According to Jewish Federation of Northern New Jersey, the Jewish population of Teaneck in 2003 was 37%. According to a Haaretz article—yes, that paper—in 2018 the Jewish population of Teaneck was 30%. Wherever the truth lies, we are probably somewhere in the mid 30s. Therefore, with a total population of about 40,000, according to the U.S. Census, the Jewish population in Teaneck is around 14,000. So why did only 2,255 vote for Rachel Secemski? Why did only 1,209 vote for Laura Fein, and only 1,820 for Yassine Elkaryani?
Clearly, part of the failure lies with the candidates’ effort to get out the vote and advertise their positions. Another part of the failure lies with our community leaders’ and rabbis’ efforts to get out the vote and explain the positions important to our community. Those acts are clearly consistent under the 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status of the IRS. Finally, our relative economic success has bred a degree of apathy amongst us. We are blessed to live in a country where our vote counts, it’s a shame too many don’t seem to care.Jeff Rubin