Islamic anti-Semitism is increasing. Roman Catholic leaders are eerily silent about Mel Gibson's filmed Passion play and its negative portrayal of Jews. Southern Baptists are reaffirming their call to convert Jews.
Stepping into this current state of interfaith affairs comes David Elcott, who this week assumes the post of U.S. director of interreligious affairs for the American Jewish Committee.
But Elcott, a 54-year-old California native who has spent most of his career in Jewish communal work, says he's excited to assume the post, which has been vacant for a year.
Twentieth Century Fox will not distribute the controversial film "The Passion," Mel Gibson's take on the death of Jesus. The announcement by Fox, which is owned by Rupert Murdoch, came as a small group led by Brooklyn Assemblyman Dov Hikind protested at Fox News Corp. headquarters in Manhattan on Aug. 28. Some interfaith scholars have warned that "The Passion" could fuel anti-Semitism because of its portrayal of Jews as being behind Jesus' crucifixion.
Harvard University is declining to say when it will make a decision about keeping a controversial $2.5 million gift to fund its first chair in Islamic religious studies at the divinity school. This follows media reports that an Arabic research center accused of promoting anti-Semitism and anti-Americanism was shut down recently by United Arab Emirates President Sheik Zayed bin Sultan al Nahyan, who is funding the Harvard chair.
Preppy Izod clothing (those cotton polo shirts and windbreakers with the open-mouthed alligator logo) can now be found far from the tony Lacoste boutiques that cater to country-club crowds. The label is available downtown at Michael K., the new electronically enhanced, 22,000-square-foot urban-outerwear emporium on Broadway near Spring Street, that opened last weekend.
by Stewart Ainby Stewart Ain |
Rabbi Milton Balkany, a Republican fund-raiser who reportedly raised $100,000 for President George W. Bush's campaign, was arrested Tuesday on federal fraud charges for allegedly misusing a $700,000 grant intended for disabled preschoolers. The rabbi, it is charged, used some of the money to pay his federal income taxes and life insurance premiums.
A rift has broken out between a New Jersey-based pro-Palestinian student group and a national pro-Palestinian organization, threatening a three-day Palestinian solidarity conference scheduled for Rutgers University in New Brunswick in October.
A spokeswoman for the National Student Conference of the Palestine Solidarity Movement (PSM) confirmed that the group has voted to move its third annual national conference from Rutgers to Ohio State University because of "concerns about the capability of New Jersey Solidarity (NJS) to host this year's conference successfully."