At sunrise on April 8, the eve of Passover, a group of Jews from the Upper West Side will gather on the roof of the JCC in Manhattan. Organized by Hazon, the New York-based group that works for a “more sustainable Jewish community,” the early-morning risers will say some prayers, do some yoga and burn some chametz.
When the sun appears over the Atlantic that morning, a similar scene will take place on Miami Beach.
It was a sports dream but a food and scheduling nightmare.
Ira Jaskoll is a Sy Syms School of Business associate dean who keeps his athletic career alive by taking part in New York Yankees Fantasy Camps where men over 30 — and an occasional woman — get to train with and play against former members of the storied franchise at the team’s spring training site in Tampa, Fla. But there was no kosher food and the schedule was rough on shomer Shabbat participants. So Jaskoll pitched the Yankees some ideas.
There is good news and bad news in the preliminary FBI national statistics on hate crimes in America released this week.
The good news: National hate crimes plummeted 23 percent, to 7,462 in 2002 from a record 9,730 in 2001, according to data collected by the FBI under the 1990 Hate Crime Statistics Act.
And the number of hate crimes against Jewish individuals and institutions nationally dropped to 931 in 2002 from 1,043 in 2001.
Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad continued his verbal campaign against Jews this week with the enthusiastic support of American anti-Semites, as one American Jewish official called on world leaders to speak out against the rising rhetoric.
The Anti-Defamation League reported this week that U.S. anti-Semitic groups are encouraging members to voice their support for Mahathir.
Orlando, Fla. — In a continued effort to spiritually reinvigorate its 1.5 million adherents and bring young people back into the pews, the Reform movement plans to revolutionize its prayer services, stressing more Hebrew and new American-style music.
Baltimore — What do an expert on Buddhism, a Christian theologian and a former Reagan administration bureaucrat have to say about Jewish spirituality to a room full of Conservative rabbis? That was the question here this week when all three addressed several hundred rabbis and guests at the 99th annual convention of the Rabbinical Assembly, the organization representing the world’s 1,500 Conservative rabbis.
Campus battles over the Middle East conflict and rising anti-Semitism are heating up on several fronts:
# A national pro-Palestinian student conference declaring that “Zionism is racism” is slated for Oct. 12 at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, with plans to increase pressure on college officials to drop investments in Israel.
There will be no kosher meals. No Jewish holiday observances. And many — perhaps even most — of the students won’t be Jewish. But if philanthropist Michael Steinhardt has his way, New York City’s first publicly funded school devoted to Hebrew language and culture will open its doors in Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn, in September 2009.
Pro-Israel money will help give Joe Lieberman the ability to run a serious race if he sticks with his vow to make an independent bid to keep his Senate seat, according to political insiders and some pro-Israel donors themselves.
This support, they said, will counterbalance the evaporation of political backing Lieberman will now likely experience from his Democratic Party colleagues with the victory Tuesday of his primary opponent in Connecticut, Ned Lamont.
Baruch Lanner, a former yeshiva high school principal and religious youth group counselor who was convicted in 2002 in New Jersey of sexually abusing two teenage girls, appears no longer to be on the New Jersey, Florida or national sex offender registries.
Lanner, 59, an ordained Orthodox rabbi, was sentenced to seven years in prison, but did not begin serving his sentence until 2005, after his conviction was upheld on appeal. He was released on parole in January of 2008. According to the New Jersey Department of Corrections, Lanner’s parole ends next month.