Watching “Casino Jack” on its opening weekend was the very first time I ever felt embarrassment for wearing a kippa in a movie theatre. When Jack Abramoff, played by Kevin Spacey, sponsored kosher restaurants and a yeshiva with dirty money, the woman sitting next to me let out a disgusted “My G-d!” I shrunk in my seat.
Cory Booker seems to find himself in the right places at the right times. Two decades ago, as a 22-year-old Rhodes scholar at Oxford, he found himself one night at Shmuley Boteach’s L’Chaim Society, a Jewish cultural center on campus.
He was invited by a young woman for a Simchat Torah celebration. When he walked into Chabad House everyone froze. He looked for his date but found men with beards and skullcaps.
My wife and I are blessed with four wonderful children, two of whom are married, and the third a sophomore in college. Our youngest child- a son- is eighteen and a senior in high school. And like his friends, he is living through those weeks of high anxiety when college acceptances- and the other letters- are sent out.
What do we hope the American Jewish community will look like in 2025? No one knows what the coming years actually have in store for the Jewish community but we can at least attempt to outline a vision for what our future can entail with focused and vigorous efforts. Before we discuss the mechanics of accomplishing our collective dreams —hundreds of leaders, thinkers, and organizations would need to do that work in very different ways—perhaps we can at least advance open conversations of where we, as the empowered and engaged in the Jewish community, are looking to go.
Israel is roiled once again in sad and needless moral controversy. Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu of Safed, son of former Israeli Chief Sephardic Rabbi Mordecai Eliyahu, and with the support of 49 other rabbis, has ruled that it is forbidden by Jewish law for Israeli Jews to sell land or rent property to an Arab.
Joel Chasnoff is a stand-up comedian and writer with stage and screen credits in eight countries, and author of the comic memoir The 188th Crybaby Brigade (Simon and Schuster), about his year as a combat soldier in the Israeli Army
The ways in which women are vulnerable, and their human rights are violated, have changed little through the millennia, and climate change will only exacerbate the same old suffering.
Special to the Jewish Week
In December 2004, when the Indian Ocean tsunami devastated the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, women died, in part, because they could not swim, because they put the needs of their children first, and most tragically of all, they drowned in their homes because they would not flee after debris had torn off their clothes. In the years since the tsunami, these shocking facts have motivated NGOs to develop programs to prepare women for the increasing number of disasters expected to result from climate change.