Dr. Cohen Urges Parity for Jews As Professionals
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Dr. Cohen Urges Parity for Jews As Professionals

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A demand for equal opportunity for Jews in the professions was uttered here today by Dr. Morris R. Cohen, professor of philosophy at the College of the City of New York, in an address before the joint convention of the National Conference of Jewish Social Service, National Association of Jewish Center Executives and National Council for Jewish Education at the Hotel St. Charles.

Outlining the position and the possibilities of the Jews in the professions, Dr. Cohen said:

“As Americans as well as Jews, we must not abandon the principle of the opening of opportunity to each individual according to his ability. The community as a whole is entitled to the best doctor, to the most capable lawyer and if the best-judged by any fair test-happens to be a Jew, the community as well as the individual suffers a loss if the latter is deprived of his opportunity to function according to the best of his ability.


“I know that this position is often characterized as idealistic and not sufficiently practical. But if practicability consists in confusing our ideas as to what is really worth while, the essence of wisdom still is as it always has been, to avoid narrow practicality.”

Other speakers at the convention, which will continue until Tuesday, included Professor Horace M. Kallen, Morris D. Waldman, Dr. Isadore Lubin, Dr. Selig Perlman, David J. Saposs, Fred Butsel and Bernhard Ostrolenk.

American Jews face the same peril as their brethren in Europe, declared Morris D. Waldman, secretary of the American Jewish Committee, speaking before the National Conference of Jewish Social Service at a separate session.

Mr. Waldman’s address will be found on page four of today’s Jewish Daily Bulletin.

Intimating that if the present attempts to stabilize the economic structure of the country fail to achieve results there is a possibility that a non-democratic method will be tried, Dr. Isadore Lubin, commissioner of the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the Department of Labor, warned the joint session that Jews should realize from their experiences in Europe that non-democratic methods mean disaster for them.


They should therefore lend every effort to the present attempts to achieve economic security in democracy, he declared. Dr. Lubin claimed that the only hope for complete absorption of the present unemployed in the United States lay in the extension of government services in the non-profit fields of teaching, public health and recreation.

Dr. Lubin was one of a group of speakers who discussed the implications of recent economic trends and their effect on Jewish life. Fred Butsel of Detroit presided over the session.

Dr. Selig Perlman, professor of economics at the University of Wisconsin, showed how the economic future of the growing generation is intimately bound up with the other groups. David J. Saposs of the Brookwood Labor College, Katonah, N. Y., reviewed the problems confronting Jewish labor.

The ghetto has urbanized the Jew by public decree, by restrictions and by virtue of necessity, but emancipation brought to life again the dream of a rural Jewish people, Dr. Bernhard Ostrolenk, editor and agronomist, declared at the afternoon session.


When the Jews came to the United States in large numbers, he said, they were already too late to take advantage of the opportunity that had been presented in history of obtaining free land. The frontier had disappeared by 1890, he explained, and the influx of Jewish people from 1890 to 1910 presented no opportunity for a moneyless people to settle on the land.

Economic forces, he added, directed them to stay in the large seaboard cities where they landed. Yet Jewish history in America is replete with instances of struggle of reestablish agrarian Jewish communities.

Oligarchy and Fascism in American Jewish life were attacked as the cause for anarchic conditions in Jewry and for failure to cope with problems raised by the rise of Hitlerism in an address by Professor Horace M. Kallen of the New School for Social Research delivered this evening at a joint general session of the convention of the National Conference of Jewish Social Service, National Association of Jewish Center Executives and National Council for Jewish Education.

Professor Kallen, a disciple of William James and author of many philosophic works, asserted that all central Jewish bodies except the American Jewish Congress employ oligarchic and Fascist methods.

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