Editorial & Opinion | Opinion

06/03/2015 | | Opinion

Editor's Note: This essay was originally published on The Jewish Week's Fresh Ink For Teens, an online magazine.

Parents of high school students do weird stuff. I think of mine as bears in hibernation. Freshman year, sophomore year, they just sort of read the paper, eat some porridge and ask how school was, but come junior year, and specifically spring of junior year, they awake, rise up and with a loud roar, scream: “ROAD TRIP!”

06/02/2015 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

Recently, prominent Washington, D.C. Rabbi Barry Freundel received a 6 1/2-year prison sentence for spying on women immersing in the mikveh, the ritual bath. And just last week, The New York Times published an expose on Riverdale Rabbi Jonathan Rosenblatt’s longstanding habit of bringing teenage boys and young men whom he was mentoring to sit with him naked in a sauna.

06/02/2015 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

Many people take it for granted that the physical land of Israel is innately holy. Since traditional sources constantly refer to the land as such, it is not much of a stretch that people make the assumption that every facet of the land is imbued with some sort of beatified, transcendental significance. To our detriment, we have witnessed fundamentalism and fanaticism emerge from this doctrine, calling our core national ethos into question.

05/28/2015 | | Opinion

One of the goals of The Jewish Week’s Write On For Israel program for high school juniors and seniors is to break some of the stereotypes they’ve heard or read about regarding Israel and the Mideast conflict. It’s important for students to have an accurate picture of Israel before they head off to college, where they are likely to be challenged about Israel and its policies.

05/26/2015 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

In what is just the latest in a sad string of similar stories about the struggle for religious pluralism in Israel, the ultra-Orthodox mayor of Rehovot, Rahamim Malul, forced the postponement of a long-anticipated bar/bat mitzvah ceremony for children with special needs — in this case, severe autism. This program, sponsored for the last 25 years by the Masorti (Conservative) movement in Israel, was to have taken place in Adat Shalom-Emanuel, the Masorti congregation in Rehovot. But the mayor decided that it would be offensive to Orthodox sensitivities to hold it there, leaving the children and their families understandably distressed.

05/26/2015 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

‘How am I doing?”

We ask ourselves this question periodically — in fact, between Rosh HaShanah and Yom Kippur, we have a 10-day period to do so.