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American Jews

Lead by Fear, Jewish Leadership Fails

Rabbi Yonah Bookstein | Posted 07.29.2015 | Religion
Rabbi Yonah Bookstein

Maybe it is time Jewish American leadership was more like Queen Esther, who wasn't afraid of losing her position or her life for the sake of her brothers and sisters, and less like those whose fears of accusations of disloyalty or increased anti-Semitism prevented them from acting to save millions.

Why Holocaust Analogies Aren't Helping Republicans Win Jewish Votes

John A. Tures | Posted 07.28.2015 | Entertainment
John A. Tures

Republicans have done everything they can to win the Jewish vote, never missing an opportunity to link Democrats and any foreign policy opponent to the Nazis and the Holocaust. They just don't get how offensive such remarks are to Jewish voters, continuing to drive them toward Democrats.

Reclaiming Jewish Identity: An Aboriginal People of the Middle East

Binyamin Arazi | Posted 07.07.2015 | Politics
Binyamin Arazi

Much of the confusion surrounding Jewish identity is the result of our unique historical circumstances, and our status as a nation that had been displaced by colonizers centuries ago and remained in exile until relatively recently.

The Battle Over These $7.4 Million Bells Is Heating Up

AP | MICHELLE R. SMITH | Posted 06.09.2015 | Religion

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The leaders of the congregation that owns the nation's oldest synagogue were offended and appalled when the congregation tha...

Is the Golden Age Over for American Jews?

Rabbi Evan Moffic | Posted 06.08.2015 | Religion
Rabbi Evan Moffic

100 years ago my great grandfather took a ship from Poland to New York. He eventually made his way to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He soon sent for his two brothers and sister, who made their way there as well.

34 Life Lessons You Learn At Jewish Summer Camp

The Huffington Post | Posted 06.02.2015 | Religion

Cult classic "Wet Hot American Summer" gets a few things about Jewish summer camp gloriously wrong: Campers are generally not left to drown in the lak...

Bad for the Jews, Bad for America

Sandy Goodman | Posted 05.26.2015 | Religion
Sandy Goodman

The American Jewish community is coming apart at the seams. Its vital center is collapsing, and the entire group is increasingly polarized by runaway growth at both extremes: religious fundamentalism on one end, secular non-belief on the other.

Some Thoughts on Israel's Independence Day

Alan Elsner | Posted 06.22.2015 | World
Alan Elsner

With the U.S.-Israel relationship under growing strain, someone has to step forward to act as its guardian. American Jews have a crucial role in that. We need to begin by laying out the contours of a normal, healthy relationship between Israel and the United States.

Jewish National Fund Award To Anti-Gay Pastor Angers Some Jews

Religion News Service | Lauren Markoe | Posted 04.08.2015 | Religion

(RNS) Decrying Atlanta pastor Charles Stanley’s “sordid history of virulent homophobic statements and actions,” a gay Jewish group is protesting...

The Days of 'Kumbaya' Are Over: It's Time for Netanyahu and Abbas to Enter the Tent

Dana Beyer | Posted 05.27.2015 | Politics
Dana Beyer

When both Barack Obama and James Baker take the same position on a critical foreign policy and national security issue, you know things have changed. When the bald call for automatic support for an Israeli government that has betrayed its own principles and people, and its agreements with the United States, finally turns away former supporters, you know things have changed.

Samantha Lachman

American Jewish Groups Largely Quiet On Netanyahu's Controversial Campaign Statements | Samantha Lachman | Posted 03.19.2015 | Religion

WASHINGTON -- Many influential American Jewish organizations have avoided condemning Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's recent controversial ...

Is America Becoming Anti-Semitic?

John A. Tures | Posted 05.09.2015 | Politics
John A. Tures

When a Republican gubernatorial candidate allegedly kills himself after a possible campaign to discredit him for being Jewish, it's worth a look to see if such anti-Semitic behavior is widespread in America today.

