Ledger editorial makes light of a serious concern
The editorial by your Editorial Advisory Board entitled “Embracing the Muslim Community” (Ledger, Dec. 25, 2015) is unduly flippant in tone. The editorial addresses a most serious subject: the unexplained and ominous presence at Emanuel Synagogue, three days after the San Bernardino terrorist attack, of two female strangers who were wearing Muslim religious garb, acting oddly and carrying large bags. The same women appeared that evening at a menorah lighting ceremony, provoking further well-founded concern, especially when it is generally known that Jewish institutions and events are likely ISIS targets either sooner or later.
Synagogue officials, appropriately, called the West Hartford Police Department.
The police investigated both the synagogue occurrence and the presence of the two women at the menorah lighting. While confirming that the two women did not pose a danger, the Police Department’s statement also said that citizens have been asked to report anything they observe that is out of the ordinary and noted that what was done by the Jewish community in West Hartford was perfectly consistent with that mandate.
Despite the concerns of the synagogue and the community, and the appropriate action taken, the editorial dismisses and trivializes those concerns and the community’s vigilance by referring to them as “an anxiety attack.” That reference, in the face of so serious a matter, is insulting and disrespectful to the Jewish community. Jewish Ledger readers deserve better.
Roslyn S. Fishman
The Ledger news brief, “San Bernardino killer’s father: Son was obsessed with Israel” (Ledger, Dec. 21, 2015) shows that Syed Rizwan Farook’s radical views did not come from out of the blue. His father’s apparent hatred of Jews and Israel reveals the culture Farook grew up in. This paved the way for Farook to be persuaded by others that those with different religious beliefs will – and should be – swept aside.