Letters to the Editor - 6-20-24

Reviewing Rep. Hayes’ support for Jewish values

I respond to letters from my friend, Alan Friedman, who is supporting George Logan’s challenge to Rep. Jahana Hayes (D-5).

Alan and I served together to help organize last November’s nonpartisan Salisbury Vigil for Israel, the Hostages, and Peace, where Mr. Logan indeed spoke in support of Israel and the Jewish people. But Rep. Hayes, who couldn’t attend due to Washington business, also delivered a supportive statement, and she has in fact attended other such gatherings, most recently at Congregation B’Nai Israel Southbury.

Israel is at war with foes that seek its destruction and the death of its citizens, even at the cost of the lives of Gaza’s own citizens, among whom they hide. The antisemitism building across our land is one element of their strategy. So, it is appropriate that Congresswoman Hayes has in fact frequently voted to condemn antisemitism, most recently in the Antisemitism Awareness Act of 2023, and she has consistently voted for appropriations for the defense of Israel, as on April 24, when she voted for bills to help Israel defend against Hamas and Iran, to support Ukraine, and to support Indo-Pacific deterrence against Chinese aggression. This included humanitarian aid for Gaza — something absent from a Republican measure last November that a majority of House Democrats (not just the “Squad”) voted against. The April 24 bills should all have been enacted much sooner but were held up by the Republican majority — to the peril of Israel and Ukraine.

So too, a majority of House Democrats (not just the “Squad”) voted against HR 927, condemning the testimony of several university presidents regarding campus antisemitism, because the bill actually called for the presidents’ resignations – something a majority of Democrats agreed the House should not demand. Otherwise, Rep. Hayes would have certainly voted yes, as reflected in her statement of April 22, telling many university presidents that the antisemitism on their campuses is “intolerable” and that they must do better. Hayes also voted in favor of the Nonprofit Security Grant Program to help protect houses of worship and to ensure Holocaust education is taught in our schools.

Rep. Hayes and 39 other House members (again, not just “the Squad”) signed the April 5 letter seeking a halt to the transfer of offensive arms to Israel, until an investigation into the airstrike that reportedly killed several World Central Kitchen workers is adequately concluded. A good faith position that Israel should not use American offensive weapons in a way that kills humanitarian workers does not allow for a charge of irresolution in support of Israel — even if Israel did not intend this result.

So, it is not surprising that Rep. Hayes — given her support for Jewish values, Israel, and the Jewish people — has earned the endorsement of the Jewish Democratic Coalition of America. If, however, Mr. Logan were elected and the House remained in Republican hands, Mike Johnson or worse would be Speaker, and the chances of enacting Trump’s repressive authoritarian program would go way up. No thanks!

Mike Abram


A letter to Mother Nature

I know that living here in Northwest Connecticut, in the country, is special. You fill our landscapes with all sorts of beauty and wonder — year round: the many splendid critter tracks in the soft cold snow, the thousands of brightly colored leaves dancing and laughing while whispering “wheee!” as they float and sometimes rambunctiously tumble to the earth, the fish jumping up and out of the crisp clear water for a tiny morsel — and the rebirth of all of the families — both the year round residents and the winged migrants here for a spell.

And yes, I guess I understood (in my brain) that none of it was ‘free’.

It doesn’t all just happen. The many myriad intertwined systems of life present and flourishing to greater and lesser degrees, each has been shaped by the intricate dynamics of the environment — both natural and man-made. And yes, I understand that there is a price to be extracted for any and all of this wonderful beauty. I just never thought that I would have such a front row seat on how terrible that price can be — and how it can be paid.

Nearing home, returning from a walk with Jasper (our dog) down at the river, I slowed the car as we came upon a doe and new-born fawn crossing the road. The doe scampered-off the road and down the embankment into the woods. The wobbly-legged fawn collapsed into a wobbly heap as it exited the pavement. I slowly drove the short distance home and deposited Jasper in our house and then started to walk back to the spot where the fawn had collapsed. I warned a couple of car drivers approaching to slow down and be aware of the fawn. They happily agreed and slowly proceeded. I then approached the spot where I last saw the fawn — and thankfully saw nothing.

I was alone and it was quiet. After a few moments, I started hearing the soft plaintive rhythmic bleats of the fawn. I could not see exactly where in the woods the fawn was, as the woods were heavily shaded but it sounded nearby. A moment later I saw the fleeting shadow of the mother doe bouncing away, traveling much further into the woods [I had been told that does will try to lead any possible danger away from their fawns]. I realized that my presence on the roadside might be intrusive to her so I started to walk home along the road. As I walked, I kept glancing down the embankment into the nearby darkened woods, hoping to catch a glimpse - my glances were guided by the stationary, beacon-like bleats of the fawn.

My joy at witnessing such a timeless and touching event, so close to home — instantly turned to horror.

For approaching the bleats, the spot where the vulnerable, wobbly-legged fawn was, my final glance into the nearby woods revealed the powerful, business-like approach of a large black bear.

Michael Moschen

Cornwall Bridge

Support for Logan

It’s not too soon to start thinking about the upcoming election in the 5th Congressional District and why we can’t afford to re-elect Jahana Hayes, who has backed the disastrous policies of President Biden 99% of the time and has a demonstrated unwilllingness to work across the aisle. She has voted to give undocumented immigrants the right to vote in D.C. It’s all about retaining political power for the Democrats and what’s best for her, not for us in Connecticut.

Coming to our rescue is the Afro-Latino candidate George Logan. He is campaigning against profligate federal spending (causing record price inflation), open borders, and weak support for Israel. With so much corruption for all to see and no accountability, let’s do the right thing in November, fight back, and give George our vote.

Peter Becket


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