Blog

FAITH GONE AWRY 

This week’s Torah portion, “Shelach-Lecha” (“Send” or “Send for Yourself”), shares something with Texas Republicans’ 2022 platform. It’s frightening. Numbers 13 tells of twelve Israelite chieftains sent by Moses to scout out Canaan, the land God promised to Israel. On returning, ten “spies” display a grievous lack of faith. They concede that the land “does…

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BULLSHIT!

I have an awkward relationship with WordPress, which I use to publish my posts. A former American president has an awkward relationship with the truth. My problem is easier to deal with.  WordPress analyzes a post’s “readability.” My drafts always receive a frowning icon and a warning: “Needs Improvement.” One exception stands out. “Putin’s Secret…

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DO YOU HAVE TO BE JEWISH? 

From 1961 through the ’70s, Levy’s Real Jewish Rye Bread ran a celebrated advertising campaign in New York. It’s worth a thought when we talk about casting actors in films and on TV.  The Levy’s campaign (agency: Doyle Dane Bernbach) featured obviously non-Jewish models across the ethnic spectrum. Smiling, each held up a piece of…

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NUMBERS—BIBLICAL AND AMERICAN 

The British prime minister Benjamin Disraeli is cited for mentioning “lies, damned lies, and statistics.” Numbers can confuse us. This is true of Torah and American gun violence. This week, we begin the Book of Numbers. One year after the exodus from Egypt, God commands Moses to conduct a census of Israelite males age 20…

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POTATO KUGEL AND SHARED HUMANITY 

Last weekend in Los Angeles, Carolyn and I helped our son with a project for his summer anthropology class at Pasadena Community College. It involved a beloved family recipe and offers a lesson that should be familiar to Americans but too often isn’t. Yosi had to make a short video and write up a report…

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IN PRAISE OF A COMMON LANGUAGE 

Oscar Wilde, George Bernard Shaw and Winston Churchill all are credited with some version of: “England and America are two countries separated by one language.” That differing versions of a supposedly common language can create barriers applies within America. Language variants have created an issue between Blacks and whites and also within the Black community—as if there…

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FAREWELL, GRACE AND FRANKIE 

One of our family left us. No one died. The comedy TV series Grace and Frankie (Netflix) aged out. I feel the loss.  Seven seasons involved Carolyn and me with two elder women thrown together reminiscent of The Odd Couple. The straightlaced WASP Grace Hanson (Jane Fonda) and ex-hippie Frankie Bergstein (Lili Tomlin) were forced to live together…

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WORDLE AND BETRAYAL 

Wordle, an online word game, offers insight into what drives Congressional leaders like Mitch McConnell and Kevin McCarthy to betray this nation. Wordle players get six tries to guess a five-letter word. Feedback helps. Enter PLACE, and if E comes at the end of the mystery word, the letter shows up on a green tile.…

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INFORMED YET IGNORANT 

I recently read the novelist Saul Bellow’s nonfiction To Jerusalem and Back (1976). Bellow’s personal take on Jerusalem and Israel half-a-century ago is quite interesting. But what most fascinated me was a comment on another matter.  Well before CNN, Fox and other cable news organizations, way before the internet, social media and podcasts, Bellow wrote, “We are informed…

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FREEDOM AND WATER 

The Israelites fleeing Egypt, and Albert Sobel, the transgender protagonist of my novel Lola Flores, share something in common. Their freedom requires traversing or immersion in a body of water, source of life. Following the exodus from Egypt, the Israelites find themselves trapped between Pharaoh’s army and the Reed Sea. “Then Moses held his arm over…

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THE OLDEST GUY IN THE ROOM 

A week ago, Carolyn and I flew to Texas for a nephew’s wedding. The trip brought up separate thoughts about flying and mortality.  A 6:00 am (ugh!) flight took us from San Francisco to Dallas-Fort Worth International to change planes for Waco. We flew coach. Ugh again. Flying once was exciting and comfortable. Today, security…

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I AM NOT A UROLOGIST

Mondays, I often read “The Conversation,” a wide-ranging chat between New York Times columnists Gail Collins and Bret Stephens. This week’s, “It’s Never a Good Time for the Hunter Biden Story,” disturbed me, though it had nothing to do with the president’s son. Stephens, a conservative, supports year-round daylight savings. Collins, a liberal, doesn’t like…

