TO MY CHRISTIAN NEIGHBORS

The United States is at war against terror. Some Christian churches have initiated punitive action against Israel, one of our staunchest allies in this war, because Israel has built a fence to prevent terrorists from entering Israel and killing its inhabitants.

The United Church of Christ (http://www.ucc.org/search/results.php?q=Israel) and the Disciples of Christ (http://www.disciples.org/ga05/ResolutionsPostGA/0522.htm) have formally encouraged its members “to engage in prayer, study, and dialogue about the barrier and to raise diligently with their governmental officials these concerns.” The World Council of Churches (http://www2.wcc-coe.org/pressreleasesen.nsf/index/pu-04-11.html) “calls on all member churches and ecumenical partners to condemn the wall as an act of unlawful annexation." These organizations have not condemned the U. S. for building a fence on its Mexican border to keep Mexicans from entering the U. S. to work.

Likewise the U. S. Presbyterian Church (http://www.pcusa..org/mrti/actions.htm) and the World Council of Churches (http://www.eappi.org/pressreleasesen.nsf/index/pr-cc-05-08.html) have initiated stock divestment programs against companies doing business with Israel. They have not taken comparable action against China for occupying Tibet and destroying its culture, nor against Saudi Arabia for prohibiting the open practice of Christianity, nor against North Korea for sending Christians to disappear in its gulag, nor against Sudan for committing genocide in Darfur.

When I moved to Centre County 38 years ago, it was a tolerant community. I was happy to live and raise my children here. Now this community has become highly anti-Semitic. This is even a source of pride in some liberal Christian circles. The Centre Daily Times (CDT) routinely publishes lies about Jews (letters of June 27, 2003, and September, 23, 2004, by Marjorie S. Newell; September 24, 2003, by Reed M. Smith; November 28, 2003, by Kazimierz Wiesak; and September 10, 2004, by Dean Tuttle).

Penn State University has become a hot bed of anti-Semitism, as pointed out by Tuvia Abramson in his CDT article of May 16, 2005 (omitted from the CDT web archives). Intellectual dishonesty is the cardinal sin of academic institutions. Falsifying facts is grounds for dismissal of faculty and staff, for expulsion of students, and for disbanding university sponsored organizations. Yet the Penn State administration does not take meaningful action to stop slander and libel against Jews on its campuses.

Christians have hated, persecuted, and murdered Jews for over 1000 years in Europe. America was founded with dedication to religious freedom and tolerance. It was the great hope for Jews, who came to this country in huge numbers. Now this hope is being dashed. Apparently the disease of Jew hating is so ingrained in Christianity that it even will cause Christians to take action against Jews when that action is inimical to their own interests.

Stop hating Jews. Jews are not the enemies of Christianity.

Julian Heicklen
Patton Township
September 12, 2005

A slightly modified version of this letter appeared as a paid advertisement in the Centre Daily Times of September 25, 2005.