Opinion

Arizona House bill proposed adding ‘anti-Semitism’ to list of hate crimes

Alma Hernandez

A House panel agreed to add “anti-Semitism” to what is considered a hate crime amid questions of exactly what that includes — and what that change in state law would mean to those who are accused of those crimes. HB 2683 requires the Department of Public Safety to collect… Read more »

Ongoing human rights struggles inform work of Holocaust History Center

The Holocaust History Center at Tucson’s Jewish History Museum

On Feb. 21, 2020, the Jewish History Museum will mark four years since the opening of the Holocaust History Center and the expansion of the museum’s campus. The creation of the Holocaust History Center marked the realization of a decades-old community aspiration that began in the 1960s when local Holocaust… Read more »

AIPAC is coming, but no one knows who’s speaking

Background: the AIPAC Conference in Washington, March 6, 2018 (Haim Zach/GPO); foreground: Rep. Betty McCollum, a Minnesota Democrat who called AIPAC a "hate group." (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

WASHINGTON (JTA) — AIPAC is coming, but no one knows who’s speaking. Just about two weeks before the activists come to town for the largest U.S. Israel lobby’s annual conference, AIPAC has no speakers listed on its convention website, though I’ve been told it will be posted in the… Read more »

Mike Bloomberg: Anti-Semitism is a problem on the right and the left. Here’s how I’d combat it from day one.

Democratic presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg holds a campaign rally in Detroit, Feb. 4, 2020. (Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)

(JTA) — The Jewish Telegraphic Agency has sent five questions about anti-Semitism and Jewish issues to all of the registered presidential candidates from both parties. You can read Vice President Joe Biden’s responses here and Mayor Pete Buttigieg’s responses here.  1. Anti-Semitic hate crimes are currently on the rise across… Read more »

As a former Israeli lawmaker, I know Trump’s peace plan won’t work. But it could strengthen Arab-Israeli relations.

The Arab League held an emergency meeting to discuss the U.S.-brokered proposal for a settlement of the Middle East conflict at the league headquarters in Cairo, Feb. 1, 2020. (Khaled Desouki/AFP via Getty Images)

TEL AVIV (JTA) — President Donald Trump’s Middle East peace plan will probably not achieve its stated goal of bringing peace between Israel and the Palestinians, but it might just bring about peace between Israel and more of its Arab neighbors. Here’s why. Over the past several years, Israel… Read more »

I’m done passing as a matrilineal Jew

(We Are via Getty Images)

This story originally appeared on Alma. “Your Hebrew name?” the head of the yeshiva asked, pencil and paper poised to take it down for my aliyah, the honor of reciting Torah blessings. It was my third week at his school, a place where I’d reluctantly agreed to study for… Read more »

I study epidemics, including community violence. Here’s my advice for containing the spread of anti-Semitism.

Hasidim, government officials and police officers stand in front of the K'hal Adas Greenville synagogue next door to the JC Kosher Supermarket in Jersey City, N.J., the site of a deadly shooting, Dec. 11, 2019. (Laura E. Adkins/JTA)

CHICAGO (JTA) — Some commentators have used the word “epidemic” to describe the recent spikes in anti-Semitism. They may not realize how correct they are. Twenty years ago, upon my return to the United States after serving as a senior infectious disease epidemiologist at the World Health Organization in… Read more »

Diego Schwartzman and the outsized power of Jewish representation in sports

Diego Schwartzman, listed at 5-7 but probably shorter, is congratulated by Alexander Zverev, who stands 6-6, at the 2019 U.S. Open. Schwartzman defeated Zverev in the fourth round. (Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)

This article originally appeared on Alma. I was never the best tennis player. Nor was I particularly good at soccer, basketball or any other sport my parents signed me up for. Still, I stuck with tennis through my junior year of high school, when I was unceremoniously cut from the… Read more »

Even though anti-Semitism is rising, we can still appreciate how far the acceptance of Jews has come in America

Rabbi Levi Shemtov attends a ceremony posthumously awarding Raoul Wallenberg with the Congressional Gold Medal in honor of his heroism during the Holocaust, at the U.S. Capitol, July 9, 2014. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Early Friday afternoon, I received a call inviting me to the White House to participate in a same-day signing ceremony for legislation authorizing $375 million in Homeland Security grants to help protect synagogues, churches, mosques and other places of worship. I replied that while I would… Read more »

You can’t defend haredi Orthodox Jews against violence while demonizing our schools

Members of the Jewish Orthodox community walk through a Brooklyn neighborhood on the Yom Kippur holiday, Oct. 9, 2019. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

