January 23, 2009

Looking Back

Published January 15, 2009, issue of January 23, 2009.
  • Print
  • Share Share

100 Years Ago in the Forward

“My dear husband! I have decided that I can no longer live with you. I am writing this letter with a wounded heart. My life with you has been unhappy because I do not love you. I am in love with Cohen and the two of us are leaving, far far away. Consider me dead. For you, I am no longer among the living. You will get married again and you will see that you should have taken better care of me.” The preceding letter was left for Mr. Goldstein, a farmer in the Catskills, by his wife, who left town with his former business partner. Not only did she leave her husband, but she also left her two children, the youngest of whom is only 2.

75 Years Ago in the Forward

A priest who rented time on WARD, a Jewish radio station in Brooklyn, launched an antisemitic attack before he was cut off and replaced by Jewish programming. The priest, Homer Thomalson, had read his “speech” to the head of the station beforehand, and it was apparently innocuous. But once he got on the air, he began to let go with all kinds of antisemitic invective. The owner of the station, Rabbi Aaron Kronenberg, says he plans to press charges against the priest. In a related matter, it has been reported that Hitler has been funding antisemitic agitation in the United States. It is not known if Thomalson’s outburst is connected to this.

50 Years Ago in the Forward

It used to be that when a Jew died, his or her children would say Kaddish. But times have changed. Nowadays, there is a Kaddish industry whereby people simply pay a synagogue functionary, or even some lazy Jew willing to make a buck, to say Kaddish for them. Many elderly Jews in America expect that their children will say Kaddish for them when they pass away. That is the least they can expect. But here in America, the Kaddish industry is helping to bury the little bit of Yiddishkeit that keeps people going to synagogue.

The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Find us on Facebook!
  • "What I didn’t realize before my trip was that I would leave Uganda with a powerful mandate on my shoulders — almost as if I had personally left Egypt."
  • Is it better to have a young, fresh rabbi, or a rabbi who stays with the same congregation for a long time? What do you think?
  • Why does the leader of Israel's social protest movement now work in a beauty parlor instead of the Knesset?
  • What's it like to be Chagall's granddaughter?
  • Is pot kosher for Passover. The rabbis say no, especially for Ashkenazi Jews. And it doesn't matter if its the unofficial Pot Day of April 20.
  • A Ukrainian rabbi says he thinks the leaflets ordering Jews in restive Donetsk to 'register' were a hoax. But the disturbing story still won't die.
  • Some snacks to help you get through the second half of Passover.
  • You wouldn't think that a Soviet-Jewish immigrant would find much in common with Gabriel Garcia Marquez. But the famed novelist once helped one man find his first love. http://jd.fo/f3JiS
  • Can you relate?
  • The Forverts' "Bintel Brief" advice column ran for more than 65 years. Now it's getting a second life — as a cartoon.
  • Half of this Hillel's members believe Jesus was the Messiah.
  • Vinyl isn't just for hipsters and hippies. Israeli photographer Eilan Paz documents the most astonishing record collections from around the world:http://jd.fo/g3IyM
  • Could Spider-Man be Jewish? Andrew Garfield thinks so.
  • Most tasteless video ever? A new video shows Jesus Christ dying at Auschwitz.
  • "It’s the smell that hits me first — musty, almost sweet, emanating from the green felt that cradles each piece of silver cutlery in its own place." Only one week left to submit! Tell us the story of your family's Jewish heirloom.
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?

We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.