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October 28, 1938     The Jewish Transcript
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October 28, 1938

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PA Two THE JEWISH TRANSCRIPT, SEATTf,E OCTOBER 28, Thought Of The Week qOne of the heaviest obligations which the present state of the world and of Judaism, in particular, places on us is the preservation and advancement of our faith. The Jewish education of our children, our attendance at synagogue worship, and the support of the in- stitutions of higher Jewish learning, always of primary significance, are of especial importance at this time. The part of our Synagogues, scholars and teachers should be to spread among our congregations, young and old, the knowledge of God, obedience to His Laws, ob- servance of the high moral teachings of our Holy Scriptures and of our rabbis, to the end that every Jew should lead a just and upright life. We can only combat hatred in so many countries if we ourselves are without reproach." -DR. CYRUS ADLER, scholar and teacher of rabbis. 00twish Transtript Combined with THE JEWISH CHRONICLE A Weekly Newspaper for the Jewish People of the Pacific Northwest 1616 8th Avenue, Seattle Phone MAin 2715 HERMAN A. HOROWITZ ........................ Editor and Publisher aTnAN KR.mMS ....................................... Associate Editor DNEY Yy. WEBBER .................................. Business Manager O],rlCAL PSDTDORAPHER ......... Walters Studio, 4th and Pike Building A weekly paper devoted to the interests of the Jewish people of Washington, Idaho, Montana, British Columbia and Alaska. Entered as second class matter September 5, 1924, at the Post Office at Seattle, Washington, under the Act of March 3, 1879. Single Copies, 5 Cents. $2.00 per Year -qD- Vol. XV Friday, October 28, 1938 No. 35 THE VOICE OF DEMOCRACY A UNITED American Jewry, bacled by large segments of the rest of the American people through their duly elected legislative representatives, has protested in no uncertain terms against the threatened abrogation of the Balfour Declara- tion. The spiritual leadership of this country as well as repre- sentatives of our intellectual world have pleaded for a just and fair solution of the present Palestine dilemma. Even in the phlegmatic ears of British statesmanship the American outcry against any curtailment of Jewish rights in Palestine must have had a ring of authentic indignation which the British Government cannot ignore if it values American friendship. The statement of Secretary of State Hull on the Palestine question was couched in cautious, diplomatic language which promises nothing, yet does express genuine concern for American interests in Palestine. It is of course idle to speculate to what lengths the American Government would be prepared to go to change the viewpoint of the British Government as regards a drastic change in its Palestine policy. Yet the impression is gaining ground that Washington will do everything within its legitimate diplomatic rights to argue this point with the British Government. It goes without saying that from the British viewpoint the Palestine issue transcends the Jewish question, being intimately related to the new post-Munich orientation. Much, therefore, depends on the reception the Woodhead Report receives in the House of Commons. It would surprise close observers if, in the event that the division in Parliament is close, Mr. Chamberlain were to insist on the acceptance of that report. Even if American public opinion has done nothing more than to impress upon the British Parliament and upon the British people that the American people would lose much of their pro-British sentiment if Mr. Chamberlain were to railroad through another "peace with honor" on the Mediterranean front--even if American public opinion has achieved nothing more than this, it has rendered a great service to the cause of democracy. In any case, America has spoken in the ringing voice of true democracy. WHERE CATHOLICS STAND o one doubts that Catholics are "quite as strongly opposed to Naziism as are Jews, but because Catholics rarely'voice this opposition in the form of mass demonstrations or pro- test meetings, the uninformed might feel that they are not as actively anti-Nazi as they should be. The vigorous pronouncements of the Pope have of course been widely discussed, but the attitude of the rank and file of Catholics is not as well known as it should be. The fact is, however, that Catholics see the menace of Naziism clearly. Only last week on three widely scattered fronts individual Catholics gave dramatic expression to their anti-Nazi sentiments. In the Hungarian town of Sobron a group of Catholic girls, incensed at the action of Nazi vandals who smeared the local synagogue building with tar and smashed its windows, went in a body to the rabbi and