The Tragedy in Orlando

I turn to our tradition for guidance, comfort and wisdom when looking for answers and trying to make some semblance of sense of some senseless act. The Torah’s assertion that each and every human being is created b’tzelem Elohim, in the image of God is a clarion call to treat people, all people, regardless of …

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Shalom Auslander’s “Fallen Jew”

Shalom Auslander’s column, “A ‘fallen Jew’ on what to read this Passover” is so full of mistakes and misconceptions it more properly should have appeared in the column on the same page of the Outlook section entitled “myths.” It could have been called “Auslander’s myths about Passover,” and refuted his points.   Contrary to what …

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Oren’s Problem: Can We Handle the Truth?

Michael Oren’s recent articles and Ally, his autobiographical account of his tenure as Israel’s ambassador to the United States, have provoked quite a response. Some are upset by the opinions he has expressed about the Obama administration, and a number of critics have expressed surprise that Oren is saying and writing things he didn’t say …

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Confirmation Class Message – 2015

May 30, 2015   The focus of study for the confirmation class is studying ancient texts. We study classic Jewish sources for a number of reasons. For one, I want to be sure that the children of B’nai Tzedek have a knowledge base and an awareness of Jewish teachings – what they are, how they …

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My Blog Post about Barbara Mikulski

Mikulski will be missed.   The scramble to fill the shoes of Senator Barbara Mikulski, a woman who has had a remarkable career of public service and who has left a major mark on our state and nation is on.  I hope that whoever succeeds her will continue to embody the principles which have been …

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The Heart of the Nation is Broken

The heart of the nation is broken.  A country all too familiar with tragedy once again is mourning the loss of three of its sons.  Three beautiful, innocent children whose short lives were filled with mitzvot.  Who cannot feel the pain and anguish of the grieving parents whose children were murdered? Their cries pierce the …

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Letter to the Editor of the Washington Post

Two recent articles by Ruth Eglash reveal a clear bias.   The first seven paragraphs of an article about Palestinian homes being torn down in the Jordan Valley in the March 9 paper presents the issue purely from the Palestinian perspective.  It is not until the 8th paragraph that mention is made that the Jordan …

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A Plea to Rabbis: Be Positive

October 2013   The stakes are high.   Let’s be honest. For most of the people who attend High Holidays services this is the only time they will be in shul the whole year.  It might be the only sermon they will hear.   It is our chance to inspire and uplift them.  It is …

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Ambassador Michael Oren

You may recall the old Superman comic that used to open with the words, “It’s a bird.  It’s a plane. No, It’s Superman!” The description could aptly be used to describe Michael Oren.  Although he is not Superman, it could be said of him, “He’s a scholar.  He’s a television star.  No, He’s an ambassador.”  …

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It’s About More Than Tickets

The signs are back.   They are popping up on street corners, public and private property – unauthorized, most definitely not legal, but catchy and appealing.  Last year they merely advertised “Free High Holiday Tickets”.  This year they have gone one step further, and take a swipe at the concept upon which the American Jewish …

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