Dear Editor. I felt compelled to write this letter to TLS in appreciation for what this site has done for me. I am a Non- Jewish resident of Lakewood for several years, and until recently, my understanding of the Jewish people has been very minimal. I actually regret to say that I have had a negative attitude towards my Jewish neighbors and at times, employers.
I have interpreted Jewish behaviors, traditions and laws as insulting, strange and stand-offish.
However, I have been an avid reader of this site for over a year now, and I am truly amazed at what I have come to learn. I now understand that what I interpreted as stand-offish and snobby is truly an honest attempt to remain sheltered. I feel prepared about upcoming Holidays and am therefore not taken aback by them- I actually look forward to the entertainment they bring (Purim is my favorite).
And I have recently asked a Jewish neighbor of mine- what all the numbers represent- such as 1-10, 10-20… each time a severe accident or tragedy occurred in town. When he explained that complete strangers take time to say Psalms, I was moved to tears.
Thank You TLS for making me now a proud member of the community.
What I learned from this experience is how important it is to become educated about others before forming opinions. Awareness brings understanding, and understanding brings tolerance and friendship.
Signed- your Non- Jewish friend. (Otherwise known as not “fun unzere”)