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Our responsibility as Americans and Jews to welcome immigrants

LIVELY OPINION

FOR MORE than 200 years, our tradition of welcoming immigrants from around the world has given us a tremendous advantage over other nations.”

So began President Obama’s speech two weeks ago, as he announced executive action on immigration to increase border security, retain skilled immigrants to benefit our economy, prioritize deportations to focus on criminals, and create a mechanism for certain undocumented immigrants to become accountable citizens.

The legality of this unilateral approach is being debated fiercely among the chattering class (although among actual legal experts, there seems to be more consensus that it is within the bounds of presidential authority).

As a rabbi, I offer here not a legal or political opinion, but rather a Jewish reflection on immigration.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 04 December 2014 15:05 )

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Rabbi’s extreme views on Arabs find mixed reception

Rabbi’s extreme views on Arabs find mixed receptionNEW YORK — If Rabbi Steven Pruzansky of Teaneck, NJ, had his way, Arab rioters and stone throwers would be shot with live ammunition. Arabs would be barred from the Temple Mount for six months. Any village from which two or more terrorists originated would be razed and its residents deported. Arab terrorists would be executed, their bodies cremated and buried with dead pigs, their families deported and their homes destroyed or given to Jews. “There is a war for the land of Israel that is b...

Last Updated ( Friday, 28 November 2014 10:19 )

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St. Louis Jewish take on Ferguson

St. Louis Jewish take on FergusonFERGUSON, MO., is ablaze with fury over the St. Louis County grand jury’s Nov. 24 decision not to indict Officer Darren Wilson for killing unarmed African-American teen Michael Brown on Aug. 9, 2014. The moment St. Louis prosecutor Bob McCulloch announced the jury’s ruling, Ferguson erupted in tears, disbelief and anger. Despite pleas for peaceful protests from Brown’s parents and many residents, rioters burned and looted stores in the suburb.
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Biden at the GA: Iran won't go nuclear

Biden at the GA: Iran won't go nuclearOXON HILL, Md. — From well-worn anecdotes about Golda Meir to rousing statements of support for Israel’s security, Joe Biden captured the audience in his remarks at the General Assembly of Jewish Federations of North American (JFNA) on Nov. 10. What began as a low key talk evolved into a passionate speech about the vice president’s long-standing commitment to Israel and the American Jewish community, culminating in a standing ovation. “We have a responsibility to guarantee [Israel’s]...
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RCA to review conversion system

RCA to review conversion systemNEW YORK — Tzipporah Laura LaFianza and her family have been living as Orthodox Jews for four years now. They reside in a heavily Jewish suburb of Washington, go to shul every Shabbat and keep a kosher kitchen. But they’re not Jewish — yet. A prospective Orthodox convert, LaFianza, 34, is still waiting for the all-clear from the local rabbinical court affiliated with the Rabbinical Council of America so she and her family can immerse in the mikveh, or Jewish ritual bath, and formally bec...
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