Friday, June 27th, 2008
My uncle, Milton Samuel Mark, died of AIDS a while back, from a blood transfusion given to him in a Bronx hospital, so I take the AIDS issue seriously and with some measure of resentment.
Last year, Rubashkin — the name of the family that owned and ran Agriprocessors, the country’s largest kosher meatpacking plant — became synonymous with scandal. In May 2008, U.S. immigration officials raided the plant, arresting 389 illegal aliens employed there, and company owners were charged on numerous counts of violating child labor and immigration laws. The highly publicized case also put a spotlight on a disquieting history of accusations of mistreatment of animals at the slaughterhouse.
Amid hard times and carbon footprints, leftovers are thrifty, politically correct — and shockingly tasty.
For 100 years, we were a restaurant family. From 1888 to 1988, we threw out food. Pristine bread trays, untouched butter ramekins, plat du jours at the end of the jour. Anything tired or wilted was whooshed into the garbage, OUT! Every morning, as the sun rose over the East River, the kitchens started from scratch.
After learning about the benefits of genetic screening from her physician, a pregnant woman decides to schedule an amniocentesis test. Doctors carefully screen her amniotic fluid sample, and they determine that her fetus has an extra 21st chromosome — in other words, the child will be born with Down syndrome. The patient instantly faces an emotional quandary: should she go forward with the pregnancy, or should she have an abortion?
This kind of thorny ethical question was at the center of a forum on genetic disease forum held May 5 at the JCC in Manhattan.
Rachel Rosenfeld opened up a school in Cambodia. Danny Schwartz donated kitchens to six Ethiopian families in Israel. And Becky Weinberg organized “Becky’s Closet,” donating princess-like dresses to needy bat mitzvah girls in Canarsie, Brooklyn.
The common denominator? All three are New York Jews under the age of 18.
Want to create an instant community? Just add cotton. That's what one San Francisco-based entrepreneur says she's doing with a line of T-shirts silk-screened with the slogans "Yo Semite" (a play on the national park's name) and "Jews for Jeter": in support of the Yankees' star shortstop.
Undeniably clever, the shirts ($15 to $20) are "no joke" to their designer, Sarah Lepton, 30.
My colleague, James Besser, asked, on his blog , why Israel’s Ambassador Michael Oren (correctly described as “smart and sophisticated”) “continues to pick needless fights” with J Street, the so-called and cynically self-described “pro-peace process lobby” and political action committee (see a JTA story on Oren’s latest comments).