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WELCOME TO THE GRAY ZONE 

Americans hoping Ukraine can resist Vladimir Putin share a common trait with many of the most memorable characters in the Hebrew Bible. This may discomfort us. Abraham and Sarah, Isaac and Rebecca, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, Aaron, Miriam, David, Solomon all exhibit real flaws. (David takes Bathsheba to wife after sending her soldier-husband, Uriah the Hittite,…

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MARTY

On March 3, I lost a friend. So did hundreds of other people. Many were closer. But Rabbi Martin Weiner (z”l) will always hold a place in my heart. Carolyn and I met Marty in 1985 when we joined Congregation Sherith Israel. Seth, then nine, entered religious school. Yosi and Aaron followed. Every Sunday morning—rain…

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WHEN SMALL STUFF IS BIG 

A 6th-century mosaic, an ancient proverb and this week’s Torah portion all relate to a recent post, “Hopping Off the Treadmill.” They comfort me. The colorful mosaic map on the floor of the Church of St. George in Madaba, Jordan—I was there—details the Holy Land, particularly Jerusalem. Originally, it contained more than two million small…

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PUTINSPEAK

Americans have nothing on Vladimir Putin when it comes to perverting language. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine (an act of “genius” twice accorded Putin by Donald Trump before the actual incursion), becomes entirely rational once you understand Putinspeak. Here are seven words to consider: Peace—order imposed by force of arms. A society without obedience to a…

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HOPPING OFF THE TREADMILL 

In the celebrated 1967 film The Graduate, Benjamin Braddock (Dustin Hoffman), a recent college grad, has no clue to his future (including seduction by Mrs. Robinson—Anne Bancroft). When I saw the movie, I could relate. A recent college graduate (English) stationed at Fort Sam Houston (San Antonio), I had no idea what I wanted to do…

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LEGITIMATE POLITICAL DISCOURSE 

Physicists and sci-fi authors often posit alternate universes. Parallel selves or others inhabit space we believe to be ours. Fantasy? Not in America.  Last Friday, the Republican National Committee censured Rep. Liz Cheney (Wyoming) and Rep. Adam Kinzinger (Illinois) for serving on the House select committee investigating January 6. According to the RNC, they “are…

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PUTIN’S SECRET DEMANDS 

Russia justifies massing 100,000 troops on its border with Ukraine in response to NATO encroachment. But Vladimir Putin recently sent Joe Biden his real demands.   “Comrade Joe: Do not mind ‘Comrade.’ Takes me back to glorious days of Soviet Union, which all Russia wishes to return. Except way things are now, situation not bad. “Enough…

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HAM AND LIMA BEANS

In 1967, my Infantry Officer Candidate School company underwent a weeklong field exercise at Fort Stewart, Georgia. We ate C-rations. They taught me a valuable lesson about pragmatism. C-rations, heated over a can of Sterno, offered a variety of main courses. The guys ate their favorites first. Beef stew was pretty much everyone’s preference.  Eventually,…

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AFTER COLLEYVILLE, WHAT?

A British Muslim, Malik Faisal Akram, took four hostages at gunpoint—including Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker—last Saturday at Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville, Texas. The hostages escaped. Akram was killed. Why do antisemitic acts still take place?  When have they not? In 2017, white supremacists marched in Charlottesville chanting “Jews will not replace us.” In 2018, a…

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COVID, TRAVEL AND LUCK

Thanks to Covid-19, Carolyn and I hadn’t seen our eldest son Seth in more than two-and-a-half years. Despite Omicron, we flew to the Seattle area to visit. There’s a lesson here. We all took precautions, isolating ourselves before the trip. Seth works from home for a major video game company. Carolyn and I avoided other…

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WISHES FOR 2022

I don’t usually make New Year’s resolutions, and I haven’t. But I do express best wishes to people who impact our lives and can make 2022 a better year for all of us. I hope that San Francisco mayor London Breed comes across an updated copy of Crimestopper’s Textbook from the old comic strip “Dick Tracy” by Chester Gould.…

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S.F. CRIME AND B.S.

