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August 12, 1994 - Image 1

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1994-08-12

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

750

DET RO IT

THE JEWI S H NEWS

5 ELUL 5754/AUGUST 12, 1994

The Good,
Old
Socialist
Days

A Workmen's Circle
subdivision is still
thriving — but with
VCRs and BMWs.

STEPHEN SAGNER

SPECIAL TO THE JEWISH NEWS

T

he names on the
mailboxes include
Katz, Zuckerman,
Segal, Bloomstein,
and Adler. Men are
in their back yards,
reading the paper or working in
the garden. The smell of barbe-
cue wafts gently in the breeze.
Children shoot by on their bikes.
It's 8:30 p.m., but still sunny. A
ball game can be heard from a
screened-in porch. The place is
verdant, quiet and safe.
It could be a summer scene
from several local suburbs, but
it's not. The location is the South
Haven Mt. Pleasant Lake Shore
Subdivision, a Jewish summer
community founded in 1924 by
the Workmen's Circle.

Continued on page 58

An ADL report on the Christian right angers
both Christians and Jews.

RNS PHOTO/WIDE WORLD

Close Up

Who's In The Right?

nessman from Kansas City and one of 75
signatories to the New York Times letter.
"What they are is a threat to those who
equate Judaism with liberalism and the
Democratic Party."
The national ADL office in New York
issued a lengthy statement respecting the
right of the ad's signers to their views, but
"strongly disagreeing" with their conclu-
ELIZABETH APPLEBAUM AND ALAN HITSKY ASSOCIATE EDITORS
sions.
The report, the ADL said, nev-
idge Dechter was livid.
er
argues against "the religious
She started reading
right's efforts to organize and
a report about "toler-
strengthen its political represen-
ance and pluralism" in
tation." Its point is that while "be-
America. What she
coming involved in the political
found, she said, was an
process does not constitute a
attack on some of Is-
threat
to pluralism, successfully
rael's best friends and
demonizing opponents within
a suggestion that anyone who does not
that process does."
hold certain political positions, especially
The ADL report defines the re-
on issues like abortion and gay rights, is
ligious
right as "an array of po-
undermining American freedom.
litically conservative religious
The report was the Anti-Defamation
groups and individuals who are
League's new The Religious Right: The
attempting to influence public
Assault on Tolerance & Pluralism in
policy
based on a shared cultur-
America. And the more Miss Dechter read, Pat Robertson: "Prophet of rage" or friend of Israel?
al philosophy that is antagonis-
"the more horrified I became."
tic to pluralism and church/state
So Miss Dechter, a distinguished fellow
The report's publication in June has
with the New York think tank Institute sparked a major public relations counter- separation."
It describes the religious right as
on Religion in Public Life, took out an ad. campaign from the Christian right, as well
She got a few friends — like former as exposed a split between those in the "prophets of rage," engaged in a "bitter
AIPAC President Edward Levy Jr. of De- Jewish community who believe the liber- push to replace the wall of separation with
troit, columnist Mona Charen, film critic al agenda is synonymous with the Jewish a citadel of Christianity." Its leaders often
Michael Medved and Democratic Party one, and those convinced a conservative demonstrate "a disturbing insensitivity
lobbyist David Ifshin — to sign it. Then platform best advances the values of Ju- to Jews and Jewish concerns."
The report is divided into four sections.
she ran the ad on the Aug. 2 New York daism and American life.
The
first focuses on the religious right in
Times opinion page, questioning ADL 'ev-
"(Many of the clergy) cited in the report
idence' of a conservative Christian threat are not a threat to the Jewish communi- the 1990s (including Pat Robertson and
to Jewish security."
ty," said John Uhlmann, a Jewish busi- RIGHT page 22

Affirmative Action

nside

Jews take both sides in the continuing controversy.

Kids' Stuff

RUTH LITTMANN STAFF WRITER

ometimes Jonathan
Gorman, a profes-
sional from Ann
Arbor, overhears
whispers near the
coffee machine at
work. Disgruntled
employees talk of
coworkers promot-
ed "just because they're black."
Mr. Gorman brushes most of it off as
jealous banter, even bigotry. He does not
think affirmative action policies at his
workplace have resulted in unfair em-
ployment practices or reverse discrimi-
nation.
"Affirmative action can be very divisive
if it's not done properly," he says. "How-
ever, I've seen organizations that have im-
plemented it at great cost and effort, but
with great success."
Affirmative action has long been the
subject of heated debate nationwide. The
mere definition of affirmative action re-
veals a highly significant rift in philoso-
phies of Jews in metro Detroit and
elsewhere.

Those who define it as a policy of racial
inclusiveness tend to call themselves
supporters. Those who consider affirma-
tive action a system of quotas in sheep's
clothing denounce it as unfair and dan-
gerous.
Affirmative action rose to prominence
in the 1960s during the civil-rights move-
ment when many thousands of U.S. citi-
zens began protesting unfair treatment
of minorities, particularly blacks. The 1964
Civil Rights Act proscribed race, religious
and sex discrimination in public and pri-
vate institutions, and in 1972, the Equal
Employment Opportunity Commission
(EEOC) was established to enforce nondis-
criminatory policies at businesses, schools
and other operations receiving public
funds.
Nationwide last year, 89,000 complaints
were filed with the EEOC. In Michigan,
they numbered 2,400.
During its evolution, affirmative action
has broadened its scope to include women,
gays, the handicapped, elderly and obese.
Experts find it difficult to pin down exact

ACTION page 8

Oakland Mall Giggle Gang
merges kids, cash registers.

Page 46

Sukkah Stays Up

New Jewish Agenda
continues to challenge.

Page 95

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Good News, Bad News

World Series disappointment
leads to Maccabi Games.

Page 98

Contents on page 3

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