Your decision to publish the full-page back-cover advertisement for the largest casino in Maryland in the Aug. 9 edition reflects a disregard for the long-standing policy positions of both Baltimore’s rabbis and our organized Jewish community. Since November 1995, the Baltimore Jewish Council, whose mission includes determining and communicating our community’s consensus positions on governmental matters, has passed resolutions opposing commercialized casinos and slot machines as inappropriate methods of public program financing. Central to this opposition to gambling was the Council’s agreement with the Baltimore Board of Rabbis when it declared that the operation of official authorized slot machines is inconsistent with the Torah’s teachings (Leviticus 19:14). The BJC’s statements further recognize the inequity of enticing the poor to fund these revenues. Your choosing to gain advertising income from casinos helps promote those activities that our leaders want discouraged. Please honor these respected community voices by not accepting further advertisements from the gambling industry.

Steve Sklar
Member, Board of Directors
Baltimore Jewish Council

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