Friday, September 14, 2012

Conservative Jewish Women Argue Same-Sex Marriages Are More Fair Than Heterosexual Unions

Could same-sex marriage within the Conservative Jewish community actually change heterosexual marriage for the better?

Same-sex marriage's removal of the traditional Conservative Jewish "ownership" requirements of one dominant (male) party over a subordinant (female) party, may set a new standard that does just that.

More after the jump!

According to the New York Post:

"This spring, a committee that creates laws for the Conservative Jewish movement approved two ceremonies for same-sex couples that strip marriage liturgy of any reference to ownership, makes double-ring ceremonies officially part of the wedding and allows either party to initiate a divorce — three issues that have long been sticking points among Jewish brides."

Though efforts have been made in recent years to make heterosexual marriages within the community more equitable, there have been difficulties in finding a balance between the modern realities of the dynamic between men and women and the desire to maintain tradition.

Heterosexual couples in the Conservative Jewish faith enter into a a "kiddushin," which requires the dominant party to acquire the less dominant party.  Women, unfortunately, are limited regarding their power within this union, at least according to the church. -- Instinct blog

To read more, click here.

White Sox-Indians game start time changed for Yom Kippur

The start time of a Major League Baseball game between the Chicago White Sox and the Cleveland Indians has been changed due to Yom Kippur.

The Sept. 25 game will now start at 1:10 p.m. instead of 7:10 p.m., the Chicago White Sox organization announced Tuesday. The game will be played in Chicago.

The time change came after a "significant number" of White Sox fans contacted the baseball club over the game's conflict with Yom Kippur, a statement from the team said.

The White Sox and the Indians discussed the possibility of a time change and reached an agreement to move the game earlier, according to the team.

Chicago White Sox third baseman Kevin Youkilis, who is Jewish, told the Chicago Tribune that he was pleased with the switch.

I guess that means I can play," Youkilis told the newspaper. "I really didn’t know. I know there was talk that there was something about maybe changing it for the fans on that day. But it’s a good thing for the playoff stretch.”

Youkilis was traded in June by the Boston Red Sox to the Chicago White Sox.

Youkilis reportedly has never played a game on Yom Kippur.

This is not the first time a professional baseball game has been switched to accommodate Yom Kippur. In 2009, the Yankees and Red Sox moved a Sept. 27 game from evening to afternoon after an outcry from Jewish fans of both teams. -- JTA

The Jewish Take on Her Car Accident by Mayim Bialik

It’s been three weeks since the car accident I had which damaged my right hand and set me on a course of several months of recovery, lots of lying on the couch, and more negotiating with dosages of acetaminophen and ibuprofen than I care to discuss.

I have written about the accident cursorily and somewhat lightly: how I removed my false eyelashes in the ambulance, made jokes about desires for tummy tucks with my plastic surgeons who repaired my hand, and the breathing and meditative techniques of natural labor I utilized to manage pain and fear. But my religious identity has pursued me–or I it–throughout this ordeal, and I have a desire to write about some of the more complex aspects of the accident and recovery as an observant Jew. -- Mayim Bialik, Kveller

To read more, click here.

    

Notes removed from Western Wall

The Western Wall was emptied of layers of notes from its cracks and crevices for the New Year.

The notes were removed Monday morning under the supervision of the rabbi of the Western Wall, Rabbi Shmuel Rabinovich, who ensured they will remain confidential. They will be buried.

At the time of the removal, the rabbi said a prayer asking God to fulfill the requests contained in the notes.

The notes are removed from the wall twice a year, before Rosh Hashanah and Passover. -- JTA

Rabbis Urge Single, Orthodox Women to Freeze Eggs at 38

Members of the Jewish Orthodox community walk down a street in a Brooklyn, N.Y., neighborhood
on June 14, 2012. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
Rebecca, an Orthodox Jew from California, was two weeks away from her marriage to the son of a respected rabbi when medication she was taking for migraines triggered a debilitating stroke.

She fell to the floor of the emergency room where she was working as a manager and broke her neck, suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries. When her fiance saw the extent of her disability, he called off the wedding.

"We did everything the Orthodox way," she said of their three-month engagement after being matched by family members. "I was in the hospital on my wedding day and they got out the wheelchair, and he was so frightened he backed off."

