Jews

Ai Weiwei's Jews: Pictures from an Exhibition

On the weekends, I like to get away from work. One of the places where I like to do that is museums.  And what better one to visit, if you're looking to avoid Jews (for me, that's my job; not anti-semitism), than the Asia Society?  Surely there'd be nothing on view there that would make me think of writing, deadlines and blogging about Jews--that is, work.

Herman Cain's Bigotry

"No Jews Allowed."
 
A sign like that would be infuriating. How about a presidential candidate saying he would be uncomfortable appointing Jews to his cabinet, you know, with all those dual loyalty questions? Outrageous bigotry, you say? Now substitute Muslim for Jew and you have Republican presidential wannabe Herman Cain.
 

Gallup: Jews Still Solidly Back Obama

The latest Gallup poll shows a "solid majority of Jewish Americans still approve of Obama," and they may be his most loyal segment of the population. President Obama's Jewish approval level was 60 percent in June, about 14 points above the general public. Among Jewish Democrats his rating was 85 percent, compared to 51 percent among observant Jews, who attend synagogue at least once a week and tend to be more conservative than most other Jews.

Israel Zangwill's "Melting Pot" and Europe's Anti-Muslim Problem: Lessons from Two Struggles

It doesn't matter if you're liberal or conservative--if you're European, "mutliculturalism" has become a dirty word.  The New York Times ran an op-ed today by a British writer attacking multiculturalism as form of public policy.

Baby Steps Toward Arab-Jewish Cooperation

Two mayors in the north, looking for a grass-roots connection.
07/04/2011 - 20:00
Editor And Publisher

‘Even if there is peace between Israel and the Arabs, it will not solve our problems,” Nazia Masrawa, the mayor of an Arab Israeli town in the north called Kfar Qara (population 17,000), told me in a soft, matter-of-fact voice during a recent interview here.

He cited the lack of interaction between Arabs and Jews living in close proximity, based on fear and distrust, and the economic gap between the societies that has widened since the first intifada almost 24 years ago.

Gary Rosenblatt

A Tale of Two Cities: Jews vs. Hispanics and Blacks, New York City

New York magazine has a great chart comparing two adjacent New York City congressional districts in this week's issue.  One is District 14, which includes all of the Upper East Side, parts of Murray Hill, Long Island City, Astoria, and a few other less affluent places too.  The other is District 16, just north of the Upper East Side, and covers much of the South Bronx. The stats they line up are startling: the average income in District 14 is $79,385; in D-16 it's $23,073.

H&H Heretic: Why I Cheer the Closing of a Bagel Shop

On Monday the Upper West Side outlet of the venerated bagel store H&H closed, and not since the death of Michael Jackson has a New York summer seen so much grief. "There Goes a Piece of the Old Neighborhood, Again" ran a New York Times headline in a story dripping with pathos.

Happy 107th, Leo Bloom!

Today, June 16, Leopold Bloom--the protagonist of James Joyce's revered and often inscrutable novel "Ulysses"--turns 107.  Happy Birthday!  And, also, so what? 

So what--because "Ulysses" is often regarded as one of the 20th centuries greatest novels, and also one of the greatest novels few have ever read.

So what--because Leopold Bloom is one of literature's most vexing Jewish characters, as he's born Jewish, but never circumcised and baptized three times in order to marry his Christian wife, Molly.

Notes on the Closing of Yale's Anti-Semitism Center

Last week, Yale made national headlines when it decided to close its five-year-old anti-Semitism institute. The decision came after a growing number of scholars began to question whether it was promoting anti-Arab sentiment, rather than coolly objective academic scholarship.  Not to toot my own horn, by I saw this one coming. 

Shavuot: A Night of (Unhappy) Learning

Shavuot, which starts tonight, is all about learning.  Jews are supposed to stay up all night reading in celebration of God giving Jews the Torah.  What makes the holiday rare, though, isn't the reading part--what Jewish holiday doesn't involve that?  It's that there's no bad guys in the story.  Unlike Passover, we don't commemorate Jews escaping a pharaoh in Egypt, or, as in Hanukkah, a revolt against the Romans. No matzah, no latkes, just books and books and books.

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