On Sunday night, the Cleveland Cavaliers came back from a 3-1 deficit to win the NBA Championship. As a native Clevelander, I’m still trying to wrap my head around the fact that the terrible curse has been broken. And there's a Jewish lesson to be learned in all of it.
As a queer Jew, the solidarity I seek from other Jews is not simply ignoring the passages of Torah that are used to discriminate against LGBTQ people. I seek recognition that homophobia and transphobia actively exist in our modern Jewish community and are perversions within our interpretive tradition. I seek the acknowledgment that religion is too often used to justify discrimination against LGBTQ people.
In Orlando early Sunday, 49 people died in the deadliest mass shooting in U.S history, in an act of domestic hate and terror focused on a popular gay nightclub. May the memories of the righteous be a blessing.
Genocide has been in the news lately. On March 17th, Secretary of State John Kerry declared, “In my judgment, Daesh (ISIS) is responsible for genocide against groups in areas under its control, including Yazidis, Christians, and Shia Muslims.” But unless the world’s most powerful nation fulfills its legal and moral obligation under the Genocide Convention, thousands more men, women, and children will fall victim to the crime that once had no name.
Ten of the Titanic’s victims were buried in Halifax’s Jewish Baron de Hirsch Cemetery, but it is not known whether any of them were in fact Jews. The local rabbi, in a rush to identify Jewish victims and bury them within the prescribed time under Jewish law, reportedly spirited away 10 male bodies awaiting interment in the Protestant graveyard and instead buried them in the Jewish cemetery.
The Ruderman Family Foundation recently released The Ruderman White Paper on Media Coverage of Law Enforcement Use of Force and Disability. As an authority on the topic of disabilities, the foundation issued this groundbreaking report to share its own perspective and help readers understand this complex issue.