Newspaper Archive of
Heritage Florida Jewish News
Fern Park , Florida
August 28, 2009     Heritage Florida Jewish News
PAGE 5     (5 of 23 available)        PREVIOUS     NEXT      Full Size Image
PAGE 5     (5 of 23 available)        PREVIOUS     NEXT      Full Size Image
August 28, 2009

Newspaper Archive of Heritage Florida Jewish News produced by SmallTownPapers, Inc.
Website © 2019. All content copyrighted. Copyright Information.     Terms Of Use.     Request Content Removal.

HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, AUGUST 28, 2009 HERITAGE encourages readers to send in their opinions for the Viewpoint column. They must be signed; how- ever, names will be withheld upon request. Due to space limitations, we reserve the right to edit, if necessary. Opinions printed in Viewpoint do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the paper. Looking for a few good Jews: Please! A few days ago I returned froma business trip that took me to Las Vegas, Nev.. where a general merchandise trade show was being held. While the outbound Sunday was a direct flight, the return Thursday was more compli- cated, as shopping for-the best deal I had to fly from Las Vegas to L.A. at 7 p.m. Pacific time and catch the red ey~ to Orlando, a flight that was to arrive at 6:30 a.m. local time. Exhausted as I was from the demanding trip, and catching perhaps a two-hour nap, I got my luggage, picked up my car, and trekked back to Altamonte Springs via I-4. About 7:15 a.m., as I was crossing Lee Road. it dawned on me that it was Thursday. Perhaps, when getting off the Maitland Avenue exit, I should turn right instead of left, and go to the JCC, where the Community Daily Minyan is being held Mon thru Fri 7:45 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. I am so glad I did. Since I was the tenth person early that morning, which enabled several attendees to say Kad- dish shortly thereafter. As most of us know, 10 Jews are necessary for a minyan. Without a minyan, no Kad- dish can be recited and no Torah portion of the week can be read on a Monday or Thursday, because the Torah cannot be taken out. Fortunately, both took place on that day! Later on, and after the great breakfast that is sponsored by one of the community rabbis from his discretionary fund, I thought that this experience should be shared, as had I not been guided by G-d to go to the JCC that Thursday, a real "shanda" would have oc- curred: no Kaddish in memory of a loved one for those in need to recite it that morning, and no Parsha reading as we are commanded to do. I don't claim to be the most observant Jew around, but to me it is a mitzvah to be able to attend a couple of times a week and help at- tain the minimum number requiredSIMPLY 10 JEWS, men, women, youngsters, religious, not so religious, from this shul. that shul, pro- fessional, not professional. those who live nearby and those who live 12 or 15 miles away, nobody really cares, as among the "regulars" we have doctors, engineers, converts, -women. retirees, and Hank Goldberg, recently named by the Heritage the recipient of its Human Service Award, who goes out of his way to make everyone feel welcome and at home. When Judy and I first came to Orlando in 1974 there were only three synagogues. Today there are many more (double digits, according to the Heri- tage listing on its pages.) The Community Minyan of today was preceded by separate minyans at both Congrega- tion Ohev Shalom and Temple Israel years ago. They both had 10 6r more Jews attend and the community was one- third what it is today--10,000 vs. 30,000 strong. One of the local i~abbis has appealed on these pages to our community numerous times. Still we have trouble having "10 good Jews" at- tend from time to time, and this, my fellow Jews, is a real "shanda!" Of those 30,000 Jews, it is estimated that 10.000 belong to a synagogue or the JCC. Won't you, dear reader, consider making a commit- ment to come only once a month? Perhaps once aweek? PAGE 5A. Even once a quarter if you spreadthe word and convince a couple of friends to do the same! We guarantee you that You will enjoy the short service. You will make new, won- derful friends. You will enjoy the cama- raderie. You will enjoy the conver- sation if you are able to stay for breakfast, and most of all You will be doinga mitzvah by enabling those who need to recite Kaddish because of a yahrtzeit or a recent loss to do so. Just think, one of you could be the one needing the other nine Jews someday-- G-d forbid. Please, don't wait. Make that commitment today. We will welcome you with open arms. JAMIE SHUJMAN Altamonte Springs By Menachem Z. Rosensaff NEW YORK (JTA) One stark difference between Democrats and Republicans is that Democrats appear to be far more willing to con- front and publicly denounce bigots and extremists in their own fold. This has been highlighted by the GOP lead- ership's failure to condemn Rush Limbaugh's divisive, race-baiting diatribes. During the 2008 presiden- tial campaign,Barack Obama unambiguously rejected and repudiated Louis Farrakhan. calling the Nation of Islam leader's anti-Israel and anti- Jewish tirades "'unacceptable and reprehensible. " Despite a very real concern that distancing himself from the Rev. Jeremiah Wright risked alienating a significant part of the Democratic base. Obama also condemned as "ridiculous" and "divisive" what he described as his for- mer pastor's "rants that aren't grounded in truth." Similarly, in a June 1992 speech to the Rainbow Coali- tion, presidential candidate Bill Clinton denounced the incendiary anti-white rheto- ric of the hip-hop rap artist, Sister Souljah, thereby incur- ring the Rev. Jesses Jackson's wrath. In sharp contrast and with rare exceptions, the Republi- can leadership consistently refuses to even address, let alone condemn, Limbaugh's inflammatory, offensive and vitriol-laced radio broadcasts, either because they condone his sentiments or because they are terrified of losing the votes of his millions of faithful listeners. Most