Ten days ago, Mayor London Breed addressed San Francisco’s crime problem. She said something few politicians do.  Crime will be reduced, according to Breed, “when we take the steps to be more aggressive with law enforcement … and less tolerant of all the bullshit [emphasis mine] that has destroyed our city.” Crime may or may not be…

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GRAY AND OTHER TYRANNIES

Two features of San Francisco’s Mediterranean climate stand out. One is fog, which turns summer in my neighborhood into winter. The other is a response to fog-induced gloom—homes painted in cheerful colors. As to the latter, the fashion tyrants have foisted gloom upon us. Owners of houses and apartment buildings are adhering to fashionistas’ counsel…

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SLOW STREET, DEAD-END THINKING

Early in San Francisco’s COVID lockdown, the Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) initiated a “Slow Streets” program to provide safe space for pedestrians, runners and bicyclists. This lofty idea has morphed into senseless ideology.   At least two of my three daily walks take me across or along Lake, one of almost thirty streets technically limiting traffic…

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POLITICAL TRIBALISM AND LUST

POLITICAL TRIBALISM AND LUST (545) Andrew Sullivan is a British-American writer and journalist, an openly gay Catholic, and a conservative. His November 14 “60 Minutes” interview presented the levelheaded—and now rare—side of conservatism. Sullivan embraces proven values but welcomes responsible change. “The American Constitution was set up for people who can reason and aren’t afraid…

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JACOB, ESAU AND THANKSGIVING

For Jews, Yom Kippur—the Day of Atonement—is two months past. But Thanksgiving is days off, and all Americans might bear in mind a story from Torah that suggests we pay attention to atonement daily. Jacob, the younger twin of Isaac and Rebecca, purchases his brother Esau’s birthright for a bowl of lentil stew. Deduct points…

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WHEN VALOR IS OVERLOOKED

Yesterday, November 11, the nation observed Veterans Day. Some people got a day off. Others shopped for bargains. But many Americans gave thanks to those who serve and formerly did. I got an early start by being videoed for a documentary about the death of one particularly heroic soldier. 1LT Howie Schnabolk, my fraternity brother,…

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POLITICAL HATRED’S NEW SLOGAN

Many on the far right have adopted a new political theme, “Let’s Go Brandon.” Innocuous? Hardly. While free speech remains a valued American principle, this phrase poses yet another threat to our democracy.   On October 2 at Alabama’s Talladega Superspeedway, driver Brandon Brown won his first Xfinity Series stock car race. NBC Sports’ Kelli Stavast…

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WRITERS BLOCK—SORT OF

I always take notes on my next novel and short story while working on my current project. But a theme for this week’s post challenged me. Yet stimuli abound. So I’ll share some thoughts. As I write, Democrats have yet to pass the classic infrastructure bill linked to “human infrastructure” legislation to help American workers…

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LARRY’S COMFORTING BOOK

Do books matter? For a Good Year: Selected High Holy Day Sermons by Congregation Sherith Israel’s Rabbi Emeritus Larry Raphael (z”l) is giving me needed perspective on critical theological and personal issues.  Larry’s wife Terrie put the book together. I’m grateful.  The Jewish High Holy Days are more than a month behind us, so it’s easy to…

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TWAIN, STALIN AND COVID

Surprise! The field of statistics links Mark Twain with Josef Stalin—and the two of them with the COVID-19 pandemic. “There are three kinds of lies…” Twain wrote, “…lies, damned lies, and statistics.” Stalin supposedly said, “One death is a tragedy, a million deaths a statistic.” Both statements apply to some Americans’ response to COVID-19’s impact…

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WHAT’S IN A NAME?

Baseball’s Cleveland Indians, who go back to 1900, have disappeared. But the team will return next season—under another name. There’s a lesson here. “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet,” says Juliet in Shakespeare’s “Romeo & Juliet.” She references Romeo, a member of her family’s archrival House of Montague yet filled with…

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MOSES’ DEATH AND REBIRTH

Moses died this past week. Unlike the rest of us, he’ll soon come back to life. This testifies to nearly 3,000 years of Jews venerating the written word. Last Tuesday night/Wednesday marked Simchat Torah—Joy of the Torah. Ashkenazi Jews complete the annual Torah cycle, reading V’zot Hab’rachah (Deuteronomy 33:1–34:12) and starting anew with the first…

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COMMON NONSENSE

Last Monday, the comic-strip cat Garfield announced, “I’m a rule follower. Rule number one… The rules don’t apply to me.” That’s funny—in a cartoon. In real life, nonsense. That morning, a Garfield wannabe nearly killed me.  I was crossing the street at Lake and Arguello when a red sedan sped through a red light and…

