There was a time when Yehuda Lev, an outspoken Jewish journalist who died this past weekend at the age of 86, was the talk of the Los Angeles Jewish community. His weekly column, “A Majority Of One,” published in the local Jewish Journal was widely read and hotly debated each week in the 1980s. He often delighted in skewering local machers and people he considered to be religious and political extremists on the right.
Last week, sociologist Bruce Phillips argued in the Los Angeles Jewish Journal’s “Demographic Duo” blog that intermarriage actually declined between 1990 and 2000, the period in which the Jewish establishment was in the midst of a continuity panic attack.
According to Phillips, the National Jewish Population Surveys of 2000 and 1990 measured intermarriage in a “problematic” manner inconsistent with the way “the larger field of demography” measures interracial (and presumably inter-ethnic?) marriage. This, he says, made for misleadingly high intermarriage stats.