Now 38 and walking again, Rebecca is single, but her Orthodox faith implores her to find a husband and build a family. So she sought spiritual guidance from three or four rabbis and has decided -- with their blessing -- to have her eggs frozen for the future, when she hopes she will marry and start a family.

Doctors in the United States who are familiar with "halacha" -- or Jewish religious law -- say they are seeing more Orthodox patients who have been sent by their rabbis to freeze their eggs before their fertility wanes. -- Susuan Donaldson James, ABC News

To read more, click here.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Update: Egyptian admits involvement with anti-Islam film, Jewish connection seems unlikely

An actor portraying the prophet Muhammad
in the "Innocence of Muslims,"
which allegedly incited the deadly attack in Libya on U.S. diplomats.
(via YouTube)
He’s not a Jew.

At least, that’s the latest on the man behind the anti-Islam film, "Innocence of Muslims," that has fueled attacks on U.S. diplomatic installations in Libya, Egypt and Yemen, leaving the U.S. ambassador to Libya, J. Christopher Stevens, dead.

The filmmaker appears to be an Egyptian Christian rather than an Israeli Jew, as he had claimed in interviews.

The Associated Press tracked down an Egyptian Coptic Christian living in Southern California who admitted to involvement with the film’s logistics, and whose middle name and a known alias closely resemble the apparently fake name – Sam Bacile – used by the filmmaker. -- JTA

To read more, click here.

Many questions arise about anti-Islam filmmaker

Protesters destroy an American flag pulled down from the U.S. embassy in Cairo, Egypt,
Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2012. Egyptian protesters, largely ultra conservative Islamists,
have climbed the walls of the U.S. embassy in Cairo,
went into the courtyard and brought down the flag,
replacing it with a black flag with Islamic inscription, in protest of a film deemed offensive of Islam.
(AP Photo/Mohammed Abu Zaid)
The man behind video exerpts from an anti-Muslim movie that provoked mobs in Egypt and Libya said Wednesday that he has gone into hiding. But doubts rose about the man's exact identity amid a flurry of false claims about his background and role in the purported film.

The filmmaker, who identified himself in a telephone interview with The Associated Press as Sam Bacile, said he is an Israeli-born, Jewish writer and director of "Innocence of Muslims." Bacile was the name used to publish excerpts of the movie online as early as July 2.

But some key facts about Bacile's background and role in the film crumbled Wednesday as a Christian activist involved in the film project said that Bacile was a pseudonym, that he was not Jewish or Israeli, and that a group of Americans of Mideast origin collaborated on the film. Officials in Israel also said there was no record of Bacile as an Israeli citizen. -- Shay Tayefe Mohajer and Stephen Braun, Associated Press via Yahoo

To read more, click here.

Make Some Noise in Synagogue

Prayer shouldn’t be a spectator sport. So why do so many shuls insist that congregants sit in silence?
(Photoillustration Ivy Tashlik; original photos Shutterstock)
The CEO and managing director of the Brooklyn Philharmonic set off a storm of protest in the classical music world this spring when he suggested that concert halls could benefit from less audience decorum and more clapping, laughter, cheers, and other expressions of emotion. Don’t sit still so much at the symphony, Richard Dare urged: Performances of classical music need to be livelier, less hushed, less boring, and audiences can do their part in making that happen.

The idea horrified some musicians and orchestra officials. If people can’t “sit still and be quiet,” said Robert Spano, the music director of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, “I don’t think classical music is for them.” Dare has clarified his position in subsequent articles, but has not backtracked. “I don’t want bedlam to break out,” he told reporter Daniel J. Wakin for a piece about the controversy published June 8 in the New York Times. “I’m keenly interested in not dismantling the experience we have now,” he explained. But he does want to make that experience “relevant to more people.”

I’m with him all the way. If you substitute “synagogue” for “concert hall” and “prayer services” for “orchestral performances,” you realize that Dare’s proposal is relevant—point after painful point—to the experience that many Jews have in all too many North American synagogues. Since several million Jews are about to spend a great deal of time in synagogue—the High Holidays are almost upon us, to be followed immediately by Sukkot, Shemini Atzeret, and Simchat Torah—I think there is good reason to ask whether something could or should be done to alter the atmosphere in a shul in the ways that Dare wants to change it at the concert hall. I vote yes for two principal reasons -- Chancellor Arnold Eisen, The Jewish Theological Seminary, Tablet

To read more, click here.