offered to help clean the synagogue. In Ottawa, Canada, a delegate of Jewish origin attending the first Catholic Youth Congress, received a tremendous ova- tion from the 15,000 people present while a German delegate was greeted with hoots and catcalls as the congress endorsed a state- ment that "Catholics do not approve of racial boundaries." In New York, Dock Commissioner John McKenzie, a Catholic, notified German Ambassador Hans Dieckhoff that, as a Catholic, he would have no further social relations with Ger- mans "until the Reich returns to the path of civilization in re- ligious freedom." These incidents could be greatly multiplied, but they are sufficient to reveal the tenor of Catholic public opinion. Under the leadership of Pope Plus, world Catholicism has come to understand that Naziism is anti-Christian as well as anti-Semitic. MAIMONIDES ON LUXURIES OSES MAIMONIDES, greatest of all Jewish philosophers, who lived in the twelfth century, was a strict believer in the simple life. The essentials of food and clothing which man requires, can be attained without excessive exertion, he declared. "All the difficulties and troubles we meet in this respect are due to the desire for superfluous things. For the more of them we desire, the harder our task becomes; our strength and possessions are spent in unnecessary things, and are wanting when required for that which is needed. "Observe how Nature proves the truth of the matter. The more necessary a thing is for life, the more easily it is found and the cheaper it is. Air is the most necessary, for if man is without air even for a short time he dies; while he can be without water a day or two. "And air is undoubtedly the more easily found and the cheaper of the two. "Water is more necessary than food; for some people can live four or five days without food, if they have water. And in every country water is more plentiful and cheaper than food. "The same relation can be observed in the different kinds of food; that which is more necessary in a certain place exists there in larger quantities and is cheaper than that which is less necessary. "This shows the kindness of God to His creatures." An Editor Answers Has Anti.Semitism To ? America. By RUSSELL W. DAVENPORT Managing Editor of Fortune Magazine The question of the Jews in Am- erica is one to which 1 and my asso- ciates (in ]"ortune have devoted con- siderable thought. It is a question, we believe, which goes directly to the root of many of the world's most serious economic and political troubles; whi,:h, indeed, cannot be discussed without refer- enee to those troubles and without taking sides concerning the solution (if them. In other words, it is our feeling that what has 1)een called anti- Semitism--a phrase which i shall presently define--is not an isolated prohlenl, but is rather symlltomatic of even l)rofounder l)rolllems which must lie solved if our civiliz.tion is any longer to survive. By this I do not liieaii that the survival (if civilization hiuges upon the sohition to anti-Seniitisni. That would lie a gross exaggeration. I mean, rather, that anti-Semitism arises fi'mn, and is cause(l by, the very forces whieh are unsettling the politics, and now esl/ecially the economics oJ the modern world. Anti-Semitism is an inevitable by- liroduct of the action of these forces; just as prohibitive tariffs are an in- evitahle by-product, and trade quot- as, and extended armies, and threats of war. To make my meaning clear it will tie necessary to begin where Fortune's article on Jews in America began: that is, with a definition of anti- Semitism. Here it is necessary to proceed very carefully. In one sense, anti-Semit- ism has always existed, because latent prejudice against the Jews, as Rabbi Joel Blau has said, "dates back to the beginnings of the Jewish people." tiara in America this lu'ejudice has made it difficult or impossible for Jews to enter certain clubs and cer- tain social circles. Pre!udice like that is deplorable; but in America, at any rate, it has been almost entirely social (in the narrow sense of the word society) and I am sure that that is not what is in your mind when you speak bf anti-Semitism today. I am sure that you have in mind something at once more specific and more general. What we mean when we talk about anti-Semitism today is--to quote Fortune--"a deliberately incited, affirmative, racial phobia." It is the emotion or state of mind of being against the Jews, and of actively expressing one's antagon- ism in personal speech aim propa- ganda, or by outright persecution. Anti-Semitism in this sense is the crystallized thought or action of a majority group against a minority group. It is therefore capable of gathering unto itself a mass of opinion and dogma which was not (Iriginally a part of it. Beginning with that small, half- hidden prejudice which the Christian worl(1 has always had against