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Jewish Journal

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  • On a sharing economy and politics

    September 8, 2014 | 10:01 am

    Uber has pulled off what few others can these days: The beloved car service (if I’m allowed to describe it so prosaically) has united politicians of all persuasions. Republicans, Democrats, and Libertarians are all vying to outdo each other in portraying the popular company, and...

  • Israeli-Americans Get Their Own Birthright Trip

    By tessc

    September 5, 2014 | 10:27 pm

    When Eden Bennun — who had to give up on plans to attend a Birthright Israel trip this summer because of a job — heard about a new trip aimed specifically at Israeli-Americans, she thought: “It must be fate.”

    Both of her parents were born in Israel, and, although she grew up in...

  • Statement of Principles: Ve-ahavta le-re`acha kamocha: Love Thy Neighbor as Thyself

    September 5, 2014 | 4:11 pm

    1)    We, members of the Los Angeles Jewish community, write to express our anguish and sorrow over the loss of life and scale of destruction in the recent conflict between Israel and Gaza.   We condemn Hamas’ war-time tactics, especially its disregard for the residents of Israel,...

  • Asking For My Own Forgiveness

    By Beit T'shuvah

    September 5, 2014 | 1:46 pm

    By Rabbi Mark Borovitz

    It is another one of those nights! I woke up after 4 hours of sleep and could not go back to sleep. My mind started racing and I just now figured out why: I am in the middle of my Inventory for Yom Kippur. I have a form that looks at how I take actions that...

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  • Enslaving Expectations

    By Dr. Afshine Emrani

    September 4, 2014 | 6:44 pm

    In 2012, the late Joan Rivers said that Johnny Carson had given her the biggest break of her career.  She became very close to him and even substitute hosted when he was on vacation.  When she accepted her own show, opposite his, Carson cut all tie with Rivers.

    I once acted as an...

  • Is the next big (Jewish) baseball star here in Los Angeles?

    By Jared Sichel

    September 3, 2014 | 2:19 pm

    As the baseball flared into short center field in the bottom of the 2nd inning at Dodger Stadium last night, most of the crowd stood up and gave the batter, Joc Pederson, now standing on 1st base, an excited, prolonged ovation. 

    Sitting a few rows behind home plate, my friends...

  • What Ferguson can learn from Los Angeles

    By Raphael J. Sonenshein

    September 3, 2014 | 11:34 am

    For students of Los Angeles history, the tragic saga of Ferguson, Mo., rings bells. A brutal police department, accountable to no one and backed by a hostile white mayor and police chief, faces off with a black community that seemingly has little recourse. A largely white City Hall...

  • Dodgers’ Jewish phenom Joc Pederson gets first Major League hit [VIDEO]

    September 3, 2014 | 10:41 am

    It wasn't pretty – but the beginning of the Joc Pederson era began with a flare last night. With two outs, nobody on and a 2-2 count the young center-fielder hit a blooper over Washington Nationals' second baseman Asdrúbal Cabrera for his first major league hit. Watch the video below:

  • Meet the Jewish founders of Tinder

    By Jared Sichel

    August 27, 2014 | 11:53 am

    Finding dates used to require approaches such as hiring matchmakers, signing up for dancing and cooking classes, attending synagogue, asking friends for help, or, for the least energetic, merely creating a cursory profile on sites such as JDate.

    But now, thanks to apps such as...

  • My Return Home

    By Dr. Afshine Emrani

    August 26, 2014 | 6:26 pm

    1978-2014.

    My younger self awaits me in that old home. He stares at the future that would be me; I ponder the past that was him. We connect on a bridge made of yearning and nostalgia. Hesitantly, we embrace.

    We fall to our knees and sob. I ask if he ever told dad about how he...

  • Meeting the owner of the L.A. urban farm where Kimbra wrote “The Golden Echo”

    By Jared Sichel

    August 21, 2014 | 12:17 pm

    The setting was about as unorthodox and unique as the woman.

    Standing on a sidewalk in Koreatown, Rosa Goudsmit, 42, was watching her two baby children, Benjamin and Devrah, who fell asleep in the front seat of her Chevy 3500 truck, which she uses to safely transport bees—yes,...

  • Journey to Uganda: Hunger, thirst and happiness

    By David Suissa

    August 20, 2014 | 5:44 pm

    It was  a scene that repeated itself every time we arrived at a new village in rural Uganda. First, the villagers, who were expecting us, came running toward us as we unloaded our tired bodies from our large, rickety van after hours of slogging on dirt roads — roads that made you...

  • On the frontlines of reintegrating LAUSD

    By Bill Boyarsky

    August 20, 2014 | 12:22 pm

    In a city and county that tends to be segregated by race and income, it’s inspiring to meet people trying to reverse the trend. That’s particularly true in the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), where a number of parents, many of them Jewish, have been trying for years to...

  • Six days of quiet in Israel: A brief look back

    By Jared Sichel

    August 19, 2014 | 2:29 pm

    Now back in Los Angeles, I'm more convinced than ever that my shuttle journalism peacekeeping mission to Israel was a great success. Let it be noted for the record that:

    a) The rocket fire ended just before I arrived on Aug. 12 and resumed shortly after I departed on Aug. 19, and...

  • The Journey Towards T’Shuvah

    By Beit T'shuvah

    August 15, 2014 | 11:33 am

    By Adam Siegel

    Well, we’ve reached the point of summer when we can’t believe that people are starting to talk about the High Holidays.  As the daylight begins to shorten, members of the Beit T’Shuvah community are beginning their own preparations.

    The High Holidays are a time...

