Opinion

OP-ED Conservative movement is closing its gender gap, but there is still work to be done

Amy Eilberg, the first woman ordained by the Conservative movement's Jewish Theological Seminary in 1987, speaks at the Parliament of the World’s Religions, December 2016. (Screenshot from Youtube)

(JTA) — As the Jewish world this year marks Israel’s 70th anniversary, we recall that two years before Israel’s independence, a momentous change came in the Conservative movement: Its then new prayer book, known as the Silverman siddur, no longer contained the traditional words “Shelo Asani Eisha” — thank you… Read more »

Relating Tisha b’Av to today’s environmental crises

Tisha b’Av (the 9th day of the month of Av) which we commemorate this year on July 21-22, reminds us that over 2,000 years ago Jews failed to heed the warnings of the prophet Jeremiah, with the result that the first Temple in Jerusalem was destroyed, the first of… Read more »

‘Connection’ doesn’t give women equal access

I am writing about the article, “CCC program aims to bolster ‘The Connection,” published in the June 14, 2018 AJP, which promoted a series of events centered around a visit of 12 yeshiva students from The Foxman Yeshiva in New Jersey. I was concerned by the failure of the… Read more »

TSO conductor, CEO give longtime fan thrill

I’ve been attending the classic series at the Tucson Symphony Orchestra for many years, on Sundays. This past season’s opening concert fell on Sept. 24, the Jewish Fast of Gedaliah. I was fasting. At the end of the concert, the new music director and conductor José Luis Gomez was… Read more »

OP-ED US immigration policies are straight out of the Bible — the story of Sodom

Illegal migrants seen in a jail at the Central Processing Center in McAllen, Texas, June 17, 2018. (U.S. Border Patrol/Handout/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

NEW YORK (JTA) — Last week, I visited McAllen, Texas, with a group of clergy — including 10 rabbis — to bear witness to the situation on the border, where new policies are forcing the detention and separation of families and the refusal to hear asylum claims from victims… Read more »

OP-ED Charles Krauthammer: ‘How dreams of peace led to Israel’s biggest mistake’

Charles Krauthammer in his office in Washington, D.C., March 16, 1985. (Ray Lustig/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

(JTA) — On June 10, 2002, Charles Krauthammer delivered the Distinguished Rennert Lecture upon receiving the Guardian of Zion Award from Bar-Ilan University’s Ingeborg Rennert Center for Jerusalem Studies. Below is an excerpt from the lecture titled “He Tarries: Jewish Messianism and the Oslo Peace.”  In the 1990s, America slept and… Read more »

OP-ED The road to LGBT acceptance in Israel was bumpy. I should know.

TEL AVIV (JTA) — Tel Aviv has been decked out in rainbow flags for weeks. Suddenly, it seems, every restaurant, coffee shop and store is super “gay friendly.” The city’s Pride Parade is traditionally held on the second Friday of June. Fifteen years ago, estimates were that 9,000 people… Read more »

OP-ED Any volunteers? You are tomorrow’s Jewish doers and leaders

More than 150 Limmud volunteers from over 40 communities around the world at a program in Maale Hahamisha, Israel. (Courtesy of Limmud)

(JTA) — “Ethics of the Fathers” includes this bold advice from Rabbi Yishmael: “When we learn in order to act, we become learners, teachers, preservers and doers.” So many Jewish institutions are asking how they might engage younger people, raise a new generation of leaders and appeal across age groups.… Read more »

Jews should protest separating of families

We have a special responsibility as Jews to stand up and stop the Administration policy of separating families of undocumented immigrants at the border. When I see the horrible pictures of children in detention centers, it brings to mind the powerful Arizona Theatre Company production of “Diary of Anne… Read more »

Bourdain used food to bridge divides — even between Arabs and Jews

Anthony Bourdain at the Whitby Hotel in New York, July 17, 2017.

Anthony Bourdain was quick — and often willing — to publicly offer his own flaws. “Until 44 years of age, I never had any kind of savings account,” Bourdain said in 2017. “ always owed money. I’d always been selfish and completely irresponsible.” Despite or maybe because of such… Read more »

JTA article on Jewish groups fighting inaccurate

The JTA article you published online (“These Jewish Groups are Fighting…Behind the Scene” May 16, 2018) about ZOA criticizing some Jewish groups for their troubling policies and positions had many inaccuracies.  (1) In fact, ZOA legitimately criticized National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) for signing a letter demanding that people stop… Read more »

Tucson BNC honors Lisberg

The Tucson Brandeis National Committee mourns the loss of a special friend and mentor, Elaine Lisberg, who passed away April 29. Elaine had a long-lasting love of Brandeis University and was a good friend of its founding president, Abram Sacher. She was a national president of Brandeis National Women’s… Read more »

USHMM exhibit misses mark

According to your May 4 news report, “Exhibit shows ordinary Americans knew a lot about Shoah as it was happening,” the new “Americans and the Holocaust” exhibit at the United States. Holocaust Memorial Museum claims that President Franklin D. Roosevelt was unable to grant haven to Jewish refugees because… Read more »

Op-Ed: The #MeToo movement goes to summer camp

(Pxhere)

The #MeToo movement has empowered women to speak up against harassment and abuse. It is heartening to see many men standing as allies and organizations beginning to hold themselves accountable for establishing policies, procedures and transparency and for changing the workplace culture. For those of us working in youth-serving… Read more »

OP-ED When Jewish students in America raised alarms about the Holocaust

The cover of Yeshiva University's student newspaper, The Commentator, from March 4, 1943, shows that Jewish students were active in efforts to draw attention to the plight of Europe's Jews. (Courtesy of The David S. Wyman Institute for Holocaust Studies)

  JERUSALEM (JTA) — Seventy-five years ago this month, a handful of rabbinical students in New York City helped mobilize hundreds of churches and synagogues nationwide to cry out against the Nazis’ mass murder of European Jewry. That remarkable interfaith protest is omitted from the U.S. Holocaust Museum’s new… Read more »

Op-Ed: I voted against the Iran nuclear deal. Withdrawing from it is a mistake.

Sen. Ben Cardin speaks at a news conference at the Capitol in Washington, D.C., introducing the Iran Policy Oversight Act of 2015, Oct. 1, 2015. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON (JTA) — President Trump’s decision to withdraw the United States from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, known as the Iran nuclear deal, is bad policy and calls into question America’s international credibility. Mr. Trump has now set the international community on a slippery slope, imperiling the national security… Read more »

OP-ED To fight anti-Semitism, first you have to define it

A Turkish demonstrator holding a banner with a Nazi swastika and Star of David in Istanbul, Jan. 2, 2009. (Mustafa Ozer/AFP/Getty Images)

(JTA) — In recent years we have witnessed anti-Israel demonstrations that have turned overtly anti-Semitic and even violent, but police ignored initially as only political activity. We have seen prosecutors and judges rule that an arson attack on a synagogue is not anti-Semitic because the perpetrator was motivated by… Read more »