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

Articles written by Jonathan S. Tobin

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Why are 'progressive Jews' defending Ben & Jerry's?

(JNS) — If you thought that American Jews were going to unite against discrimination in ice-cream sales, you were wrong. The decision of the Ben & Jerry’s company to “end sales of our ice-cream in ‘occupied Palestinian territories...

 

A year with too much to mourn

(JNS) — It may have been discouraging, but the dismal turnout for a national rally that was supposed to bring Jews together against antisemitism was also an appropriate reminder of the greatest challenge facing them. A week before Tisha B’Av ...

 

Are Jews really united against antisemitism?

(JNS) — The first thing to be said about the “No Fear” rally against antisemitism held in front of the U.S. Capitol in Washington on Sunday was that it was a noble effort. The organizers and those who showed up deserve credit for trying to...

 

Don't confuse Holocaust education with the battle over critical race theory

(JNS) — There is no more obvious sign that American education is in trouble than the fact that most state legislatures have become battlegrounds over how to teach history. The subject can be fraught with controversy under any circumstances. But in...

 

The left slides into acceptance of antisemitism

(JNS) — As far as some of Israel’s most vicious critics were concerned, it was the sort of thing that gave their critiques of Zionism a bad name. It was difficult to pretend that the decision of organizers of a Philadelphia food festival to disin...

 

Why is HIAS seeking to make America's border crisis even worse?

(JNS) — Over the weekend, President Joe Biden finally conceded that what was happening at America’s southern border is a “crisis,” a word that his administration had consistently refused to use when referring to the situation there which...

 

What Bernie Madoff proved about America and the Jews

(JNS) — On Dec. 11, 2008, one of the worst events to rock the organized Jewish world was revealed on the front pages of the nation’s newspapers. Few outside of the financial world had ever heard of him before that day. But when news broke that...

 

Stop pretending that anti-Zionism isn't anti-Semitism

(JNS) — In case you haven’t heard, people who want to eliminate Israel are very interested in stopping anti-Semitism. In other words, the same people who want to deny rights to the Jewish people that they don’t think of trying to deny to...

 

How many American Jews are there, and does it really matter?

(JNS) — Two weeks ago, the White House Passover seder was hosted by America’s Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff. The Brooklyn, N.Y.-born lawyer is the first Jew to be a spouse of a vice president, as well as the first male to occupy the role. Being a...

 

Will Biden's moves bring the Saudis closer to Israel?

(JNS) — President Joe Biden’s foreign-policy team has talked a lot about re-emphasizing diplomacy and re-engaging with allies after what they claim was the trashing of old friends during the presidency of Donald Trump. But that doesn’t appear...

 

Don't stop JNF from doing its job

(JNS) — The little blue box is no longer ubiquitous in Jewish households the way it once was. The symbolic pushke into which coins were collected in the homes of both the rich and the poor to help the Jewish National Fund redeem the land of...

 

Who will defend Jewish students against anti-Semites?

(JNS) — Following the U.S. Capitol riot, there has been a renewed emphasis on the threat from white-supremacist hate groups from the Biden administration, much of the media as well as the organized Jewish community. The anti-Semitic imagery seen at...

 

Will impeachment and censorship defend Jews against anti-Semitism?

(JNS) — With the U.S. House of Representatives poised to pass new articles of impeachment against former President Donald Trump, the debate about the proper response to his role in last week’s disgraceful and bloody Capitol riot has now moved to...

 

A toxic race curriculum has no place in Jewish schools

(JNS) — Just how far are Jewish institutions willing to go to accommodate the principles of critical race theory and its “cancel culture” view of American and Jewish history? In the case of Brandeis University Press, even that respected...

 

Why are Jews trying to undermine the fight against Jew-hatred?

(JNS) — A group of 122 Palestinian academics, journalists, writers and filmmakers signed a letter last month taking issue with the widespread adoption of the International Holocaust Remembrance Association definition of anti-Semitism. Their...

 

The Chanukah challenge for young Jews

(JNS) — Chanukah’s popularity with American Jews was largely the result of a futile though determined effort to compete with Christmas. While enjoying freedom, prosperity and influence that was unprecedented in the history of the Diaspora,...

 

Is there a way back from a broken political culture?

(JNS) — Many Americans are anticipating a return to normalcy now that the votes have been counted and the presidential election determined. For some, that just means an end to the constant bombardment of election ads on television, the Internet and...

 

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...

 

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