American and campus Jews will vote for Democrats in
2004

To the Daily:

Having read Jonathan Goldberg’s response (Jewish voters
are not ignorant, will vote to support Israel in 2004
,
03/19/04) to Jason Pesick’s column (Jewish voting
patterns: Tradition!
, 03/18/04), I find that both of the
authors are short on nuance and understanding of the American
Jewish vote. I tend to agree with Goldberg that Jewish voters are
not ignorant of the Arab-Israeli conflict and that strong support
of Israel is important to almost every Jewish voter. That is why
most Jews support the Democratic Party, which has been strongly
pro-Israel since Israel’s birth. The Republican Party is only
a recent supporter of Israel, often allying itself with oil
interests through the 1970s and thus the Arab oil kingdoms.

If both candidates adequately satisfy that threshold, Jewish
voters overwhelming support candidates who champion progressive
stances on economic and social issues. Jewish voters are lucky to
have such a candidate this year in Sen. John Kerry. No Republican
since 1916 has garnered 45 percent of the Jewish vote, and over the
last 11 elections, most Republican candidates haven’t even
gotten 20 percent. If anyone in the Bush campaign believes
President Bush can equal this feat, he is either foolish or stupid,
and if Goldberg were better informed, he would not repeat such a
prediction.

Having been heavily involved in Goldberg’s organization as
well as the entire Jewish community at the University, I would
confidently predict that an overwhelming majority of campus Jews
will cast their votes for Democrats this fall. Recent polls on the
subject, historic voting patterns and social science analysis all
point to Kerry carrying the national Jewish vote with ease. No
social science research has validated Republican claims of a shift
of Jewish voters to the Republican Party. As long as the Republican
Party fails to practice the Jewish value of tikkun olam, creating
justice in the world, Jewish voters will continue to give 70 to 80
percent of their vote to the party that does, the Democratic
Party.

Eric Feldman

Alum

The letter writer is a former chair of College Democrats and
a former board member of the American Movement for Israel.

 

Death tragic, but Corrie no human rights activist

To the Daily:

This letter is in response to the news article
‘U’ students commemorate death of young activist in
Middle East
(03/17/04). In the article, author Victoria Edwards
refers to Rachel Corrie as a “human rights worker.”
This is patently false.

Corrie was complicit in carrying out terrorist attacks against
innocent Israeli civilians and children. We have all seen the
all-too-familiar photo of an enraged Corrie burning a picture of an
American flag among impressionable Palestinian youth. It seems
bizarre that someone who supposedly stands for human rights would
be promoting and instigating violence against America and Israel
among young Palestinians.

Corrie was a member of the International Solidarity Movement, a
blatantly anti-Semitic organization which works to protect
terrorist groups such as Hamas and Islamic Jihad. In March, 2003,
the ISM attempted to shield a leading member of Islamic Jihad,
Shadi Sukia, from the IDF by hiding him in its Jenin office. The
ISM coordinator, Susan Barcley, refused to let the IDF in, and
subsequently she was arrested along with the hiding terrorist.

There is also no mention of the reasons why Corrie was standing
in front of the bulldozer in the first place. She was not
attempting to protect innocent citizens. The town she was in was
Rafah, which is well known for its tunnel networks used by
terrorists to smuggle arms in from Egypt. Corrie was standing in
the way of a bulldozer that was demolishing havens for terrorists
who smuggled weapons to kill innocent civilians and children.

It is tragic when anyone dies, and Corrie’s death
certainly deserves mourning. However, it is important that members
of this campus realize that Corrie was not a peace activist; she
promoted terror and violence toward Israeli civilians and
children.

Jeff Glogower

Alum

 

Davis a poor choice for commencement speaker

To the Daily:

Last week, University President Mary Sue Coleman announced the
keynote speaker for this May’s commencement. “David E.
Davis Jr., founder of Automobile Magazine and arguably the foremost
writer in automotive journalism” was selected to deliver the
address to an estimated crowd of 30,000 people that will include
students, family and friends from 50 states and over 100
countries.

For many graduating seniors, the University’s selection of
another little-known speaker was a major disappointment and further
proof that the University’s tradition of selecting unknown
and generally unimportant speakers continues. While I personally
expected the University to select another speaker that would be
consistent in furthering the University’s political agenda,
in this case I was more surprised by the general weakness of the
selection.

Coleman was quoted as saying, “I think it is really
important for our graduates to see how one person can have a big
say.” “Through his (auto) critiques, he has really had
an impact on a big industry … in Michigan,” she
added.

What Coleman fails to realize is that the University is not a
technical institute or a professional auto school somewhere in the
boondocks of Michigan. If I were a student at such a school, a
selection like Davis may be acceptable. The University is a
world-class institution with an Ivy League reputation. It maintains
the advantage, both academically and financially, to attract
speakers who are distinguished on a global scale and who truly
influence our future. With the University’s U.S. Supreme
Court victory, an upcoming presidential election and an ongoing war
in Iraq, the school’s choice in Davis is odd at best.

While other schools will be treated to such captivating and
moving speakers as U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan, Bill Cosby,
the president of the United States or a Supreme Court justice, the
University, however, will once again not. While Davis’s
achievements and life story are surely notable, the selection of
such a speaker with so little experience in public speaking by such
a highly esteemed university is not only distressing for seniors,
many of whom have paid thousands of dollars in tuition, but an
embarrassment to the school.

Adam Paterno

LSA senior

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.