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View from Central Park

Latkes

With Chanukah just a couple of weeks away, I already hear people talking Chanukah shop, in other words, latkes.

Without a doubt, they are the star of Chanukah dinner parties. You could slave for hours and prepare the most gourmet brisket, and it will still be ancillary to the humble spud, the latke that steals the show.

Mounds of hot fried, crispy, lacy latkes are already on my and so many others’ minds. Indeed, they are goooood.

To be sure, latke talk inspires strong opinions regarding what ingredients and methods are best, not to mention the title of which family makes the best latkes.

In my case, if I do say so myself, I am confident my family holds the blue ribbon for this one, so I don’t bother arguing.

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Conservative Lens

You can kill, but not murder

Ask almost anyone to recite the commandment in the Ten Commandments that prohibits taking a life and you will be told, “Thou Shall Not Kill.” That is the King James translation of the sixth commandment. It is a magnificent translation, but one that has led to much moral confusion. You would think that of all the Ten Commandments the one that needs the least explaining is the sixth, because it seems so clear. In fact, it is probably the least well understood of the Ten Commandments. The re...
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View from Central Park

Israel and Ferguson

I’m not one to make everything be about Israel. As CNN was covering the rioting in Ferguson, one of the newscasters, Sarah Sidner, had a rock thrown at her. She continued reporting until a few moments later Jake Tapper of CNN fame interrupted, asking her to stop reporting and reach safety, saying: “Obviously some really bad people near you...nefarious person throwing rocks at you...” I thought to myself, hmm, interesting, when rocks are thrown in Ferguson, the rock throwers are “really...
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View From Denver

Assisted suicide is not a slippery slope

REPORTEDLY, TWO Colorado legislators are drafting a physician-assisted suicide bill for debate and, they hope, passage in the upcoming session of the Colorado legislature. Physician-assisted suicide is not a slippery slope. It’s the bottom of the slope. Once the absolute, “thou shalt not murder,” is compromised, the fundamental line has already been crossed. The implications, the so-called slippery slope, are not for the future. They are here. In fact, they are here with or without a ...
Reflections

Ordinary can become extraordinary

She could do anything with her professional life that she wanted to do. Not many can boast of Sandy’s talents; she is a highly educated, talented musician, a wonderful teacher and a dedicated mother and wife. So when she told me what she does in a typical work day, I was stunned. Several days a week Sandy takes care of Ruth, an elderly, infirm woman to whom she is both care-giver and devoted companion. She does many of the things that a dutiful daughter would do — from driving her to doctor...
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Shabbat Times

JTA News

UCLA student government member questioned about Jewish identity

Gabe Friedman A member of UCLA’s student government was asked in a hearing whether her Jewish identity presents a conflict of interest. ... [Link]

WATCH: Leonard Nimoy explains Spock’s salute

Gabe Friedman In a video, Leonard Nimoy explain the Jewish origins of the famed gesture. ... [Link]

Leonard Nimoy, actor who played Spock on ‘Star Trek,’ dead at 83

Gabe Friedman Nimoy said that he based Spock’s split-finger salute, now a pop culture fixture, on a Kohanic blessing that involves a manual approximation of the Hebrew letter shin. ... [Link]

Q&A with Jorma Kaukonen on Jefferson Airplane and Judaism

Gabe Friedman The legendary guitarist talks about his Jewish family roots, the Torah scroll his great-grandfather worked on and why so many blues guitarists are Jewish. ... [Link]

Italian lawmakers urge recognition of Palestinian state

Cnaan Liphshiz Non-binding resolution passes by a vote of 300 to 45, adding Italy’s Chamber of Deputies to other European parliaments supporting the move. ... [Link]

Politician for French National Front says Jews blocking his musical career

Cnaan Liphshiz Xavier Sainty quotes Jewish producer as telling he’ll never work in the industry because he’s not Jewish. ... [Link]

China, World Jewish Congress to commemorate Shanghai Ghetto liberation

Cnaan Liphshiz Chinese official says landmark event underscores Chinese, Jewish suffering under fascism. ... [Link]

Madonna hacker indicted in Tel Aviv

Marcy Oster Avi Lederman is charged with illegal wiretapping, invasion of privacy, copyright infringement and obstruction of justice. ... [Link]

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