Tag Archives: halakhah

The Legal Responsibility of Jewish Hotel Patrons

Over the past few years, I had been trying to pass a teshuvah (Jewish legal opinion) in the Conservative Movement’s Committee on Jewish Law and Standards arguing that Jewish law insists we must not patronize businesses that abuse their workers. The paper … Continue reading

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A House of Prayer for All People – Rosh Hashanah Day 1 5775

              In the Jewish tradition, each new year provides an opportunity to pause, reflect, and refocus. We consider the events of the year that has passed, celebrate our triumphs, and confront our failures. Looking … Continue reading

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30 Days of Liberation: Day 19 – Loyal Opposition

The Seder contains two distinct customs: one, representing the view of most ancient rabbis, to eat matzah and marror separately; the other, representing Hillel’s view, to eat them together as a sandwich. This was not a petty dispute; these rabbis … Continue reading

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Is Spying on Citizens Kosher?

“Big Brother is watching you.” That is one of the most iconic lines from George Orwell’s classic novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, but it could also describe one of 2013’s defining stories. In June, The Guardian exposed a classified court order that directed Verizon, … Continue reading

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To Disrespect and Disobey – 30 Days of Liberation, Day 10

The first heroes of Exodus are two lowly, God-fearing midwives named Shifrah and Pu’ah who refuse Pharaoh’s order to kill all Hebrew baby boys. The midwives model being unafraid to stand up for what is right, even to someone profoundly … Continue reading

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Winey Jews – Purim Prep

A famous (and strange) Purim custom is to drink “until one no longer knows the difference between blessed Mordechai and cursed Haman.” While many rabbis tell us not to drink this much (since our primary religious obligation is health/safety) there … Continue reading

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The Jewish Necessity to Question the Israel-Gaza Conflict

Over the past few years, Hamas operatives in Gaza have been indiscriminately firing rockets into Israeli civilian population centers. When the shelling dramatically increased last week, the Israeli government decided to initiate a strong military response. The Israeli government claims … Continue reading

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The Observant Life: Parashat Emor 2012

As many of you know, over the past week I had the great privilege and joy of attending the annual Rabbinical Assembly convention, which this year was held in Atlanta.  The Rabbinical Assembly, or the “RA” as it is known … Continue reading

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Israel, Iran, and Trayvon Martin

Reposted from: http://www.haaretz.com/jewish-world/the-line-connecting-trayvon-martin-and-an-israeli-attack-on-iran-1.426760 “If it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then what is it? That’s right, it’s a duck. But this duck is a nuclear duck and it’s time the world started … Continue reading

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Born Again Judaism – Parashat Tzav/Shabbat Hagadol 2012

This Shabbat, the Shabbat before the onset of Passover, is commonly referred to as “Shabbat Ha-Gadol.” Shabbat Ha-Gadol means “The Great or Big Sabbath,” and it is given this name because on this Shabbat we announce the impending arrival of … Continue reading

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