Letters to the editor: November 28, 2018


Bipartisan support for global health initiatives

The Jewish Light’s Nov. 14 editorial “Election Day: Show me two Missouris” notes that “non-partisan” coalitions, such as the laudable efforts of State Sen. Jill Schupp to reach across the aisle, will be needed in the future. 

Fortunately, the area of global health provides the opportunity for such cooperation. By way of example, although it has not yet been enacted in the current congressional session, the Reach Every Mother and Child Act, which would modernize the way in which maternal and child healthcare is provided to the developing world at no additional cost to taxpayers, currently has 49 cosponsors from both parties in the Senate and 207 in the House. 

If similar bipartisan support is displayed when this bill is reintroduced next session, the lives of countless mothers and their babies will be saved. Likewise, in the next session Congress will have the opportunity to provide funding to combat TB, the leading infectious disease killer in the world, which takes 1.6 million lives annually. 

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Congressional support for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and malaria, which has achieved tremendous success in addressing these diseases, will also be important. Here in St. Louis, as a result of grassroots advocacy, global health initiatives have enjoyed support across party lines. It is hoped that Senator-elect Josh Hawley will continue in this tradition.

Greg Campbell, Creve Coeur

Israel’s continued need for security

Recently the Jewish Community Relations Council of St. Louis released a statement that the JCRC “continues to be distressed by the continued escalation of violence between Israel and Gaza.” 

JCRC should make it clear that the “escalation of violence” is a result of Hamas choosing to attack Israel. If the government in Gaza would pursue peace, they would find willing partners on the other side of the border. It is important not to assume a false equivalence between Hamas and a liberal democracy.

Much has been written about Israel refusing to take the concerns of American Jews seriously. Jews in the United States must take Israel’s concerns seriously as well. We should all be outraged by the 480 missiles fired at Israeli communities in 24 hours, the firebombing of Israeli lands and the riots that occur every week at the Gaza border. 

Israel does not suffer from a lack of criticism nor from a lack of detractors. It is important that during a time of rising anti-Semitism, Jews in Israel and Jews in America support each other. We should remember that it is the Israelis who are the ones who must risk their lives to defend Israel. 

It is still true that the vast majority of American Jews are not in the Israel Defense Forces, nor are we the ones needing to run to a shelter in a few seconds when the red alarm is sounded. It is time that we acknowledged Israel’s need for security.

Laura Goldmeier, Creve Coeur