Author Archives: Mel Weiss

Live from the Lilith Blog

January 26, 2009 by

Harmonic Convergence

If you’ve read, well, anything I’ve written here on this blog, you have probably inferred that rarely do I feel particularly in step with the larger world, let alone with the government. So it’s kind of weird for me to walk around feeling in touch with, not so much (or not just) a cultural moment, but a political one. I start mainlining political blogs during the 2007 phase of the 2008 election, my apolitical friends start quoting polls to me within months. I develop a little election-season crush on that brilliant butch Air America host who keeps popping up on MSNBC, and everyone from New York magazine to my considerably-to-the-right-of-me family in Texas starts to sing her praises—and maybe even her way-left politics. We all start praying that the remarkable Jewish-progressive cultural moment that exploded digitally during the Bush years takes on a political side in this new world, and Jstreet comes a-callin’. I think I’m going to start meditating on the words “infrastructure” and “two-state solution” for maybe an hour every day.

All this by way of saying that we at the Lilith blog—by which I mean I—messed up a little bit: I missed this year’s annual Blog for Choice Day. (You can, of course, peruse our post from last year.) Tons of amazing blogs participated, and you can see them all at NARAL’s website. I feel bad, but to be totally honest…I guess I just wasn’t so motivated by fear this year. We all know the story of how George Bush reinstituted the Gag Rule on Jan. 22, 2001—but did you know that President Obama (still getting the shivers over that one) reversed it?

It’s not like we don’t have plenty to worry about—we’ve still got a court that could make you rip your own hair out. (By the way, Mr. Chief Justice, we all hope you read the Constitution a little more carefully on the bench itself.) But with (say it with me!) President Obama up in charge, I can wear my very Jewish guilt about missing this year’s blog-for-choice day a little more lightly. But to make me feel better, go give a read anyway.

–Mel Weiss

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Live from the Lilith Blog

January 19, 2009 by

Small Reasons for Hope

Around this time of year, some combination of the weather and too much time spent reading the New York Times gets me down—it’s just a depressing time. So, on the off chance that there are Lilith blog readers who also experience the same seasonal malaise, a brief list of things about which we can have some hope.

1. The inauguration. While kind of a “duh,” it’s worth going the nearest mirror and saying to yourself, “Barack Obama is my president.” If that doesn’t work, switch it up to “George W. Bush is no longer president.” You may feel yourself strangely compelled to whistle, click your heels together and greet strangers on the street warmly. Do not be alarmed.

(Going to the inauguration? Leave your “I was a Jewish feminist at the Obama inauguration story on the wall of Lilith’s Facebook page, for the rest of us—or at least me—to peruse enviously.)

2. Ceasefire in Gaza. Unfortunately unilateral? Yes—although now that it’s underway, Hamas and others have agreed to cease hostilities. Nothing’s been solved, but a ceasefire is without a doubt the first step towards a slightly more lasting solution. Furthermore, Egypt and Turkey seem particularly interested in being involved in the process from this point forward, which is fantastic. I’m a big believer in the concept that peace negotiations (or more permanent ceasefire ones, for that matter) have a better chance of success when they’re negotiated in as multi-lateral a way as possible.

3. SCHIP. Arisen from the oldies-but-goodies graveyard, this important piece of legislation, passed by the House and vetoed by Bush not once but twice, will improve health care for American children. It passed 289-139 in the House on Wednesday, and there’s just about no more Bush administration to shoot it down again. The incomparable and much-lauded Nate Silver notes that the numbers this round reflect not only the Dem’s amazing job in the 2008 elections, but a general change of heart in our capital. I’m for it.

4. Heartwarming Plane Crash and Rescue in the Hudson. Maybe it’s just local news, but when a plane full of people crash lands in the river a few blocks from your office and everybody is fine…well, it’s another reason to get out of bed in the morning.

5. Global Warming Has Not Yet Won. For those of us in the parts of the country getting some grossly cold weather recently, it’s, well, cold comfort, but it gives me hope that the fight against global warming and our imminent self-destruction might yet be won. Now is a good time to start reading up on the stimulus package we’ve all been dreaming of; it’s got a lot of provisions for renewable energy, and we all owe it to ourselves and the next generations to work for even more.

What have I left off of this list? Fill us in on your own additions.

–Mel Weiss.

