Heritage Florida Jewish News - Central Florida's Independent Jewish Voice

Articles written by Andrew Silow Carroll

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Conan and 'Transparent' give Israel the normalcy it craves

(JTA)—“It looks just like L.A.” A character in the Amazon series “Transparent” says this as she gets her first glimpse of Tel Aviv, and if you work for the Israeli government, or any of a number of pro-Israel groups, you probably...

 

Self-hatred: It's not just for self-haters! 

(JTA)—I used to joke that I am not a self-hating Jew: It’s all those other Jews I can’t stand. Like I said, I used to tell that joke. In the current political climate, self-hatred is no laughing matter. Calling another Jew “self-hating” is...

 

Our president just asked us to be fair to white supremacists

NEW YORK (JTA)—There was a moment in his “neo-Nazi, neo-Shmazi” news conference where you might have found yourself thinking, maybe President Trump is right. On the narrow question of who was responsible for the violence in Charlottesville, a...

 

American Jews really care about pluralism-but it's not just about pluralism

(JTA)-The Great Jewish Revolt of 2017. The Bar Kotel Rebellion. The Diaspora Strikes Back. Whatever you call it, last week's clash between American Jewish leaders and the Netanyahu government felt...

 

Tel Aviv is the 'home of Judaism.' So is Boston, Sao Paulo, Marseille...

(JTA)—Donald Trump and his staff may have left Israel feeling pretty friendly to the Jews, but man, we don’t make it easy for them. Flying with reporters from Saudi Arabia to Israel on Monday, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson announced that they...

 

Jewish life, like college campuses, could use more free speech

(JTA)—Sunday night in Teaneck, New Jersey, Daniel Kurtzer and Ruth Wisse spoke at separate synagogues, roughly at the same time, about a quarter mile apart. Kurtzer, a former U.S. ambassador to Israel and a professor of Middle East studies at...

 

The last Passover countdown checklist you will ever need

(JTA)-The 30-day period between Purim and Passover is often fraught, especially for Jews-especially if, against all sound advice, they insist on hosting a Passover seder. To ease the challenging...

 

Is Trump owed an apology after the JCC bomb threat arrest? Is anybody?

NEW YORK (JTA)—Literally within seconds of the news of the arrest in Israel of an Israeli-American teenager for the bulk of the JCC bomb threats, Twitter lit up with Jewish anxiety. “[I] fear the inevitable backlash from haters who we whipped...

 

JCC bomb threats are weapons of fear

(JTA)—The “fear itself” thing? FDR was on to something. The rash of JCC bomb threats and cemetery desecrations, combined with a general sense that the country is becoming more intolerant, has Jews on edge in ways they haven’t been in years....

 

In 'Blazing Saddles,' Gene Wilder helped recall a fading black-Jewish alliance

(JTA)-Last year I joined some 3,000 people at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark for a wide-screen showing of Mel Brooks' 1974 Western parody "Blazing Saddles." In the...

 

Trump can lay 'Stargate' to rest-assuming he wants to

(JTA)—Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign never recovered after he was caught on video telling a group of millionaires that 47 percent of Americans will always vote for Democrats because they don’t take “personal responsibility” for th...

 

Why not Al Franken?

(JTA)—Last week Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) said that if Hillary Clinton asked him to be her running mate, he’d take the job. “If Hillary Clinton came to me and said, ‘Al, I really need you to be my vice president, to run with me,’ I would...

 

AIPAC and the perils of bipartisanship

WASHINGTON (JTA)—I am trying to imagine a conversation between Donald Trump’s people and a delegation of Reform rabbis and lay leaders. Rabbi Jonah Pesner, the Reform movement’s man in Washington, told me that Trump’s people have agreed to a...

 

Our America-and Trump's

Two of my favorite television shows are about what I think it’s fair to call the “New America.” In Master of None, on Netflix, Indian-American comedian Aziz Ansari plays a struggling actor in a very real and recognizable New York. His best fri...

 

Strangers in a welcoming land

December 22, 2015 I didn’t cry when I first saw the Western Wall, but I bawled like a baby when I first visited Ellis Island.  I thought about this over the weekend as I watched Brooklyn, director John Crowley’s emotionally devastating adaptati...

 

Double standards and selective sympathy

From the attacks in Paris to the deadly toll of terror in Israel, events of the past week have reminded us of the wide gap between Jews and the rest of the world. As if we needed any reminding. Following the rampage in Paris, which left over 140...

 

The Jewish divide: Who cares?

Let’s assume—despite evidence that polling on the issue was at best “quick and dirty,” according to one prominent analyst—that the Jewish establishment was out of step with most American Jews in opposing the Iran agreement. And let’s agre...

 

Should Federations wade into the Iran nuke debate?

The history of Jewish democracy is scattered with congresses, parliaments, unions, councils, sejms, and kahals—all attempts to govern or speak for an unruly body of people who shared a common culture but lacked genuine political autonomy. Various...

 

Let's learn for Charleston

There’s a lovely Jewish tradition of honoring the dead by engaging in Torah study. You can devote any number of mitzvot in the memory of the departed, but studying Torah is said to have particular mystical power. Tradition says it elevates the...

 

When Hershey met Mary

I always had a soft spot for the comedian Anne Meara, in large part because she looked a lot like my mother, of blessed memory. Similar cheek bones, the wide smile, a deep dimple in her left cheek. My mother was usually there, too, on her side of...

 

As they lay dying

At some point in the life of the average adult, the conversation shifts from “How are the kids?” to “What’s happening with your parents?” If you’re lucky, you can talk about two silver-haired retirees, enjoying their relative good...

 

For the sake of heaven

I once heard a rabbi, a noted proponent of a Greater Israel, make a plea to his congregation for bipartisan empathy. This was just a few years after the assassination of Yitzhak Rabin, when both the Right’s dreams for an unchecked settlement...

 

Beyond us and them

On Monday night I clicked over from a nail-biting, extra-innings Mets game to CNN’s coverage of the crisis in Israel. In short: Mets win, Israel loses.  While SNY.tv kept showing a did-he, didn’t-he replay of a disputed play at second, CNN...

 

Crossing the line

During the wedding scene in Fiddler on the Roof, Perchik, the student revolutionary, breaks with tradition by crossing from the men’s side to the women’s side to dance with Tevye’s daughter Hodel. On stage it plays like a breakthrough; even...

 

Dear esteemed editor...

n 1906, Abraham Cahan was looking to boost the circulation of the Forward, the Yiddish daily that he edited. Warheit, a rival for the affections of Yiddish-speaking immigrants, had begun to publish letters from readers seeking advice. Not to be outdo...

 

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