Some kids growing up in south Brooklyn in the 1960s had heroes such as Mickey Mantle, John F. Kennedy or The Beatles. For Madison High School graduate Chuck Schumer, it was his grandfather Jacob, a Polish immigrant.
“My real hero is my grandfather,” Schumer said fondly during a recent interview.
It was a quiet, touching moment, free of the increasing nastiness of the campaign trail, in which Schumer, the veteran Democratic Brooklyn congressman, is locked in a contentious, too-close-to-call battle to unseat longtime Republican U.S. Sen. Alfonse D’Amato.
Striding across the opulent lobby of Manhattan’s Waldorf-Astoria Hotel last Sunday morning, Michael Sonnenfeldt, chair of the pro-peace Israel Policy Forum, spotted Malcolm Hoenlein, the top executive of the nation’s leading Jewish umbrella group — the 50-year-old Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations.
“It seems like I’m always following you around,” joked Sonnenfeldt, a private investor with a linebacker’s build, extending his hand.
The latest skirmish in the halls of Jewish academia has, surprisingly, nothing to do with Israel. But the new discord over academic grants made by the Posen Foundation concerns a charged topic just the same — the growing trend of teaching about Jewish culture through an exclusively secular lens.
Bob S., a 50-year-old computer specialist from Scarsdale, was laid off from his $175,000-a-year job in March after years of steady employment. He, his wife and their two children began living off the family’s savings, canceled their vacation plans and began eating all their meals at home.
Are you familiar with the Haggadah commentary of Rabbi Benjamin David Rabinowitz, an 18th-century scholar in Warsaw? Or of Rabbi Ya’akov Lorberbaum, a Polish rosh yeshiva in the late 1700s and early 1800s? Or of Rabbi David Dov Meisels, a chasidic rebbe in Poland 150 years ago?
Probably not. Unless you are a member of the Oceanside Jewish Center.
Shawn Green has taken his place in the major leagues – of Jewish philanthropy. Last week the Mets right fielder announced he will donate $180 to UJA-Federation for every run he drives in.
This week UJA-Federation asked more people to step up to the plate. The philanthropy unveiled its RBI Initiative, encouraging people of various means to pledge amounts of their choosing to the annual campaign for every Green RBI.
New Haven, Conn. — For a long time Yale University was not a good place to be a Jewish student. The WASPy Ivy League school here maintained a Jewish quota from the 1920s until the ‘50s, limiting the number of Jews to 10 percent of the undergraduate class.