For veteran Pennsylvania senator Arlen Specter, political races are a way of life. But at 80, the Jewish politician is facing a new kind of challenge. For the first time in decades, he is running on the Democratic side of the political map, trying to win a tough upcoming primary and a November race that pollsters now see as neck and neck.
Oxygen? Check. Spacesuits? Check. Signed presidential statement declaring May to be Jewish American Heritage Month? NASA’s next space mission will carry that, too.
Most American Jews have a grandmother, aunt or family friend who plays mah-jongg. In fact, the game was so popular among Jewish women in the 20th century that Eddie Cantor wrote a song called “Since Ma Is Playing Mah Jong,” and Woody Allen, in his film “Annie Hall,” had the character in the role of his mother play it on piano.
If doling out advice — from parenting to relationships to spirituality — to American Jews and gentiles weren’t enough, celebrity rabbi Shmuley Boteach has gone for the big score: the bishop of Rome, the head of the Catholic Church, the pope.
Jane R. Eisner, editor of the Forward, has been selected for a 2009 Sigma Delta Chi award for excellence in journalism for a series of three editorials she wrote about gender and family issues.
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