The last time I saw the sun, it was setting over Tucson, Ariz.
Oggi and I started our cross-country drive in sunny Los Angeles. But somewhere in western Texas, we awoke to a cold drizzle, which turned into a week of rainstorms and unrelenting gray skies that we managed to follow, thanks to the jet stream, all the way to Boston. Where, as I write this a day after our arrival, the rain has just turned to — you guessed it — snow.
With the news this week that the city manager of Ferguson, Missouri has resigned following a scathing Justice Department report that accused his police department of systemic racism, and with a fraternity on the University of Oklahoma having been thrown off campus for an ugly, alcohol-driven (evidently) racist incident, it is clear that race relations in America remain in crisis. As President Obama said quite eloquently at the ceremony marking the fiftieth anniversary of what came to be called Bloody Sunday in Selma. Alabama, we have indeed come a long, long way from where this country was at its worst. Clearly, we have a long way to go.
Stephen Hazan Arnoff is the new CEO of the JCC Association, an umbrella organization in New York.
Stephen Hazan Arnoff, former executive director of the 14th Street Y in Manhattan, was recently named the CEO of the JCC Association, the New York-based umbrella organization for more than more than 350 JCCs, YM-YWHAs, and campsites in the U.S. and Canada. He succeeds Allan Finkelstein, who served two decades in that post. Arnoff was also the first director of the Office of Culture, Community and Society at Shalem College in Jerusalem. The Jewish Week interviewed Arnoff by email. This is an edited transcript.
I can only imagine that, after everything I’ve written the past few weeks about Bibi, Barack, and the “Situation,” and having just come back from the AIPAC Policy Conference, you might expect me to write about all that … And you’d be completely justified in assuming that I would.
Since the Jerusalem Marathon was first run through the hilly streets of Israel’s capital in 2011, representatives of ALEH, which bills itself as the country’s “largest network of facilities for children with severe physical and cognitive disabilities,” have been a presence. As members of Team ALEH, supporters traveled the 26.2-mile course in distinctive bright green T-shirts to raise money and publicity for the organization, then with in a small group of ALEH (ALEH.org) residents who, with aid, “ran” an abbreviated course on race day.
Both God and Linda Weiser Friedman's books have got funny stuff in them, she says.
There’s a lot of laughter at Baruch College this year, and it’s coming from the classroom of a professor of statistics & computer information systems. The new course is “Jewish Humor,” which attempts “to walk the fine line between scholarship and playfulness.” The teacher is Linda Weiser Friedman, co-author — with her husband, Heshy Friedman, a professor of business at Brooklyn College — of “God Laughed: Sources of Jewish Humor” (Transaction). On the eve of Purim, a Jewish holiday that celebrates humor, The Jewish Week caught up with Friedman by email. This is an edited transcript of the interview.