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Virtual Talmud

Virtual Talmud

March 2008 Archives

Some Parting Reflections

Well, loyal readers, all good things must come to an end and we’ve been informed that this particular experiment in blogging as a forum for creating wide-ranging discussion on topics of interest to contemporary Jews has run its course. Maybe […]

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Obama’s Lesson and The Jewish Community

There are few times in this blog’s history when I have felt that Rabbi Grossman was one hundred percent correct in her criticisms of my ideas. However, a few weeks ago she called me out for citing a few crack […]

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The Future of Race Relations

As a post-baby boomer, it is interesting to me to see how much of today’s conversation about racial relations is still rooted in the 1960s experience and rhetoric of the civil rights struggle, and the disenchantment that followed. Many in […]

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Wright and Wrong of Race and Jews

Years ago, as a rabbinical student, I was one of a group of rabbinical students who visited an African American seminary in Atlanta. My fellow rabbinical students and I expected an uplifting weekend of interfaith sharing like we had experienced […]

Spitzer’s Mask

It may be a twist of fate that Eliot Spitzer faced his downfall a few days before Purim, the Jewish holiday that entertains how people are often not what they appear. Spitzer appeared to be someone who defended and upheld […]

Drowning with Spitzer

My Dad had a terrific insight on the lessons learned from the Spitzer fiasco and the rise and tarnishing of his successor, David Paterson. In Ethics of our Fathers we are told that Hillel “once saw a man’s skull floating […]

Why Prostitution Degrades Us All

posted by akornfeld

In this Jewish season of farce, a lecherous ruler (King Achashverosh) is mocked for his desire to have a pretty woman (Queen Vashti) dance for his court wearing nothing but the royal crown. Truth, of course, is even stranger than […]

Haman, Anti-Semitism, and the Internet

It has been said that if you say something often enough and emphatically enough, more and more people will believe it. Something that at first may seem obviously ridiculous with repetition becomes accepted fact. That is why Holocaust deniers are […]

Hate Is at Home on the Internet

It is a truism that the power of the Internet is to allow for the proliferation and dissemination of information without passing through central sources (newspapers, radio, TV) that would screen or block them. The advantages are obvious: repressive governments […]

The Internet and Anti-Semitism

The other night my friend, Jewish media guru Steven I. Weiss, asked me to go with him to hear Bernard Henri Levy’s State of World Jewry lecture at the 92nd street Y in Manhattan. Levy can be very entertaining and […]

Brief Reflection on Thursday’s Tragedy in Jerusalem

I share with the Beliefnet community a message I sent to my congregation last night: The escalating violence in Israel has not escaped anybody’s notice over the past week, beginning with the killing of a Sderot resident by a Hamas-launched […]

The Bombing and Bloodbath in God’s House

A Palestinian gunmen today walked into Merkaz Harav Yeshiva gunning down eight boys in the middle of prayers. This horrible act of terror is but another sad chapter in this 60-year war. Yet, it represents an emerging trend in the […]

What’s Wrong with Hecksher Tzedek?

We took up the question of the Conservative Movement’s Hecksher Tzedek a few months back and I am glad Rabbi Grossman brought it up again. At the time I was taken aback by the negative comments that some had posted […]

How ‘Kosher’ Is Kosher Food?

If the term ‘kosher’ means fit, or done right, is the food we eat ‘kosher” if it’s produced using unethical practices? What if it meets all other technical requirements? Conservative Rabbi Morris Allen says, “no”. For Rabbi Allen, it is […]

Stop Jewish Smear Tactics Against Obama

Rabbi Stern is right to protest that we should not be judging someone on their religious affiliation. However, he is wrong to uncritically pass along the very information that has been circulating in anti-Obama email smears. If Rabbi Stern had […]

Previous Posts

The Task Is Never Finished
It has been heartwarming to read the warm responses to Rabbi Waxman's post asking Beliefnet to reconsider its decision to cancel Virtual Talmud. Virtual Talmud offered an alternative model for internet communications: civil discourse pursued in ...

posted 12:31:46pm Apr. 03, 2008 | read full post »

Some Parting Reflections
Well, loyal readers, all good things must come to an end and we’ve been informed that this particular experiment in blogging as a forum for creating wide-ranging discussion on topics of interest to contemporary Jews has run its course. Maybe ...

posted 1:00:29pm Mar. 31, 2008 | read full post »

Obama's Lesson and The Jewish Community
There are few times in this blog’s history when I have felt that Rabbi Grossman was one hundred percent correct in her criticisms of my ideas. However, a few weeks ago she called me out for citing a few crack websites on Barak Obama’s ...

posted 12:09:08pm Mar. 31, 2008 | read full post »

The Future of Race Relations
As a post-baby boomer, it is interesting to me to see how much of today’s conversation about racial relations is still rooted in the 1960s experience and rhetoric of the civil rights struggle, and the disenchantment that followed. Many in the ...

posted 4:04:41pm Mar. 25, 2008 | read full post »

Wright and Wrong of Race and Jews
Years ago, as a rabbinical student, I was one of a group of rabbinical students who visited an African American seminary in Atlanta. My fellow rabbinical students and I expected an uplifting weekend of interfaith sharing like we had experienced ...

posted 12:50:11pm Mar. 24, 2008 | read full post »

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