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Jewish Journal

Tag: Opinion

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  • Not a Fan—a declaration of independence

    By Mindy Leaf

    3 days ago

    Superhero summer has blasted down among us once again. The past weekend saw some 43,000 Florida Supercon attendees at the Miami Beach Convention Center (established in 2006, it's the largest comic-con-like convention in South Florida). Next week's San Diego Comic-con (the original,...

  • American Football gets an F!

    By Mindy Leaf

    6 days ago

    Attention all parents! Before signing your kids up for the football team at camp — or during the school year — you must read this.

    And the results are in: Playing football is bad for your health. It's bad even if you haven't suffered multiple concussions — even if you haven't...

  • Starry Nights

    By Mindy Leaf

    1 week ago

    It's not every night one has a transcendent experience while taking out the garbage. But that's exactly how I felt several nights running when I was struck by dazzling lights in the western sky. At first I thought this super bright "star" in front of me — more like three stars put...

  • The University of California should stand for free speech

    2 weeks ago

    On the surface, the UC system adopting a definition of anti-Semitism seems like a no-brainer. After all, the University should oppose all forms of racism and discrimination, and have meaningful definitions to guide its policies of enforcement. However, the definition of...

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  • I am NOT impressed!—a rant against ‘The Man’

    By Mindy Leaf

    2 weeks ago

    I'm generally thought of a "nice" person. At least I've been told so often enough. I'm naturally kind, sympathetic, conscientious about things I promise and like to make people laugh (or at least crack a smile). I treat most everyone I meet — be they the Queen of England (well I...

  • Travels with TOPS!—when every ride is a new spine-chilling adventure

    By Mindy Leaf

    2 weeks ago

    It was the thrill ride of a lifetime. With the bursts of speed and sharp, unexpected turns, it left me breathless and hanging on for dear life. The only problem was the sharp smell of alcohol that permeated the mini-bus. And the fact that it was late at night, and our driver kept...

  • Bad Cat!

    By Mindy Leaf

    2 weeks ago

    The cat pooped on the couch again, and my husband isn't talking to me. That is, he's only deigning to address me if absolutely necessary, ending each sentence with, "Get rid of the cat!" Does he really think endless repetition will change my mind?

    We've been over this subject ad...

  • What we are, and what we are not

    2 weeks ago

    I recently was delighted to meet a former Hebrew school student and his mother at the market.

    The woman proudly shared that her son was active in combating anti-Semitism in his school, reporting swastikas on lockers and publicly condemning the hostility some of them were...

  • Reading Yesterday’s News

    By Mindy Leaf

    3 weeks ago

    My house has been hit by another avalanche — several actually — of piles of newspapers. We Leafs are members of the idiosyncratic minority who still harbor affection for printed matter of the tactile variety. In addition to our collections of books — shelved, stacked and otherwise...

  • Saving the World—one painting (or sculpture) at a time

    By Mindy Leaf

    3 weeks ago

    Once I would have been called an "art groupie." From creating art as a kid to following in the footsteps of my favorite masters--both in technique and training--I allowed art to rule my life. At least for a time, before the hard knocks of reality took hold.

    But I never totally...

  • Price-Less Art

    By Mindy Leaf

    3 weeks ago

    A new musician-friend of mine recently handed me his latest CD, which I happily accepted. It was "Volume 7" in a professionally produced series, all available free of charge. I knew I wasn't on his "preferred recipient" list, as his entire output was also laid out neatly in a box...

  • Why does a Jew write for Atheists?

    June 8, 2015 | 11:11 am

    “Are you an atheist?”

    No, I explained. I’m a Jew.

    “Then why are you writing a book about atheists?”

    I’ve run into this line of questioning a lot.

    For the past several years, I’ve worked on What If I’m an Atheist?, a guidebook for teenagers who doubt or deny the existence of...

  • Attacking the messenger and not the message

    May 28, 2015 | 10:52 am

    It is sad that Barbra Miner resorts to the old ploy of attacking the messenger and not the message.

    Yes, I was upset and passionate about the presence of Jews for Jesus, Messianic Jews—also known as Hebrew Christians— and other missionaries at the Celebrate Israel Festival.

    But...

  • President Obama vs. the LA Times on anti-Semitism

    May 27, 2015 | 12:08 pm

    The Obama White House and the opinion page of the Los Angeles Times are usually in sync—but not always.  Take for example the recent conflict between President Obama and Palestinocentric UCLA Professor Saree Makdisi on anti-Semitism and how to combat it.

    In a much-discussed...

  • Fifteen answers for Dennis Prager

    May 18, 2015 | 1:39 pm

    All right, I’ll admit it. I believe I’m a progressive, and I’m proud of it. I define “progressive” as “advocating inclusivity and being ready to adapt to changing world conditions.” If that is different from the idea Dennis Prager had in mind, stop reading right now. From my point...

