When I was a kid, I'd often spend the Sunday before Passover with other yeshiva kids packing up boxes full of matzah, eggs, grape, juice, gefilte fish and other staples to help the needy observe Passover.
Voters in Brooklyn's 44th Council District will go to the polls on Tuesday to fill the vacancy that was created when SImcha Felder was named deputy comptroller under John Liu. The winner will either by David Greenfield or Joseph Lazar, and in either case would be the third consecutive Orthodox Jew to represent the district, which includes all of Borough Park and much of Flatbush, and probably has more Jews, most of them Orthodox, than many U.S. cities.
JTA’s Ron Kampeas has an excellent piece out today on the effect of social media on organized Jewish communal life as personified by one William Daroff, the Washington director of Jewish Federations of North America, who is the one person I know that probably pushes up against Twitter’s maximum hourly output.
Is Israel a Jewish state or the state of the Jewish people?
That’s the question that faced voting representatives at this week’s conference of the Jewish Council for Public Affairs. Many voted in favor of amending the language of a 2008 JCPA resolution in support of a two-state Mideast solution to remove the words Jewish state. The motion, which was not carried, was sponsored by the JCRC of St. Louis.
[The measure passed unanimously. Let's see what comes of it]
Among the issues to be debated at the annual plenary of the Jewish Council for Public Affairs next week is what the umbrella group considers a growing loss of common ground and tendency to disagree stridently among groups that ostensibly have the same agenda of concern for Israel and the Jewish people.
An interview with Mel Gibson on a local Chicago station has been getting more than the usual amount of play. It seems reporter Dean Richards of WGN popped a question into a fluffy Mel Gibson movie plug session that made the action hero uncomfortable.
It’s probably just a coincidence that the blue-skinned, endangered aliens from the planet Pandora in the mega-hit “Avatar” are called the Na’vi, which is Hebrew for prophet. It couldn’t be that non-Jewish writer and director James Cameron took the term deliberately to make a point that in these victimized, ultimately triumphant underdogs we were to see a glimpse of some conflict in the offing. Could it?
Probably not. But it is one of the things to ponder about a movie that borrows so much of its essence, while leaving so much to interpretation.
I know it’s early, but this surely qualifies for the finals:
“In the last few days, I’ve been getting a lot of sympathy calls, and I want to start by making it clear that no one should waste a second feeling sorry for me. For 17 years, I’ve been getting paid to do what I love most and, in a world with real problems, I’ve been absurdly lucky.” — Conan O’Brien