The scholars, journalists and concerned citizens were there for a conference whose title could hardly be weightier or more ominous: "The Collapse of Europe, the Rise of Islam, and the Consequences for the United States."
In Los Angeles, the most diverse city in the world, we Jews have grappled long and hard with our sense of place in America. Ultimately, having found our "place in the sun," we have forged meaningful relations with many of the communities that make up this complicated goulash.
It's Friday night, and as I wander toward the entrance of Temple Emanuel, a Reform synagogue in Beverly Hills, an usher approaches and asks brightly, "Are you with the choir?" I'm African American, but I'm not with the choir, at least not with the choir of Temple Bryant A.M.E. Church, which is visiting the synagogue tonight. I smile through a twinge of annoyance.
Like many hothead progressives around the world, I preach antiracism, teach multiculturalism and recognize the United States to be a politically and culturally imperialistic society.
Proper revolutionary that I am, I have no problem with guerrilla warfare against oppressive regimes, and I fully recognize that "terrorism" can be a political term used to invalidate the violent behavior of one group and justify that of another.
One might say I'm an all-around, groovy radical. And yet, I've got a major problem with compassion for Palestinian suicide bombers blowing up Israeli citizens
Among those who care about public education, "multiculturalism" is one of today's favorite buzzwords. But at the Community School, a magnet campus that falls under the auspices of the Los Angeles Unified School District, the concept of multicultural education has been in place for 25 years.