If we go by numbers alone, the non-Orthodox American Jewish community is facing an existential crisis. The study clearly demonstrates that we stand at an urgent crossroads for American Jewry, and presents us with a major opportunity.
I remember when I learned that a Las Vegas casino magnate, Sheldon Adelson, was donating $20 million to Birthright Israel. I didn't think too much about who Adelson was at the time, and he most certainly wasn't known as the the polarizing far-right wing zealot that he is today.
Her work in the entertainment industry in LA has allowed her to promote Israel through pop culture in a variety of projects ranging from indie and documentary films to organizing celebrity trips to the country.
The enormous resources AIPAC marshals in pursuit of its goals, including for extensive overseas trips for legislators, drown out other voices and make it difficult for Members of Congress to hear other points of view about how to foster a peaceful Middle East and protect U.S. security.
The return to the Jewish homeland has always been a dream that has inspired the Jewish people for thousands of years. It is a dream that many continue to seek to make a reality, and for those that it is a reality, like the young generation of Israel today, it must never be taken for granted.
In life we all search for a place called home, an identity, and a place to belong. No Jewish organization on earth provides it more inspirationally than Birthright. Still, it can be made better. Here is how.
One cannot help but note an eerie similarity between the birthright debates raging in the US and the State of Israel. Both nations are badly in need of resetting their immigration policies in the face of a rapidly globalizing planet.