  • Schmuck and the City

    By Nikki Tabibian

    August 13, 2014 | 11:57 am

         During my first months on the East Coast, snowfall, rain and hail hit The City, while a storm of vexing questions plagued my frozen suburban mind:

         How many layers are too many?
         Would it be appropriate to wear a hijab to fight off a 30-degree chill? 
         Where...

  • Medical Lessons From Robin Williams

    By Dr. Afshine Emrani

    August 11, 2014 | 5:23 pm

    Dear Robin,

    You were such an inspiration.  You showed us courage in the face of adversity, making us laugh while your own soul was broken.

    Even now, at the time of your death, we find ourselves in a recently forgotten place- where all people, regardless of faith, color, or...

  • Demonstrations over war on Gaza shut down Wilshire (video)

    By Ryan Torok

    August 10, 2014 | 3:52 pm

    Pro-Palestinian demonstrators marched on Wilshire Boulevard today, closing down the street. Their ultimate destination was the headquarters of the Consulate General of Israel in Los Angeles.

    The Aug. 10 rally drew pro-Palestinian, anti-Zionist demonstrators. Photo by Ryan...

  • Religion:  It’s A Dog’s Life!

    By Dr. Afshine Emrani

    August 6, 2014 | 5:26 pm

    "C’est une vie de chien!"

    “It's a dog's life!”  The French use this expression to shrug their frustration at the overwhelming struggles of life.  To me, it is a statement of how random our most important beliefs are.

    Growing up in Iran, many Muslims believed dogs to be ritually...

  • Los Angeles community reacts to violence in the Gaza war

    August 6, 2014 | 4:05 pm

    Two simultaneous events in Los Angeles last week that focused on Israel’s war in the Gaza Strip revealed a community split between progressives who expressed some criticism of Israel even as they supported its efforts at security, and more unconditional supporters of the Jewish...

  • Los Angeles City Hall supports Israel

    By Ryan Torok

    August 5, 2014 | 4:27 pm

    During a press conference at Los Angeles City Hall on Aug. 5, the city’s top leadership expressed solidarity with the State of Israel.

    Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti; City Controller Ron Galperin; City Attorney Mike Feuer; City Council President Herb Wesson and President Pre...

  • Why I Made Aliyah During the War!

    By LiAmi Lawrence

    August 5, 2014 | 11:43 am


    Last week in the middle of the war in Israel I made aliyah!  Why would I leave my easy life and  comfortable apartment exactly on the Beverly Hills border (the next house is Beverly Hills, if there is an earthquake I would land in Beverly Hills) to come to a small expensive one...

  • Pro-Palestinian protest in Westwood draws thousands, causes Wilshire to shut down

    By Ryan Torok

    August 2, 2014 | 3:05 pm

    [UPDATE – Aug. 4] Law enforcement made one arrest in connection with "sexual battery," according to LAPD-West L.A. Division Officer Hornback. No further details were available.

    Los Angeles County Sheriff Department estimated 1,500 people turned out to the event.

    [Aug. 2] On...

  • Ayelet Waldman’s new book is more than a Holocaust novel

    July 31, 2014 | 2:17 pm

    I devoured all 331 pages of Ayelet Waldman’s gripping and powerful novel, “Love and Treasure” (Alfred A. Knopf) in one 14-hour marathon on my flight from Los Angeles to Israel. Before the El Al plane made its descent into Ben Gurion Airport, I began this review with Waldman’s...

  • Conflict in Israel heightens local security concerns

    By Ryan Torok

    July 30, 2014 | 1:12 pm

    Israel’s Gaza War has some Los Angeles Jewish institutions addressing security concerns. 

    At Adat Ari El, a Conservative congregation in Valley Village, Executive Director Michal Lesner said the institution is “boosting” security. This includes increasing the visibility of...

  • Two Los Angeles rallies held criticizing Israeli response in Gaza

    By Ryan Torok

    July 30, 2014 | 12:15 pm

    Yossie Khen, an Israeli based in West Hills, served in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) decades ago during the Israel-Egypt War of Attrition, but he doesn’t believe the current conflict in Gaza can be solved with military action.

    “A viable Palestinian state in alongside [updated...

  • Hiatus Schmiatus

    By Nikki Tabibian

    July 29, 2014 | 12:13 pm

    A message from the author:

    My dearest readers and adoring fan (hey Grandma),

            When I began writing Le’chaim To Laughter, I was committed to documenting my memoires as a city gal with nothing but comic relief and hummus to help her get by. Yet, as I turned the page on...

  • Struck by Venice lightning

    July 28, 2014 | 6:16 pm

    On Sunday afternoon, I was knee-deep in the ocean, right next to the Venice Fishing Pier, when the deadly lightning bolt hit the water. This rare bit of weather would kill at least one person and injure 13 others, making national news. But I didn’t know it right then.

    I had gone...

  • Anti-Semitic voicemail targets far-left Israel group

    By Ryan Torok

    July 28, 2014 | 3:48 pm

    L.A. Jews for Peace – a far-left organization that criticizes Israel’s policies toward Palestinians – has received a voicemail in which members of the organization are referred to as, “Jew traitors, filthy Jew traitors, bastard Jew traitors.”

    L.A. Jews for Peace representative...

  • When anti-Semitism Strikes Science and Medicine!

    By Dr. Afshine Emrani

    July 27, 2014 | 9:08 pm

    On July 23rd, The Lancet published an Open Letter describing the situation in Gaza (http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(14)61044-8/fulltext).

    The Lancet, a top tier scientific journal by all accounts, did a great dis-service to the medical community....

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