Dude, Don’t Boycott Israel

For the current crop of Jewish college students, the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions Movement, or BDS, is a major stimulus for pro-Israel activism. BDS is wrong, and it is a challenge that deserves an answer. Yet, most arguments in favor of Israel, despite their good intentions, seem tired and familiar. Two weeks ago, Orthodox rapper… Read More

Who Is An Israeli?

David Ben-Gurion, Israel’s founder, may have inadvertently complicated things when he gave the name Israel to new the Jewish state. Had he chosen Judea instead, the citizens of the country would have been known as Jews, and their connection with their kin in the Diaspora would have been obvious. As it is, Israel’s population registry… Read More

Tyranny Of The Minority

U.S. House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) watches as House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) addresses the press following a House Republican party meeting on Capitol Hill earlier this week. (JASON REED/REUTERS/Newscom)

The government shutdown, which is now in its second week, is an outrage. And the continued dysfunctionality of the legislative branch of our federal government is an embarrassment. With accusations, threats and sound bites being exchanged by frustrated leadership on both sides, one sometimes loses focus on the real culprits in this sad story. The… Read More

The Hard Reality Of The New Pew Report

100413_editorial

The latest study by the Pew Research Center put on paper a lot of what our communal leaders already knew. Intermarriage is on the rise (71percent of non-Orthodox Jews are intermarried) and younger Jews are opting out of ritual and affiliation (1/3 of Millenials identify as Jews of no religion). But it also reported other… Read More

A Questionable Religious Freedom Envoy

Last month, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed H.R. 301 with bipartisan support. The bill calls for the establishment of a special envoy to promote religious freedom for religious minorities in the Near East and South Central Asia. The bill has yet to be considered by the Senate, where a similar measure died in 2011…. Read More

Security Or Provocation?

092713_scurity-provocation_lg

  The separate murders last weekend of two Israeli soldiers has led to an outpouring of grief. On Sunday, Sgt. Gal Gabriel Kobi was killed by a Palestinian sniper while on patrol in Hebron. That followed the killing Friday of Sgt. Tomer Hazan, who was lured unarmed to a West Bank village by a Palestinian… Read More

Be Good While Doing Good

Two high profile cases involving American Jews in high community positions again shine an accusatory light on Jewish communal leadership and raise the question of whether a person’s good deeds are canceled by the bad they have done. William Rapfogel, the CEO of New York’s Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty, turned himself in to the… Read More

A Voice For Jewish Culture

Have you ever heard of the Foundation for Jewish Culture? It is a New York-based organization that was founded 53 years ago and is dedicated to the advancement of Jewish cultural life and creativity in the United States. Since 1960, the foundation is credited with channeling some $50 million to Jewish scholars and artists. Last… Read More

We’ve Seen This Before

092013_Weve_Seen_This_Before_lg

We mourn for the 12 victims of Monday’s mass shooting at the Washington Navy Yard and wish a speedy recovery to those who were injured. And we thank the police officers who ended the killing spree before the number of casualties grew even higher. But for the individual lives lost and the particular location of… Read More

Time To Raise The Minimum Wage

Any discussion of the minimum wage should begin with the fact that Costco pays a starting hourly wage of $11.50 in all states. Compare that to the $7.25 minimum wage mandated by federal law, the state of Maryland and the Commonwealth of Virginia and the $8.25 minimum wage in Washington, D.C. In Maryland, a new… Read More