New York City (Aug. 20)
To the Editor, Jewish Daily Bulletin:
Bernard S. Deutsch, president of the American Jewish Congress, is at present in Mexico, where he has distinguished himself by heaping fulsome praise on several occasions upon a government which has pursued an anti-religious policy equalled only by the interdiction of religion which has been accomplished, in Soviet Russia. According to a dispatch to The New York Times from Mexico City on August 15, Mr. Deutsch, addressing the Mexican Advertising Club, said that “Mexico’s best advertisement was the stability of her democratic government and the vigorous character of her industrial and commercial interests.”
It is not besides the point to remind your readers that Mr. Deutsch, together with his confreres in the American Jewish Congress, has been the most voluble opponent of Nazi rule in Germany. He has, on more than one occasion, appealed to the world for liberty, tolerance and fair play for the Jews. Yet Mr. Deutsch is spending his visit to Mexico by heaping praise upon a country whose rulers are persecuting Catholicism as ruthlessly as the Nazis in Germany are persecuting the Jews.
Mr. Deutsch, I am sure, would be the first one to raise his voice in protest if some well-known Catholic were to go to Germany and praise the accomplishments of the Nazi government. But he has no compunction about bestowing encomiums on a government whose policies are outraging American Catholics.
It may be argued that Mr. Deutsch spoke as an official of the government of New York City. Nevertheless, Mr. Deutsch is also president of the American Jewish Congress which affirms, wherever it can get a hearing, that it speaks for all the Jews of America. However, I for one should like to go on record as emphasizing that Mr. Deutsch in this instance, speaks for no one, unless it be himselfâ€” certainly not for the Jews of America.
Mr. Deutsch’s utterances in Mexico are indicative of many of the actions of some so-called leaders in the American Jewish Congress who can lay more claim to trouble-mongering than they can to statesmanship. It is high time that Jews like Mr. Deutsch, whose name is backed up by some official title, do a little calm and logical thinking before acting, instead of acting first and thinking afterward. Let them consider that their actions and their utterances sometimes reflect on other Jews. Or if these Jews insist on being irresponsible, let us turn them out of office and elect statesmen instead.