Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Anchorage Daily News Wants Alaska State Legislature To Re-visit $850,000 Grant For Jewish Musuem

In an Anchorage Daily News (ADN) editorial entitled "Take Back State Funding", published March 21st, 2007, the Anchorage Daily News suggests the cancelled land swap between the Lubavitch Center and the Municipality of Anchorage offers a welcome opportunity to re-visit the $850,000 grant previously awarded by the Alaska State Legislature for a Jewish historical museum in Anchorage. Click HERE to view the editorial column.

Synopsis: The grant, buried in the bowels of a complex annual state budget during a time of great concern over a proposed natural gas pipeline and the accession of a new gubernatorial administration, escaped the notice of many, including the Anchorage Daily News and this blog. However, the recent cancellation of the aforementioned land swap has shed fresh light upon this appropriation and ADN, given the opportunity to focus more completely on this issue, has found reasons to question the grant.

And what disturbs the Anchorage Daily News, as well as others within the community, is that this $850,000 grant may establish a constitutionally-questionable precedent for using public money to help build any religious organization's cultural history project - regardless of faith or denomination. Even though the Lubavitch Center would have set up a separate nonprofit entity to own the museum, or that the museum would be separated by a wall from the synagogue, or that the museum would be open to the general public, is not considered sufficient justification for public funding. If the Anchorage Baptist Temple could have their property tax exemptions for their non-clerical residences questioned by the Anchorage Assembly last year, then it is not inappropriate to also question this $850,000 grant.

And ADN clearly is not anti-Semitic. They also take equal issue with another decision by the legislature last year to give $50,000 to the Bingle Camp Ministries, a camp and retreat center south of Fairbanks owned by the Yukon Presbytery, Presbyterian Church USA. Even though the camp is open for public rentals, it's still owned and operated by a church, and, as such, should not cross the line and receive government funding.

The Anchorage Daily News clearly believes that a local Jewish historical museum would make a positive contribution to the community. After all, it is intended to focus on Jewish contributions to Alaskan history and life rather than become America's 24th Holocaust Museum. But funding museums for any of those history lessons should come from the pockets of private donors, not public funds. The ADN's bottom line - take back the funding.

Analysis: Agree. All religious organizations should receive equal treatment under the law. The First Amendment is explicit - Congress (or any subordinate state legislature) shall make NO LAW regarding the establishment of a religion... On the other hand, the First Amendment was not intended to forcibly rip down symbols deemed religious, like Ten Commandments displays, Nativity scenes, or Christmas trees (since when did THEY become "religious", by the way?).

The objections to the proposed land swap outlined in Proposition 9 were NOT religious or racial. To briefly recap: The Lubavitch Jewish Center had wanted to construct a 14,000-square-foot, two-story building on 36th Avenue, with a museum of Jewish history in Alaska, a community center, a day care and a synagogue. The group had wanted to trade a parcel it owns on Otis Lake for city land adjacent to land it owns fronting on 36th Avenue. The swap would have given it enough room for a parking lot. However, this was considered a huge project for a neighborhood zoned residential. Neighbors were so concerned about the possible impact on traffic, wetlands and drainage in low-lying areas that the Rogers Park Community Council voted 92-1 to oppose Proposition 9.

Even some Jewish residents were opposed. One local resident in particular, Beate Frankel Zinck, wrote a
Compass column published in the Anchorage Daily News on March 15th highlighting the same objections. However, she also spoke up in order to deter and deflect any allegations of "anti-Semitism" and to encourage non-Jewish residents to express their concerns more freely without being psychologically hailed before the proverbial Court of Supreme Diversity. Encouraged by this expression of fair-mindedness, and incensed by insensitivity to their feelings by the Anchorage Assembly, the Rogers Park Community Council voted 92-1 to oppose Proposition 9.

Ultimately, the Lubavitch Center, acknowledging the sheer weight of public opinion, chose to vacate the proposed land swap and graciously conceded the point. Nevertheless, the question will still be on the April 3rd municipal election, since the ballots are already printed, but the deal itself is dead. The Center says it will look for another site.

