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Sep 20th
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What have you said in private?

A PRIVATE recording of racist remarks by the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers, Donald Sterling, in a telephone conversation was released last week.

That his comments are racist and therefore contemptible goes without saying. But the incident raises other issues that are not so clear as the racism in Sterling’s comments, yet they are at least as important.

One is the increasing release — and the acceptability thereof — of private recordings and videos.

Take the video released last month of a married congressman engaged in a passionate kiss with a married member of his staff. This was a security surveillance video. Isn’t the only reason for the very existence of surveillance cameras to catch criminals?

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View From Denver

‘Covenant’ — the foundation of Jewish theology

‘Covenant’ — the foundation of Jewish theologyIF one had to sum up Jewish theology in a single word, it would be covenant. This is grasped instinctively. When Jewish German immigrants on the Lower East Side of New York established a Jewish fraternal and service organization 171 years ago, they choose the name B’nai B’rith, “Sons of the Covenant.” The bris (“covenant”), that is, circumcision, is one of the three most observed Jewish rituals (the other two being Passover and Yom Kippur).
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View from Central Park

We remember them all

In tribute to this Sunday’s Yom Hazikaron — Israel’s memorial day for fallen soldiers — a lot of articles on the topic are circulating. One, by Israel National News, is titled “Families, ‘Ashamed of Haredi War Dead.’ ” The gist of the article is that a group of hesder yeshiva students has taken the initiative to search for and map out the graves of their fellow comrades, fallen haredi soldiers, whose families buried them in civilian cemeteries, shunning military funerals at Mt. ...
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View from Central Park

I was floored

WALKING through Crestmoor Park the other Shabbat, a couple, the guy’s head covered with a yarmulke and tzitzit (four-cornered tassles) protruding from his shirt, the woman at his side dressed in a long skirt and her head completely wrapped in a scarf — greeted me with “Shabbat Shalom.” I naturally responded warmly in kind, with my own “Shabbat Shalom.” Ah, a lantzman. Denver Jewry used to have that small village kind of feeling in which everyone knew everyone, at least when it came ...
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View From Denver

Trembling, awe, ethics: ‘Fear of G-d’

Trembling, awe, ethics: ‘Fear of G-d’THERE is no word for “accountability” in Hebrew, which, it has been suggested, is why Israeli bureaucracy runs amok, stopping people from accomplishing the simplest tasks, like getting an appointment to see a doctor. Perhaps the ultimate translation of “accountability” would be “fear of G-d” — fear of punishment and embrace of reward. Especially in an age of ersatz “self-esteem,” fear of G-d in the sense of fear of punishment is often dismissed or derogated. Love of G-d is alm...
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Shabbat Times

JTA News

From the Archive: Suriname’s Jewish settlement and non-settlement

Raffi Wineburg In 1948, Suriname — then a Dutch colony in South America — backed out of a plan to settle 30,000 European Jewish displaced persons. ... [Link]

South African president vows to fight anti-Semitism

Cnaan Liphshiz Representatives of South Africa’s Jewish community commended President Jacob Zuma’s pledge to combat anti-Semitism. ... [Link]

House unanimously approves anti-Semitism condemnation

Ron Kampeas A bipartisan congressional resolution urging increased action by the United States and other countries to address resurgent anti-Semitism passed unanimously. ... [Link]

Senate approves enhanced U.S.-Israel cooperation bill

Ron Kampeas The U.S. Senate unanimously approved a bill that would further enhance U.S.-Israel ties. ... [Link]

Elsewhere: The separation myth, diplomatic delusions, tasting Hitler’s food

Raffi Wineburg JTA rounds up noteworthy news items from the Web. ... [Link]

U.S. officials ‘not optimistic’ going into Iran talks

Ron Kampeas U.S. negotiators are not entering the latest round of nuclear talks with Iran with optimism, a top U.S. official said, citing Iran’s insistence on maintaining its uranium enrichment capability. ... [Link]

In the kitchen with Joan

Raffi Wineburg Joan Rivers may have been famous for fat-shaming, but according to a forthcoming cookbook, she liked to eat rich Ashkenazi dishes. ... [Link]

This Week in Jewish Farming: Season of abundance

Ben Harris With winter storage crops harvested and summer crops still in the ground, September is a special moment for the seasonal eater. ... [Link]

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