NEW YORK (Aug. 30)
The American Jewish Committee, in a 1,200-word statement which will appear in next week’s issue of the Jesuit magazine “America, ” strongly criticizes the Catholic weekly’s editorial of last week for confusing efforts to implement the First Amendment with a campaign to remove religion from American life.
Entitled “To Our Catholic Friends, “and taking more than a page of space in the magazine, the AJ Committee statement scores the view that Jews stave off the threat of anti- Semitism by abandoning commitments to the protection of the First Amendment as interpreted by the Supreme Court.
The AJ Committee statement charges that the “America” editorial exaggerated the role of Jews and says: “It has not been uncommon in history for Christians to assign to Jews a symbolic role which is unrelated to their real influence and which allows them to become a scapegoat for the problems of others. A singular service would be rendered by the editors of ‘America’ were they to make it clear to their readers that anti- Semitism has traditionally fed on this tendency to exaggerate the influence of Jews.”