Saturday, October 31, 2020


A Vote For Voting

My 90-year-old mother received her absentee ballot in the mail last week, and proudly voted in the upcoming election.

It was the 18th presidential election in which she has cast her ballot (she first voted for a president way back in 1952) and the 70th consecutive year in which she has exercised


Why (Orthodox) Jews Should Vote for Joe Biden

The Torah of my primary role models, Rabbis Joseph B. Soloveitchik, Aharon Lichtenstein and Abraham Isaac Kook:

embraces every person, created in God’s Image, with love

is concerned for the welfare of humanity as a whole



The Case for President Trump

Partisanship, the idea that we must vote for a particular political party always and forever, regardless of its current positions, leaders and tendencies, is a curious notion. There are Jews, even rabbis, who always support every Democrat as if there was a mandate from Sinai that “every Jew must vote Democrat forever!” That necessitates


As an Orthodox Rabbi…I Will Not Tell You How to Vote and Neither Should Anyone Else

This election cycle has brought us headlines such as “Leading Orthodox rabbi endorses Trump for reelection” and “Leading Israeli Modern Orthodox rabbi condemns Trump.”

We have Orthodox rabbis publishing articles (see prior page) telling us “Why (Orthodox) Jews Should Vote for Joe Biden,” and


Why Vote? Because We Can’t Look at Their Faces

I haven’t slept much in the last month. Neither has anyone on our team at the Teach Coalition. We are busy 24/6 working to get the Jewish community to vote. Why are we so passionate about voting?

Because we can’t look at their faces anymore.

I can’t look at the


Rep. Mikie Sherrill Meets With Orthodox Community

In a recent virtual conference with Orthodox rabbis and constituents, Rep. Mikie Sherrill (D-N.J.-11) emphasized her sensitivity to the needs of the Jewish community. She discussed the initiatives she has promoted to back the Unites States’ alliance with Israel; the importance of Holocaust education; and ways to stem the tide of


Making The Write Choice for President

This presidential election is not just the most acerbic, contentious and divisive in recent history. In light of the nonstop media attention, the precarious and vulnerable physical and economic health of our country and the sheer volume of accusations and character assassination


Aramaic: The Special Love Language Between Hashem and Am Yisrael

Why is so much of our liturgy and holy texts in Aramaic? When hearing a ketubah read aloud at a chuppah, we wonder why the need to struggle through an antiquated language. The typical answer offered is that Aramaic was the lingua franca for much of antiquity, and the Gemara and our tefillot are written in the language that people of the


Avinu Malkeinu

Parshat Lech Lecha

The 40th perek of Sefer Yeshayahu, which opens with the words “Nachamu, Nachamu Ami,” is quite well-known to shul-goers as it is read every year on the Shabbat following Tisha B’Av and, in fact, that opening word is what designates the Shabbat as Shabbat Nachamu. But that is


Letters From Rabbi Ovadia of Bertinoro

We all know of him from his commentary on the Mishnah. But what about his biography?

We would know very little of his life except that fortunately, in the years 1488-1490, he wrote three letters from Israel about his journey from Italy and his early impressions of Israel, and copies of these


Venturing Into the Unknown

Imagine you’re a fly (or an iPad) on the wall in school right now. Here’s what you might see: Children with masks lining up for recess, six feet apart. As you pass in the hallway you hear your name. You look in the direction of that sweet little voice and see a student tilting her head and stretching out her arms with a heart-melting


The Modern Day Message of Parshat Lech Lecha

We are all very familiar with many a bar mitzvah boy’s speech for this week’s parsha equating Avraham’s journey to the journey that the bar mitzvah boy takes as he embarks on the next part of his life as a Jewish adult who is now obligated in all of the mitzvot. While always beautiful and always fitting, I’d like to propose a