In 2006, the State of Israel proclaimed Martha and Waitsill Sharp “Righteous Among the Nations” – an honor bestowed by Yad Vashem, the Holocaust museum and memorial in Jerusalem, upon non-Jews who risked their lives to save Jews during the Holocaust. The Sharps became two of only five Americans so recognized.
For all the talk about Israel being the “third rail” of Jewish life – and there is no denying that its politics can be divisive – in truth, communities can find a lot of common ground. Most American Jews occupy the spacious center located between the poles of the extreme right, with its ideology of “Greater Israel,” and the extreme left, which rejects the very foundations of Israel’s right to exist
Venerable film critic Molly Haskell unveils a warm respect for the blockbuster filmmaker, discussing his evolution from wunderkind to serious filmmaker through the lens of his very personal struggle with Judaism.
As scientists learn more about disease-causing mutations in the Ashkenazi Jewish gene pool, it becomes increasingly urgent for couples in this demographic to undergo genetic testing before having children.
More than two million Jews from Eastern Europe arrived in the United States between 1880 and 1924, the majority of them secular.
German Lutheran Pastor Martin Niemöller is best known for his celebrated confession. These oft-quoted words at Holocaust commemorative observances might lead you to believe that Niemöller was sympathetic to Jewish suffering during the Holocaust. Not true.
Judy Glickman Lauder’s photographs in Beyond the Shadows: The Holocaust and the Danish Exception are so masterfully crafted they make us feel as if we ourselves are on the train tracks approaching Treblinka, behind the barbed wire fence at Majdanek, at the entrance of Dachau under the sign Arbeit Macht Frei, outside a gas chamber at Auschwitz. Faced with these images, we can’t help but imagine what it must have been like for the millions of innocents who entered these passageways, in most cases never to return.
Many American Jews shuddered as Donald Trump proclaimed, “The American Dream is dead!” and “America first!” to rally crowds during his 2016 presidential campaign. We remembered how, in the late 1930s and early 1940s, these slogans were an open call for virulent anti-Semitism, pro-Nazi sentiment, white supremacy, xenophobia, and nativism.
At the core of being Jewish is a fundamental demand for justice. Demanding justice involves asking others to work toward a more just world, but it also involves asking ourselves to do that work.