$100,000 for a wedding? $20,000 for a bar mitzvah? When did extravagance and luxury become such primary Jewish values? I can’t remember the last simcha (Jewish celebration) I attended at which there were not tremendous amounts of wasted food, overly expensive napkins and bands large enough for a royal banquet.
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Six Jewish organizations signed a letter calling on the U.S. Congress not to advance a bill that would reopen the Holocaust insurance assessment process.
The American Jewish Committee, the Anti-Defamation League, B’nai B'rith International, the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, the World Jewish Congress and the World Jewish Restitution Organization condemned the Holocaust Insurance Accountability Act of 2010 in a recent letter to Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.), chairman of the House of Representatives Judiciary Committee.
Lawyers for Newburgh Four claim entrapment in incident cited as case in point for nonprofit security grants.
Assistant Managing Editor
When the trial of the so-called Newburgh Four, accused of a plotting to blow up two Riverdale synagogues, commences next month, it will be the first case of alleged anti-Jewish terrorism in a New York courtroom in more than 15 years.
The news surrounding Elena Kagan’s nomination has focused on more than her legal qualifications — her looks have caused a lot of buzz, too. Michael Savage, talk show commentator, said that Kagan “looks like she belongs in a kosher deli.” Another writer questioned, “Why do Janet Napolitano, Sonia Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan all look like linebackers for the New York Jets?” JInsider wanted to get a Torah perspective on the relative importance of physical appearance from one of our favorite and most thoughtful rabbis, Rabbi Naomi Levy (www.nashuva.com).
After reading The Jewish Week, I have come to the conclusion that this world has turned itself around. Liberal Jews criticize Israel and equate it with Nazi Germany while they support an enemy that is bent on Israel’s destruction. They criticize Israel for defending itself against an enemy that uses barbaric means to kill Jews, no matter how observant they are or what denomination they are from.
Interfaith marriages are hard enough, but a Jewish-Muslim family raising dual-identity children?
Special To The Jewish Week
Her father fled Nazi Germany before World War II, arriving in New York as a refugee; her grandparents and an aunt were murdered at Auschwitz; and another aunt, now 92, somehow survived two years of hiding in Berlin.
His grandfather built a life in India as a renowned Islamic and Persian scholar, a teacher and an imam at the local mosque, and his Muslim family continues to live in South Asia.
With two such markedly different backgrounds, the chances of Helene Lauffer and Muzaffar Chishti meeting, much less falling in love, could be seen as remote by many observers.
Her background surfaces even as Jewish groups mostly silent on wider nomination battle.
James D. Besser
A Jewish community divided over key constitutional questions is watching closely but mostly silently as a hyper-partisan Senate debates President Barack Obama’s nomination of Elena Kagan to succeed the retiring Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens — and as hints that the nominee’s Jewishness is being used against her surface.
No-confidence vote in leadership sought after threat to expel Syracuse synagogue.
In the wake of an unprecedented move by the National Council of Young Israel to expel a member congregation in upstate Syracuse, a rebellion is brewing among some of the Orthodox congregations affiliated with the movement.
The challenge to the National Council surfaced during a conference call last Thursday with representatives of the organization’s nearly 150 member congregations.
Jews in All Hues, a new-ish “peer-led program that provides a safe space for people from interfaith families to explore their identities as mixed heritage Jews,” is holding a conference in San Francisco on Sunday, May 30.
I attended their conference last year in Philadelphia and came away with mixed feelings, a no doubt appropriate emotion for an event focusing on the state of being mixed!
One of the most enlightening and disturbing articles on Jewish life that I’ve read in awhile appears in the Spring issue of Lilith, the Jewish feminist magazine, in which Rabbi Susan Schnur interviews her daughter and two other 20-something young women (rabbis’ daughters, each, and observant, to varying degrees).
Young Families, Singles Flocking to Upper East Side; ‘The Memory Is In Their Taste Buds’: The Lure of Sephardic Food; Safra Synagogue Rabbi’s Growing Empire; Sephardic And Egalitarian at B’nai Jeshurun; Giving Voice to Sephardic Music.