Letters to the Editor: Same-sex Adoptions and a Minister's March of Folly

The annual Gay Pride Parade in Tel Aviv, Israel, June 12, 2015.
The annual Gay Pride Parade in Tel Aviv, Israel, June 12, 2015. Ariel Schalit, AP

Proud of my gay son, ashamed of my government

In response to “Israel tells High Court it opposes adoptions by same-sex couples” (July 17)

Full disclosure: I am the proud father of an openly gay son and my words are not addressed to the government, but to my son and his many friends in the LGBT community. The government’s decision to set you apart and discriminate against you due to your difference is a racist decision. A government that makes a decision on the basis of gender is a bad government, one that acts “heroic” at the expense of the weak.

You are its punching bag and your relative weakness enables it to prove its supposed strength. You are being persecuted, and who knows better than you what an oppressive feeling it is, to say the least, to live with the sense that you are a child unwanted by his or her parents, or a citizen ostracized and discriminated against by his country.

This latest mark of Cain is not to be etched on your forehead, but rather on the ugly face of the government in Jerusalem that is disconnected from the people.

Every mother and father has a supply of soothing words to call upon, because your kids are always your kids, not matter how old they are. But this time, and it’s not the first time, the insult is so deep and so cruel that there are no words. For what can you possibly say to your third child – Why is it okay for his brother and sister but not for him? How can you explain why his country is treating him so callously? 

But day by day, hour by hour, you all are out there showing that you will not give up your natural, innate right to a life of freedom, love and family, no matter what the government and the Knesset say. Coming out as gay is a heroic act. What tremendous courage it takes to muster the strength to go against society’s dictates and prejudices. What fortitude it takes to stand before your father and mother and say the words: “I am gay” or “I am a lesbian” or “I am a bisexual” or “I am transgender.” You do so because you’ve chosen not to live a lie or in secret, but to be free to live your lives as you are.

I stand in awe of your courage. You will continue to live your lives and start families as same-sex parents with or without the government and Knesset. You are already doing so with much success.

Yaakov Bar-Levy

Regev marches on

In response to “Miri Regev: Tel Aviv’s culture institutions are going to hurt big-time next year” (July 11)

Culture Minister Miri Regev outlined her doctrine regarding culture, financial allocations, the periphery, etc. at a discussion in the Knesset’s Finance Committee. If anyone thought this minister’s marches of folly were a thing of the past, they were wrong. This time she surpassed herself and broke new records of ignorance.

Regev estimates and evaluates art according to an “original” formula – the amount of money the state invests compared to the number of spectators. For example, 18 million shekels are allocated to the Israeli Opera and “only” a meager percentage of the population views it. I then tried to imagine what the Schocken family was thinking when it decided to adopt S.Y. Agnon and support him financially almost all his life. I’m convinced this wouldn’t have happened to Minister Regev. Sad.

Arye Michalovich

Haifa

State charging commission?

In response to “Justice Minister Shaked supports fining prostitution consumers” (July 17)

The justice minister from Habayit Hayehudi proposes to fine prostitution consumers. It is customary to think that prostitution is the oldest profession. It seems that the steady demand over generations and the threat to fine prostitution consumers wouldn’t deter them and stop prostitution.

Such a demand is more like the state’s desire to charge a commission.

David Ringold

Tel Aviv