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Live from the Lilith Blog

January 5, 2009 by

Gaza

If there’s one thing Americans can now do, a particular skill that the vast majority of this large nation has learned, it’s that it is possible to hate a war without hating the country that, while provoked, is responsible for the violence. It is possible to understand how the war begins and hate the war. It’s possible to empathize, to be angry at wrongdoing, and oppose a war. It’s possible to change your mind about the effectiveness of violence and political cycles based upon it. So let’s do that.

Let’s say, together, that we want for Israel a just and lasting peace. Safety. A place in the world. That we will defend their right to exist, that Israel is not alone. And let’s add that when we refuse to condone the kind of violence that uses cluster bombs in highly populated civilian areas (especially when an estimated third of cluster bomb casualties are children), we see ourselves engaged in a battle for Israel, too–for its soul. This is not moral solipsism; this is love. And more than that, this is practicality. This is understanding that there may be a time for armed conflict, but armed conflict should not be our first and only approach to diplomacy. The kind of military engagement Israel uses to deal with the essentially political question of Palestine has ceased working. That’s not me speaking, that’s many other people, much smarter than I. As they say, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing again and again and expecting different results. So let’s refuse to do that thing again.

I signed the Jstreet petition and then heard the Executive Director, Jeremy Ben-Ami, on Rachel Maddow’s radio show, pitching the idea that a progressive, pro-Israel community exists out there, and that we can make a difference. It looks like a ceasefire is off the table for now, but if we keep the pressure on, who knows?

So read the talking points, consider signing the petition, and don’t let anyone tell you that violence is the only answer worth considering. My mother taught me to use my words, and when I couldn’t, to take a time-out in a quiet corner. We could all use a dose of that right now.

–Mel Weiss

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Live from the Lilith Blog

December 26, 2008 by

The View From Under The Bus

Let me start by saying happy Hanukkah, everyone, and I hope whatever other holidays you celebrate are also full of joy and peace.

While we turn off the world for a few days to celebrate, though, interesting and frequently disquieting political stuff continues to go down all over the place. And frankly, I’m not fond of too much of it, because the tossing of people under the metaphorical bus seems not to have taken much of a holiday break. I’m not even talking about the under-the-bus-chuck of the auto industry (especially labor in that sector) by congressional Republicans like Louisiana Senator David Vitter. (And isn’t it a totally weird coincidence that many of the Southern states that crashed the auto bailout happen to have lots of factories from foreign-run, unionless auto companies?)

No, no, I’m talking about much more in-your-face, flip-you-the-bird-as-I-toss-you, not-even-any-TARP-money-from-the-White-House-as-a-consolation-prize under-the-bus chucks. Like the Israeli government’s tearing down of the country’s first “eco-mosque,” at Wadi Na’am in the Negev. The project had been scheduled for demolition in November; the demo was postponed, but now Bustan, a cooperative eco-org in Israel, is reporting that yesterday, under the cover of darkness, the mosque was totally destroyed. Merry Christmas, everyone!

If you’re an American searching for bus-chucking closer to home, consider our still-administration deciding that hey, if you don’t want to perform a medical procedure or do your job in the health industry because of religious objections, that’s totally cool. To refresh your memory, this just-passed jewel enables anyone employed in any sector of the medical world—from your dentist to your gynecologist to the person who schedules your medical appointments to the person who cleans medical tools in a doctor’s office and on and on—to refuse to participate in any part of any medical procedure they personally reject on religious grounds. The sprinkles on this ice cream cone of absurdity? Nobody is required to inform his or her employer beforehand of any such scruples that might come up! Anyone who’s ever been to or plans to go to a medical professional for anything, ever, should go to NCJW’s action page and tell your representatives in Congress and the president-elect that you think this is ridiculous.