the Jews, it assumes economic and l)atri- otic aspects, which could not have been duduced from the original prem- ises by any process of logic or reason. In Germany today anti-Semitism is performing political and patriotic functions which, if they were not so tragic, could be described its ridicu- lous. onle. (if tlS feel that "inti-Semit- ism, in the sense just (lefine(l, exists JEWISH CALENDAR 5699 - 1938 Marehesvan ........... Wed., Oct. 26 Kislev .............. Thurs., Nov. 24 Chanukah ............. Sun., Dec. 18 Tebeth ................. Fri., Dec. 23 Fast of Tebeth .......... Sun., Jan. 1 Nothing could be more timely than this article. It is a Christian's slant on a problem that plagues Jews. It is a brilliant editor's views on an urgent question that you hear discussed, almost inevitably, whenever Jews meet. It is written by the man who directed the now-famous Fortune survey of Jews in America, when the $1-a-copy magazine sent its in the United States, either aetu.flly or potentially. To those who believe that it actu- ally exists, I can only say that I do not agree, and that their belief seems to me alarmist and unwarranted by the facts. /ndeed, l wouhl say t() these people: "If you believe 'mti-Semit- ism actually exists iu the United States today, you have missed the definition (if, you have utterly uuder- rated 'nti-Scmitism. You have ntis- taken something superficial (the agc-ohl prejudiee against the Jews) for something profound." But there are others who, on much sounder grounds, believe that anti- Semi((sin lie(ant(ally exists in the United States. And 1 cannot help but agree with theni. I think we have all observed evi- dences, or at least had suggestions (if it. A member of our staff the other day, wishing to get out of town for a swim, called up an inn on the Cmmecticut shore to make a reser- vation for dinner. He was unknown at the inn-- which calls itself a club, though it caters more or less to the general public--and was asked whether or not lie was what the mantiger called a Hebrew. Admitting that lie was not, tie was then asked whether his companion would be a IIebrew; at which point, I am glad to report, lie flung down the telephone. Another member of our staff found a small poster a few inches square on a telegraph pole in Connecticut, reading "Help save America. Don't buy from JewsI" And I think we have all heard similar disquieting stories from other parts of the country. I must urge you, however, not to take these reports too seriously. Indeed, if you were to ask me whether or not anti-Semitism exists potentially in the U. S., my answer would not be based upon such stories as these at all. They do not prove anything whatever. The answer to whether anti-Semit- ism exists potentially or not lies in the state of mind of the people of the United States concerning, not the Jews, but the people of the United States themselves. In brief, i shouhl like to give you this paradox: that the Jewish prHb- lem, if there is a Jewish problem, is not a Jewish lu.oblem at all. i can make my meaning a little clearer to you 1)y pointing out the historical fact that, by and large, democracy has a better record with regar(t to the Jewish people than any other governmental form. ]'tie reasou for this is obvious. In a democratic' political-economy each individual has the same fulida- mental rights as every other indi- vidual, regardless of race, color, or creed. So long as the people as a whole cling to this concept, they will not --they dare not--l)ermit the growth of pressure-gr(iups that 'ire too power- ful to l)c controlled. But if ever for any reason the eon- eel)t of democracy (:eases to grip them, then it is altogether inevitable that pressure groups should arise. They arise for economic reasons, for geographic r(,asolis, or for purely trained investigators into the ar ena to dig up the cold facts on what part Jews play in leading American industries. In another column, The Trans- cript brings you the unrevealed, exclusive story of the Nazi not- work in America. This article tells you what to do about that menace. It explains how Hitler- crusading groups can get a foot- hold.--The Editor. emotional reasons. And their effect is two-fold. On the one hand they unify groups of people, who, presumably, are afraid of something, though they may not know what; and on the other hand, until ()tie big pressure group wins out in th(7 end (as, for instance, in the case of prohibition) they I)reak up the political economy into warring elenients which have their own welfare more at heart thao the welfare of the syste, m its it whole. Now we have had pressure-groups in the United States in the l)ast, but tl l) to now, at any rate, they have not been entirely on( (if control There was, for example, the l(u I(lux Klan. There was prohibition, which got out (if control for It while. The American Legion has--haplii- Iy--confined