November 20, 2018

Letters to the editor: Climate change, veterans, SJP and more

A Climactic Discussion

It is essential that the Jewish community play a leading role in efforts to avert a climate catastrophe (“Judaism in the Time of Climate change,” June 6). The scientific consensus that we may be on the brink of a tipping point when climate change will spin out of control, with disastrous consequences, is overwhelming.

For the first time in human history atmospheric CO2 levels have passed 400 parts per million (ppm), well beyond the 350 ppm that climate experts feel is a safe threshold.

Richard Schwartz via

More Thoughts on Student Groups

These anti-Israel tactics on campus are almost 50 years old (“Battleground California,” May 30). The only difference between the 1960s and now is that Israel is stronger and more capable of defending herself. So, if that’s Students for Justice in Palestine’s goal, more power to them.

Dumisani Washington via

Let these people organize their own free tours of Palestine. They are disgruntled because Israel has done what they can’t and they have to take one more drubbing in the eternal PR and propaganda wars. This ain’t sore losers, it’s sore non-competitors. These students should have told their accusers to get lost. There is no advantage to legitimating that which is illegitimate in the first place, and there is no reason to give these people a larger platform.

Stacy Fernandez via

As a graduate of UCLA, I wholeheartedly endorse the efforts of the Students for Justice in Palestine on my old campus and every college campus across the country to get those institutions to pass resolutions calling for divestment from Israel and any company doing business with Israel as well as prohibiting school officers to take all-expense paid trips to Israel courtesy of one Israel lobbying organization or another.

The handwriting is on the wall. UCLA’s Jewish students would be well advised to read it.

Jeff Blankfort via

Debating Palestinian Demographics

Bravo to David Suissa on his exposure of J Street’s anti-Israel campaign, to which student Sage Lachman takes issue (Letters, May 30).

Lachman writes that it takes leaders who are courageous enough to make compromises necessary to make peace. Where was she when P.M. Netanyahu offered, repeatedly, to sit down with the Palestinians who continue to refuse to recognize the Jewish state and seek its destruction?

Lachman repeats the canard that without a two-state solution Israel cannot remain a Jewish homeland and still be a democracy. Who says so? She offers no facts or statistics. The usual reason cited is demographic: that although the population split currently is 75 percent Jewish, 20.7 percent Arab, and 4.2 percent others (Jewish Virtual Library, May 2014), in a short time Arabs would be the majority west of the Jordan River. The American-Israeli Demographic Research Group showed that the Palestinian data inflated the Arab population by an enormous 50 percent.

Furthermore, the myth that the Palestinians have higher population growth and fertility rates than the Jews is not borne out by recent data. Israeli Jews now have a higher fertility rate (3.04 children per woman) than the Arabs of Judea and Samaria (2.91). And, Israel’s immigration rate is high and rising, while Palestinian emigration rates have skyrocketed over the past decade (Caroline B. Glick, “The Israeli Solution: A One-State Plan for Peace in the Middle East,” 2014).

C.P. Lefkowitz Rancho Palos Verdes 

True Roots of Anti-Semitism

Rabbi Abraham Cooper and Dr. Harold Brackman’s op-ed article (European Jewry Battered by Soaring Anti-Semitism, June 6) fails to mention the root cause of difficulties for Jews living in Europe. For 2,000 years they were depicted as the son of the god of perfidy. The dictionary defines perfidy as treachery, faithlessness, deceitfulness and distrustfulness.

This charge was codified into the most sacred liturgy of the holy day of Good Friday, when the faithful recited the charge of the perfidious Jew. Such an emotionally charged accusation cannot be removed overnight or even in the 50 years since it was [removed from the liturgy]. It will take generations before Jews living in Europe will enjoy the same level of tolerance and respect their counterparts enjoy in the United States, where they are protected by the Constitution and its amendments. 

Norman Lerner via

Vouching for Veterans

The fix to this problem has been there for years: give vouchers for private medical help to vets who are told to wait longer than a few weeks (“Anatomy of a Scandal,” May 30). People from both parties have suggested this — but still no action. Maybe it’s better for some to keep this a “scandal” than to fix it.

Ken Lautman Los Angeles