A nonprofit, independent news source to inform, inspire, educate and connect the St. Louis Jewish community.

St. Louis Jewish Light

A nonprofit, independent news source to inform, inspire, educate and connect the St. Louis Jewish community.

St. Louis Jewish Light

A nonprofit, independent news source to inform, inspire, educate and connect the St. Louis Jewish community.

St. Louis Jewish Light

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Your letters to the editor of the St. Louis Jewish Light (Feb. 7 issue)


Help the farmers of Israel

I came home to Israel from University City over 41 years ago. As a child I remember in 1967 and 1973 U.S. Jews getting on planes to help Israel when there was a manpower shortage due to the war all the people called up to defend Israel. 

Today we are in the same situation. There is no one to help the farmers harvest their crops. 

I went yesterday to help. The average age of the volunteers was above 60. 

After I finished, I was exhausted but glad I had helped a farmer save his crop. Please come for two weeks and help the farmers of Israel.

Aryeh Blumberg
Maaleh Adumim, Israel

Support ballot measure to protect reproductive freedom in Missouri

As we honor the Jewish value of reproductive freedom on Repro Shabbat this weekend, we also acknowledge that allowing Missourians to decide to protect a right to abortion through a ballot initiative put forth by Missourians for Constitutional Freedom is the Jewish thing to do. 

On our way through the wilderness, Moses becomes overwhelmed, and his father-in-law, Jethro, a priest of Midian, teaches him the invaluable lesson that he does not have to guide and lead others on his own. Moses has the spirit that empowers him with leaders to help him serve, and we learn that Eldad and Medad, who were hanging around outside the tent, also received the spirit. 

When Joshua sees that they are serving the people, he complains to Moses, who replies, “would that all of the people would speak!” 

And democracy is born as the voices of all the people are valued and counted.

Through the democratic process, the people of Missouri should have the chance to reclaim the right to abortion as basic health care with a ballot initiative that would allow pregnant patients and their doctors, not politicians, to decide what’s right for their unique situations.  

While we can have compassion for people who are on different sides of this issue, the true test of laws is not theoretical. The true test is their impact, and the impact of restricting abortion access results in avoidable deaths and suffering. 

Defending access to affordable, legal and safe abortion is also about our broader ethical and spiritual obligations. We are taught to look for people who are most harmed and to focus on their needs. Abortion bans deepen every structural inequality in our society. People who are denied access to reproductive health care are more likely to live in poverty and to remain in abusive relationships. Our maternal mortality rates, already unacceptably high, rise, and all of the divides continue to grow. 

Abortions will continue regardless of the reckless decision of the Supreme Court and bans in red states like Missouri that have already caused suffering and death. A majority of Americans continuously show that they want to restore access to safe and affordable abortions as a choice.

We, the members of the Access Missouri Clergy Advisory Board, encourage all Missourians to gather signatures for and support this ballot initiative, and vote to keep the voice of the people and democracy alive and well in Missouri.

Visit the Missourians for Constitutional Freedom website (moconstitutionalfreedom.org) to learn more about this grassroots effort to restore reproductive health care in Missouri, read the proposed amendment, donate to the campaign, sign up to volunteer (collect signatures, make calls, host a house party) and to receive updates from the campaign.

Rabbi Susan Talve, on behalf of the Access MO Clergy Advisory Board, whose members include:

Rabbi Jeffrey Abraham

Rabbi Michael Alper

Rabbi Doug Alpert

Rabbi Rachel Bearman

Rabbi Jim Bennett

Rabbi Daniel Bogard

Rabbi Karen Bogard

Rabbi Joe Davidson

Rabbi Matt Derrenbacher

Rabbi Amy Feder

Rabbi Randy Fleisher

Rabbi Dr. Andrea Goldstein

Rabbi James Stone Goodman

Rev. Gabrielle NS Kennedy

Rev. Dr. Deborah Krause

Rabbi Lori Levine

Hazzan Sharon Nathanson

Maharat Rori Picker Neiss

Rabbi Janine Schloss

Rabbi Scott Shafrin

Rabbi Jeffrey Stiffman

Rabbi Susan Talve

Cantor Seth Warner

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