most of its pressure to bonuses and pensions. Nevertheless, I think it is clear that pressure groups are more num- erous and more insistent now than they used to be. "Fortune" recently published an article by Dr. Raymond Leslie Buell called Death by Tariff, in which the existence of economic pressure groups in the United States was shown. These groups are erecting internal tariffs, one against the other, and are thus threatening the fundamental premise of the democratic political economy. Certain capitalist organizations seem to me to possess the character of pressure groups; and certain labor organizations, too. , , Now anti-Semitism is a pressure- group phenomenon. It is nothing else. Groups of persons here and there become afraid. They do not know what they are afraid of, but some of them might have had some unpleas- ant experiences with Jews (or it might have been Catholics, mr Japan- ese, or Eskimos). They erect an emotional thesis and they present this to otber persons and groups who are afraid. All these persons, mid you, must have abandoned hope for the demo- cratic political economy, must have relinquishe(l that ideal. If they have not yet relinquished it they will resist the pressure. If they have, then they will fall for it, and the anti-Scmitic pressure group will grow until it becomes it majority pressure group against a helpless minority. That would lie anti-Semitism. Consequently, when asked whether anti-Semitism potentially exists, I look to the state of affairs in the po- ]itical economy; and in the light of Dr. Buell's article (which never once mentimied Jews) and of some of my owu observations, my feeling is that the American people today are in danger of loosening their grip upon l, hc political and economie principles which they inherited from the past. I say in danger, because I don't think they really have, and I don't think they really will. I think they just have a ease (if in- digestion, having had too many theories thrust at them--and not enough work. But I do think that for the time being they are very susceptible to pressure-grollp emotionalisn -- or shall we cMl il psychosis. Come Assuming, then, that: there danger in the rise of pressure what is aa intelligent and Jew t(i tie? Is he to lie down "rod (aloe it? has too much self-respect for that Is lie, ()it the other hand, to ganizc ant)thor pressure gr0,P coral)at the pressure group? seems clear that such a course lie suicidal. A pressure group to fight Semitism not only excites troul)le, but it strikes a blow at one and only i)olitical systen has decently protected the this world; tit the democratic tam, under which pressure the kiud we are talldng about possibly "(rise. I realize that tile teln combat anti-Senfitism with groups is ahnost over-powering I cannot urge too strongly the ity, to say nothing (if the danger The re,(son it is futile is beC you are not here dealing with but with emotions. In my opinion, the greatest I)ution made by Fortune's article Jews in America was its cleat" de strut(on (if the myth that the control America. Running down the entire American imhtstry and Fortune disposes oJ the myth the Jews run America: found that they dominate the ment industries; and it found that the Jews contribute thetJ share of the talent and abilit country. But the point I wish to that, confronted with an pressure-group, indisputable like these are of no avail. The counter-pressure group cites them--equally emotionally haps--can only store ut I and give direction to the ing fear upon which always found. What, then, is the Jew to do? The answer, it seems to me is per" fectly clear. Si nee the democratic political' omy has received him more mindedly and has offered hina opportunity than any since this form of political eeOl contains within itself, functioning well, the only safeguard against the rise of nous pressure groups; since things are so, it would secm that the Jew should concern always and every day with fense, the preserwition, and thor development" (if that p0 economic system. ti' The Jew's answer to potential Semitism is good citizenship, e.v Ite should make of himself a0,0, . . gr0 ur pone(t, not prnnarlly of his 0tl not primarily of any other grotP,. of those ideals ah'ea(ly mcntie:0" IIe should make himself an eXVhi , ant of them attd lie should make "ro self a student of ways and mea0S' enacting them. v0, We have in the city of NcV l as .00.Teed sea?ely tell you, 00ev erican, e#" That is the type of life--not  r0d sarily public, not necessarily D.i# --wtiich I urge the Jews of h e to adopt. I urge upon them a c iti which will make all other proud of their citizenship, ad  And I submit that if the four -e to half milliou Jews in America ei i0 affect othe, r Americau citizee this way, an anti-Semitic raovew couhi never actually arise. (Copyright, 1938). Thorah (Hebrew for the L,)o, i the name (if a township in oilta'