National

An enduring feature of the pandemic so far: Jews are flocking to online classes

Israeli poet Rachel Korazim has been surprised by the popularity of her online classes during the pandemic. (Screenshot)

(JTA) — Israeli poetry scholar Rachel Korazim had been thinking about cutting back on travel when the coronavirus pandemic made the decision for her. “I said I really want to shift my teaching to distance learning because, you know, I’m not getting any younger. Travel is tiring,” she said… Read more »

John Lewis and the Jews: 6 moments that showcase an enduring alliance

John Lewis, D-Ga., and Norbert Bikales, who was part of the Kindertransport from Berlin to France in July 1939 following the deportation of his parents and brother to Poland, light one of six candles representing the more than six million Jews who were killed during the Holocaust, in a ceremony in the rotunda of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., April 9, 2002. (Scott J. Ferrell/Congressional Quarterly/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON (JTA) — When John Lewis, the civil rights icon and congressman from Georgia, died at 80 over the weekend, Jews in America and abroad lost an ally of nearly six decades. Lewis never tired of telling folks to “get into good trouble,” to defy the authorities and the… Read more »

Abe Foxman’s next act: Raising $28 million to feed thousands of struggling Holocaust survivors

A volunteer packs groceries at the Met Council's warehouse in Brooklyn. Volunteers there assemble more than 1,200 packages of groceries for Holocaust survivors each week. (Courtesy of Met Council)

(JTA) – Since retiring from his post as national director of the Anti-Defamation League in 2015, Abraham Foxman has had plenty of opportunities to take on other projects in the Jewish world. Until now, he’s always said no. But now the 80-year-old is coming out of retirement with an… Read more »

What Hank Greenberg’s friendship with Jackie Robinson can teach us today

From left: Jackie Robinson in 1945 (Hulton Archive/Getty Images); Hank Greenberg (Getty Images); Zach Banner (Katharine Lotze/Getty Images); and DeSean Jackson (Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)

NEW YORK (JTA) — Pittsburgh Steelers offensive tackle Zach Banner posted a video late last week in response to Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson’s anti-Semitic screed against Jews. After describing his horror at the 2018 Pittsburgh synagogue shooting, Banner preached that as important as the work of Black… Read more »

Southern Poverty Law Center identifies Stephen Miller as an extremist

(JTA) — The Southern Poverty Law Center has added White House adviser Stephen Miller to its Extremist Files, a database of extremists that includes former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke and Nation of Islam head Louis Farrakhan. Miller, who helps design much of the administration’s immigration policy, was… Read more »

Zach Banner wants to team up to fight hate. He’s also looking forward to lots of Shabbat dinners (after COVID-19).

Zach Banner after a game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Tampa, Fla., Sept. 24, 2018. (Roy K. Miller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

(Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle via JTA) — Just two days after Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson posted an anti-Semitic message he attributed to Adolf Hitler on social media, Pittsburgh Steelers offensive tackle Zach Banner came to the defense of the Jewish community. In a series of tweets and videos,… Read more »

Want to pray with a synagogue minyan? Sign this COVID-19 waiver first.

Some synagogues are requiring congregants to sign waivers releasing them from liability for COVID-19 infections. (Graphic: Laura Adkins)

(JTA) — If you want to pray with a minyan at Beth Sholom Congregation in Potomac, Maryland, the synagogue has a page on its website that guides you through the process. At the top is a helpful video in which the Orthodox synagogue’s two rabbis describe the procedures the… Read more »

Jewish NFL players say education, not ‘cancellation,’ is the right response to DeSean Jackson’s anti-Semitic posts

Jewish football players participated in an online conversation July 12, 2013. Clockwise from upper left: Anthony Firkser, conversation organizer Michael Neuman, Geoff Schwartz and Greg Joseph. (Screenshot from virtual event)

(JTA) — Former professional football player Geoff Schwartz wasn’t surprised when he heard about Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver DeSean Jackson’s anti-Semitic Instagram posts. “I just thought to myself it’s ignorance — someone who has no idea whatsoever what anti-Semitism is, why his quote could be hurtful to Jews, or… Read more »

Orthodox Jewish camps won’t be allowed to open as US judge sides with New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo

Orthodox children watch as protesters march through Brooklyn on June 3, 2020.(Angela Weiss/Getty Images)

(JTA) – A last-ditch effort by Orthodox Jews in New York to clear the way for overnight camps this summer fell short Monday as a federal judge declined to intervene against Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s decision to keep the camps closed. The judge was responding to a lawsuit brought last… Read more »

New York Jewish Week is putting print edition on hiatus

(JTA) — The New York Jewish Week said it will put its print edition on hiatus as it transitions to a “digital-first model.” The last print edition of the nearly 150-year-old weekly — at least for now — is scheduled for July 31, according to an announcement published Tuesday… Read more »

Karen Berg will become only Jewish member of Kentucky state legislature

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (Jewish Louisville Community via JTA) — After winning a special election in the state’s 26th district last week, Karen Berg will become the only Jewish member of the Kentucky state legislature. “I’m very excited; I’m humbled; I’m ready to get to work,” said Berg, who will serve… Read more »

Los Angeles has a major homelessness problem. These Jewish groups are helping by opening their parking lots.

A homeless woman is seen on the streets of the Skid Row neighborhood in Los Angeles, May 16, 2020. (Apu Gomes/AFP via Getty Images)

LOS ANGELES (JTA) — Art had been living with his mother for more than 30 years when she lost her apartment a little over a year ago. Though the mother was able to move in with one of Art’s brothers, the 49-year-old former tennis coach had nowhere to go… Read more »

How and where the Democrats and Republicans are trying to woo Jewish swing voters

President Trump looms behind Pennsylvania, Georgia, Ohio, Florida and Michigan. ("I Voted" stickers photo by Shana Novak via Getty Images; Montage by Laura E. Adkins for JTA)

WASHINGTON (JTA) — One thing we know about elections is that Jewish voters can make a difference. Take Florida: The Sunshine State’s Jewish voters helped deliver its critical electoral votes to Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012. Problematic ballots in heavily Jewish Broward County may have clinched George W. Bush’s… Read more »