Tikvat Israel's Cowen Responds

Since I was personally attacked by letters to the editor in this past week's magazine, I wanted to clarify some things. I am a rabbi of a Messianic Jewish congregation by virtue of receiving a degree from a Messianic Jewish seminary and am ordained by the Union of Messianic Jewish Congregations, comprised of approximately 100 congregations. I was born into a Jewish family, was raised Jewish and continue to be and live as a Jew to this day.

With respect to the accusation that no reputable Jewish organization accepts Messianic Jews as Jews, I suggest your readers purchase the book "Messianic Judaism" by Dan Cohn-Sherbok, a highly respected and prolific reformed rabbi and author.

Jamie Cowen

Kilgore Panders to Women

I wanted to hurl as I read that fluffy blather you printed about our notorious attorney general, Jerry Kilgore ["The Luck of Jerry Kilgore," Cover Story, July 31]. While you may get all warm and fuzzy when you think of him, most family men and divorced fathers in Virginia would relish the idea of kicking Jerry Kilgore's tail for what he has been doing to them.

The most destructive legislative trick Kilgore pulled was to get the "marital-rape" law passed. This law gives still more power to women in divorce cases. The message is not that harassment is wrong; the message to every Virginia female is that if you fail professionally, or have a falling-out with your associates, you can always recoup your losses by filing a harassment claim.

On these issues, Tim Kaine and the Democrats took essentially the same position as Kilgore. It just demonstrates that both campaigns have decided that in the next governor's race, the key swing-voter segment is women. [Kilgore] has recklessly shown that he is willing to abandon his base support in our Virginia families in a futile attempt to win over the man-haters, feminists and gold-diggers.

J. Tyler Ballance

Kilgore Didn't Need Luck

As one of Jerry Kilgore's former law partners, it was with particular interest that I read your article on him. I was fortunate to be able to get to know Mr. Kilgore well when he worked with me here at Sands Anderson Marks & Miller for the four years before he was elected attorney general of Virginia, and I can assure you that luck had very little to do with the success he has enjoyed both professionally and politically.

Although becoming attorney general certainly involved a great deal of political savvy and some good fortune, Kilgore will serve the citizens of the commonwealth well as the state's top attorney, not because of his political acumen, but because he is a very good and honest person and an excellent lawyer. In fact he was voted by his peers to be among Virginia's legal elite last fall in Virginia Business magazine.

While I would love to practice law with him again, Virginia needs Jerry Kilgore's commitment to public service. Thanks for helping demonstrate that to your publication's readers.

Douglas P. Rucker Jr.

Give Nuccio's a Chance/

The article on Nuccio's real Italian restaurant was not a fair analysis giving it benefit of the doubt [Restaurant Review, July 10]. As a steady customer, I have ordered almost everything on the menu, and the service normally is excellent and the food excellent. Customers want great food and service at great prices. I believe Nuccio's restaurant has great service most of the time. Randall Stamper should try it again. Please see if Randall can give Nuccio's another try, for it is a great fantastic place.

Bob Charles



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