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Jul 24 2014

No Hatred in the World Can Take Away My Son’s Jewish Pride

By at 10:04 am

anti-israel protest

“Mom!” my son calls. He sees me coming over the hill. It’s clear he has been standing there since the last day of camp began, waiting to see me. It’s been a month: he’s taller. He hugs me, tightly, and I feel his love in my ribcage. I feel my own love for him beating in my chest.

We drive home in our comfortable, air-conditioned car. My son is exhausted, but talking a mile a minute in a voice made hoarse by weeks of nonstop chatter. He sprinkles Hebrew in his conversation. He sings songs, leans forward to share new details he hasn’t told us about yet. His face and his happiness glow.

My son has come home from Jewish camp with new pride and joy in being Jewish. Some would say it’s an epic case of bad timing. Read the rest of this entry →

Nov 10 2011

Occupy Childhood

By at 1:57 pm

Ronia occupies Philly.

A month or so ago, I attended a panel on the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions movement at a synagogue in Brooklyn. My daughter Ronia, 3, was in tow.

Dubious of the deserted childcare facilities on a weekday evening, Ronia scanned the room. She spotted the seven people on stage, waiting to begin their confab. She turned to me and asked, “Are we going to have a chance to go up there and speak?”

I was touched. Three years old and she had not learned the sometimes arbitrary routes by which some people speak and others listen.

When that forum took place, Occupy Wall Street was a curiosity less then a week old. Its major results at that point were inspiring critiques from established activist groups about how they were doing it wrong. But when it took off, I knew I had to be part of it. Having spent some time at Occupy Wall Street, I very much wanted Philly to have a similarly strong Jewish presence. I plugged in the best way I knew how, organizing the “Jewish stuff,” starting with the Kol Nidre services. Read the rest of this entry →

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