  • Why give Muslims a Pass?

    By David Suissa

    May 5, 2015 | 3:19 pm

    If a Christian fundamentalist holds a provocative conference attacking abortion and two violent liberal protesters show up and start shooting, do we accuse the preacher of being too provocative and igniting the violence?

    If a Muslim preacher gives a nasty public sermon calling...

  • Seeing the future

    By Rabbi Joshua Levine Grater

    April 29, 2015 | 11:15 am

    On the whole, I don’t believe in direct prophecy or in seeing the future.  But, this past Sunday evening, at the Dr. Hassan Hathout Foundation annual gathering, where I was humbled and privileged to be a speaker, I met and learned from a man who made me feel like I was seeing the...

  • Why doesn’t the world care about Palestinian refugees in Syria?

    April 22, 2015 | 9:41 am

    It’s happening again — Palestinian refugees are caught between warring factions in the Middle East and the world is reacting too slowly to their plight.

    In earlier times, Palestinian refugees found themselves in the crosshairs at the Sabra and Shatila camps, when Lebanese...

  • An open letter to Cornel West

    By Judea Pearl

    April 21, 2015 | 3:13 pm

    Judea Pearl is Chancellor’s Professor of Computer Science and Statistics at UCLA and president of the Daniel Pearl Foundation.

    Dear Professor West,

    This is a humble request sent to you from a rank-and-file Jewish professor at the University of California, Los Angeles, where you...

  • The effective way to combat anti-Israel activity on campus: Public relations

    April 13, 2015 | 3:47 pm

    There has been an incredible growth of anti-Semitism on college campuses in North America. Too often anti-Israel sentiment is simply a veiled and more culturally appropriate form of anti-Semitism. According to the Anti-Defamation League, anti-Semitic incidents on college campuses...

  • The Jewish Response to a Cheap Dress

    By Dr. Afshine Emrani

    February 28, 2015 | 3:57 pm

    Did you see blue-and-black, or were you in the white-and-gold camp?  Was your family as polarized as mine?

    I can't help it.  I am a Jewish doctor.  What seems to be a trivial, yet highly popular discussion on social media about the true colors of this $70 dress, keeps me up at...

  • So Israel is a little bit of a fixer-upper…

    By Noga Gur-Arieh

    December 24, 2014 | 8:33 am

    In recent years, it seems as if every policy Israeli decision makers issue is followed by massive, harsh criticism by the global community. World leaders use every opportunity to look down at Israel's leaders, judge them for their "problematic decision" and urge them to reconsider...

  • 19 years since the murder of Yitzhak Rabin – we can’t let democracy die

    By Noga Gur-Arieh

    November 4, 2014 | 11:55 am

    Where were you on the day Yitzhak Rabin was murdered?


    This is a question every Israeli can answer. We all remember that night, November 4, 1995. A big rally took place in the heart of Tel-Aviv, under the title "Yes to peace, No to violence." In his speech there, Prime Minister...

  • My brother, the soldier

    By Noga Gur-Arieh

    October 29, 2014 | 9:48 am

    To my dear brother:

    I remember the four months between your high school graduation and your recruitment day. You played as many PlayStation games as possible, and rented all the movies you could see. You wanted to live each moment of freedom to its fullest, before you had to hand...

  • Contemplating hypocrisy and double standards

    By Noga Gur-Arieh

    October 22, 2014 | 8:51 am

    Hypocrisy – the ability to do certain things and then criticize others for doing the exact same thing, is part of being a human being. We do it constantly, and in the age of social networks –we have no shame in sharing our hypocrite thoughts with the world. We try to hide it behind...

  • In a perfect world, the UK Parliament would have looked different

    By Noga Gur-Arieh

    October 15, 2014 | 8:20 am

    In a perfect world, George Galloway would have been removed from office, and Mike Freer would have stayed and fight. Sadly, we don’t live in a perfect world…


    In the past couple of days, headlines here were all about the UK, and its House of Commons' controversial vote to...

  • My Yom Kippur Lesson

    By Noga Gur-Arieh

    October 2, 2014 | 8:48 am

    Yom Kippur is our time to reflect, think and ask for forgiveness. Not because we have to, but because we want to. It is our time to look back at all the times we were so convinced we’re right that we let our fingers type or our mouth speak harsh words towards others. Sometimes, it...

  • Summing up the past two months - between happiness and frustration.

    By Noga Gur-Arieh

    September 1, 2014 | 8:41 am

    How can I sum up this crazy summer?


    In the past eight weeks I have been through an emotional roller coaster. I’ve been up and down, high and low, frustrated and hopeful, but most of all – surprised, because of so many things…


    What started as yet another July, where my...

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