The Yad

On Point With Today's News

Golden Time For Hava Nagila

Aly Raisman, the pride of Needham, Mass., isn’t the only Jewish winner at this week’s London Olympics.

This is also a golden time for Hava Nagila.

Raismam rode – actually jumped and tumbled – her way to a women’s team gold medal by performing her floor exercise routines in both the preliminaries and to the classical-to-the-point-of cliché Jewish melody, which is usually associated with weddings and other simchas.

Hava Nagila was probably never heard by so many people at one time.

Sheet music for Hava Nagila.

Sympathy For The Devil: Killers and the Women Who Love Them


He is, subject to the findings of a jury that he is guilty, or of a judge that he is certifiably insane, a mass murderer, a demented college dropout who walked into a movie theater near Denver recently, armed to the teeth and armor-protected all over his body, and opened fire, committing one of the greatest killing sprees in modern American history.

He is, by anyone’s estimation, a real creep, appearing in court for his first post-shooting appearance with a shock of carrot-red dyed hair and an attitude of profound, blank-stare indifference.

What Do Maeve Binchy And Michele Bachmann Have In Common?

A formative experience as a young adult on a kibbutz, that's what!

Binchy, an Irish novelist whose work focused on women's lives and friendships, died Monday at age 72. Her book, "A Circle of Friends," was made into a movie starring Minnie Driver and the ferociously talented Alan Cumming, now starring as ethically suspect Chicago lawyer Eli Gold on "The Good Wife."

This lady, and recently deceased Irish novelist Maeve Binchy

AC/DC In Iran, And Other News You May Have Missed

While Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad boasted last week that another 1,000 uranium enrichment centrifuges had gone on line, the cyberwar attempt to scuttle Iran’s quest for a nuclear bomb continues with a new computer worm causing havoc.

An Iranian nuclear scientist has reportedly sent e-mails complaining that computers at the Natanz and Fordo nuclear plants began playing the AC/DC song “Thunderstruck” at full volume during the middle of the night.

Oh My G-d, You Guys!

What is there left to say about Mindy Meyer?

 In case you somehow haven't heard, Flatbush resident Ms. Meyer is running as the Republican candidate for the State Senate against incumbent Kevin Parker. She is young (22) and an Orthodox Jew, but that's not why she's made the national news. 

Ms. Mindy Meyer

Summer Reading, Yes. Beach Reading? Not So Much.

This weekend is Tisha B’Av, which is supposed to be depressing. For one thing, it's a fast day in the heat of the summer.


An Opera Singer’s Final Scene


Some cross words were exchanged at a prominent cultural festival in Germany last week.

Not angry words – words about a politically symbolic cross, the swastika.

The Church of TED Talks

Who wants to be transported? I do, I do. So I was interested to read these comments in a recent New Yorker article:

“It set my heart on fire.”

“I got all inspired and my hair stood on end and I got weepy-like and energized and enthused.”

The Vilna Gaon would not have liked TED Talks

Fallen Halos And The Perils Of Silence

I came across an upsetting story last week, the latest in a series of stories on an upsetting topic. Some respected community leaders were accused of molesting children. Their superiors failed to act on the accusations or go to the police. They feared the financial or public relations consequences. They did not limit the accused pedophile’s access to children. Trust us, the superiors cautioned.

I’ve read such stories far too often in recent years in connection with the Orthodox community, both the Modern Orthodox and so-called black hat sections.


News You May Have Missed

Every now and then we hear stories about young people drinking at synagogue celebrations. Many synagogues now bar youngsters from drinking even wine – and with good cause. An 11-year-old boy was hospitalized recently in serious condition after drinking alcohol at his synagogue in Bnei Brak, according to The Times of Israel.

App designed by Ben Gurion University could be on Facebook soon.
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