Steven I. Weiss


Theology of 'True Detective'

By Steven I. Weiss

Theology of 'True Detective'
You don’t have to go far to find people utterly disappointed in the season finale of “True Detective.” Many websites have spilled thousands of words expressing upset that the episode didn’t expose any remaining mysteries about the criminal acts driving its plot.Read More


Doctors Say Circumcision Ritual Still Not Safe

By Steven I. Weiss

A long-simmering dispute over a controversial circumcision procedure with allegedly life-threatening risks will land like a hot potato on the desk of incoming New York state Governor Eliot Spitzer this January, after the administration of outgoing Republican Governor George Pataki reached an agreement with Hasidic leaders on precautions that medical experts say will do little to reduce the risks.Read More


All Aboard: Studytime

By Steven I. Weiss

Any compendium of Yiddish jokes is chock-full of items about Jews on a train. They talk, they eat, they sleep — all in the buildup toward some punch line about how Jews traveled in the old country. It was the “Jews on a train” phenomenon that Romanian-born Rabbi Moshe Shapiro was hoping to address when he launched the Daf Yomi, a page-a-day schedule for learning Talmud, in 1934. The idea behind it, he said, was that when two Jews met randomly in their travels, they could discuss the day’s Talmud portion together.Read More


Israeli Rightist Calls for Transfer of Arabs

By Steven I. Weiss

Effi Eitam, a leader of the joint Knesset faction aligned with Orthodox Zionists worldwide, drew swift condemnation this week from secular American Jewish organizations because of his call “to expel the great majority of the Arabs” from the West Bank and “sweep the Israeli Arabs from the political system.” But for the most part, his ideological allies in the United States have remained silent.Read More


Orthodox Rabbis Eye Liberal Seminary

By Steven I. Weiss

The main union of Modern Orthodox rabbis in America is preparing to vote on whether to admit graduates from an upstart Manhattan seminary.Most of the 1,000 members of the Rabbinical Council of America are graduates of Modern Orthodoxy’s flagship institution, Yeshiva University. But the RCA’s executive committee is scheduled to vote in JuneRead More






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  • "I’ve never bought illegal drugs, but I imagine a small-time drug deal to feel a bit like buying hummus underground in Brooklyn."
  • We try to show things that get less exposed to the public here. We don’t look to document things that are nice or that people would like. We don’t try to show this place as a beautiful place.”
  • A new Gallup poll shows that only 25% of Americans under 35 support the war in #Gaza. Does this statistic worry you?
  • “You will stomp us into the dirt,” is how her mother responded to Anya Ulinich’s new tragicomic graphic novel. Paul Berger has a more open view of ‘Lena Finkle’s Magic Barrel." What do you think?
  • PHOTOS: Hundreds of protesters marched through lower Manhattan yesterday demanding an end to American support for Israel’s operation in #Gaza.
  • Does #Hamas have to lose for there to be peace? Read the latest analysis by J.J. Goldberg.
  • This is what the rockets over Israel and Gaza look like from space:
  • "Israel should not let captives languish or corpses rot. It should do everything in its power to recover people and bodies. Jewish law places a premium on pidyon shvuyim, “the redemption of captives,” and proper burial. But not when the price will lead to more death and more kidnappings." Do you agree?
  • Slate.com's Allison Benedikt wrote that Taglit-Birthright Israel is partly to blame for the death of American IDF volunteer Max Steinberg. This is why she's wrong:
  • Israeli soldiers want you to buy them socks. And snacks. And backpacks. And underwear. And pizza. So claim dozens of fundraising campaigns launched by American Jewish and Israeli charities since the start of the current wave of crisis and conflict in Israel and Gaza.
  • The sign reads: “Dogs are allowed in this establishment but Zionists are not under any circumstances.”
  • Is Twitter Israel's new worst enemy?
  • More than 50 former Israeli soldiers have refused to serve in the current ground operation in #Gaza.
  • "My wife and I are both half-Jewish. Both of us very much felt and feel American first and Jewish second. We are currently debating whether we should send our daughter to a Jewish pre-K and kindergarten program or to a public one. Pros? Give her a Jewish community and identity that she could build on throughout her life. Cons? Costs a lot of money; She will enter school with the idea that being Jewish makes her different somehow instead of something that you do after or in addition to regular school. Maybe a Shabbat sing-along would be enough?"
  • Undeterred by the conflict, 24 Jews participated in the first ever Jewish National Fund— JDate singles trip to Israel. Translation: Jews age 30 to 45 travelled to Israel to get it on in the sun, with a side of hummus.
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