Born in Jerusalem. Pe­riod.

The Washington Post Sunday - - SUNDAY OPINION -

The Supreme Court de­ci­sion in­val­i­dat­ing a law that al­lowed Amer­i­cans born in Jerusalem to iden­tify Is­rael as their place of birth ex­posed a dis­turb­ing truth about our for­eign pol­icy [“A sin­gle voice on for­eign bor­ders,” front page, June 9]. Re­gard­less of whether one be­lieves, as the court ma­jor­ity held, that the law in­fringed on the pres­i­dent’s power to grant for­eign recog­ni­tion, the truth is that pres­i­dents of both par­ties have been in thrall to the State Depart­ment’s pol­icy to limit as much as pos­si­ble the foot­print of a sovereign Jewish state in the Mid­dle East. Of­fi­cial pol­icy is to not rec­og­nize even West Jerusalem as part of Is­rael.

Against the back­drop of a re­gion in ut­ter chaos, we are asked to ac­cept the ab­surd no­tion that list­ing Is­rael on the pass­port of a Jerusalem-born Amer­i­can will un­der­mine the peace process.

Stu­art Endick, Burke

As an Amer­i­can Jew, I ap­plaud the Supreme Court’s de­ci­sion that only the pres­i­dent can de­cide for­eign recog­ni­tion, strik­ing down the at­tempt by Congress to al­low Amer­i­cans born in Jerusalem to list Is­rael as their birth­place on pass­ports.

Chief Jus­tice John G. Roberts Jr. wrote in his dis­sent that the court’s de­ci­sion was “based on the mere pos­si­bil­ity that ob­servers over­seas might mis­per­ceive the sig­nif­i­cance of the birth­place des­ig­na­tion.” This com­ment re­veals his in­abil­ity to con­sider the real-world out­come of what he would have had the court de­cide.

Chief Jus­tice Roberts and some of his col­leagues ap­pear to think that their be­liefs about the ef­fects of their de­ci­sions are based on their un­der­stand­ing of the real world, when in fact they are noth­ing more than their own be­liefs. Say­ing it doesn’t make it so.

David M. Zw­erdling, Sil­ver Spring

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