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racial inequality

Collage of four Black individuals holding signs that say EQUAL

As fulfilling as it was to engage in Shavuot programs, a lot weighs on me. With COVID-19 continuing to ravage Black communities and racist violence all over the news, I almost feel like it’s Yom Kippur instead – the time when Jews are supposed to be most aware of their own mortality.

Chris Harrison
Young Black woman wearing a face mask outdoors

The COVID-19 crisis has impacted nearly everyone across the globe, and the Jewish community is no exception. Those of us who are Jews of Color – comprising approximately 12 percent of the U.S. Jewish community – feel a particular sense of isolation and anxiety.

Chris Harrison
Still from the film Just Mercy showing Michael B Jordans character comforting the character played by Jamie Foxx

I carry the trauma of my ancestors, who were kidnapped and enslaved, who survived post-abolition racist terrorism, and who survived devastating Jim Crow laws. I also carry the history of the Jewish people, who have survived countless acts of violence, forced conversion, and genocide.

Chris Harrison
Reform Jewish students visiting Selma, Alabama

Learn how a trip in the South helped a group of Reform Jewish teens confront racial inequality and explore their own connections to promoting racial justice.

Rabbi Ellen Nemhauser
Racially segregated water fountains in the south

In 1961, I asked my rabbi if he thought I should join the Freedom Riders, who challenged segregated seating in the south. He said, “If I were in your shoes, I would go.”

Rabbi Philip M. Posner
Sunset profile of a child holding the hand of an adult and looking up toward them

Now that I’m a parent, teaching my children about racism, classism, and homophobia is as important to me as teaching them about their 5,000-year-old Jewish heritage. 

Rachel Hall
Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in Washington, D.C.

On MLK Jr. Day, we often see a sanitized, nonconfrontational version of King that is far from the radical activist who was reviled during his time for his justice work.

Chris Harrison
Many pairs of hands forming hearts

This essay about Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. written a year after the civil rights leader was slain, is from a collection of unpublished writings by Rabbi Chaim Stern, z"l.

Rabbi Chaim Stern, z"l
Hand in a pink sweater holding the new Moral Resistance book

We caught up with some of the contributors of the new anthology Moral Resistance and Spiritual Authority to learn about their perspectives on the spiritual origins of the Jewish pursuit of justice.

Abby Levine
Martin Luther King statue

I joined the Poor People’s Campaign because I am answering the call of the One who calls me to act concerning the poor and disenfranchised.

Rabbi Lisa Bellows

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