Letters to the Editor | The Jewish Chronicle of Pittsburgh

Editorial error at Omar
I wanted to respond to the July 9 editorial claiming that Ilhan Omar was an “eyesore” on the Democratic Party. As an active Jewish person in his community who lived in Israel for several years and is now actively involved in US politics, I politely disagree with this assessment. I felt that the editorial itself contained very few details of Omar’s behavior that she equated with Republican Marjorie Taylor Greene, and the examples given were inconclusive.

Their condemnation of Israeli behavior and their allegations of the difficulty of taking notice of the Israeli atrocities that the government regularly perpetrates against indigenous people are not anti-Semitic. Painting them with such a brush only reinforces their message about how censored our community is towards those who point out our mistakes.

There is intense pressure among American Jews to fully support all decisions made by the Israeli government on Palestinian issues. This pressure is to our disadvantage and has led to the unnecessary extension of the corrupt government of Netanyahu as an honest debate about how the Likud has dealt with things has not been possible.

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Omar’s voice is reasonable. She does what all people in her position do: to stand up for an oppressed minority. It has never belittled or belittled Jewish history, instead highlighting the obvious extremes Israel has come to and the conspiracy of silence around it. When I listen to her I can better understand my position and I am grateful for her voice.

Nevertheless, thank you for your great publication. I enjoy reading the diversity of the Jewish community that you regularly bring to your pages.

Dan Warner

Netflix show misrepresents Orthodox life
Thank you for highlighting some of the key issues with My Unorthodox Life (typical reality plan for My Unorthodox Life, July 16).

I am very disappointed with the decision to put on another show that portrays the Jewish community in a negative light. I understand that in order to make money, Netflix shows need to attract viewers and be entertaining, but it’s not entertaining to see people constantly beating up Judaism and the decision to live in a Jewish community.

Both “Unorthodox” and “My Unorthodox Life” focus on very extreme circumstances in which people are extremely unhappy and struggle with their beliefs. It is important to remember that in the secular world there are also extreme circumstances of calamity and people feel the need to “leave the community,” but this does not exactly represent an entire group of people.

It seems that Netflix constantly feels the need to spark controversy over religion. So why not show a Jewish community that is happy? A show with Jews who love the Torah and who love their upbringing would also generate interest and show Judaism in a positive light. What some viewers of “Unorthodox” and “My Unorthodox Life” don’t know is that Judaism holds the standard that “a Jew is a Jew is a Jew,” which means that no matter what your level, you will practice and however you express (or do not express) your Jewish identity, a Jew is a Jew and is accepted as one.

In addition, the Jews are taught not only to accept other Jews, but to accept all people for who they are. There are large numbers of Jews who actually come into the religious world of their own accord instead of leaving it. Many Jews do not grow up with a Torah upbringing or parents who demonstrate this type of Jewish lifestyle, but deep down they long for it and find it for themselves. This is what makes Judaism so special: Everyone is accepted, regardless of their origin. his origin or his upbringing. This is the type of show that should be aired, and this is the type of show that Netflix can be proud of.

Jews have been discriminated against and brought down for years, and until Netflix (the world’s leading streaming service) takes a stand and shows us otherwise, it will keep the problem going.

I encourage anyone who feels this way to reach Netflix through Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, as well as live chat on the Netflix website.

Stephanie Birnbaum

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