An article in the Baltimore Sun (http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/local/baltimore_county/bal-shabbat0527,0,5468633.story) states that the Jewish Community Center (JCC) in Owings Mills will now open on Saturday afternoons. While there was a rally last week at the Park Heights JCC to dissuade the board from approving this, the recommendation passed 97 to 33 by the board. I have to say that I am really disappointed.
While I am not a Jew who is observant of the Sabbath, I believe there are certain things that you hold sacred. The Sabbath is meant as a day of rest; a day to spend with family and friends; a day meant not to work. The Owings Mills JCC already opens their doors during the summer for the outside pool. Why the sudden need to open the indoor components? Being Jewish needs to mean something. And, yes, I know that you do not have to be Jewish to belong, but I bet you won't see the YMCA board vote to stay open on Christmas or Easter to suit their non-Christian members.
This will not change my support of the JCC. I am not a member nor do I plan to be a member. It simply is not convenient for me as I do not live in close proximity to their locations.
But this decision seems to be the start of a deterioriation of the "sacred-ness" of being Jewish. If the "Center" that bares it's name can't observe the simple rules of the Sabbath, how can we envision a population of Jewish people to aspire to and observe the rules of the Sabbath?