Oh, and while you’re enumerating for President-Elect Obama the things you’re not wild about, how about adding on that you’re not pleased to have America’s gays (and women) tossed under the bus right now either. Obama’s pick to lead the invocation at the inauguration is the gays-and-repro-rights-hating Pastor Rick Warren. (If you’ve missed some of the more salient recent commentary, start catching up now.) In the wake of Prop 8 (or “Prop H8,” as innumerable email forwards have renamed it) and its concomitant protests from pissed-off Americans of all sexual orientations, it seems like now is maybe not a great time for Democrats to be totally taking advantage of the gay vote. (Numerically, I’d like to point out that it’s almost never a good time to mess with the women’s vote, as we’re kind of the majority. Not that that seems to stop anyone…)

My own ritual Christmas movie was “Milk,” an excellent reminder that even a small group of people, organizing to claim their rights, can refuse to lay down under the bus anymore. As I sat in the darkened theater, I thought of the powerful ending to Tony Kushner’s Angels in America: “The world only spins forward. We will be citizens. The time has come.” And when I got home from the movie, I lit my menorah as it sat in my window for any and all to see, a reminder that small groups of dedicated individuals can win our freedoms, but only we, though dedication and courage, can keep that light alive in our own times.

I hope your holidays are peaceful; don’t lie down under the bus.

–Mel Weiss

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Live from the Lilith Blog

December 8, 2008 by

What You Won't See

I was really touched by Anna’s most recent post on missing women, and also stumped about the theme of my post this week. So here is your shamelessly-ripped-off roundup on what you might find missing in the political universe around you.

Medical Care. Remember that guy, we used to all talk about him a lot, his name is President George W. Bush? Yeah, he’s still president, and he’s got about five weeks left to do some nice damage before he bounces. Among those things are the “Provider Conscience” rule, which, according to NOW, “has the potential to severely restrict women’s access to birth control and other reproductive health services.” Essentially, the rule says that “any healthcare worker who morally objects to any medical procedure or service can legally refuse to perform it or take part in any way.” And—get this—although this is an obvious poke at abortion, birth control, and other repro rights beneficiaries, technically, this rule could protect medical staff that didn’t want to make appointments, prescribe drugs, or clean medical instruments. Um…what?

Jobs. Well, only if the auto industry gets good and shot down by Congress, and by Congress, I mean Congressional Republicans. The auto industry bailout is one of those things that I just didn’t want to think about, because it makes my head hurt. But the truth is, no matter how bad your bailout fatigue, you should really give this one a few minutes of consideration. For starters, this is not your investment broker’s bailout: this one’s a lot smaller ($25 billion vs. the financial industry’s $700 billion); it’s in loans, and not straight giveaways; it’s got the support of the United Auto Workers, normally not too chummy with the heads of the Big Three. However, I can’t do nearly the job explaining this as can Senator Barney Frank, interviewed by the ever on-target Rachel Maddow, so watch this.

By the way, yeah, you’re in America in the 21st century, watching a gay senator being interviewed by a wildly popular, incredibly talented and totally butch lesbian talking head, which brings us to…

Gays. This Wednesday is scheduled to be Day Without a Gay. LGBTQAI etc. folks and their straight allies are encouraged to call in “gay” to work and do service projects of all sorts. I think this is sweet. If you’re missing lots of folks from the office on Wednesday, I hope DWaG is why.

Senator Nita Lowey. With Secretary of State Clinton getting ready for the transition, Gov. Patterson needs to fill her seat soon, and not shockingly, everybody’s got an opinion. As ever, I have several, but at the top of my little list was Congresswoman Nita Lowey, who was under consideration but has apparently formally declined. In addition to her great progressive voting record, I had really been hoping for a resurgence of of those great dancing-head videos about Jewish women in Congress. Oh well—more’s the pity.

–Mel Weiss

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Live from the Lilith Blog

November 24, 2008 by

Madame Secretary!

Google’s newish ‘suggested search’ function can be irritating, but it also gives you a feel for what’s on the mind of The Public. Like when you search “Hillary Clinton secretary of state” and see that nearly a million and a half other folks have done the same, you get that nice cozy feeling of being on the same wavelength as so many others. For the record, it’s now pretty clear that, post-Thanksgiving, Obama’s going to offer Clinton the post and she’s going to say yes. Now, I know plenty of people are worried about plenty of angles on this one (and as a New Yorker, let me say me, too!, because we’ve got quite a situation on our hands here, and she’s been an amazing senator), but please allow me to list some reasons why this is a good thing:

Senator Clinton, in her own right, which is to say if you don’t think about the nasty things she and the President-Elect said about each other in the primaries, is an obvious and amazing choice for SoS. She’s clearly brilliant and capable, has sat on the Senate Armed Services Committee for a while now, has traveled for the Senate extensively (remember the vodka incident?), met and cultivated relationships with an amazing number of dignitaries during her tenure as First Lady, and, last but far from least, she’s tough as nails.

