The years have been kind to us, I thought as the five of us gathered again. We're grayer and less carefree, some of us could lose a few pounds, but we are content, healthy, successful and surrounded by cherished families.
Just about every summer camp today has policies in place regarding the use of technology by campers. Rules governing whether campers can bring their cell phones, iPods, digital readers, and smartphones to camp (and if so, when they can use them) have been part of ongoing discussions as new forms of technology are introduced into the marketplace.
As if he needed more tsuris in in his fight for a sixth term – this time as a Democrat – Sen. Arlen Specter, the veteran Jewish lawmaker, now may have a major Elena Kagan problem.
Kagan is President Obama's nominee to fill the seat of the retiring Justice John Paul Stevens, and Specter – back when he was a Republican, which was after he was Democrat – voted against her last year when Obama appointed her solicitor general.
The story was recently told to me about a Facebook user who updated her status message to announce the death of her grandmother and the grief she was feeling because of the loss. Her friend's mother, a Facebook newbie, read the status update and clicked Facebook's "Like" option. Was this a Facebook faux pas or a way to express condolences in the era of social networking?
Will the Mojave Desert cross controversy ever end?
You may recall that last month the Supreme Court ruled that the 7 foot Christian symbol, erected in 1934 to honor fallen U.S. servicemen, was not necessarily a violation of church-state separation just because it was erected on federal land, a ruling that disturbed groups like the American Jewish Committee.
How do you convince a young generation of Jews increasingly detached from their past that connecting to their heritage and community is important and beneficial – to their fellow Jews and to themselves?
“We can’t coerce or guilt them,” noted Jack Ukeles, a consultant on policy-oriented research studies for a number of Jewish communities around the country.
The dozen or so communal leaders and academics around the table on Monday night, at the last of a four-part series of conversations on Jewish Peoplehood, nodded, almost glumly, it seemed.
By now Elie Wiesel's newspaper advertisment, which attacked Obama's position on east Jerusalem settlements, is well known. My editor, Gary Rosenblatt, even got an exclusive interivew with Wiesel about it, which is certainly worth a read. In short, Wiesel's letter basically said that Obama did not understand the signficance Jerusalem has for Jews. "Jerusalem is above politics," Wiesel noted, which I'm guessing will be remembered by many as an egregious snaf
Twenty-eight-year-old poet Hila Ratzabi has the kind of credentials Jewish leaders like to tout as the surefire antidote to intermarriage: 12 years of Jewish day school followed by four years in the Jewish Theological Seminary/Barnard College undergraduate double-degree program.
The daughter of an Israeli father and American Jewish mom, Ratzabi always assumed she would marry a Jewish man. But in the year and a half since she met her Mexican-American (Baptist-raised) atheist boyfriend José, a grad student in chemistry, Ratzabi, who has an MFA in writing from Sarah Lawrence College, has been questioning her long-held assumptions about intermarriage and eagerly reading stories of how other people have negotiated interfaith relationships.