Remembering the African-American/Jewish Coalition of Support for the March From Selma to Montgomery

Clarence B. Jones | Posted 05.05.2015 | Black Voices
Clarence B. Jones

Few leaders were more important to and decisive in mobilizing public opinion in support of the march than leaders from the American Jewish community. Ironically, it was this historic coalition that came to mind when I listened to and read the 24/7 media commentary around Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's recent speech to Congress.

High-Stakes Netanyahu Speech

Michelle Kraus | Posted 05.04.2015 | Politics
Michelle Kraus

What was the real deal with the Benjamin Netanyahu speech this week? It seems that Speaker John Boehner might have been set up by his own party. In f...

Netanyahu Speech Creates Rift Among Jews

USA Today | William M. Welch | Posted 03.02.2015 | Religion

WASHINGTON (RNS) American Jewish leaders and activists are worried about widening political divisions between Israel and the White House sparked by Is...

New Report Says Anti-Semitism Is A Big Problem At American College Campuses

Religion News Service | Lauren Markoe | Posted 02.28.2015 | Religion

WASHINGTON (RNS) A student group in South Africa this month called on all Jews to leave the Durban University of Technology, an act of anti-Semitism t...

Where Are The Queer Spaces For Jewish Women?

J.E. Reich | Posted 04.29.2015 | Gay Voices
J.E. Reich

Even though the West Village offers "lesbian nights" on Fridays in hallowed locales like the Stonewall Inn and the Monster Bar NYC, it's a far cry from the dozens of spaces and nights for gay men spackled across the Five Boroughs.

Dear Congress, Please #SkipTheSpeech

Naomi Dann | Posted 04.18.2015 | Religion
Naomi Dann

The unprecedented backlash against Netanyahu's upcoming speech demonstrates what may be a historic moment in the history of U.S./Israeli relations. This moment is also significant in that it demonstrates the growing rift between the American Jewish community and Israel, a rift that Netanyahu has helped to accelerate.

What an American Jew Really Thinks of Netanyahu, Israel and Religion

Stu Kreisman | Posted 04.14.2015 | World
Stu Kreisman

Over the past few weeks I have been called anti-Semitic, a Nazi lover, a self-hating Jew, a disgrace to "my people" and worse, all because I despise the war mongering, self-promoting Netanyahu and his policy of continuing to build settlements.

The Jewish Day School Discussion: Take Two

Shira Hirschman Weiss | Posted 03.25.2015 | Religion
Shira Hirschman Weiss

It's damn expensive to send multiple kids to Jewish day schools. It's expensive to send just one. Jews still feel like they are being priced out of their religion, but there's a sliver of hope -- schools that employ blended learning that charge $9,000 tuition per child as opposed to the standard $15,000-$18,000

Why Jews Go to Florida

Chef Rossi | Posted 03.09.2015 | Comedy
Chef Rossi

"Why do Jews go to Florida?" I asked my mother as we were driving to Florida from New Jersey. "Because we're smart!" she answered.

Movies and Chinese Food: The Jewish Christmas Tradition

Isaac Zablocki | Posted 12.05.2014 | Entertainment
Isaac Zablocki

There is an old Talmudic debate about whether one should eat Chinese food on Christmas after going to a movie, or before. After centuries of rabbinic contemplation, the jury is still out. But it is clear that movie watching is a crucial activity for Jews on the birthday of Jesus.

A Jewish Perspective on Giving Tuesday

Seth Moskowitz | Posted 01.26.2015 | Impact
Seth Moskowitz

Judaism directs us to always look beyond our own selves to "K'lal Yisrael," to the greater good of the entire community.

Jewish Millennials and Co.

Martin Marty | Posted 01.10.2015 | Religion
Martin Marty

Relying on a variety of polls that use a variety of methods and definitions, and, always ready to point to a few counter-trends, we've reported on those who track the religious or irreligious young through various cohorts or with various religious identities.

Why Don't Progressive Jews Believe in an Afterlife? Are They Missing Something?

Stafford Betty | Posted 01.01.2015 | Religion
Stafford Betty

As a professor who studies attitudes toward death among a wide populace, I ask myself, "Are my Jewish friends in denial?" After all, if death really is our destination, then we cease to exist when we die.