I can’t deny that the idea of two successive strong women in the position is appealing, even though Condaleeza Rice may no longer have any soul left to sell at this point in the game, which should disqualify her from my approval. [This week’s New York magazine has a surprisingly straightforward—and kind of depressing—article, not yet available online, about the Hillary Clinton/Sarah Palin bitch vs. ditz conundrum. I was won over to the idea that the ditz rep is far more damaging, so I say, the more aggressive, self-possessed, smarter-than-you-and-you-know-it women we can get back into the spotlight asap, the better.] Nor can I deny that, along with Bill Richardson and Janet Napolitano (and we can throw in Lawrence Summers for good measure), Clinton’s presence helps me believe that this is an administration that will manage to ‘look like America’ in a non-pandering, non-condescending kind of way.

And I know people are worried that they’re not going to be able to work together, and there’s been plenty of bashing of the “team of rivals” concept (many thanks to Doris Kearns Goodwin for popularizing that phrase), but I guess I just can’t help appreciating at least the appearance of adults acting like adults and putting the country before their own petty grievances.

And to all y’all who still fear that Obama is somehow not good for Israel, take a deep breath. This appointment will confirm that, sorry, you’re wrong. Even Republicans, during those years of the primary that now, in my mind, stretch back a decade or so, admitted that Clinton had a good record on Israel. Israelis certainly thought so.

Yes, this does open up, to quote Rachel Maddow, “about 1.7 trillion political questions.” Yes, it may cause conflict. Yes, it may well be concerning to note all these Clintonites and fairly hawkish folks in an Obama administration, especially in the foreign policy and diplomacy department.

But it still makes me smile*.

–Mel Weiss

*The fact that I won a bet by calling this appointment weeks ago is totally beside the point.

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Live from the Lilith Blog

November 17, 2008 by

Marital Blues

The whole “same-sex marriage” thing has been on my mind a lot since the election, mostly because that’s where we lost. The succor of those magic words, “President-elect Obama,” has been a balm for me, but, to mangle a metaphor or two, the bloom is about to be off the rose and people still can’t get married. So. Let’s discuss.

For starters, in case you were overwhelmed by aforementioned magic words, allow me to remind you that just under two weeks ago, California, Florida and Arizona voted to make same-sex marriage illegal. Arkansas voted to make sure that no one not legally married—and that means y’all, too, straight single folks—can adopt or foster a child. That brings the number of states with a constitutional ban up to twenty-nine. (Not to mention those that have bans written into law but not the state constitution.) There are two states that will marry The Gays, eight states and a district that will guarantee some sort of vague, partnership-type legal relationship that may look like marriage and smell like marriage, but is definitely not marriage, and one clearly befuddled state, squeaking out legal gymnastics a Talmudist would be proud of, which will not permit gay marriage to happen instate, but will recognize it formally when performed in a state where it is permitted*. Basically, we’re not feeling the love.

So, why should Jewish feminists care, specifically? How many levels of outrage can this hit for us?

Well, first of all, there are some out there who’d say that the right to marry the person you love is a universal right, something every human should be allowed. But let’s leave them aside for a moment, because that kind of argument just shuts down debate. Historically, some of the early rifts between the secular feminists and gay folks (lesbians, mostly)—“Lavender Menace,” anyone?—didn’t exist between the Jewish feminist and Jewish queer movements**. We have a longstanding closeness and a history mutual aid and support—not to mention a vast pool of people with dual identification—so it’s time to step up.

Furthermore, this is an issue of the separation of church and state if ever I have seen one. Forget the ten commandments in public parks and school prayer; ask anyone who says that they think gays shouldn’t be allowed to get married—including that strange breed who insist that we should be given every legal right that accompanies marriage without the marriage itself—ask them to provide a definition of marriage unrelated to religion. Listen, if there are churches out there—or synagogues, say—that want to refuse to do gay marriage, I’m okay with that. I might find it painful, but it’s legitimate in the eyes of the law. But the nation doesn’t get to work that way. And Jews, especially, ever attuned to the ruling authorities’ views on state/religion, should be concerned and opposed to this sort of blurring.

Lastly, given that we’re a people with a reputation for economic acuity, we should all recognize that gay marriage will be good for the economy. And right now, just about anything that merits that praise should be strongly embraced.

