‘You’ve set back the Jewish contribution to making the world spiritually whole…’
(Denis Slattery, New York Daily News) Stephen Miller’s childhood rabbi condemned the White House aide over his role in President Donald Trump’s immigration policies in a scorching Rosh Hashana sermon.
Rabbi Neil Comess-Daniels of Beth Shir Shalom said Monday that Miller has spread “negativity, violence, malice and brutality.”
“Honestly, Mr. Miller, you’ve set back the Jewish contribution to making the world spiritually whole through your arbitrary division of these desperate people,” Comess-Daniels said. “The actions that you now encourage President Trump to take make it obvious to me that you didn’t get my, or our, Jewish message.”
The Guardian first reported the critical comments.
Miller is the senior Trump adviser behind the administration’s hard-line immigration policies, including the controversial travel ban barring people from certain Muslim-majority countries into the U.S. and separating families crossing into the country illegally from Mexico.
He has also called for a rollback of legal immigration, which prompted his own family to speak out against him.
Dr. David Glosser, Miller’s uncle, argued that his nephew’s family would have been turned away if the policies currently backed by Miller and the president were in place when his ancestors were coming into the country.
“I have watched with dismay and increasing horror as my nephew, an educated man who is well aware of his heritage, has become the architect of immigration policies that repudiate the very foundation of our family’s life in this country,” Glosser wrote in an article published by Politico.
Miller grew up in Santa Monica, Calif., a well-heeled liberal community on the Pacific coast.
He attended Beth Shir Shalom, a progressive reform synagogue where Comess-Daniels has taught and provided spiritual guidance for more than three decades.
The rabbi assured his congregation on Monday “that what I taught (Miller) is a Judaism that cherishes, wisdom, values … wide horizons and an even wider embrace … (Separating families) is completely antithetical to everything I know about Judaism, Jewish law and Jewish values.”
Rosh Hashana is the Jewish New Year, and Comess-Daniels said he felt compelled to speak out because “in a free society, some are guilty, all are responsible. Because we want this society to remain free, we will continue to act.”
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