Consider Gorsuch on His Merits

The Senate’s advice and consent on a proposed Supreme Court nominee is a fundamental constitutional exercise that is important, consequential and reflective of the checks and balances built into our system of government. Consideration of Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch should begin with that in mind. Gorsuch 49, is a U.S. Court of Appeals judge… Read More

Punishing Muslims for Being Muslim

Most of the organized Jewish community, along with most civil libertarians, shuddered as the new administration issued an executive order effectively targeting Muslims who want to immigrate to the United States. The order suspends the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program for 120 days for review. It permanently bans immigration of Syrian refugees. It calls for a… Read More

Rabbi for Rent

Rabbi Yona Metzger, the man who was the Ashkenazi chief rabbi of Israel from 2003 to 2013, is going to jail. Although he pleaded guilty to charges of fraud, breach of trust and tax offenses — which earned him a three-and-a-half-year prison sentence and a fine of $1.3 million — he was actually charged with… Read More

Caught in the Middle

President Donald Trump appeared to be addressing his core supporters rather than the nation during his inaugural address last Friday. There was no outstretched hand to the other side, no inclusive reference to “my fellow Americans,” and no soaring rhetoric projecting the United States’ leadership role in the world. What Trump delivered with a clenched… Read More

No Third-Rate Hack Job

It is tempting to dismiss allegations of Russian hacking during last fall’s presidential election as blame shifting by sore losers in the Democratic Party and/or the work of a socially-awkward teenage hacker working from his parent’s basement. Various figures on the right, including President Donald Trump himself, have intimated as much. But faced with the… Read More

Woodmont Not Playing its ‘A’ Game

“Yeah, you go ahead and bar the first black president from your country club. Forget what the 1950s felt like.” This tweet followed the news, first  reported Jan. 10 by the New York Post, that the historically Jewish Woodmont Country Club in Rockville was debating — “at each other’s throats,” was the Post’s description —… Read More

The Cost of Staying Tight-Lipped

We are thankful that last week’s bomb scares were only that — there were no  casualties, no damage and no bombs found at the 16 Jewish community centers in the East and South, including the Jewish Community Center in Park Heights, which received threatening calls on Jan. 9. We praise the institutions that followed security… Read More

Hier Will Honor the Presidency

A presidential inauguration has always been a celebration of the peaceful transfer of power. This year, after a crude and divisive election campaign won by Donald Trump, the idea of a peaceful transfer has emerged in high relief. That’s what we read into the words of Rabbi Marvin Hier, founder of the Simon Wiesenthal Center… Read More

Sgt. Azaria and the Rule of Law

Last week, Sgt. Elor Azaria, 20, of the Israel Defense Forces was convicted on a charge of manslaughter for killing a prone Palestinian man who had earlier lunged at Israeli troops with a knife. A three-judge military panel rejected Azaria’s defense that he acted out of fear when he shot Abdul Fatah al-Sharif, 21, in… Read More

So Much for Friendship

Conventional wisdom holds that the only solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict lies in a two-state solution and that the United States will always have Israel’s back through the peace process. In one speech last week, Secretary of State John Kerry turned that wisdom on its head. On their face, Kerry’s remarks seemed to be nothing… Read More