Opinion

Yes, anti-Semitism is a problem again. No, it is not 1939.

A mourner wearing a Star of David around his neck at the Squirrel Hill memorial service for the victims of the shooting at the neighborhood's Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh, Penn., Oct. 29, 2018. (Matthew Hatcher/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

(JTA) — My father, whose own father changed his unpronounceable last name to Carroll when he came to America, would often tell a story about job hunting in the late 1940s and 50s. It was only after the interview that the men across the desk would ask, “And all… Read more »

We’ve seen this before: Public charge rules used to disguise xenophobia

The Trump Administration recently proposed an unprecedented expansion in our country’s public charge rules for applicants for citizenship. For the first time, a legal immigrant to the United States can be considered ineligible for citizenship simply because they utilize SNAP — our nation’s food stamp program. These new public… Read more »

OP-ED Why Roseanne Barr and Shmuley Boteach need each other

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, left, and Roseanne Barr in conversation at Stand Up NY in Manhattan, July 26, 2018. (James Devaney/Getty Images)

  NEW YORK (JTA) — Rabbi Shmuley Boteach may or may not be America’s most famous rabbi. But among Jews, at least, he may be it’s most polarizing rabbi. Boteach has built his career on those twin tent poles of American fame: sex and celebrity. In books like “Kosher… Read more »

There are no other Jews where we live. Do we leave?

Oh, if I could count the many discussions my husband and I have had on this topic — multiple times a day on some days. Pros, cons; the list begins. Our house fit us well enough and served its purpose well enough when we bought it 12 years ago.… Read more »

NY meeting not chance but divine providence

Some people believe we live in a world where everything can be seen and touched. They buy into scientific explanations and find it hard to believe we live in a complex world where there’s much we can’t explain. Here is a true story of divine providence or in Hebrew,… Read more »

‘Never Again’ article misrepresents gun control movement

I feel uncomfortable writing this letter, but I feel that a response is needed to the recent article written by Dov Marhoffer, “‘Never Again’ belongs to the Holocaust, not the gun control movement,” (AJP 9/14/18).  I cannot begin to imagine the horrors that he must have experienced as a… Read more »

If dancing on Simchat Torah makes you feel uneasy, think of it as a test

Rabbi Israel Becker claps to the music as Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild carries Congregation Chofetz Chayim’s newly written Torah scroll on Sept. 14, 2014, at a celebration akin to those held on Simchat Torah. Rogelio Garcia)

I have long had a problem with the central rite of Simchat Torah: dancing. I have nothing against the kind of dancing that requires learning certain steps — I then enjoy the challenge of mastering the particular dance. The dancing on Simchat Torah, however, requires almost no skill and consists… Read more »

REPORTER’S NOTEBOOK: How an encounter between Jews and Palestinians underlines the promise and failures of Oslo

The Palestinian side of the separation wall in Bethlehem has graffiti in Arabic and English, but not Hebrew, June 25, 2018. (Ron Kampeas)

(JTA) — The wall separating Bethlehem from Israel-controlled territory is silent and noisy at once, like the breakdown in conversation between Israelis and Palestinians that helped kill the Oslo peace accords. It was only this year — in June, almost 25 years since the launch of the accords that… Read more »

OP-ED Young activists learned the wrong lessons from the Oslo Accords

Members of the Peace Now movement demonstrate outside the residence of Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak in Jerusalem, July11, 2000. (Brian Hendler/Newsmakers/Getty Images)

LAS VEGAS (JTA) — This summer, America’s Jewish youth rebelled. Or at least a very small minority of them did. But through orchestrated stunts and aggressive marketing, they garnered the headlines they sought. These youth are demanding that Israel end its “occupation,” presumably of the West Bank. They are… Read more »

Oslo failed. Long live Oslo.

From left to right: Yasser Arafat, Shimon Peres and Yitzhak Rabin in 1994 after winning the Nobel Peace Prize for their roles in the Oslo Accords. (Wikimedia Commons)

NEW YORK (JTA) — It has become conventional wisdom in certain circles that the Oslo agreement between Israel and the Palestinians, which was signed 25 years ago Sept. 13 on the White House lawn, was simply a failure. There is no doubt that the great hopes of Israeli-Palestinian peace and… Read more »

With time running out, more of us must engage with Holocaust survivors

Raisa Moroz, Holocaust survivors program manager at Jewish Family & Children's Services of Southern Arizona (left), talks with Yulia Genina, a survivor from Ukraine, in 2014. (Nancy Ben-Asher, AJP)

There are over 400,000 Jewish Holocaust survivors worldwide, but the survivor population is rapidly diminishing. As we celebrate the High Holidays and mark the beginning of another year, each of us needs to reflect on what we have done in the past year to support this shrinking community and… Read more »

‘Never again’ belongs to the Holocaust, not the gun control movement

I am a Holocaust concentration camp survivor. I am one of a rapidly dwindling number of eyewitnesses to the Nazi Holocaust, the most systematic genocide of all time. I regularly speak at high schools, universities and community events, sharing my eyewitness account with newer generations of Americans who have no… Read more »

First I sat shiva for my mom. Then I ran a marathon.

(Kveller via JTA) – When a Jewish person dies, the traditional way to grieve includes sitting shiva, a seven-day mourning period when visitors arrive to comfort and care for the bereaved. At the end of the week, the mourners “get up” and resume more of their normal activities. Some people… Read more »

OP-ED Eastern Europe is changing. How we deliver care to Jewish elderly has to change with it.

A man in Kishinev, Moldova, receives honey from the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee. (Courtesy of the JDC)

    NEW YORK (JTA) — In business, an effective planning process is essential for success. During the High Holidays, Jews are urged to engage in this sort of process for our own lives. We reflect on the past year, seeking lessons to help us in the coming year.… Read more »

I don’t believe in God — but this is why I’m having an Orthodox wedding

Cnaan Liphshiz and wife Iris celebrate their wedding in the Netherlands, July 2, 2013. (Courtesy of Liphshiz)

AMSTERDAM (JTA) — My wife and I were married roughly 5,000 diapers ago, and she’s still waiting for me to propose. I know this because she reminds me every anniversary. To be clear, ours was no shotgun wedding. Iris and I were hitched in a civil marriage in Holland… Read more »