Several recent news stories may be of interest to our readers, so let’s dive right in…
Apparently putting on tefillin in the airport or on an airplane can still cause you some trouble in the USA. Once again there has been an incident in which observant Jews in morning prayers have caused panic in flight, this time on an Alaska Airlines flight to LA from Mexico. Shmarya over at Failed Messiah has a story with links to similar ones from recent history.
Arnold Eisen, the Chancellor of the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York, has a piece on the Tablet Magazine site which describes an exhibit of ketubot – wedding contracts – at the Jewish Museum in New York, and Eisen’s own thoughts about ketubot from the middle ages up through today.
Just in time for Purim, Lawrence Grossman of the Jewish Ideas Daily site provided a review of Rabbi David Fohrman’s new book on Megillat Esther, entitled The Queen You Thought You Knew. Although I have not read it yet I plan to do so soon, and according to Grossman, Rabbi Fohrman is “…uninterested in the origins of the text or in theories of composition, but unwilling to dismiss it as farce, [he] takes the Scroll of Esther as it is, a work with its own literary integrity. He then proceeds to ask difficult questions.”
For those who are interested, The Jewish Week has its March 2011 Kosher Wine Guide available now, in time for you to stock up for Pesach. It is available right here. Oh, and they also have an article by Amy Spiro that includes links to recipes for chocolate-peanut butter, and chocolate-raspberry-coconut Hamantaschen. Yum…
The Sh’ma Journal site offers an interesting look by the guys at Punk Torah at different ideas around Jewish identity and how it is built, packaged, understood, etc., and why this is important. The article includes both narrative and video, and interviewed guests include Jewsbychoice.org community member Rabbi Juan Mejia. Check it out!
Eugene Korn wrote an article on the Forward website about Pope Benedict XVI’s recent book, Jesus of Nazareth, in which the author explains from the vantage point of Catholic theology why the Jewish People are not collectively guilty for Jesus’ crucifixion, despite historical Church teaching to the contrary.
Winnipeg University took a proactive step to pre-empt the one-sidedness of so-called “Israel Apartheid Week” on the campus by offering many opportunities for Jewish-Arab dialogue during the same time. The Jerusalem Post provides an account here.
In a story that also relates to IAW activities on a college campus, Jewish student Jessica Felber is suing UC Berkeley over an assault she was suffered at the hands – or rather a metal cart pushed into her – by an Arab anti-Israel leader. Berkeley has been in the news regularly during the last couple of years as Jewish students have found themselves increasingly fearful for their safety due to being targeted by pro-Palestinian groups. YNet has the story here.
YNet also has a story on Ron Schiller, a former fundraiser for the National Public Radio Foundation, who was forced to step down on Friday after his comments about Jews controlling the print media were made public.