The Need of Appreciation for One Another


As we look back on the tumultuous year for our city, I am reminded of the inspired leadership of Martin Luther King Jr. This was a man of action who brought hope and healing to our country and whose values of truth, justice and compassion brought about the civil rights conversation so important at that… Read More

Obama’s Efforts Are Not Enough

In the well-known story from the opening chapters of Genesis, we read the sparse narrative of an intimate  relationship that turns violent. Writing of the murder of Abel by his brother Cain, Russel Jacoby, author of “Bloodlust: On the Roots of Violence from Cain and Abel to the Present,” points out that victims are most… Read More

The Anti-Israel Trend You’ve Never Heard Of

If you want to understand why the boycott, divestment and sanctions movement (BDS) has gained so much ground in the past two years, look no further than intersectionality, the study of related systems of oppression. Intersectionality holds that various forms of oppression — racism, sexism, classism, ableism, and homophobia — constitute an intersecting system of… Read More

A Turning Point for Area’s Jewish Community

When my son, Charlie, now a sophomore at Friends School of Baltimore, asked to join BBYO last year, I swelled with pride. As an alum myself some 50 years ago in Hibbing, Minn. — a town of only 17,000 people and fewer than 10 Jewish teens — BBYO was my lifeblood in connecting with Jewish… Read More

Don’t Endanger Americans

Syrian immigrants pose a grave  danger to all Americans —  and  especially to American Jews and gays. Top Obama administration officials testified that Syrian refugees cannot be properly vetted. As FBI Director James Comey stated, “We can query our databases until the cows come home, but nothing will show up because we have no record… Read More

Breaking Our Silence

The body of 18-month-old Ali Dawabsheh, surrounded by relatives, is carried at her funeral in the Palestinian village of Duma. (Oren Ziv/Getty Images)

The images are shocking. Celebrants at a Jewish wedding in Jerusalem dance to a rock band while brandishing assault rifles, guns, knives and a fake Molotov cocktail, and repeatedly stab a photograph of Ali Dawabsheh, the 18-month-old Palestinian toddler who was murdered along with his parents by Jewish  terrorists in the West Bank village of… Read More

Why ‘Good for the Jews’ Is Bad for the Jews

Ever wonder if Bernie Sanders is good for the Jews? How about Andy Warhol? The pope? 9/11? The Diaspora? Alexander the Great? Drake? The year 5775? “Is it good for the Jews?” is as much a punchline as a question. And yet, whether the question is asked explicitly or not, there remains a corner of… Read More

Why I’m Moving My Family to Israel

I can tell that some friends and relatives think my decision to move my family to Israel for a year is, well, questionable. “So you’re really going to do this?” one friend asked over coffee, eyes widening. My father suggested that we†might consider somewhere in the country less “tense” than Jerusalem —Tel Aviv, perhaps? Other… Read More

At Hillel, Fostering a Culture of Disabilities Inclusion

Standing before the burning bush, Moses asks of God, “Mi anochi?” “Who am I to be the one who goes to Pharaoh?” Though there are many reasons why Moses may have asked the question, a tip-off to what is really on Moses’ mind comes just a few verses later when Moses reminds God that he… Read More

Kaddish and My Dad: a Celebration of Life

When I embarked upon the sad journey facing a new life after losing my Dad, Neil Israel, one year ago, I was nervous about the necessity to recite the mourner’s Kaddish multiple times every day as an avel (mourner). However, I found that its rote repetition never became a burden; but rather a bracha (blessing)…. Read More