It Is Bigotry, Not Religious Freedom

They are called “religious freedom laws” by their backers. But the recent bills signed by the governors of Mississippi and North Carolina are anything but that. Critics rightfully call them anti-gay laws, but they are more than that. The new laws are licenses to discriminate at will — to deny service and jobs, to ostracize… Read More

Trump Stands by His Man

When it comes to the historic candidacy of billionaire Donald Trump, the Republican firebrand whose march to the White House has caused us all to rethink this nation’s political order, there are clear differences of opinion. Trump’s distasteful comments about women and abortion, his lack of depth when it comes to foreign policy, his seeming… Read More

The Human Rights Smoke Screen

Contrary to what you may have heard, the United Nations did not name Israel as the world’s top violator of human rights. Nonetheless, the world body and its commissions and councils remain disproportionally focused on and critical of the Jewish state. On March 18, the U.N. Commission on the Status of Women passed a resolution… Read More

The Political Olive Branch

Merrick Garland (The White House/Public Domain)

In nominating federal appeals court judge Merrick Garland to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court, President Barack Obama has met Republican senators at least halfway. The 63-year-old nominee does not appear to present an ideological challenge to the Senate majority, so there appears to be little for them to fear. But… Read More

Is ‘Separation’ a Step toward Peace?

Will a wall around Palestinian neighborhoods of Jerusalem help protect Jewish  Israelis from the violence that has plagued the city since last fall? Haim Ramon, a former government minister who spent much of his career in the Labor Party and later joined the Kadima Party, made that assertion on a tour of the city last… Read More

Pew’s Portrait of Israel

The 2013 Pew Research Center’s “Portrait of Jewish Americans” touched off discussions, head scratching and soul searching about where American Jewry was headed. Even those who saw no revelations in the findings attested to the report as a particularly clear snapshot of Jewish reality. Pew’s serious reputation as a research center, plus its status as… Read More

Chris Van Hollen for U.S. Senate

In the years since Democrat Chris Van Hollen won Maryland’s 8th District U.S. House seat in 2003, he has risen to leadership roles on Capitol Hill and within his party. He was once reportedly being groomed to be the next Democratic Speaker of the House should the party  regain the majority. Now, Van Hollen, 57,… Read More

The Perils of Social Media

An email exchange between the head of a pro-Israel organization and a “Voice of America” producer that appeared to degrade an Israeli-Palestinian journalist is a reminder, even now, that what you put into social media never goes away. The exchange between former AIPAC official Josh Block, now CEO and president of The Israel Project, and… Read More

Trump’s Reality Candidacy

With mounting vehemence and desperation, Republican and conservative politicians and pundits are denouncing Donald Trump and his appeal to what is characterized as the lowest instincts of the American electorate. From Mitt Romney (“Donald Trump is a phony, a fraud”) to columnists George Will (“Trump is a presidential aspirant who would flunk an eighth-grade civics… Read More

The Vanishing NJDC

Has the National Jewish Democratic Council run out of steam? The once vocal and visible lobbying organization that represented Jewish interests in the  Democratic Party and Democratic interests in the Jewish community has virtually vanished. Since its last full-time director, Rabbi Jack Moline, left the organization in 2014, the NJDC has been led by its… Read More