Newsweek

Top Ten Reasons To Hate Newsweek's Annual Top Rabbis List

Since 2007, Newsweek has been issuing an annual list of America’s 50 Most Influential Rabbis. I am pleased to say that several rabbis who are welcoming of interfaith families, including Rabbi Kerry Olitzky of the Jewish Outreach Institute, are on this year’s list.

A hearty mazel tov to Rabbi Olitzky and many of the other people I know personally, like Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum of Congregation Beth Simchat Torah and Rabba Sara Hurwitz, who made the list.

However, the list itself irritates the hell out of me and I am hoping that, with the struggling news magazine now on the auction block, this year’s list will be the last. Here, in no particular order, are my reasons:

Shabbat Unplugged

-This morning at the JCC, I was hurriedly checking my email on my phone when an elderly gentleman came up to me and asked what I do with that "thing" on Shabbos.

An Italian Philosophy Inspires Jewish Preschools

01/09/2008
Special To The Jewish Week

On a recent winter morning the 130 children attending the nursery school at Manhattan’s Stephen Wise Free Synagogue are engaged in such hands-on projects as building a sukkah, maintaining a rooftop garden and creating small clay sculptures. Some have designed a replica of the Brooklyn Bridge, made from Styrofoam and other objects, while each class has met with a Jewish scribe to learn about a project that involves the entire congregation: the drafting of a Torah to mark the synagogue’s 100th anniversary.

 

An Italian Philosophy Inspires Jewish Preschools

01/09/2008
Special To The Jewish Week

On a recent winter morning the 130 children attending the nursery school at Manhattan’s Stephen Wise Free Synagogue are engaged in such hands-on projects as building a sukkah, maintaining a rooftop garden and creating small clay sculptures. Some have designed a replica of the Brooklyn Bridge, made from Styrofoam and other objects, while each class has met with a Jewish scribe to learn about a project that involves the entire congregation: the drafting of a Torah to mark the synagogue’s 100th anniversary.

 

CAIR and the latest Islamic terror plot

Thursday, December 10th, 2009 I’ve never entirely bought the argument that the Council of American Islamic Relations (CAIR) is somehow in bed with terrorists and extremists. I do see a group that  has a hard time dealing with the extremism in its own community.  And its ambivalent sounding statements on terrorism and extremism sometimes undermine the group’s credibility.

Code Orange Puts U.S. Jews On Alert

02/14/2003
Staff Writers
The nation's Jewish communities are on high alert this week after the Bush administration upgraded the country to "orange alert" (the second-highest warning) in response to potential terrorist attacks by al Qaeda in the United States. In New York, the Jewish Community Relations Council warned several thousand area synagogues, Jewish schools, community centers and hospitals to upgrade security for their buildings' ventilation, heating and air conditioning systems in case of a chemical or biological attack by the Islamic terrorists.

Arafat, Neville, Did More For Peace Than Obama

Friday, October 9th, 2009 I don’t get it, how did Obama get the peace prize and not Chamberlain? At least Chamberlain came home from Munich with a piece of paper. And don’t dismiss the prize because Arafat won it. Don’t compare Obama’s accomplishments to Arafat’s. That’s not fair to Arafat. At least Arafat had the Oslo Accords to show for himself.  (That’s pretty grim, when you compare Obama to Arafat and Arafat comes out more worthy of the prize.)

George W. Bush for — get this — Mideast envoy?

Wednesday, July 29th, 2009 In the craziest-idea-of-the-month sweepstakes,, this one can’t help but come up a winner. Writing in Newsweek, Gregory Levey suggests replacing U.S. special Mideast envoy with – are you ready for this – former President George W. Bush.

Obama’s Nowruz Address: not “appeasement,” not a Kumbayah moment

Sunday, March 22nd, 2009 James Besser in Washington Predictably, President Barack Obama’s conciliatory Nowruz message to the Iranian people has produced fierce reaction on both sides of the debate over Iran policy.
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