Editorial & Opinion | Opinion

04/23/2014 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

Two opposing trends can be discerned within today’s American Jewish community. The first is the move to precisely define the borders and boundaries between various Jewish denominations and religious groups. On the pages of this newspaper and elsewhere, there are debates about what precisely constitutes Open, Modern, or Ultra Orthodoxy, and where exactly the boundary is between Orthodox and Conservative Judaism. On social media, this splintering and boundary-setting is even more pronounced as quasi-denominational labels like Egalitarian Traditional, Left-Wing Conservative and Modern Ultra-Orthodox proliferate.

04/23/2014 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

At a recent event honoring a well-known rabbi, I was flattered when a prominent member of the Jewish community asked why I had stopped writing essays in The Jewish Week. Frankly, I was surprised that anyone had noticed (and was unduly flattered), but answered, “I just can’t figure out what is going on.” The caustic response was, “That doesn’t stop anyone else from writing.” 

04/17/2014 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

The recent plethora of blog posts and articles written about the Conservative movement would force even the most casual reader to understand the challenges being confronted by this segment of the Jewish community. Because numbers within the movement have declined, and synagogues and day schools have been forced to either close doors or merge, some observers have predicted the death of Conservative Judaism, with others acknowledging the challenges and proposing various solutions to increase the number of adherents.

04/17/2014 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

In the course of less than a decade, my mother went from independent living to assisted living and, following one quick event, to a skilled nursing facility that specialized in dementia. Her path from enjoying her evening cocktail to having to be fed by family and aides is a path now shared by many of our loved ones. We take that journey with them, juggling work, our own families, and our own lives.

04/11/2014 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

On June 1, tens of thousands of New Yorkers will gather for the annual Celebrate Israel Parade. As in previous years, we at the New Israel Fund (NIF) will be there, leading a group of progressive, pro-Israel activists. We will take our rightful place alongside the many others dedicated to the Israel that is, as well as the Israel that ought to be.

04/10/2014 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

When I was growing up, one of the running jokes in my family was how annoying it is that Germans make good cars.

As an Israeli-Ashkenazi, three generations removed from the Holocaust, it was obvious to me that buying a German car was not an option, and that it doesn't really matters who wins the World Cup in soccer -- as long as it's not Germany.