In Latin America, Jewish communities are booming

Participants celebrating during services at
the World Union for Progressive Judaism Conference of Jewish Communities
in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Aug. 2012. (Diego Melamed)
Nearly wherever one looks, Jewish life is growing in Latin America, which is now home to an estimated 500,000 Jews. The growth comes as the region continues to transform economically as part of a social evolution following the end of military dictatorships that ruled many countries into the 1980s.

From 2000 to 2010, poverty in the region dropped  from 44 percent to 32 percent of the population, according to the Economic Committee for Latin American and the Caribbean, or CEPAL. In large part it is because of the increase in jobs that has come from rising prices for the region’s commodities and natural resources, such as copper, oil, soybeans, meat, fruits and other agricultural products.

And more growth is on the horizon. Latin America will contribute to global growth more than Europe in the next seven years, according to CEPAL, which released a study in August that said the 2013-2020 period “will be a low-growth cycle for industrialized economies while it will display dynamism in emerging economies.” -- Diego Melamed, JTA

To read more, click here.

Rabbinical Assemby supports parental consenet for controversial circumcision practice

A Conservative rabbinic group is supporting a proposed New York City Board of Health measure that requires parental consent for a controversial circumcision practice, while an Orthodox group opposes the regulation.

The health department is scheduled to vote this week on a measure that would require parental consent if a mohel wants to obtain a waiver for the use of direct oral-genital suction, known as metzitzah b'peh. The form would indicate that parents are aware of the risk of infection.

The Conservative movement's Rabbinical Assembly applauded the commissioner's push for parental consent, while the the Rabbinical Council of America expressed discontent with the prospect of regulation on the matter. However, the RCA advocates for safer practices.

Rabbi Gerald Skolnik, president of the Rabbinical Assembly, in a statement released on Monday said, “This practice, which is not required by Jewish law, and emanates from older practices designed to prevent illnesses that precede current medical knowledge about disease, presents a serious health risk to babies and is inconsistent with the Jewish tradition’s preeminent concern with human life and health. There have been tragic incidents of babies becoming ill as a result of this practice, and we encourage the Board of Health to require parental consent.” -- JTA

To read more, click here.

Israel will not receive lulavs from Sinai

Israel likely will not have palm fronds from the Sinai for this year's Sukkot lulavs.

Terror in the Sinai and a lack of communication between Israeli and Egyptian agricultural agencies are the reasons that the palm fronds will not be imported, Israel National News reported Monday. They are grown in the Sinai's al-Arish area, located west of the Gaza Strip.

Last year, Egypt banned the export of the palm fronds to Israel, leading to fears of a lulav shortage for the holiday and higher prices. Israel's Agricultural Ministry then encouraged local palm farmers to increase production.

Avner Rotem, manager of date palms on Kibbutz Tirat Tzvi in the Beit Shean Valley, told INN that there should be enough lulavs grown in Israel to meet domestic needs and for export.

Israel previously had imported about 700,000 palm fronds a year in the run-up to Sukkot, which is about 40 percent of the annual demand. Another 700,000 of the 2 million lulavs used in Diaspora Jewish communities also came from Egypt. -- JTA

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Israeli Anti-Islam filmmaker in hiding after protests

Gunmen storm U.S. consulate in Libya
The U.S. ambassador to Libya and three embassy staff were killed
as they rushed away from a consulate building in Benghazi,
stormed by al Qaeda-linked gunmen blaming America for a film
that they said insulted the Prophet Mohammad. (Sept. 12)
An Israeli filmmaker based in California went into hiding after a YouTube trailer of his movie attacking Islam's prophet Muhammad sparked angry assaults by ultra-conservative Muslims on U.S. missions in Egypt and Libya. The U.S. ambassador to Libya and three American members of his staff were killed.

Speaking by phone Tuesday from an undisclosed location, writer and director Sam Bacile remained defiant, saying Islam is a cancer and that the 56-year-old intended his film to be a provocative political statement condemning the religion. -- Shaya Tayefe Mohajer, Associated Press via Yahoo News

To read more, click here.





