PHILADELPHIA (Aug. 29)
American Jewish youth was urged today to accept its “adult roles” and to “exert pressure for changes” in policies and programs affecting the future of the American Jewish community.
Addressing the national convention of the Student Zionist Organization which opened today at Camp Galil, Ottsville, near here, Dr. Judah J. Shapiro, former secretary of the National Foundation for Jewish Culture, said that, while students at American campuses have been demonstrating increasing acceptance of their adult roles in most social and political affairs, “no comparable role is yet discernible in Jewish communal affairs.” Only in the Jewish community, Dr. Shapiro declared, “do students still conduct themselves as children, regarding themselves as ‘youth movements’ of adult organizations.”
Stressing the need for Zionists to concern themselves with the “nature and quality of Jewish communal life as a whole, ” Dr. Shapiro said that involvement in Jewish communal affairs “will require the attempt to make it democratic in order to establish an arena for the debate of the relevant issues and for action to be taken on them by the participation of all who regard themselves as Jewish and who are ready to play a political role in determining the affairs of the Jewish community.”
The convention, being attended by 200 delegates, will continue through Friday.