NEW YORK (JTA) — Relentless campaigns calling for curricula reform in the nation’s yeshivas. Misleading headlines about educational standards at Orthodox schools. Zoning efforts aimed at keeping large Jewish families out of suburban towns. Some see a direct link between such things and the anti-Semitic violence that has erupted… Read more »

Pete Buttigieg: My administration will devote $1 billion to combat anti-Semitism and other violent extremism

Democratic presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg speaks to voters in Cedar Falls, Iowa, Jan. 15, 2020. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

(JTA) — This is the second op-ed in a series of pieces about anti-Semitism and Jewish issues written by 2020 presidential candidates. This one is by Pete Buttigieg, 38, the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana. The Jewish Telegraphic Agency has sent five questions on the topic to all… Read more »

Why is a church still holding services in the former Nazi headquarters of Auschwitz-Birkenau?

A view from outside the former death camp Auschwitz-Birkenau in Poland (Alexandre Marchi/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)

OSWIECIM, Poland (JTA) — As the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz approaches, survivors are preparing to gather and commemorate the event, testifying to their faith in life over death. Political and religious leaders from around the world will be there, too, declaring that what happened in that dark abyss will… Read more »

The Israeli left is dead. Can Jewish and Arab cooperation save it?

At left, Joint Arab List members present their party list to the election committee at the Israeli parliament in Jerusalem, Jan. 15, 2020. (Olivier Fitoussi/Flash90); at right, Labor Party leader Amir Peretz and Meretz leader Nitzan Horowitz are seen at a meeting of the Labor-Gesher and Meretz parties list in Tel Aviv, Jan. 20, 2020. (Flash 90)

(JTA) — Two center-left parties in Israel merged their electoral lists last week ahead of a submission deadline for the March 2 election. Labor, the “founding party” of Israel, will run with Meretz, a left-wing party long committed to ending the occupation and establishing a Palestinian state. This reluctant… Read more »

How the Women’s March made itself irrelevant

Organizers of the Women's March at the march, Jan. 19, 2019. (Evelyn Hockstein/For The Washington Post via Getty Images)

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (JTA) — As the Women’s March gears up for its fourth go on Saturday, the skepticism and disenchantment are palpable. Articles questioning the relevance of the Women’s March in 2020 abound, comparing its expected low number of 10,000 marchers against the estimated 4 million in 2017. I,… Read more »

Holocaust survivors will soon be gone. Now it’s up to us to speak out against hate.

Ronald S. Lauder holds a #WeRemember sign ahead of International Holocaust Remembrance Day. (Courtesy of World Zionist Congress)

NEW YORK (JTA) — It is a fact well-documented and well worth repeating: Within 25 years, it is likely that no survivors of the Holocaust will be alive. As a Jew, I am frightened by how the world looks in 2020. The rise of anti-Semitism we are experiencing today,… Read more »

Why intersectionality fails the Jews

A house of cards (Getty Images)

NEW YORK (JTA) — Thirty years ago, Kimberlé Crenshaw coined the term intersectionality as a way to help explain the oppression of African-American women. The theory of how different forms of discrimination interact is a useful tool to recognize the way privilege and oppression overlap. It can serve to… Read more »

The incredible NYC march should not overshadow Judaism’s main purpose

Left: The Siyum HaShas at MetLife Stadium; right, the No Fear No Hate March in New York City (Photos: Left, courtesy Agudath Israel; right, Getty Images)

On Sunday, I joined tens of thousands of Jews and non-Jews who marched from downtown Manhattan over the Brooklyn Bridge in a show of commitment to fighting the recent violent rise of anti-Semitism. Last week, I stood in Jerusalem with thousands of Jews at the Siyum HaShas, a celebration… Read more »

In this time of crisis, the Jewish community must do more — and we will

Participants in New York's solidarity march against anti-Semitism Jan. 5 cross the Brooklyn Bridge. (Jewish Federations of North America)

On Sunday, Jan. 5, a huge crowd responded to the call from UJA-Federation of New York to march against anti-Semitism. The sense of threat is so pervasive at this moment that Jewish Federations and other organizations bused thousands from other states and locales to march in solidarity with the Jews of New York, who have experienced an unprecedented wave of violent anti-Semitic attacks, most recently in Monsey on… Read more »

So far, Jewish 2020 candidates spur no remark

The fresh feeling of possibilities at the dawn of a new secular year (and decade) will no doubt be accompanied by business as usual in the political arena — loud bickering, mud-slinging and more regarding presidential candidates — not only in the House and Senate but in the homes… Read more »