The Science of anti-Semitism

The darkest chapter of modern Jewish history involved Germany applying science to anti-Semitic degradation and violence. Seventy-five years later, the German government is still exorcising those demons, and as part of that effort, it’ll now be using scientific logic to stamp out resurgent Jew-hate within its own borders.  It’s been a long road. West Germans … Continue reading

Ilhan Omar singles out her opponent’s Jewish donors with anti-Semitic campaign mailer

There’s nothing more on-brand for freshman Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar of Minnesota than finding herself at the center of a controversy over anti-Semitism. Lo and behold, that’s exactly where she finds herself once again. On Thursday, Vice reported that Omar’s campaign had sent mailers to constituents asking, “Can We Trust Antone Melton-Meaux’s Money?” They also allege that primary … Continue reading

Hey, NFL: Take up the mantle and combat anti-Semitism

Somewhat unexpectedly, the National Football League stands astride a pivotal moment in Jewish history. How do the Philadelphia Eagles (and the league more broadly) think about anti-Semitism? This week marks a turning point for Jews (and for American culture more broadly) as the NFL decides whether anti-Semitism is vile bigotry that must be stigmatized or … Continue reading

It’s always the right time to talk about anti-Semitism, especially during Black Lives Matter protests

Recent weeks have seen a heated discussion among American Jews about whether there is a “right time” to talk about anti-Semitism. And if so, does now qualify, since our country is going through a reckoning over racism? American Jews want to show solidarity with peaceful protesters, but should that include support for the Black Lives Matter organization, … Continue reading

Investigate Mayor de Blasio

On Thursday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced that city parks will reopen on Monday. This is a sharp about-face for a mayor who opposed reopening parks on Tuesday and wouldn’t commit to “Phase II” reopening on Wednesday. New Yorkers should likely thank Brooklyn’s Orthodox Jews for the change. City park closures have inconvenienced families … Continue reading

Germany’s Misleading Classification of Antisemitic Hate Crimes

The German government recently announced that 2019 saw the most antisemitic hate crimes since it began collecting data in 2001. In all, 2,032 antisemitic incidents were reported to German police last year, marking a 13 percent increase over 2018. That certainly fits with the steady drumbeat of stories about rising global antisemitism. However, the German government’s … Continue reading

Iowa’s King is dethroned

The advantage of incumbency is so strong, it’s rare for a congressional primary to have any real drama. And yet, there were true fireworks in Iowa’s 4th District last week as Republican voters decided to ditch Rep. Steve King, their representative for the last nine terms.  Four Republicans vied to replace King in the ruby-red … Continue reading

COVID-19 Complicates Grieving

Spring is typically a gentle season known for its renewal, which makes spring deaths feel incredibly discordant. Yet over a 15-day period this May, my extended family lost two relatives to COVID-19. There will be no hugs at the funerals, burial is delayed, and Shivah will be observed remotely. What began as an international news story happening … Continue reading

Teaching “Never Again” as the Holocaust Fades from Living Memory

I was in elementary school when I first learned about the Holocaust. Every year at my Jewish day school, we had a school-wide, student-led memorial for Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Remembrance Day). Memorial candles marked the six corners of a Jewish star made of masking tape on the wooden floor, recalling the six million Jewish lives … Continue reading

Bill de Blasio is Playing With Antisemitic Fire

It has been clear for some time that antisemitic hate crimes have been rising in New York City. The Jewish community has worked hard to bring attention to the increasingly commonplace verbal and physical attacks, many of which aren’t even officially reported. For his part, Mayor Bill de Blasio has tried equally hard to ignore the … Continue reading