Editorial & Opinion

Gender Bias And Rabbis

06/21/2011

Regarding “JTS Women Grads Struggling For Pulpits” (June 3), gender actually has very little to do with job placement today.

Discrimination Isn’t Comfortable

06/21/2011

In “JTS Women Grads Struggling For Pulpits” (June 3), Stewart Ain addresses an important communal issue -- gender bias in the Conservative rabbinate. There is a serious challenge for the Jewish community here—as per the troubling remarks of Rabbi Stephen Wolnek regarding communities being more comfortable with a man.

“It’s nothing against women; it’s just that given two equally good candidates, congregations would prefer to go for the more traditional profile,” Rabbi Wolnek said.

Our Man In Washington

06/21/2011
Editorial

Our man in Washington, James D. Besser, is hanging up his spikes, so to speak, after nearly 20 years with The Jewish Week. Six years before he took up his post for this paper, he covered Washington for the Baltimore Jewish Times when Gary Rosenblatt, this paper’s editor and publisher, was editor of the Baltimore weekly. That makes about a quarter century that Jim has been working his sources on Capitol Hill, attending conferences and keeping a watchful eye on the workings of the Washington operations of the major American Jewish organizations.

The Sad Downfall Of Anthony Weiner

06/21/2011
Editorial

It’s always unsettling to see a promising political career come crashing down because of a personal failing, a spectacle that has become all too familiar in recent years. We have covered Anthony Weiner’s public service from the time he rose from Chuck Schumer’s aide to city councilman to Congressional representative and strong defender of Israel, to his two surreal press conferences this month.

Everyone Sings

06/21/2011

Perek Shira, “chapter of song,” is a beautiful Midrash. Attaching an appropriate verse to the elements of Creation, it recounts how everything in the world sings: the lion sings, and the stars, and the trees. The medieval Christian spiritualist Thomas à Kempis beautifully wrote: “If you cannot sing like the nightingale and the lark, then sing like the crows and the frog, which sing as God meant them to.” This is the lesson of Perek Shira — all of Creation bears a song.

Amidst The Discussion And Debate, A Spark Of Hope

06/21/2011
Editor And Publisher

What keeps thoughtful Jews up at night worrying?

That wasn’t the title of a conference I participated in last week, but it could have been.

Many in the mix of 45 New Yorkers — Jewishly active in one way or another — who engaged in 48 hours of almost nonstop conversation challenged the very pillars of Jewish communal life and how we think about them. Whether that’s a good or bad sign depends on your own point of view and vision for the future.

Gary Rosenblatt

World Needs To Hear That Law, Not The Bible, Anchors Israeli Rights

06/21/2011
Special To The Jewish Week

A recent article in Israel's Makor Rishon newspaper (identified with the conservative and national-religious element of the Israeli public) quoted a well-known New Jersey rabbi criticizing the foreign ministry for allegedly not being able to explain the Jewish right to Israel.

"They have a hard time explaining the right to Tel Aviv" he is quoted as saying. "They have no answers. They can't explain why we are here."

The Great Mutiny Against Moses

06/21/2011
Special To The Jewish Week

Candlelighting, Readings:
Shabbat candles: 8:13 p.m.
Torah: Numbers 16:1-18:32
Haftarah: I Samuel 11:14-12:22
Havdalah: 9:22 p.m.

This week’s parsha stands as the paradigm in the Rabbinic tradition for what differentiates arguments that are l’Shem Shamayim (for the sake of Heaven) versus those that are of a pernicious and illegitimate nature.

Adena Berkowitz

The Forgotten Population: Domestic Workers in Our Homes

06/17/2011
Special to the Jewish Week

Ever stop to ask the salary of the woman washing dishes on Shabbat in your neighbor's home, or the gentleman mowing your friend's lawn about his vacation, or the nanny raising the children down the block whether she had time to sit down for lunch today? If you did, you most likely discovered an unpleasant situation of inadequate pay, few or no breaks, no paid sick or vacation days and perhaps even bullying or verbal abuse. But how can it be? Those employers (neighbors) seem so nice, and their domestic workers always seem to be smiling and content.

Rabbi Shmuly Yanklowitz

Yale’s ‘Unfortunate’ Decision

06/14/2011
Editorial

Started amid great hope five years ago, Yale University’s Initiative for the Interdisciplinary Study of Anti-Semitism (YIISA) closes its doors this month surrounded by disappointment and suspicion. The academic study center, only one of two based at American universities that focus on millennia-old hatred of Jews, was created at a time when, by all accounts, anti-Semitism was on the rise worldwide. In recent years, a growing amount of anti-Semitism has taken root in the Islamic world, if not, as some scholars claim, in Islam itself.

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