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Controversial House of Prayer in Hancock Park

October 30, 2003

Re "House of Prayer Splits Neighbors," Oct. 26: What a sad situation, stated poorly by Rabbi Chaim Baruch Rubin. As to his referring to those in my neighborhood who oppose the Orthodox houses of worship as members of a "kingdom" complete with "feudal lords," he is wrong, but he stopped listening to other points of view long ago. In fact, his argument has less to do with faith and more to do with his own misperceptions, on which he then sermonizes and leads his congregants to find as truths. It is no wonder that so many of us who are not faithful to religious zealotry feel burdened by the politics it creates.

Linda Buerge

Hancock Park

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Joel Kotkin is incorrect in saying, "This ghetto mind-set doesn't work in a place like L.A." Instead, the mind-set that doesn't work in this city is one of intolerance to various religions, races and customs. And, clearly, the real reason why "Orthodox" Jews meeting in a residence to pray together draws so many complaints is because just seeing us walk down the street in traditional Jewish outfits frightens some narrow-minded people who cannot accept us and our nonconforming look and do not want us to walk on their street. It is most unfortunate that such hatred toward Jews takes place right here in Los Angeles.

Rabbi Hershel Remer

Los Angeles

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