News

A Code For A New Age

11/13/1998
Staff Writer
Clinton and Lewinsky. The general manager of the New York Mets. Teens shaving their heads and piercing their tongues. High schoolers killing their classmates with guns. Popular culture in America is not providing a pretty picture to those interested in teaching their kids ethics and morals. But how should they be taught? Whose ethics? And what are morals, anyway?

Sinatra And The Jews

11/13/1998
Staff Writer
In Pete Hamill’s wonderful new riff on Frank Sinatra, we learn about the enormous positive impact “Old Blue Eyes” had on the immigrant Jewish community and other ethnic newcomers to America in the years following the Depression.

White House Pressure On Conversions?

02/27/1998
Staff Writer
There will never be a “religious” solution to the bitter “Who is a Jew” issue in Israel — despite intense pressure from the White House. But there still could be a “technical solution.” That’s the undiluted opinion of Rabbi Avraham Ravitz, leader of Israel’s Orthodox right-wing United Torah Judaism party, which holds four seats in the Knesset.

Reclaiming Heschel

01/09/1998
Staff Writer
He was accused of being too political. Others said he was too spiritual. Certainly he melded the ancient wisdom of the prophets with a modern sensibility to become the symbol of Jewish social action in America during the turbulent 1960s. When Abraham Joshua Heschel barely escaped Nazi Europe in 1940, the 33-year-old scholar began teaching at Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati. There he found himself disregarded as a chasidic traditionalist out of step with the Reform movement’s modern, non-observant world.

Breaking The Chains

01/02/1998
Staff Writer
On a cloudy Wednesday afternoon, the sidewalks of lower Fifth Avenue in Manhattan are bustling with last-minute holiday shoppers. But two flights up, in a nondescript building near the Banana Republic, a half-dozen rabbis and laypeople are concerned only with the liberation of Jewish women. They comprise a controversial new rabbinical court, or bet din, which is granting speedy, affordable divorces to agunot — known as “woman in chains” — whose husbands refuse to grant them a religious divorce, or get.

Poland Mulling Plan On Jewish Cemeteries

03/03/2000
Staff Writer
More than 1,000 abandoned or neglected Jewish cemeteries in Poland would be protected from development under a proposal being considered by the Polish government, The Jewish Week has learned. The plan calls for the creation of an international Jewish committee headed by Israel’s two chief rabbis that would identify and fence off forgotten Polish Jewish cemeteries. It would ensure that the land is not rezoned by local officials for commercial or any other purpose.

Was Pollard’s First Lawyer Incompetent?

09/29/2000
Staff Writer
Jonathan Pollard’s new lawyers are claiming that his first attorney 15 years ago was incompetent, and that he should be granted a new federal hearing regarding his life sentence for spying against America on behalf of Israel. The new attorneys filed a 69-page motion in federal court in Washington, D.C., last week charging Pollard was deprived of his Sixth Amendment right to “effective counsel” and his Fifth Amendment right of due process because of a series of failures by high-powered Washington defense attorney Richard Hibey.

Hillary Eyeing Move On Pollard

09/22/2000
Staff Writer
Hillary Clinton is holding top-level discussions to determine whether to call for the declassification of a damning secret memo that led to spy Jonathan Pollard’s life sentence, The Jewish Week has learned. It was also learned that Democratic vice presidential candidate Joseph Lieberman recently asked President Clinton to consider declassifying secret documents about the Pollard case, days before being chosen as Al Gore’s running mate.

Blacks, Jews At Odds Over Choice Of Lieberman

08/18/2000
Staff Writer
Black-Jewish tensions escalated this week following the selection of the first Jewish vice presidential candidate of a major party in American history. Even as the Rev. Jesse Jackson voiced strong support for Sen. Joseph Lieberman during a speech at the Democratic National Convention in Los Angeles Tuesday night, and as Lieberman met with the Congressional Black Caucus to assuage their fears about his stand on affirmative action, attacks on Lieberman came from other corners of the black community.

Reform Rabbis Set To OK Gay Unions

03/17/2000
Staff Writer
Call it the showdown in Greensboro. When hundreds of Reform rabbis gather at the 111th annual meeting of the Central Conference of American Rabbis next week in North Carolina, they will continue an intense debate over whether to officially support performing gay marriages or similar commitment ceremonies.
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