Jewish Agency website hacked

The Jewish Agency's website was attacked by unknown hackers.

The wave of attacks began Sept. 7 and continued through the weekend, the organization said in a statement released Tuesday.

The attacks, which made the website temporarily unavailable for short times, came from across the globe, including Russia, Hungary, Saudi Arabia, Brazil and Austria, according to the Jewish Agency.

With concerns that stored data could be affected, the agency's chief information officer, Dov Yahav, shut down the site on Saturday to external users. It returned to normal operation the following day following security upgrades. -- JTA

The Zionist Organization of America lost its tax exempt status


 The Zionist Organization of America lost its tax exempt status due to a late filing of tax returns.

The ZOA did not file returns for three consecutive years, the Forward reported Tuesday.

Morton Klein, the ZOA's president, confirmed to JTA that the organization has not been tax exempt since March. Since then, he said, the organization has filed the returns and is now seeking reinstatement.

"We have hired a top tax attorney and he has every confidence we will be reinstated," Klein said, adding that he hoped for reinstatement before the end of the year.

The organization has continued to fundraise, directing donations to a separate tax-exempt entity that will hold the funds until ZOA's status is restored, Klein said.

He said the organization had sought extensions for the three years it did not file because a school in Ashkelon, Israel, run under its auspices was not providing correct information and the ZOA was seeking to clarify the matter.

The Internal Revenue Service rescission came after the ZOA missed a deadline for seeking an extension based on what Klein said was incorrect advice from a tax accountant.

Klein said the ZOA was under the impression it had until November 2011 to request an extension; the deadline had passed in May of that year. The IRS notified the group of the rescission in February this year.

ZOA's board is meeting Tuesday and will be briefed on the matter. -- JTA

Israeli named to U.N. Human Rights Committee

Yuval Shany, an Israeli professor, was named to the United Nations Human Rights Committee.

Shany, an international law expert who is the dean of the law faculty at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, was approved with the support of 112 countries and will serve a four-year term.

He is the second Israeli to serve on the committee. Dan Kretzmer, also a professor, served from 1995 to 2002.

The Human Rights Committee is a body of 18 independent experts that monitors implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights by its 162 member states.

It is separate from the more high-profile U.N. Human Rights Council, a political body made up of 47 states that is responsible for promoting and protecting human rights around the globe. Members of the council, which has been accused of unfairly singling out Israel for attention, are elected by the U.N. General Assembly. --  JTA

Israel Action Network making High Holidays outreach effort to 5,000 rabbis

The Israel Action Network is reaching out to 5,000 rabbis during the High Holidays season as part of an ongoing campaign to counter the delegitimization of Israel.

The network, a project of the Jewish Federations of North America in partnership with the Jewish Council of Public Affairs, announced the initiative Monday, which will include sermon inserts and a resource guide for educating congregants that will promote peace between Israel and its neighbors.

Among the rabbinic organizations partnering in the distribution of materials are the JFNA Rabbinic Cabinet, The Association of Reform Zionists of America, the Rabbinical Assembly and the United Synagogue for Conservative Judaism. -- JTA

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Remembering September 11, 2001

Lois Silverman
Ba'Olam Editor

Monday, September 10, 2012

Israeli gay couple seeking divorce from rabbinical court

The first Jewish Israeli male couple to marry has filed for divorce in a Tel Aviv rabbinical court that never recognized the marriage.

It is unknown if the rabbinical court will provide a divorce for Uzi Even, the first openly gay Knesset member, and Dr. Amit Kama, Ynet reported. They were married in Canada in 2004 after living together for more than a decade.

Even, a professor of physical chemistry at Tel Aviv University, and Kama -- the first same-sex male couple in Israel to have their legal right of adoption recognized -- split three years ago. Even now wants to marry another man abroad, but cannot until he is divorced from Kama, according to Ynet.

Under Israeli law, the rabbinical court is the only body authorized to annul the marriage of Jewish citizens in Israel. The Interior Ministry will not dissolve the marriage without an order from the rabbinical court. Only Canadian citizens can be divorced in Canada, Ynet reported.

A separation agreement has been approved by the Ramat Gan Family Court.

Even and Kama filed a lawsuit with Israel's Supreme Court that forced the Interior Ministry to register their marriage in 2006 recognizing the marriage abroad.