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I TURNED DOWN $5.4 MILLION

I just let an easy $5.4 million slip through my fingers. Foolish? Some people might think so. Because many Americans love a con job. Recently, I received a letter from a “barrister” in London. It promised me the life insurance proceeds of the late “Dr. Darrell Perlstein.” I’d net $5.4 million after 10 percent went…

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WEATHERING THE STORM

Hurricane Ida’s ferocious winds and rainfall hit southern Louisiana hard. Fortunately, my son Seth came out unscathed. Luck? Some. But he was prepared. As for me, preparing for the unknown was a lesson I learned only later in life. Regarding Seth, two months back, he moved from boisterous New Orleans to quiet Prairieville, a suburb…

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THE SECOND CASUALTY OF WAR

If the first casualty of war is truth, a close second is certainty. Unfortunately, Americans often take a mechanical approach to problems. President Biden preaches that there’s nothing a united American people can’t do. If only. Witness the evacuation from Afghanistan. To date, we’ve flown out 105,000 Americans, Afghans and others. But come Biden’s August 31…

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OZZIE AND HARRIET

In 1950s television, virtually everyone was white. So, in my novel 2084, a key symbol for America under a white-Christian government played on a hit ’50s TV show. 2084’s protagonist, a floundering stand-up comic named Sam Klein, aka Groucho, meets “secretly” with his stand-up mentor, Don Green (nee David Greenberg) aka Miltie. They hide in plain…

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AFGHANISTAN

Following 9/11, President George W. Bush sent American troops into Afghanistan when the Taliban refused to turn over Osama Bin Laden. Twenty years later, we’ve all but pulled out. Have we learned anything? The Twin Towers turned rubble, Bush made countless mistakes. Defeating the Taliban was easy. But he refused to send American troops after…

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REMEMBERING HERB

My brother-in-law Herb Zaks (z”l) died on July 27. Married to my sister Kay for 61 years, he was 85. But this isn’t the end. We met when Herb was 21, me 13. He became a big brother, always supportive. We loved sports and went to Yankees games with my father’s weekend and holiday tickets.…

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CHILLING UNDER THE HEAT DOME

My neighborhood woke up to blue skies. That’s rare, because while much of America swelters, San Francisco remains an exception. What is nature telling us? This year, the West established record high temperatures: Death Valley 130, Las Vegas 117, Portland 115, Seattle 108. At my house, we chill in the mid-50s. We like to think…

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GAZA’S EXISTENCE ON FILM

The July 14 New York Times online presented a film, “So They Know We Existed,” about the recent Israel-Hamas mini-war. Gaza residents shot it using their phones. The film is touching. It’s also misleading. First, highlights: An opening title states, “Palestinians in Gaza captured the conflict as it unfolded.” They did, and the film is filled with real images…

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CHARACTER AND COLOR

Sixty years ago, Martin Luther King, Jr. dreamed that someday, the content of one’s character would rise above the color of one’s skin. A recent email and a newspaper article lead me to believe that real equality remains a dream—for reasons you may not suspect.  The email came from a literary publication. Like most, it…

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OPEN AGAIN

As the COVID-19 pandemic recedes, theories abound on what a re-opened America will be like. As to my outlook, I turn—as in the past—to a favorite comic strip. Some people believe the nation will be better—purged?—after experiencing over 600,000 Americans killed by the virus. “Pearls Before Swine,” written and drawn by Stephan Pastis (San Francisco…

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PRIDE

It’s Pride Month, a time for the LGBTQ+ community—an amalgam of communities—to assert, “Here I am.” Yet “pride” carries a more nuanced meaning than many people realize. To begin, I’m the father of three sons—one straight, one trans, one gay (married to my gay son-in-law). I accept all of them for who they are and…

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IT CAN HAPPEN HERE

Ross Douthat, columnist for the New York Times, wrote an opinion piece last Tuesday as a follow-up to my previous post, “A Bleak American Future?”, in which I mentioned my new novel, 2084. Okay, that’s wishful thinking on my part—but… Douthat’s column, “Are We Headed for A Coup in 2024?” considers the same challenge to American democracy…

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A BLEAK AMERICAN FUTURE?

