George Kalinsky was seething inside.
A fervently Orthodox rabbi told him that he wasn’t a real Jew.
Never mind that Kalinsky’s parents were Jewish and that he put on tefillin every morning.
Kalinsky, the longtime photographer extraordinaire for Madison Square Garden, who captured the magic of the Willis Reed/Walt Frazier-era championship Knick teams and who took the last photo of John Lennon performing live, apparently wasn’t observing rituals to the Agudath Israel rabbi’s standards.
Experts in sexual ethics violations among clergy are criticizing Temple Emanu-El for the way it has handled the arrest of its cantor, Howard Nevison, on charges that he sexually abused his young nephew.
“It’s a huge mistake that they kept him on” after Nevison brought the issue to the attention of synagogue leaders, said Dr. Samuel Klagsbrun, director of the pastoral psychiatry program at the Jewish Theological Seminary, which ordains rabbis and cantors.
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.
A sea of black hats filled Madison Avenue on the Upper East Side as demonstrators protested in front of the Czech Republic Consulate Monday. The Orthodox contingent is claiming the Czech government and a major Czech insurance company have violated a 3-month-old agreement to protect a recently uncovered medieval Jewish cemetery in Prague.
In the end, the fight over whether Reform and Conservative leaders could sit on powerful religious councils in Israel apparently turned on a Talmudic loophole. By a vote of 50-49, the Knesset this week adopted a bill crafted to keep Reform and Conservative representatives off religious councils, which dispense millions of dollars to religious institutions throughout the country.