Bintel Blog

In Other Jewish Newspapers: Yoffie Off-Balance, Larry David Speaks, ‘Bentsh it Like Beckham’

By Daniel Treiman

  • Print
  • Share Share

YOFFIE OFF-BALANCE: New Jersey Jewish News editor Andrew Silow-Carroll offers a characteristically thoughtful analysis of Reform movement leader Rabbi Eric Yoffie’s headline-grabbing speech to the Islamic Society of North America. On the one hand, he hails Yoffie as “American Jewry’s Daniel, boldly strolling into lions’ dens.” But Silow-Carroll also suggests that in Yoffie’s speech, much of which was devoted to decrying anti-Muslim bigotry, “the balance — between reconciliation and admonishment — seemed off.” Silow-Carroll writes:

Yoffie seemed to buy into a theme of victimization among Muslims and to take on faith what a New York Times article on the convention called, with little substantiation, “growing intolerance” toward Islam and its practitioners.


ENDOGAMY BITES: Writing in Columbus’s New Standard, Oberlin psychology professor Noam Shpancer argues that Jews need to get over their aversion to intermarriage. At various points in the article, he calls the Ten Commandments “a hallowed traditional dish that, upon reflection, quickly loses much of its appeal”; holds up to “critical scrutiny” the shared belief of both sides of the intermarriage debate in “the surpassing value of preserving Judaism”; and explains that intermarriages “embody a more promising future strategy for humanity.” He concludes: “At the end of the day, Judaism lives in, and for, individual living people. It is not a sacred end in itself.” So that’s what the covenant was all about?


THE PLACES WE PRAY: The New York Jewish Week reports that this Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, plenty of Jews will be praying outside of synagogue buildings — “from mountain ranges to Chinese restaurants.”

Also in The Jewish Week: The latest on the Brooklyn Arabic academy controversy (the school’s foes don’t have a friend in Ed Koch), and a Crown Heights Lubavitcher serves as an honorary marshal of this year’s West Indian parade.


INTERVIEW WITH A MISANTHROPE: “Seinfeld” and “Curb Your Enthusiaism” creator Larry David curses out an editor from Philadelphia’s Jewish Exponent. The comedy genius also reveals some tidbits about his own Jewish identity: “I’m not one of these guys that goes, ‘Hey, I’m a Jew. I’m a Jew. I’m a Jew.’” Apparently, he just plays one on TV.

Also in the Jewish Exponent: The paper’s editorialist is weary of 9/11 weariness.


DORCHESTER CALLING: A Dorchester community center that now serves a largely black population is trying to track down and reconnect with the Jews who used the building many decades ago, Boston’s Jewish Advocate reports.


‘BENTSH IT LIKE BECKHAM’: The L.A. Jewish Journal’s Tom Tugend writes about the heritage of the city’s new quarter-Jewish soccer star, David Beckham. The soccer star, whose grandfather was Jewish, has a verse from the Song of Songs tattooed on his arm in Hebrew script, which apparently co-exists harmoniously with the large cross inked on his chest. Tugend calls his article a “service to the Los Angeles Jewish community”:

At this very moment, we should think, subcommittees at The Jewish Federation, the Wiesenthal Center, Anti-Defamation League, American Jewish Committee and American Jewish Congress are busy inscribing plaques for upcoming fundraisers, honoring the greatest One-Fourth Jewish Athlete of the Year.

Also in the Journal: Editor Rob Eshman isn’t a fan of the new Walt-Mearsheimer “Israel Lobby” book. He writes: “My suggestion is that you read the book as scholars will read it decades from now: not for its insights into American foreign policy, but for how respectable scholars can twist facts and spurn logic to lead societies down darkening corridors of hate.”


SOCCER SPATS: The upcoming soccer match between England and Israel has no shortage of detractors, from anti-Israel boycott advocates to Orthodox Jews angry that its being played on the Jewish Sabbath, London’s Jewish Chronicle reports.

Also in the J.C.: Tory politician Boris Johnson wants to take on one of British Jewry’s least-favorite elected officials, London Mayor Ken Livingstone. Johnson may be pro-Israel, but he has some baggage of his own.


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: In Other Jewish Newspapers

The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.




Find us on Facebook!
  • This is what the rockets over Israel and Gaza look like from space:
  • "Israel should not let captives languish or corpses rot. It should do everything in its power to recover people and bodies. Jewish law places a premium on pidyon shvuyim, “the redemption of captives,” and proper burial. But not when the price will lead to more death and more kidnappings." Do you agree?
  • Slate.com's Allison Benedikt wrote that Taglit-Birthright Israel is partly to blame for the death of American IDF volunteer Max Steinberg. This is why she's wrong:
  • Israeli soldiers want you to buy them socks. And snacks. And backpacks. And underwear. And pizza. So claim dozens of fundraising campaigns launched by American Jewish and Israeli charities since the start of the current wave of crisis and conflict in Israel and Gaza.
  • The sign reads: “Dogs are allowed in this establishment but Zionists are not under any circumstances.”
  • Is Twitter Israel's new worst enemy?
  • More than 50 former Israeli soldiers have refused to serve in the current ground operation in #Gaza.
  • "My wife and I are both half-Jewish. Both of us very much felt and feel American first and Jewish second. We are currently debating whether we should send our daughter to a Jewish pre-K and kindergarten program or to a public one. Pros? Give her a Jewish community and identity that she could build on throughout her life. Cons? Costs a lot of money; She will enter school with the idea that being Jewish makes her different somehow instead of something that you do after or in addition to regular school. Maybe a Shabbat sing-along would be enough?"
  • Undeterred by the conflict, 24 Jews participated in the first ever Jewish National Fund— JDate singles trip to Israel. Translation: Jews age 30 to 45 travelled to Israel to get it on in the sun, with a side of hummus.
  • "It pains and shocks me to say this, but here goes: My father was right all along. He always told me, as I spouted liberal talking points at the Shabbos table and challenged his hawkish views on Israel and the Palestinians to his unending chagrin, that I would one day change my tune." Have you had a similar experience?
  • "'What’s this, mommy?' she asked, while pulling at the purple sleeve to unwrap this mysterious little gift mom keeps hidden in the inside pocket of her bag. Oh boy, how do I answer?"
  • "I fear that we are witnessing the end of politics in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I see no possibility for resolution right now. I look into the future and see only a void." What do you think?
  • Not a gazillionaire? Take the "poor door."
  • "We will do what we must to protect our people. We have that right. We are not less deserving of life and quiet than anyone else. No more apologies."
  • "Woody Allen should have quit while he was ahead." Ezra Glinter's review of "Magic in the Moonlight": http://jd.fo/f4Q1Q
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.