Agents of Change

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With school out and use-it-or-lose-it vacation days beckoning, many spent last week relaxing at home or enjoying tourist destinations around the world. But for more than 2,000 people representing Jewish communities from South America to Europe, the last moments of 2014 — and the first of 2015 — were dedicated to everything from debating the… Read More

A Show of White Power?

The Jewish Times’ analysis of the recent Maryland gubernatorial race (“Hogan Dominates,” Nov. 7) attributed Hogan’s victory to voter disco-tent with the O’Malley administration’s tax hikes. But the real “elephant” in the room of this unexpected GOP triumph lies elsewhere. Sen. Mary Landrieu (D.-La.) put her finger on it with her comment about ”the South… Read More

A Lot to Fear, but I Choose Hope

Another secular year has ended and a new secular year has begun. It’s time to review and time to plan. What can be different in the coming year? And while the yearly refrain of “the more things change, the more they stay the same” repeats in our thoughts, I can’t just accept what has been…. Read More

Tikkun Olam in Baltimore

Recently, I broke off a little before the end of the powerful Millions March against police brutality in Baltimore to warm up with tea and chili at the Lost City Diner. I was proud to have joined Baltimoreans of all walks of life, including many of my fellow organizers of Jews United for Justice (JUFJ… Read More

The Interdating Challenge

The Jewish Telegraphic Agency recently found itself embroiled in controversy when it reported on the annual international convention of the Conservative movement’s youth arm in Atlanta. In a Dec. 23 story titled, “USY drops ban on interdating,” JTA characterized an amendment adopted by United Synagogue Youth voters as relaxing longstanding rules precluding the group’s teenage… Read More

European Hypocrisy

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The past month has been difficult for Israel. With its government in turmoil as the nation girds for the next election, the country has seen a disturbing flare-up of Palestinian violence — including a brief exchange of rockets from Gaza and the firebombing of Israelis in the West Bank during the past week. But as… Read More

Freedom of Religion As a Power Grab

Saul Edelman was spot-on in noting that “For Maccabees, Goal Was Power” (Your Say, Dec. 26). Judah Maccabee was an advocate of freedom of religion in the manner of “freedom of religion” espoused today in America by many Christian conservative groups: namely, the freedom to impose one’s own dogma and practice of religion upon everybody… Read More

Menorah Claim ‘Baseless, Hurtful’

In response to your article “Right to Light Denied” (Dec. 19) in which both Dr. Gary Pushkin and his wife, Kathy Abbott, accuse the board of managers of the Guilford Association and the trustees of Stratford Green Inc. of being motivated by anti-Semitism in making their decisions regarding a request to place a menorah in… Read More

Chanukah Glitz? It’s Not Our Way

When I worked in offices, I was often the only Jewish girl. Come holiday time, I used to help decorate the office’s Christmas tree as a goodwill gesture. Why should I offend my Christian co-workers when they simply did not understand what a Jewish person was expected to do or not to do. In that… Read More

How Shall We Bless Those Who Come After Us?

According to Jewish tradition, on the eve of Shabbat and holidays, before reciting Kiddush, parents bless their children. You can find these blessings in your siddur. There you will see that sons are blessed with these words: “May God inspire you to live like Ephraim and Manasseh.” Rashi teaches that the blessing for boys is… Read More