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

Articles written by Jonathan S. Tobin

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Asking the wrong questions about extremist violence

(JNS) — He did it again. When presented at the first presidential debate of 2020 with another opportunity to make a straightforward condemnation of white supremacists, he refused. Or at least that’s what many headlines screamed the next morning...


RBG and how to save a corrosive political culture

(JNS) — U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who died on Sept. 18, the eve of Rosh Hashanah, at the age of 87 was a symbol of female empowerment, as well as a renowned scholar and jurist. Though not religious, she was a proud Jew, and he...


Take the 5781 edition of the Rosh Hashanah Jewish pundit quiz

(JNS) — A year ago, Jews looked back on 5779 and wondered, after the Pittsburgh and Poway synagogue shootings and a resurgence of anti-Semitism on the right as well as the left, how things in the United States could get any worse. As I do every yea...


What are Jews who embrace the Black Lives Matter movement endorsing?

(JNS) — To read the statement signed by more than 600 Jewish groups, in which they identified their denominations, synagogues and organizations with the Black Lives Matter movement, it’s clear that they believe they are on the right side of...


Did the Charlottesville quote define Donald Trump?

(JNS) — Three years later we’re still quoting, discussing and debating it. If there is a defining moment of the presidency of Donald Trump, it took place at a press conference on Aug. 15, 2017, when he allegedly called the neo-Nazis who...


Centrist Democrats and their leftist aides

(JNS) — Heading into the 2020 presidential campaign, centrist Democrats as well as those who are supporters of Israel had good reason to be worried about the future of their party. After Hillary Clinton’s defeat in 2016, Bernie Sanders’s wing...


The community-relations outreach trap

(JNS) — Maybe everything would be better if we could all go for walks in the woods with people who say or tweet hateful and deeply offensive things. Then again, maybe the Jewish community would be better off if those who represent it weren’t...


A tale of two revolutions and why America must be celebrated

(JNS) — In the view of those cheering on the efforts of the Black Lives Matter movement, this July 4 was one less of celebration than of soul-searching and reassessment. Thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, the normal festivities were always going...


Anti-Semitism gets you fired at Labour, but hired by the 'Times'

(JNS) — It turns out The New York Times has lower standards when it comes to those who spread anti-Semitic canards than even Britain’s controversial Labour Party. Tweeting an anti-Semitic blood libel about Israel being responsible for teaching...


The problem when revisionist history becomes official dogma

(JNS) — Angry mobs of activists are roaming American streets pulling down or defacing statues of historical figures. In some cases, governments and private institutions are joining their efforts by agreeing to take down examples of public art that...


Why can't you get canceled for anti-Semitism?

(JNS) — In the weeks since the brutal and unjustified killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer, America has been undergoing what The New York Times approvingly called a “reckoning” that marks a fundamental shift in...


Cancel culture comes to the Conference of Presidents

(JNS) — Americans are united in their outrage about the death of George Floyd, an African-American man who was wrongfully killed by a Minneapolis policeman. However, a commendable desire to oppose hate has quickly morphed into something beyond...


When should politicians think they're entitled to your vote?

(JNS) — Former Vice President Joe Biden apologizes. President Donald Trump doesn’t ever apologize. While both said things that can easily be construed as offensive, the thinking behind their talk about being entitled to votes from particular grou...


The Abbas comedy and the ongoing Palestinian tragedy

JNS) — If you think you’ve seen this movie before, you’re right. Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas has declared that he is abrogating all agreements with Israel so many times it’s a wonder that he could do so again with a straight...


Should an Islamist on Facebook's new oversight board scare users?

(JNS)—Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg thinks he’s found a way to avoid further skewering at the hands of those looking for a whipping boy for the failings of the Internet. Actor Sacha Baron Cohen scorched him last fall for running...


The leftist thought police are wrong: Taylor Swift isn't an anti-Semite

(JNS)—In today’s hyperpartisan world, nobody escapes the watchful eye of the thought police. Not even a pop superstar like Taylor Swift. The 30-year-old singer has sold tens of millions of recordings in her career that span the genres of country...


Mourning all victims is right; moral equivalence is not

(JNS)—Outside of Israel, it was the alternative ceremony that got the most coverage. The official commemoration of Yom Hazikaron—the country’s Memorial Day that occurs the day before celebrating the Jewish state’s Independence Day—began... Full story


Israel's new government is centrist, and that's OK with Netanyahu

(JNS)—Israel’s yearlong government standoff is finally over, and the only real winner is Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Although there were moments when it seemed as if there was no way he could hold onto office for long, Netanyahu again... Full story


A crisis for Jewish philanthropy may force unpalatable choices

(JNS)—The coronavirus pandemic is not the first deadly contagion to ravage the globe, but it is clearly the first that modern nations have sought to combat by essentially shutting down public life and much of their economies. While most of us may h... Full story


A right to vote but not to dismantle the state

By Jonathan S. Tobin (JNS)—It seems like a devastating argument. If Israeli Jews are willing to accept life-saving treatment from Arab doctors, why won’t they give their representatives in the Knesset a seat in the country’s government?... Full story


A fine line between sensible caution and outright hysteria

(JNS)—It’s time to take the threat from the coronavirus seriously. That’s as true for local Jewish communities as it is for governments. But just like some of our leaders have been slow to comprehend the peril from the spread of the disease,... Full story


Did Bloomberg give ammunition to anti-Semites?

(JNS) There are a lot of people who are relieved that Michael Bloomberg has dropped out of the Democratic primary race, and not all of them are named Biden. The withdrawal of the former mayor of New York City gives a boost to former Vice President Jo... Full story


Mike vs. Bernie: Two approaches to being a Jewish president

(JNS)—Bernie Sanders and Michael Bloomberg both want to be the nation’s first Jewish president. But they couldn’t possibly be more different. Sanders is a Socialist who is hoping to lead America on a lurch to the left that many of his more enth... Full story


It's not trivial to know Bethlehem isn't in a non-existent nation

(JNS)—There’s no escaping controversy any time that Israel or the Palestinians are mentioned. That’s a lesson the producers, writers and star of the long-running “Jeopardy!” television game show learned to their detriment when a clue... Full story


Will Bernie Sanders become the first Jewish president?

(JNS)—We’re still more than a month away from the first actual votes being cast in the Democratic presidential race. But an analysis piece published on the influential Politico website last week reminded observers of a possibility that many are i... Full story


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