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Letters to the Editor for Monday, Sep. 16

Letters to the Editor for Monday, Sep. 16

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Violence by Israel is not equal measure

In his July 15 letter “Much being said about Israel is false,” Don Steiner wrote correctly that both Israelis and Palestinians have been cited by widely respected organizations for human rights violations.
I hope Mr. Steiner is not implying any moral equivalency.    
Palestinian violence, even at its worst, has been a fraction of Israel’s.
When have Palestinians killed 2,000 people, including 500 children, as Israel did in Gaza five summers ago?  
Unlike Israel, Palestinians have no army, tanks, armored vehicles, warplanes, navy or nuclear weapons. Palestinians do not arrest (kidnap), brutalize and imprison hundreds of Israeli children each year.
Nor do Palestinians wage vigorous campaigns in the United States to criminalize and silence criticism of their policies and agenda.
While many desire peace, Israeli leaders have chosen might-makes-right violence as their preferred method of dispossessing and managing Palestinians while confiscating and colonizing their lands.
Other recent letter writers have asserted incorrectly that the non-violent, growing and global Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) campaign is anti-Jewish.
Many Jews endorse BDS and many Palestinians believe the economic and cultural BDS is the best way to motivate Israel to fully comply with international law.  
Tom Ellis
Albany


Place achievement over diversification

The following is text from The Gazette editorial “Increase teacher diversity” published on Sept. 4.
“Much of our children’s…educations. Comes from being taught by those like them …but they won’t get those experiences and inspiration if most, if not all, of their teachers are white.”
Therefore white teachers should not educate black students and black teachers should not educate white students.
Why is that the case? Is skin color the sole determinant of learning?
If so, then set aside all prerequisites for teaching positions and hire whomever graduates from teacher colleges as long as their skin color matches their students’.
Furthermore, within each school assign all classes strictly according to race.
No racial mixing can occur lest learning be negatively affected. Strict racial segregation must be the rule.
The editors laud Schenectady schools for “admirably” diversifying their faculty and demonstrating to the deficient Suburban Council schools, that diversification is achievable.
These are 2019 test results for Schenectady schools on statewide math and English language tests. Sixteen percent were proficient in math and 24 percent in English.
So while The Gazette salutes the diversification of these school,  it appears they value diversification over academic achievement.
But then again, The Gazette never claimed that diversification would lead to improved educational outcomes, only to certain important experiences.
Richard A. Evans
Burnt Hills
 

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