Sally Rooney’s nonsensical anti-Israel statement

The controversy surrounding Irish author Sally Rooney’s new novel, Beautiful World, Where Are You, appears to be on the downswing. Now that Rooney has clarified that she takes issue with Israel, and not the Hebrew language spoken by Israelis, the public discussion has morphed. At least in some quarters, there appears to be less heat and … Continue reading

The Troubling Prevalence of Antisemitic Attacks in Brooklyn

The FBI recently reported hate crime data for 2020 showing that Jews remain widely susceptible to attacks. Fifty-eight percent of religiously motivated attacks in 2020 involved Jewish victims, accounting for 9 percent of all hate crimes last year. While those numbers look grim for a group that makes up only about 2 percent of the … Continue reading

What Does It Mean To Be Jewish?

Ben M. Freeman writes that his new book, Jewish Pride: Rebuilding a People, isn’t about fighting antisemitism. But there’s no way to understand the Jewish Pride movement the Hong Kong-based Holocaust educator hopes to build without understanding both the history of Jew hatred and its multiple forms. Since Jew hate is what’s historically driven Jews to … Continue reading

Jews are under attack across the world

It’s time to speak out against rising antisemitism (nytimes.com). While Israelis hunkered down in bomb shelters to avoid Hamas’s missiles, Diaspora Jews encountered an antisemitic storm. The sort of antisemitic chants, threats, and attacks Jews have become accustomed to seeing in Europe went global.  Anti-Zionist fueled antisemitism has very clearly migrated to the New World. … Continue reading

EU court prioritizes animals over Jews and Muslims in backing ritual slaughter ban

What a way to bookend a year. In January, the world marked the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz. World leaders gathered and solemnly promised, “Never again.” Here we are in December, and while there is no new Holocaust, Europe is making Jews and Muslims feel remarkably unwelcome in their own homes. On Thursday, the Court … Continue reading

HOLOCAUST ANALOGIES AND TWENTY-FIRST-CENTURY VICTIMHOOD

Food Network chef Alton Brown recently starred in his own Holocaust-related Twitter controversy. After angering some fans by sharing that he has voted for Republicans in the past, Brown wrotein since-deleted tweets, “Do you think the camp uniforms will be striped, like the ones at Auschwitz or will plaid be in vogue?” Someone responded, “Depends on … Continue reading

Quasi-Religious Parenting

Nearly a decade ago, long before I was the mother of four, I was a pregnant woman preparing for motherhood. Having learned about mission statements in a graduate school class, I thought my husband and I should have one for the massive parenting project we would shortly undertake. I can still picture us standing in … 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

Why This Passover Will be Different From All Other Passovers

Every year at the Seders, Jews read the words of Rabban Gamliel, who instructed, “In every generation, a person must regard himself as though he personally had gone out of Egypt.” Envisioning oneself as a former Israelite slave witnessing the Ten Plagues and leaving Egypt as part of the Exodus has always been possible on … Continue reading