The World Congress of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Jews points out that we’re not going to have a unified Jewish front on this any time soon. (Nu? Remember that old joke about two Jews and three opinions?) But I had to put this out there—even at the risk of raving at the choir—in case any of this could possibly change someone’s mind. Seriously—we are not the enemy, and we need every vocal ally we can get.

People have been taking to the streets, which is heartening***. Jews were an important part of the last civil rights movement, and I hope we stay just as involved in the next one.

—Mel Weiss

*I refer, of course, to my ancestral homeland, the big NY. The only analogous legal comparison I can make, actually, is to the recognition of non-Orthodox marriages in Israel. Coincidence?
**Lilith (ahem), particularly, has embodied that historical non-divide. If you’re looking for more academic sources, read Pamela Nadell’s chapter in Women Remaking American Judaism for details.
***Although wouldn’t it be so much better if we could all focus our energies on making sure everyone has food and a home and affordable healthcare?

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Live from the Lilith Blog

November 10, 2008 by

Go and Find

Well.

I triple-checked the non-profit guidelines section of the IRS website, so it is without fear that I am endangering anyone here that I say: OH MY GOSH, WE WON WE WON WE WON*.

That’s a pretty nice feeling. And an unbelievable fit with this week’s parsha of Lech L’cha. Going to a new and unexplored land is a great metaphor for what this new administration will feel like. (And it’s a nifty vox populi, vox dei moment, too.) This may be more true for some of us than others: I was sixteen years old when George W. Bush was elected. His is not the only Presidency I can remember, but is the backdrop to my young adulthood and my political consciousness, so you can see that this would be not only a big deal to my cohort—as to everyone—but a real sense of beginning something new and utterly, utterly unknown. I’m not even sure how to have a non-oppositional relationship to the leader of my nation. But I’m ready to set off and find out, you know?

Sure, it’s a little hubristic to even implicitly connect Obama to Moses—especially since we apparently think he’s Jesus or something—but we’re still flying high on election victory, and it takes my mind off the thousands and thousands of files being shredded at the White House as I type. And I think of Abraham and the wells, and the way this patient man dealt with those out to make his life difficult, and I think…we could do worse for a comparison.

The Talking Heads That Be have spent almost a week now repeating over and over that this was not a victory for the left, not a victory for progressivism, just a victory for this certain man that may or may not be traceable to the bottom falling out of our economy. To this I say…whatever. We won, and while some of us may be savoring this strange and powerful elation, there’s much to come. While I’m looking forward to knowing that all my friends and family have healthcare they can afford, and to knowing that a long and bloody war will come to an end and that those fighting it will have the support they deserve, I think I am, somewhat dorkily, looking forward to the President’s expectations of me. I’m ready to be asked to serve, and I am way not alone in that.

Voluntarism—the idea that participation in certain spheres is entirely one’s choice—is a dicey thing. We must respect people’s personal freedoms, of course, but doing away with all expectations is rarely salubrious. I’m knee deep in an overview of American Jewish history right now, and the main theme may well be “voluntarism tripped us up.” The marketplace of ideas is a wonderful thing, but when you let people loose in it, they don’t always come back. In fact, it often takes a raising of expectations to get people to engage at all. Expectations and opportunity, combined with new ways of thinking and including people, get people invested. (Wait, this is sounding familiar…)
And that’s what I’m looking forward to most.

So we set off now on a grand journey. The great work begins. I can’t wait.

–Mel Weiss

*I’m speaking here of the electoral triumph of President-elect Barack Obama. In case you hadn’t heard, or in case you were judging the success of this election on the basis of how many states denied gay folks their civil rights. We’re getting back to that sometime soon, don’t worry.

