Tuesday, September 22nd 2020   |

Jews in the News

Bethany Mandel will not be canceled

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Bethany Mandel wasn’t unnerved back in May when people all over the world were decrying her as a “Grandma killer.”

After all, the mother of four and rising star in the world of conservative thinkers had invited the moniker when she posted a cri de coeur on Twitter against what she saw as indiscriminate application of quarantine restrictions.

“You can call me a Grandma killer,” Mandel wrote....

Eric Fingerhut served in Congress. He says leading Hillel was a harder job.

NEW YORK (JTA) — Eric Fingerhut believes in the “big tent.” But is the tent collapsing? For six tumultuous years, he has served as the president of Hillel International, the umbrella group for more than 500 Jewish centers on college campuses across the country. He’s leaving his position on July 1 to become the president of the Jewish Federations of North America.

Up to the end Fingerhut, a former Democratic...

These 7 Jewish comedians prove moms are really, really funny

By ARIELLE KAPLAN

When screenwriter Amy Sherman-Palladino gifted the world with “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” we here at Kveller went wild. At last there was a show (a major hit, no less!) that seemed to be aimed directly at American Jews — specifically speaking, Jewish mothers.

Although the titular character Midge Maisel has been criticized for being an absentee parent to her two young children, she is equally praised for her...

How Karl Lagerfeld cleansed Chanel of its anti-Semitic, Nazi past

(JTA) — If you walk into any wealthy Jewish American neighborhood, a careful eye will spot designer duds – Gucci, Prada, Louis Vuitton – sported by well-coiffed men and women as they walk through town. But in a sea of expensive excess, one designer’s name is spoken of with an air of reverence: Chanel.

It is a brand that can at once whisper and scream one’s bourgeois status. The boxy tweed...

A journal’s new editor wants to steer the Modern Orthodox debate into the 21st century

By SAM SOKOL

JERUSALEM (JTA) — American Modern Orthodoxy is in many ways an ongoing argument between Jewish tradition and modernity. Leaders and followers prefer to call it a balancing act, involving everything from how to read the Bible to agreeing on the borders of a Jewish state to whether to ordain female clergy.

That argument, or balancing act, has taken place for six decades in the quarterly journal of...

Al Franken learned about justice from his childhood rabbi

By CURT SCHLEIER

(JTA) — In February 2015, Sen. Jim Inhofe carried a snowball on to the floor of the Senate to prove global warming did not exist.

Everyone knows “it is very, very cold outside,” the Oklahoma Republican said. “Unseasonable.”

That, said Al Franken, gave him an idea.

“I thought about coming into the chamber with a snowball and just packing it very tight the way we do in...

Meet Miss Israel 2017, a social media savvy beauty queen

By ANDREW TOBIN

TEL AVIV (JTA) — To become the Jewish state’s reigning beauty queen, Rotem Rabi first had to conquer the internet.

The 21-year-old Jerusalem-based model recently won the coveted Miss Israel crown and sash with the help of an army of online supporters.

“I want to thank all of you for the kindness and support I received from you,” Rabi wrote Wednesday on Facebook and Instagram. “Appreciate it and love...

Billy Crystal on being Jewish, playing ball and more

By CINDY SHER

(JUF News via JTA) — The inimitable Billy Crystal is back on the road. The six-time Emmy Award-winning comedian, actor, producer, director and writer — most recently of a book of essays, “Still Foolin’ ‘Em: Where I’ve Been, Where I’m Going, and Where the Hell Are My Keys” —  is currently touring the U.S. with his new show, “Spend the Night with Billy Crystal.”

The show, scheduled to...

Matchmaking Jewish father postpones interviews of prospective brides for son

(JTA) — The Jewish father who took out a full-page ad in an Idaho newspaper seeking a wife for his 48-year-old son has postponed the interviews with prospective brides he scheduled at an Idaho resort.

Arthur Brooks, 78, of Beverly Hills, California, decided to delay his interviews of potential wives for his son, Baron, at the Coeur d’Alene Resort over the weekend after the resort “got a little scared about...

Who is Donald Trump’s Jewish son-in-law, Jared Kushner?

By URIEL HEILMAN

NEW YORK (JTA) – Jared Kushner has many claims to fame.

He’s married to Ivanka Trump, daughter of the Republican presidential front-runner. He’s the scion of a philanthropy-minded Jewish family from New Jersey that is one of the biggest names in New York real estate. He’s the owner and publisher of a storied weekly, the New York Observer.

But Kushner’s celebrity may be taking a quantum leap now...