The New Yorker titled a May 27 article by Susan Glasser, “American Democracy Isn’t Dead Yet, But It’s Getting There.” Hyperbole? Senate Republicans blocked the formation of a bipartisan commission to examine the January 6 insurrection at the Capitol that sought to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.  At a Memorial Day weekend QAnon-affiliated conference,…

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GENOCIDE? WORDS MATTER

The ceasefire holds between Israel and Hamas. Peace in Israel, Gaza and the West Bank? A long way off. Both observers and supporters of the Palestinians could help nudge the parties along by not abusing words blindly targeting Israel.   Proportionality. Hamas sent towards Israel 4,000 unguided missiles. Some landed in Gaza. Many were destroyed. Others struck Israeli civilians.…

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FINDING LOST DOGS

On Wednesday, May 12, my son Aaron’s and son-in-law Jeremy’s 18-month-old pit bull Stella, a sweetie, bolted from her dogwalker’s vehicle at 14th and Castro. A massive search operation ensued. Carolyn and I learned how little we knew about finding lost dogs. At first, Carolyn and Aaron joined friends driving around Buena Vista Park. Then a…

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CANNIBALS BARE THEIR TEETH

Nearly 75 years ago, George Orwell pointed out the mind-bending use of language by authoritarian regimes in his classic novel 1984. The Republican Party long has gone Orwellian. Republican members of the House, with the blessings of Big Brother, aka Donald Trump, purged Liz Cheney from her number-three post as conference chair. Minority leader Kevin McCarthy…

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LESSONS OF MOUNT MERON

A stampede at a Haredi (ultra-Orthodox) religious festival in Israel last week resulted in 45 deaths and many more injuries. The tragedy took place on Mount Meron across from the city of Ts’fat (Saphed), center of Jewish spiritualism. What can we learn? One hundred thousand Haredim—all male, teenagers included—gathered to celebrate Lag B’omer, a festive break…

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REVEALED AND HIDDEN

My good friend Les Kozerowitz and I are making biographical videos on Zoom for our children, now very much adults in their 30s and 40s. They’ll learn much—but not everything. We’re recording ourselves—each asking the other questions—because many kids never get to it. Also, we’re not among the many elders who resist being questioned about…

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ROAD TRIP

For 16 months, Carolyn and I didn’t travel farther from our house than 25 miles, and then only for vaccinations. Last weekend, we drove to Los Angeles to see our son Yosi. The trip reinforced the marvels of California—and seeing them at ground level. We overnighted in Pismo Beach, halfway to L.A. Highway 101 doesn’t…

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THE OTHER CONVERSATION

African-American parents long have had “the conversation” with their sons regarding interactions with police. There’s another critical life-and-death conversation all Americans should have. Immigration has been called the third-rail of our national politics. Most politicians engage in immigration rhetoric, not policy. Why? Studying the issues objectively risks alienating many or all of varying constituencies. Why? Rational discussion…

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RACE AND CONTEXT, PART TWO—OTHER VIEWS

I asked several African-American friends (Jewish) to comment on last week’s post regarding Blacks as examples of academic failure (and success). Their comments, edited for brevity: Tamar: “I grappled with what to think about the [Sandra] Sellers audio [Georgetown Law Center] precisely because it doesn’t say much on its face, but what it evokes looms large.…

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RACE AND CONTEXT, PART ONE

This week, some thoughts on race. Next week, I’ll look at comments from two African-American friends and explore related issues. Two weeks ago, two racial incidents resulted in the firing of offenders. One firing leaves me with questions regarding context and perspective. An Oklahoma high-school basketball sportscaster responded to a girls team—only some players Black—kneeling…

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ONE TABERNACLE, TWO LESSONS FOR AMERICA

Who were the five wealthiest Americans in the 1800s? Most fabled poets of 16th century Islam? Greatest emperors of China’s Tang dynasty?  I can’t answer, either. Few people achieve lasting fame. Yet many try to imprint their name on history. Ego often leads them to notoriety or infamy, as they do more harm than good…

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NOT JUST ANOTHER JOE

For five years, I wrote a lot about the most recent former president of the United States. I haven’t yet commented on the man who defeated him, Joe Biden. I’ve had reasons.  Biden, the anti-blowhard, doesn’t seek attention. Measured and self-effacing, he makes no claim to being the man on the white horse. He focuses…

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PFIZER #2 IN ARM—WHAT NEXT?

