2. When the Israeli Chief Rabbi -- N.B. the Chief Rabbi -- calls African-Americans "Monkeys," as Tablet reported he did in a sermon, no less, on March 17, you might think that that would merit condemnation from JFNA. Nope.
3. The following appeared on a major Federation website (I have omitted that community's name):
If any of you can decipher the meaning of all this, please explain it to me. I have intuited that this was written by intelligent people. Don't ask me how. It seems like a long and complicated route to the emergence of new ideas.
I am reminded by this of an old non-PC joke. Helen Keller is invited to a seder. During the readings the hostess sees Ms. Keller vigorously rubbing a piece of matzah with a deepening frown on her face. The hostess finally asks: "Helen, is there something wrong?" And Keller responded, holding up the matzah: "Who writes this crap?"
4. And, then there was that "Gala" at Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago convened by the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews at the end of March to celebrate...well, to celebrate Founder Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein and his achievements in leadership of the IFCJ. We had written of Eckstein's evident hope that the President would attend the "Together in Fellowship" thing, or, that at least Eckstein could bring his greetings to the President personally and directly. It wasn't to be, As reported in JNS ("At Mar-a-Lago, Christians and Jews celebrate Israel, unity and a strong partnership"), Trump "had to depart" for Washington but left behind a video (the story and the video can be found at: https://www.jns.org/at-trumps-mar-a-lago-christians-and-jews-celebrate-israel-unity-and-a-strong-partnership/ ) where he appeared in a white golf cap ("USA") and an open collar golf shirt; apparently right off a Trump golf course. I'm not really certain after viewing the video that the President knew the organization he was addressing. I'll leave it to you to judge: here is a portion of Trump's remarks:
"It’s a great honor to have everybody at Mar-a-Lago, a special place for a special group of people,” Trump told the gathering in a video message recorded shortly before the gala. The president left his weekend retreat several hours before the start of the event to head back to Washington, D.C. “I wanted to be there so badly. I had to leave—we have some pretty big things going on with our country, but our country is doing really well. Your taxes are down, your regulations are down, a lot of good things are happening, we’re appointing a lot of fantastic federal judges, and I think you are all very happy with the results. So I’ll see you next time. I hope you have a fantastic evening.”Then, I will leave it to you to judge whether, at the end of the day, retaining Mar-a-Lago at great, great cost compared to other venues was worth the "investment" even as a "strategic decision." (BTW, it didn't appear that President Trump mentioned Rabbi Eckstein by name in his brief remarks. Wait 'Til Next Year.)
5. Pesach must be thought to be a high point on the annual Calendar for Jewish organizations (and HIAS) to engage in an orgy of Direct Mail solicitations. (I have expressed on these pages that Direct Mail is not going to raise most organizations a significant amount, but so what, the assault continues.) In any event one of the solicitations I received (from an organization which I won't support) tried to personalize its message. The envelope was well-addressed, but the solicitation letter started "Dear Ronit."