In 2009, a Tel Aviv court gave them the right to adopt their 30-year-old foster son, whom they took in 15 years earlier after he was kicked out of his home for revealing his homosexuality. -- JTA

Israeli Court: Why are women grilled at mikveh?

Ritual bath. No entry for single women?  Photo: Israel Bardug


High Court judges require religious services minister, chief rabbi to explain why women visiting ritual bath are asked personal questions about their marital status -- Aviel Magnezi, Ynetnews

To read more, click here.



Israeli Teens 3rd Happiest Youths in the World

Israeli teens are the third happiest group of adolescents in the world, according to the findings of the Happiness Index, the results of which will be released later this month by the World Health Organization.

Israel tied for third place with Holland, Iceland and Spain, being outranked only by Armenian and Macedonian kids.

The study showed that 51% of Israeli girls reported being happy, compared to 47% of boys.  Israeli Arabs were even happier than their Jewish counterparts, with 55% of girls and 47% of boys saying they are happy.

Ironically, Israeli teens also ranked as the fifth angriest group of adolescents in the world, ranking behind Turkey, Greece, Romania, and Armenia.

Countries with the lowest happiness rankings are Turkey, Ukraine, Poland, Latvia, and Canada.

The WHO research was compiled over four years and across 34 countries. -- Malkah Fleisher  Jewish Press

From Fighter Pilot to Gold Medalist

Noam Gershony at the U.S. Open in July 2011.
Photo Credit: Robbiesaurus
Noam Greshuny’s story is one of triumph of the spirit.

Six years after being critically wounded during the Second Lebanon War, Gershuny won a gold medal at the Paralympics Games in London playing tennis, beating the number-one ranking player, American David Wagner 6:3, 6:1. -- Aryeh Savir, Tazpit News Agency via Jewish Press

To read more, click here.

New Hampshire’s Jew Pond officially renamed

A federal board changed the name of a pond in a small New Hampshire town from Jew Pond to Carleton Pond.

The name change by the U.S. Board on Geographic Names comes six months after Mont Vernon residents voted for a name change. The new name honors one of the town's founding families.

Richard Masters, the town’s health officer, had called for the change two years ago, saying the name was disrespectful and offensive. Masters had learned of the official name of the recreational water hole while investigating an algae bloom on the pond.

The body of water had been known as Jew Pond since the 1920s, though there are no signs to that effect. The name, however, does appear on maps.

Dug near a hotel and golf complex, the manmade pond originally was called Spring Pond, but reportedly became known as Jew Pond after two Jewish businessmen bought the hotel and its grounds. They intended to make the pond bigger and call it Lake Serene, according to The Associated Press.

The pond is now located in Carleton Park on land donated by George Carleton. -- JYA

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Canada closes Iran embassy, says Tehran 'most significant threat' to world peace

Citing nuclear program, hostility to Israel and assisting Assad, Foreign Minister John Baird said Canada will expel all Iranian diplomats within five days; Netanyahu: Canada took a moral step.
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad speaks at Iran's nuclear enrichment facility in Natanz.
Photo by AP
Canada has closed its embassy in Iran and will expel all remaining Iranian diplomats in Canada within five days, Foreign Minister John Baird said on Friday, denouncing Tehran as the biggest threat to global security.

Baird cited Iran's nuclear program, its hostility toward Israel and Iranian military assistance to the government of President Bashar Assad in Syria, which is locked in civil war with rebels, as the reasons for suspending diplomatic relations....

Accusing Iran of showing blatant disregard for the safety of foreign diplomats, Baird said "Canada views the government of Iran as the most significant threat to global peace and security in the world today."

"Under the circumstances, Canada can no longer maintain a diplomatic presence in Iran ... Diplomatic relations between Canada and Iran have been suspended," he said.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu congratulated the Canadian Prime minster Steven Harper on Friday, following Canada's announcement.  -- Reuters, Associated Pressand Barak Ravid via Haaretz

To read more, click here.

