Morocco Demonstrates National Anti-Semitism

Moroccan authorities take down Israeli judo team | The Times of Israel.

This was a galling article. I have now added Morocco to my list of countries that I will neither visit nor fly over.

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The European Left and False Equivalence

Both Jews and Muslims deserve to live their lives in Europe. But only Jews are being murdered on the streets of European capitals simply for being Jewish. That The Guardian and Simon Tisdall believe that there is some false equivalence between Jewish and Muslim communities in Europe demonstrates just how warped their ideologically inspired view of this serious situation is.

via Copenhagen terror: They just don’t get it | Simon Plosker | The Blogs | The Times of Israel.

More than Liberty

“I was trying to explain to my kids on the drive into the city late this morning what is at stake in the gay marriage arguments, and I said that it has to do with what is the meaning of marriage, and what is the meaning of the human person. In the end, I said, it comes down to whether or not there is a standard of truth outside of ourselves to which we must conform, or whether or not the body and the world of matter is inert material upon which we can impose our will.”

via Rod Dreher
The Unraveling of the Common Good
The American Conservative

April 28, 2015

Did Feldblum Really Say that Gay Dignity Trumps Religious Liberty

“But the bottom line for [Professor Chai] Feldblum is: ‘Sexual liberty should win in most cases. There can be a conflict between religious liberty and sexual liberty, but in almost all cases the sexual liberty should win because that’s the only way that the dignity of gay people can be affirmed in any realistic manner.'”

via National Review Online.

Did a member of the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the daughter of a Torah scholar really say this? Is affirming the dignity of gay people now officially more important than ensuring religious liberty? Has it now become binary? Has the conversation about finding a place where both can coexist ended? How can it be wrong for religious liberty to trump the dignity of LGBT people all the time, but okay for LGBT pride to trump religious liberty in all cases?

I am deeply, deeply troubled.

I would love to hear from some of the LGBT people who are also practicing Jews.

Am I Waving My Religion Around?

ReligionPenis

“Religion is like a Penis:
It’s fine to have one.
It’s fine to be proud of it.
But please don’t whip it out in public and start waving it around.”

This little meme is making the rounds of social media today, attracting nodding heads, chuckles, and shares from the atheist and the anti-theist crowd.

This is all cute and clever, but as is the case with all bumper-sticker posturing, it lacks nuance. Exactly what constitutes “waving my religion about?” Is it wearing religiously-distinctive clothing or accessories? Ordering a Kosher meal on an airplane? Going out to dinner and telling my host that I cannot eat pork or shellfish? Reading a religious text in public? Is it this blog? Or is it even, as one quite educated friend suggested, “imposing” my religious beliefs on my child.

This is an important question, for two reasons. First, I would hate to think that my rather mild religious practices offend my atheist and my anti-theist friends. But if they do, I would very much like to know why.

Second is a matter of principle. I believe that such sentiments, drawn to their logical conclusion, run the risk of infringing upon free speech, and specifically the Free Exercise clause of the First Amendment. Of course, the supporters of the above billboard can always say “oh, well, we never meant that, of course.”

If the composers of this bit of outdoor copy are, on the other hand, suggesting that religion has no place in government, I say a hearty “hear, hear!”

So a little clarification is in order. If you support the sentiment above, explain exactly what about my observance – or the observance of others – offends you. Because while we agree that religion has no place in government or the formulation of policy, it is the law of the land in the United States that government has no place in religion or the practice thereof.