recently, Limbaugh not only listed "the simi- larities between the Demo- crat Party-of today and the Nazi Party in Germany," but compared President Obama to Adolf Hitler. Here's what Limbaugh told his nationwide audience: "Obama's got a health care logo that's right out of Adolf Hitler's playbook"; "Obama is asking citizens to rat each other out like Hitler did": the president "is sending out his brownshirts to head up op- position to genuine American citizens who want no part of what Barack Obama stands for and is trying to stuffdown our throats"; and"Adolf Hitler, large Christian population. we do not consider ourselves a Christian nation or a Jewish nation or a Muslim nation; we consider ourselves a nation of citizens who are bound by ide- als and a set of values." Limbaugh further appealed to his followers' most xeno- phobic instincts by telling them that it is "really uncool to be awhite male today, "and that U. S. Rep. David Scott or one of his supporters, rather than a Ku Klux Klan wannabe, most probably hadpainted a large swastika on a sign outside theAfrican-American congressman's Georgia dis- trict office. For Holocaust survivors and their families in particu- lar. Limbaugh's demagogic screeds have ominous over- tones with which we are all too familiar. One would have expected like Barack Obama, also ruled " Republican Party leaderswho by dictate." Limbaugh has a long his- tory of inciting the far-right grass-roots against any politi- cal figures who do not reflect his white, fundamentalist Christian, conservative, anti- minority, anti-pluralistic, anti- egalitarian view of the world. He considers feminists robe "feminazis, "dismissed Justice Sonia Sotomayor as a "hack" and a "reverse racist. " and was outraged when President Obama declared in his April address to the Turkish Parlia- ment that one of the "great strengths of the United States" is that although "we have avery purport to be in the tradi- tion of Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt to speak out against Limbaugh's hate mongering. Instead, Colin Powell has been one ofthevery few prominent Republicans with the integrity to take on Limbaugh. "The problem I have with the [Republican] party right now," Powell told Larry King last month, is that when Limbaugh "says things that I consider to be completely outrageous, and I respond to it, [ would like to see other members of the party do like- wise. But they don't. " Indeed, John McCain con- siders Limbaugh to be "a voice of a significant pm'tion of our conservative move- ment in America" who "has a lot of people who listen very carefully to him. " Mitt Romney calls Limbaugh "a very powerful voice among conservatives. And I listen to him." Rudy Giuliani has said that "to the extent that Rush Limbaugh energizes the base of the Republican Party, he's a very valuable and important voice." And House Minority Whip Eric Cantor. the only Jewish Republican in Con- gress, believes that "Rush has got ideas. He's got a following. He believes in the conserva- tive principles that many of us believe in." By tolerating and encour- aging Limbaugh, the Repub- lican leadership is fomenting racial and ethnic hatred that could have disastrous conse- quences for our country. Lirn- baugh's extremist rhetoric is transforming the Republican side of the American political discourse from one of legiti- mate political and idooiogical disagreement among fellow citizens into a demonization of the "other." that is. every- one who is non-white, non- fundamentalist Christian and non-conservative. MSNBC's Keith Olber- mann regularly refers to Limbaugh as a "comedian." That's a mistake. Limbaugh may have an act. a"shtick." as it were, but there is nothing funny or entertaining about him. As McCain, Romney, Giuliani and Cantor all acknowledge, Limbaugh wields a great deal of influ- ence in both the Republican Party and the conservative movement. That makes him a dangerous, destructive cancer on bc.a the Republi- can Party and the American body politic. The GOP's leaders now have .to make a choice: They can either allow themselves and their party to be defined by Rush Limbaugh, or they must denounce and renounce him once and for all. Menachem Z. Rosensaft is an adjunct professor of law at Cornell Universit!/ and vice president of the American Gathering of Jewish Holo- caust Survivors and Their Descendants. By Michael Berenbaum LOS ANGELES (JTA)--It is the nuclear bomb of epithets. a shorthand way of tarnish- ing any opponent. In recent weeks. Rush Limbaugh and others repeatedly have com- pared President Obama to Adolf Hitler and his health care policies to Nazi tactics. More than one activist showed up at a town hall meeting brandishing a swastika sign and Obama's name. "They were for abortion and euthanasia of the undesirables." Limbaugh said of the Nazis on his radio program. "As we all know. they were for cradle-to- grave nationalized health care." Reviewing what the Nazis actually did, and why, shows that such inapt comparisons reveal more about the attack- ers than the current proposals by the president or Congress. Some history: At the Nuremberg doctors' tri- als in the late 1940s. the judicial process focused- mainly on Nazi medical experiments. But schol- ars now regard standard Nazi medical practice-the so-called euthanasia pro- gram as more serious. more all encompassing and more criminal. Long before World War II. Nazi physicians began with a mass sterilization aimed at propagating a master .race. Doctors sterilized mentally retarded and congenitally ill Germans, designated by Nazism as "useless eaters." consuming scarce resources of the German nation still mired in depression. Worse. much worse, was to follow. Within the war's first six weeks, Hitler signed an order (backdated to Sept. 1. 1939 to give it the appearance of a wartime measure) giving two doctors "'responsibility for expanding the authority of physicians.., to the end that patients considered incurable according to the best available Health on page 23A I1:HE'5 NOT.OEAO N WILL THEY KILL HIM?