect for the
cultural, ethnic, and religious
traditions of others. This
woman's support for such a
position, I believe, is one com-
monly found in the Jewish
community.
By placing everyone on an
equal footing, the theory is
that inter-group hostilities
should decrease. The unin-
tended consequence, however,
of this cultural relativism is
that many Jews feel uncom-
fortable telling their children
to marry within the faith, to
suggest conversion in the
situation of a mixed mar-
riage, or even to strongly
voice the conviction that their
grandchildren should be rais-
ed as Jews.
A question Jewish leader-
ship should have been
debating is the institutional
response to the problem of
maintaining the integrity of
the Jewish community in a
country where Jews travel
where they want, work where
they want, live where they

Distribution of All Household Members
by Region and Jewish Identity

(Total Percent = 100.0)

Total Population = 8,100,000

W- E-

L - 113
_ Midwest
5.8% t8% 2.6% 2.3%

want, attend the schools they
want, and marry whom they
want.
But what has consumed the
energies of the community?
Such issues as: who is a Jew;
patrilineal descent and the
indicia of conversion; internal
Israeli politics; and the
relative portion of fund-
raising dollars going to Israel.
While the aforementioned are
important questions, without
a healthy Jewish community,
the other questions become
largely irrelevant.
Jewish leadership has not
addressed the converse ques-
tion of what brings us
together. What made a group
of Jews in Grosse Pointe feel
the need to form a communi-
ty organization or another
group of Jews in Troy to
establish a congregation?
Nor has Jewish lay leader-
ship meaningfully examined
the painful question of why so
many Jews feel alienated
from the Jewish community.
We must begin to both ask
the right questions and to ex-
amine those unintended con-
sequences before it is too late.

Laurence R. Imerman

Birmingham

Black-Jewish
Relations

I read with interest your
editorial entitled "Reality
Check Needed in Communi-
ty" (May 31). While it is clear
that the Jewish community
and the black community
need to work harder to re-
build the relationship that we
once enjoyed, it is misleading
to suggest that the Jewish
Community Council is doing
nothing to improve black-
Jewish relations.
For well over a year I have
enjoyed and benefited from
the lively discussions that oc-
cur monthly among a group of
black and Jewish attorneys.

The group was organized by
David Gad-Harf of the Jewish
Community Council and
Winston Lang of the City of
Detroit Human Rights
Department.
We certainly don't agree on
everything and there is a lot
of work to be done, but we are
sharing ideas and we are
treating each other as fellow
human beings.

Reuben A. Munday
Detroit

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