Opinion

Silencing Women's Voices: Time To Speak Up

02/15/2013
Special To The Jewish Week

I was riveted by the recent story of an Orthodox Israeli young woman, Ophir Ben-Shetreet, who sang beautifully on the Israeli talent-search program, “The Voice,” and as a result was suspended from her Orthodox school for two weeks because of the prohibition against women singing in public if men are present.  Ophir’s performance and evident charm inspired people around the country.  The judges praised her as “modest” and “pure,” and she could serve as a role model for young Orthodox women who feel the desire to express themselves and develop their talents.  Instead, she was condemned.

'The Heritage Of All Israel'

Founder of Tel Aviv's secular yeshiva, also a Knesset member, leads Israel's parliament in study and prayer.

02/14/2013

Editor’s Note: Ruth Calderon, founder of a secular yeshiva in Tel Aviv, spent several years living in New York recently, teaching at the JCC in Manhattan and other venues. This was her inaugural speech in the Knesset this week as a member of Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid party.

Ruth Calderone

Returning To Our Core

A temporary reduction in numbers can result in renewed and stronger growth.

04/17/2014
Special To The Jewish Week
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The recent plethora of blog posts and articles written about the Conservative movement would force even the most casual reader to understand the challenges being confronted by this segment of the Jewish community. Because numbers within the movement have declined, and synagogues and day schools have been forced to either close doors or merge, some observers have predicted the death of Conservative Judaism, with others acknowledging the challenges and proposing various solutions to increase the number of adherents.

Rabbi Jerome Epstein

Conversations On The Final Chapter: The Holiness Of Caregiving

04/17/2014
Special To The Jewish Week
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In the course of less than a decade, my mother went from independent living to assisted living and, following one quick event, to a skilled nursing facility that specialized in dementia. Her path from enjoying her evening cocktail to having to be fed by family and aides is a path now shared by many of our loved ones. We take that journey with them, juggling work, our own families, and our own lives.

Rabbi Richard F. Address

Why New Israel Fund Is Marching For Israel

Our entire strategy has been based on investing in Israel, not divesting from it.

04/11/2014
Special To The Jewish Week
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On June 1, tens of thousands of New Yorkers will gather for the annual Celebrate Israel Parade. As in previous years, we at the New Israel Fund (NIF) will be there, leading a group of progressive, pro-Israel activists. We will take our rightful place alongside the many others dedicated to the Israel that is, as well as the Israel that ought to be.

Stephanie Ives

Forgive But Never Forget

04/10/2014
Special To The Jewish Week

When I was growing up, one of the running jokes in my family was how annoying it is that Germans make good cars.

As an Israeli-Ashkenazi, three generations removed from the Holocaust, it was obvious to me that buying a German car was not an option, and that it doesn't really matters who wins the World Cup in soccer -- as long as it's not Germany. 



Abraham Gutman

At Eshel, We Are Hopeful

04/10/2014

Our friend Justin Spiro has hit upon the challenge in his piece, "LGBTQ Youth Have No Derech To Stray From." We cannot complain that young people are leaving a community if it leaves them first. 

Opinion: East Ramapo's Children Are Suffering

04/09/2014
Special To The Jewish Week

The Talmud teaches that: “The world endures only for the sake of the breath of school children.” It is in that spirit that the Jewish people have valued education so highly for thousands of years. That statement also reflects a profound truth: Education is the key to a healthy, productive society, and to individual physical, emotional and spiritual flourishing. Unfortunately, that precious breath is being cut short for thousands of schoolchildren in Rockland County.

Rabbi Ari Hart

LGBTQ Youth Have No Derech To Stray From

People leave the community because of how they are treated, not because of Jewish law.

04/09/2014
Special To The Jewish Week

This weekend I had the amazing opportunity to represent JQY (Jewish Queer Youth) at the Keshet and Hazon Shabbaton for LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer) teenagers. JQY is a non-profit organization supporting LGBTQ youth and their families in the Orthodox community.  

The participants at the Shabbaton represented a wide variety of religious, gender, and sexual identities. What struck me most was the life-saving role Judaism played in the lives of these teens. Many found refuge in religion when homophobic friends, family, and society rejected them. They spoke about Reform and Conservative congregations and youth groups embracing them and mitigating the harsh reality of life beyond the synagogue walls.

Justin Spiro

Marching Together For Israel

04/08/2014
Special To The Jewish Week

The American Jewish community overwhelmingly supports Israel and strongly opposes efforts to demonize and delegitimize the nation-state of the Jewish people by singling it out for boycotts, divestment or sanctions (BDS). Although there are divisions within the Jewish community about Israeli policies — particularly with regard to the peace process and settlements — once a year we try to put aside these differences by marching together in the Celebrate Israel parade, marking its 50th anniversary this June and expected to attract over 40,000 marchers, representing over 200 schools, synagogues and organizations.

Alan M. Dershowitz
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