Letters to the editor: April, 13, 2017

Proposed cuts would devastate aid programs

Thanks to the Jewish Light for publishing Cynthia Changyit Levin’s insightful letter about the proposed cuts to global development programs (“Opposing cut to global aid programs” by Cynthia Changyit Levin, March 29 Jewish Light). 

I saw the effects of these programs when I was in Zambia in February. More than 700,000 Zambians are on antiretrovirals for HIV/AIDS, thousands of children are getting an education for the first time, and farmers are learning new techniques that will help them feed the people in this country. Imagine a 30 percent cut in funding resulting in moving Zambia backwards: more than 200,000 people without medicine, fewer children in school and farmers without help to improve food production. 

The hand up from the United States no longer is enough, instead of progressing forward to being able to stand on their own, Zambia moves backward without hope. So, do call, write, or visit your elected representatives and ask them to vote against these devastating cuts. 

Willie Dickerson

New Mt. Sinai Cemetery advertisement

Snohomish, Wash.



Combatting anti-Semitism

As a Jewish-American, naturally I’m quite concerned and dismayed over the increase in anti-Semitism that’s taking place throughout our nation’s Jewish communities — and worldwide.

Here in the United States, Jews have always been the target of hate and violence by anti-Semites who feel that Jews exert too much power in this country, accusing them of controlling the nation’s financial institutions, the media and the government, not to mention blaming them for such ills as economic downturns, wars and immorality. 

As one who’s been a target of anti-Semitism in my lifetime, I realize that such hate will never be eradicated. To think otherwise is to be or naive or foolish. However, I hope I’m not being overly optimistic when I say that I feel anti-Semitism in the United States can be mitigated and ameliorated.

How? By educating non-Jews on the fallacies and negative stereotypes surrounding the Jewish community. The main cause, I submit, is the result of just plain ignorance. Many in this country have never even met, talked to or known a person of the Jewish faith. 

I urge Jewish community leaders from across the nation to organize town hall meetings for individuals and organizations, and to work with schools and universities to enlighten and inform those who have little or no knowledge about Judaism, in the hope of creating a better understanding and mutual respect between the Jewish and the non-Jewish community.  

Gene Carton