A ‘Big’ Celebration

Growing up as an only child, for some of the time raised by a single mother, I long harbored a fantasy of what life would be like with a sibling. That’s why today — especially in the midst of the chaos of a house with eight children — I can take a deep breath and… Read More

An Epidemic of Hopelessness

The health news last week from the federal government was startling. Overall, mortality is up and life expectancy has fallen for the first time since 1993, particularly for Americans under age 65. It appears that the progress in longevity that we have come to expect is reversible. Some of the deaths may be linked to… Read More

Illegal West Bank Construction

In a speech last week to the Brookings Institution’s Saban Forum, Secretary of State John Kerry noted that there are “about 11,000 demolition orders for Palestinian homes through the West Bank.” These homes have been built without permits, evidence that unauthorized or illegal building by Palestinians is an ongoing problem in Area C, the 60… Read More

A Biblical Text of Terror

In the midst of this week’s parshah is a lengthy story about Jacob’s only daughter, Dina. While Jacob briefly appears in this story, he plays a surprisingly insignificant role. Indeed, after Jacob hears that Dina has been raped by Shechem, a local Hivite prince, he neither tells anyone nor takes any  action, choosing to wait… Read More

Illogical Letter

Gary Kaplowitz’s lashon harah in his Dec. 2 Your Say letter “Be Wary of Democratic Party” belies logic and denies reality. Like a “Fox,” he contends that the Democratic Party’s “campaign rhetoric has incited the worst racial, ethnic and religious strife since the 1960s.” In point of fact, Donald Trump first established his political currency… Read More

Say No to Trumpistan

Presumably channeling America’s boorish commander-in-tweet, Gary Kaplowitz’s Dec. 2 Your Say letter “Be Wary of Democratic Party” heralds a fear society instead of a free one.  De facto, he “Trumpets” an America devoted to the isolation of Muslims; the oppression of minorities of color; the deprivation of the First Amendment liberties currently enjoyed by Americans;… Read More

Passing Along the Importance of Tzedakah

Every year, as the Chanukah season approaches, I reflect on the importance of passing down one’s traditions. When our family gathers to light the menorah and say the Chanukah prayers, I am reminded of what we share with our children — the history, values and traditions that define who we are. This is so important… Read More

Keith Ellison’s Views

When Keith Ellison threw his hat into the ring to seek the chairmanship of the Democratic Party, he challenged long-held thinking about the type of person who could lead a major American political party. Ellison is both African-American and Muslim, two personal attributes that make him unique as a leading figure in American politics today… Read More

Model for Us All

In an era where it is commonplace to distrust government, the notion of the professional legislator is far from positive. Congress enjoys near-historic low approval levels, while the president-elect speaks openly about imposing, though the president has no power to do so, term limits on Capitol Hill. Rare, it seems, is that politician who cares… Read More

Glaring Omission

I could not help but be drawn to the Jewish Times’ Nov. 25 story, “A Labor of Love,” on Beth Israel Congregation celebrating 60 years of growth and development. The piece did mention that it was started by 10 Jewish families and was  located in Randallstown prior to its current location. My family and I… Read More