Several weeks ago, large numbers of Jews from around the world took part in “Unity Day,” an event created by the families of the three Israeli teenagers kidnapped and murdered a year ago to mark the “spirit of unprecedented unity among the Jewish People” following the tragedy.
Sparked by a scandal over a prominent rabbi’s mistreatment of conversion candidates, a review of conversion practices in the Orthodox community by a special committee of the Rabbinical Council of America has resulted in a series of helpful recommendations to make the experience more user-friendly. (See story, page 10.)
The remarkably rapid change in societal attitudes toward gays and lesbians, culminating in the 5-4 Supreme Court ruling in favor of same-sex marriage this past week, is a powerful statement about the values Americans place on democracy, social inclusion and individual freedoms.
The virtually unanimous resolution in the New York State Assembly the other day opposing Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) efforts against Israel is a reminder of the fair-mindedness of our elected leaders. It also serves as a rejoinder to Las Vegas billionaire Sheldon Adelson, who sponsored a private anti-BDS summit meeting several weeks ago that excluded key mainstream Jewish groups in the fight against de-legitimization of Israel.
As the Jewish community raises to a new level its response to the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement on college campuses, with tens of millions of dollars being set aside to combat anti-Israel activity, we offer congratulations — and a word of caution.