My son and I need help

I have been looking for help for my son for years now, but as he has aged out of the official system, he is not eligible for it.

The Jewish community offers nothing. Absolutely nothing for a boy who is very intelligent and charming and good looking, but lacks direction and focus.

I am the victim here. I am a single parent. It is hard enough having raised four adopted Israeli children, one of whom is so far gone, he cannot come back, but for the younger one it is inexcusable to have no Jewish services for him. No services — period.

There is more than enough help for developmental problems. There is a part of Zahal that includes those with mental limitations and physical disabilities, but nothing for those who have ambiguous problems with facing adulthood and life in general. I am not speaking of drug addiction; I am not speaking of heroine or cocaine. I am speaking about certain slip-between-the-cracks disabilities. Those who won’t work. Those who isolate themselves. Those who are scared of growing up.

I no longer have a family, and I no longer have a support group of friends who would help me take on these issues I deal with every day. I have reached out to so many people, and so many agencies, and I am left hanging. No one can offer help. I reach out to Nami, the national organization for the mentally ill. Yet they are still dealing with the stigma of mental illness.

Our Jewish community is secretive. It is a closet community of drug addiction, sexual predators, wife beaters, and mentally ill individuals. It is a lot of work to keep these things sufficiently out of the media so that they don’t scare our perfectly chosen people and their offspring.

Is this a Jewish community? Is this a family of Jews, or is it just a fraud? I am limited in what I can say, but I am very very angry. I need help for two of my children, and cannot buy it or find it.

Sandra Steuer Cohen

Don’t blame the police

The vast majority of the approximately 800,000 police officers throughout America are dedicated soldiers who consistently put their lives on the line to protect all of us from harm and promote peace and security. Without them our civilization would be unable to function effectively, and progressively. Chaos would prevail.

Police officers are not biased against any group, race, or ethnicity. Rather, their focus is the suppression of crime and danger wherever it appears. All law enforcement agencies insist on this ideal in their training academies.

In light of the decline and worsening of economic conditions, education, and opportunity, which is most pronounced in minority areas, these vulnerable communities see the greatest increase in destructive criminal activity. Police are drawn there to an inordinate degree. This in turn creates the false illusion of hostile police bias toward minority citizens. The result is suspicion and hostility towards police. They are additionally stressed by severe limitations imposed on them by government.

As we have seen, this noxious cycle has led to a disastrous increase in destructive confrontations. We appear to be descending into racial war.

In my opinion, what is required is ongoing consultation and communication between prominent and respected community leaders. Responsible citizens on all levels (especially the young) must be included in these discussions.

Perhaps consideration can be given to the formation of unarmed groups of well vetted young people (male and female) similar to the “Guardian Angels” organization of Curtis Sliwa. These can be a helpful bridge between law officers and the community when they establish mutual confidence.

Jerrold Terdiman M.D.

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