Jewish horror story takes ‘Possession’ of Hollywood

With an oddball cast featuring Kyra Sedgwick and Matisyahu, a new thriller borrows heavily from Yiddish folklore
A rabbi's son (Matisyahu) attempts to exorcise a dybbuk, or malevolent spirit,
from a young girl (Natasha Calis) in Hollywood thriller "The Possession"
(Photo credit: courtesy of Lionsgate)
The well-known icons and customs of Roman Catholicism have borne rich fruit in decades of scary movies. Audiences have flocked in recent years to films like “The Exorcism of Emily Rose,” “The Haunting in Connecticut” and “The Last Exorcism,” to name just a few, leaving Hollywood eager to think of new ways for malevolent spirits to inhabit the bodies of young women. Casting about for something fresh, Sam Raimi (the director of the first “Spider-Man” trilogy and the “Evil Dead” series) was wise enough to recognize the potential value in Hebraic horror.

The resulting work, “The Possession” — which opened in Israel on Thursday and in the US on Friday — keeps things kosher by introducing the Old World folktale of the dybbuk box, a traditional Jewish winebox said to contain a dybbuk, or evil spirit.

With a cast including “The Closer” star Kyra Sedgwick, the film takes a bit of inspiration from a 2004 LA Times story about a man who believed he had purchased a real dybbuk box at a yard sale. Those who came into contact with the old object indeed encountered “bad luck,” for whatever reason — although other than its yard-sale provenance, that’s where the similarities between the “true story” and “The Possession” end. -- Jordan Hoffman, Times of Israel

To read more, click here.

Israel Children’s Museum busts stereotypes on aging

Visitors to the exhibition often choose pictures of happy elderly couples
when they want to depict how they will look in 30 years.
Photo by Shutterstock.com
You have to sit for a “passport photo” before entering Dialogue with Time, the new multimedia educational exhibition on aging at the Israel Children’s Museum in Holon. Later, the picture will be projected onto a large screen, and doctored to show how you might look in 30 years.

That’s just one of the surprises awaiting visitors to the museum, whose designers spent six years imagining ways to educate and entertain while encouraging discussion facilitated by guides aged 70 and over.

Opened in August, Dialogue with Time has already gotten teens thinking and talking about the golden years. Gil Omer, director general of the museum, tells ISRAEL21c that one group of youngsters ran after their guide at the end of the 90-minute tour, persuading him to talk for another 45 minutes. “When is the last time you ever saw teenagers pursuing an older person when it wasn’t in a violent context?” he asks with a smile.

Omer does not find it strange to mount an exhibition about senior citizens’ issues on the campus of a children’s museum. After all, it already houses two immensely popular exhibitions allowing visitors to feel what it’s like to be deaf or blind.

“As a proud Israeli institution, we see it as part of our mandate to highlight perspectives of segments of human society that are all too often overlooked,” Omer says. “We firmly believe that as a museum, our role is not simply to inform our guests but also to advocate for a better and more compassionate world.” --Abigail Klein Leichman, Israel21c

To read more, click here.

Israeli actress Hadas Yaron wins big at Venice Film Festival for portrayal of a young Hassidic bride in 'Fill the Void.'

Photo: YouTube Screenshot
Israeli actress Hadas Yaron on Satruday won the award for best actress at the 2012 Venice film festival, for the film Fill the Void, a film about a young bride torn between love and familial obligations premiering at the Venice festival. -- Reuters, JPost.com staff

To read more and to see the accompanying video, click here.

Opinion: We Think of Social Action and Social Learning Trips

In an ironic twist of fate this past week, Hurricane Isaac hit the Gulf Coast seven years to the day after Hurricane Katrina struck land.

For the past nine years, I have been taking synagogues and day schools on trips to New Orleans and other cities as part of a nonprofit educational venture I created called Etgar 36. The company was born out of an idea I had when I was a youth director at an Atlanta synagogue to take Jewish students on a five-week summer journey across America. My goal is to teach the teens about history, politics and activism while developing their American and Jewish identities. During the academic year, I run shorter social activism trips for synagogue groups and day schools with the same goal in mind – to empower and inspire Jewish people to get involved and to create change.

Dating back to when Abraham welcomed the wayfaring angels into his tent, the Jewish community has had a historic connection to social action and responding to people in need. After leading trips for many groups that wanted to continue in this tradition, it occurred to me that I could be doing more to encourage a deeper understanding of the issues we were confronting. I realized that what we need is a new paradigm governing the way we think of social action and social learning trips. -- Billy Planer, eJewish Philanthropy

To read more, click here.