6 comments:

  1. Oh, come now Mr. Loerbs! You know damn well a Christmas tree is counted as a mildy religious symbol, the Ten Commandments are also a religious symbol and I'm pretty sure a Nativity scene is truly a religious symbol.
    So what are you talking about that they are OK to be left sitting on any land that is connected to anything dealing with the government.
    And for that matter isn't the Mormons on Brayton Drive looking for places to worship including local schools?
    If you want to get down and dirty buckaroo then the trees, stone tablets and homeless church groups need to find private places to worship and display their symbols.
    I know you won't agree with that but what should I expect!
    All one-sided on your part!
    Now how I see it, I believe the Ten Commandments are just fine in some judges court room, the Nativity scene in public places including government buildings are always nice to see and schools should be open to such things as Boy Scouts and temporarily homeless church groups because they pay taxes on them.
    I highly doubt it will cause anyone to convert!
    And you can tell your racist buddies to stop referring to me as a Jew, I'm not a Jew. So put that in your pipe and smoke it....!

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  2. What ever JOOdaft.... You are a dirty joo... If you are not one by birth you sure are a sympathizer...We have looked at your profile and your ties with the B'nai Elim means you are a JOO/sympathizer... So quit trying to deny it!!! As for the separation of Church and State, which is what we are really talking about when the Government pays "grants", allows the use of schools, and allows any religious symbols/doctrine (unless they are a Private Religious school).... Well you get the picture. I think you should ask your fellow JOO's for money from the Kosher Tax.... Maybe get some money from those JOO's selling JOOelry... Or one of they many JOOish scams that are going on in todays sheep filled society. I know you ain't getting my money!

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  3. screw you and your musuem!!! Pay for it yourself you dirty JOO!!!

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  4. Sammy, Sammy, Sammy you don't believe in separation of church and state. We all know you would love to put your made up Identity movement in charge of the country.
    So shut your pie hole.

    I'm still waiting for your other personality, Carl, to answer my remark about the Brayton Drive Mormons looking for schools to use until their place gets built again.

    I'll wait until Sammy Sybil goes back into that cobweb filled head to see if I get an answer.

    I also realize you are against any sort of cultural museum since you "white" supremacist really don't have one of your own. You are all so mixed and matched in family history you don't know whether to wear heavy French perfume to cover your unwashed bodies, lederhosen or wooden shoes.
    Talk about mongrels....

    You pretty much can ask just about anyone of you what your ancestory is and you will say something like,
    "Well, my granny on my mom's side was Irish but my grandfather was German I think and my grandpappy on my dad's side was English but her came from France orginally and throw in a few Italians, Welsh, Scots and you name it. There you have mongrel soup. I gave up on people asking me "what I was" years ago. I'm an American and hold American traditions. I don't have to worry about some European tradition because I'M NOT EUROPEAN...religion is another subject and we all know you don't have to be a certain skin color to join most. Except your mongrel religion that was made up within the last few years. I bet Christian Identity isn't even 30 years old....LOL

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  5. These Lubavitch are already in a residential area and have broken zoning laws to have their so called temple in a residential area and now they want a museum funded by the state there too. aND DON'T YOU THINK THAT MUSEUM WOULD BE USED TO PROMOTE THEIR RELIGION AND LINE THEIR POCKETS. They are so "entitled" !

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  6. Dear anonymous, gads I love people afraid to print their names,

    unless you are really that ignorant you will realize most churches are in residential areas.

    Between LaTouche, Benson, Lake Otis and 36th Ave there are at least three, if not four, churches. Everyone of them sit back to back with residential neighborhoods.

    And don't forget the restaurants, doctors office (one of which the biggest bitcher Michael "I'm a Jew, really I am" Bleicher works in)along with other buildings.
    They all are there next to the neighborhood that is pitching a fit over the Lubavitch.

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