A Letter to the Canadian Jewish News Regarding Homophobia and Religious Prejudice

We, the undersigned, would like to bring to your attention our anger and concern at the letter “Homosexuality prohibited by Torah law” that appeared in the “Editorials and Letters” section of the CJN on August 5, 2010.

This letter expressed one reader’s objection to the overwhelming support and participation that the Jewish community showed in the recent Gay Pride Parade in Toronto. Shortly after declaring that Muslims are Jewish enemies, the letter concludes with the author’s suggestion that Jewish federations and groups should support queer members of the Jewish community by investing in “sexual reorientation programs.” To suggest that all Muslims are the “enemy” shows the same absurd and dangerous villification that often results in the maltreatment or discrimination of entire peoples, something that Jews have known too well throughout history. Further, “sexual orientation programs” are often violent, and always inspired by a hate for a person’s current sexuality. Suggestions and support for such programs, and hate for other faith groups has no place in our Jewish community, or a Jewish community newspaper. It is the responsibility of the Editorial Board to keep such comments out of the CJN.

We acknowledge the right of people to debate religious texts and their interpretations. We also acknowledge the author’s right to submit this letter to the CJN. As a community newspaper, however, the CJN has a responsibility not to print such pieces that ostracize and demonize members of our Jewish community, and members of other faiths.

We request that the CJN prints an apology and retraction and re-establishes this newspaper as a community newspaper that welcomes readers from all walks of life.



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