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Live from the Lilith Blog

November 3, 2008 by

Erev Erev Election Day, or, I Have No Fingernails Left

So, yeah, the fate of our nation will be decided in about 50 hours from now, but let’s not talk about that, okay? Oh, I know there’s plenty of other stuff to talk about—I’ve spent a lot of time in the last week checking and rechecking such inanities as the technical definition of a graduated income tax—(don’t look now, but you might be living in a socialist state), but mostly I’ve been fretting, worrying, gnashing my teeth and the like—not just over the election, which is nausea-inducing enough, but over this fun fact, which surfaced amidst the ludicrous newscycle we’ve been living for months: in the annual press freedom report by Reporters Without Borders, the United States came in 36th, a spot we proudly share with Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cape Verde, South Africa, Spain and Taiwan. And guess what? We climbed up twelve places to get there. That twelve point bump comes mostly from the release of an Al Jazeera cameraman from Guantanamo, where he never stood trial for any crime. The low rating comes mostly from other journalists in Guantanamo and the arrests, detentions and the like plaguing journalists at both the RNC and DNC this year. (Other people I’ve spoken to have also wondered what role corporate media’s complete consumption of most news outlets might have factored in; I’m not sure.)

This is the second most not-cool thing that could happen right now. (Look at how I’m not talking about the other thing, conveniently not endangering anyone’s non-profit status!) It’s one thing for members of relatively fringe political views to expound on how equality is “a European value, and not an American value.” ( Go know, as my mother would say.) It’s quite another to have an independent third party tell us for sure that we’re not living with a truly free and unfettered press. First-amendment freedoms are among those that have defined America from the beginning, the ones always as treasured as our economic capabilities, and apparently, just as fragile.

(For the record, Israel came in at 46, while American-owned territories clock in at 119, “Israel (extra-terrestrial)” at 149, and the Territories made it to 163. So are Martians in Israel receiving a better quality of news than Palestinians in the West Bank? An interesting possibility.)

So, whether you spend Wednesday in a joyous stupor and in a state of despair, I urge you to keep some of Molly Ivins’ words of wisdom in mind: things can always get worse and often do, and since these may very well work out to be the Good Old Days, you best enjoy them while you can. Since you can all still read Molly Ivins without fear of government reprisals, I’d say go do that, and support your local and independent news sources while you’re at it.

And, of course, please vote. Please.

–Mel Weiss

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Live from the Lilith Blog

October 27, 2008 by

Autumnal Holidays and Ballot Initiatives

My girlfriend is that rare combination of pessimism with the occasional flash of hardcore optimism, and a dash of superstition thrown in for good measure. (Actually, that’s probably why everyone assumes she’s Jewish when they meet her.) We’re not discussing national election polling data right now, but as a Golden State native, she is still gloomy about California’s Prop 8, which would amend the state constitution to outlaw same-sex marriage. It’s been polling pretty well, although far less well than a similar proposition several years ago. (I’m worried about her state’s Prop 4, which requires parental notification and a state-mandated waiting period in the event of abortion. I don’t know, but when it’s the Knights of Columbus versus American Academy of Pediatrics and American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, I tend to go with the people who went to med school. But that’s because I’m an elitist, I guess.)

My point here is not to induce gloom—although given that Prop 4 has a lead in the polls, by all means, feel that, too—but to point out that the choice between presidential candidates is not the only one you’re going to have to make on November 4th. There are going to be 153 ballot measures this election, which is nearly double the number there were in 2006. And most of these are, you know, fairly big deals. Nebraska’s going to vote on affirmative action. Oregon’s going to vote on mandatory minimums. And, of course, South Dakota’s going to make another attempt at banning abortion, Roe v. Wade be damned.

So, what’s Jewish about all this? Let’s suppose for a minute that there are two main seasons of holidays in the Jewish calendar—the spring cycle of Pesach-Shavuot, and the fall cycle of Rosh Hashana-Yom Kippur-Sukkot-Hoshana Raba-Shemini Atzeret-Simchat Torah (whew!). I love them both, and I really do think they provide essential counterbalances to one another. The spring cycle, though, celebrates a phenomenon in which things were done for the Jews—God freed us from slavery and gave us the Torah. The fall season is a lot more about human fragility and agency—we must ask for forgiveness, contemplate our place in the Book of Life, sit in a hut to remind us of our own temporality, and celebrate that we read the entire Torah another time. These are both vital aspects of life, but it makes a certain thematic sense to me that we vote in the fall, after contemplating our own morality, our culpability, our vulnerability and our joy in the law. I hope it raises our sensitivities a little bit.

Thus I make to you here not just an impassioned plea that, come the 4th, you vote for the candidate of your choice, but that you take the next week to make sure you know what else will appear on your ballot, and what you think about it. If you couldn’t get wifi in your sukkah, do your research now.

–Mel Weiss

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