Last Sunday, Carolyn and I received our second Pfizer COVID-19 vaccinations. Carolyn came down with side effects that ended mid-week. I was fine. The shots should eliminate most risk of getting the virus or, if we do, suffering grave complications. Still, I’m left with serious questions. How many Americans will not have timely access to…

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LLAMAS IN THE FOG

In October 2019, I explained how I deal with past mistakes and regrets in “My Llamas.” Some months ago, my llamas taught me a new lesson. Simply put, the 2019 post developed through inspiration provided by one of two Hebrew words for why. They appear both in the Torah and modern use. Lama (pronounced LA-ma) comes from a phrase, L’ma…

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THE JURORS AND THE COMMANDMENT

Go outside, wet your index finger and hold it up. Now you understand why an important commandment in the Torah failed to impact the Senate trial of Donald Trump. Trump “won” 43-57. Of course, conviction requires a two-thirds majority. Seven Republicans voted their conscience. Forty-three cast votes based on which way they saw the political…

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VACCINATION SHOT ONE

On Super Bowl Sunday, Carolyn and I drove down to San Mateo where Sutter Health was giving seniors Covid-19 vaccinations—Pfizer. The process stimulated several thoughts. San Francisco went under “lock down” eleven months ago. Since then, I haven’t been south of the border with Daily City. The farthest north? Giving my car occasional outings, we…

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THE MANDALORIAN AND THE JEWS

Jewish film/TV characters may be identified by “Jewish names” but rarely are depicted living Jewish lives. Yet Jewish writers and directors often include Jewish references in their work. Take The Mandalorian (Disney+). Part of the Disney-owned Star Wars franchise, the series was created by executive producer/writer Jon Favreau, a fellow Queensite, who was bar mitzvah. The Mandalorian provides what seem more…

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KAREN AND GEORGE

Language is powerful, people imperfect. Often, we weaponize words against others. Exhibits A and B: Karenand George. Karen is hurled at white women accused of using their genetic, economic and social status—often termed privilege—to verbally and even physically assault African Americans. Karen accuses a mass of people and denies their individuality. I know two wonderful Karens. But what’s new? A century…

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FINGERS CROSSED

Joe Biden ascended to the Oval Office after a tumultuous post-election period. His inaugural address replaced American carnage with American hope, and Washington’s spectacular fireworks celebrated not the individual but our continuing democracy. What lies ahead? President Biden’s call to “come together to carry all of us forward” was heard across the nation. Not all…

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MOSES AND THE OVAL OFFICE

The terrorist insurrection at the Capitol shocked the nation. Donald Trump’s second impeachment not so much. The American Pharaoh was headed for disaster. His leadership stood in contrast to that of Moses.  Rabbi Shai Held spotlights Moses’ leadership strengths in The Heart of Torah: Essays on the Weekly Torah Portion: Genesis and Exodus, Volume 1 (2017).  In…

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INSURRECTION AND COMPLICITY

Wednesday’s assault on the Capitol unfolded like a TV mini-series. I binge-watched and rejoiced in the failure of an insurrection by American terrorists incited by Donald Trump. Now, we’re being inundated with pangs of conscience. The attempt to overthrow our democratic process prompted much “soul searching.” I’m skeptical. To engage in that activity, you need…

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THE REALITY CONUNDRUM

Last Monday, two events began shaping the future of the United States. Both offer reason to hope—and agonize. In New York, a critical care nurse at Long Island Jewish Medical Center received the first Pfizer-BioNTech vaccination against COVID-19. Across the nation, the Electoral College met to officially determine our next president.  The first of the…

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THIS CHANUKAH IS SPECIAL

The Jewish Festival of Lights began last night. It brightens winter’s gloom, offers hope we can overcome all the reasons we’ve had to despair. This year, Chanukah is more special than ever. 2020 brought us the COVID-19 pandemic, which shrouded America in darkness—especially since many tens of thousands of deaths probably could have been avoided…

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WHAT HISTORY TELLS US

Carolyn and I had a wonderful Thanksgiving—just the two of us. Carolyn prepared a terrific turkey—meals for a week. We were thankful. We’ll remain so. Despite the ongoing COVID-19 horror, history gives us good reason. In 1918, the Spanish flu broke out. San Francisco required facemasks and imposed a $5 fine on violators. The Anti-Mask…

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