January 24, 2012

Philanthropy & honesty - Top two op-eds of 2012

January has already brought two op-eds in the Jewish media, each of which calls all of American Jewry to task, and both written by individuals who command the respect of their own colleagues and have a broad enough following that NO ONE can credibly claim to not have heard.

William Rapfogel has built the MetCouncil into a major social service agency and incubator for solutions to urban poverty and a wide range of issues -- literally -- from cradle to grave. Now he tells it like it is to Jewish foundations that pick and choose among trendy Gen-Next start-ups while hundreds of thousands of Americans -- including many Jews -- go hungry, homeless, and hopeless. Willie's op-ed appeared in the New York Jewish Week, which is also significant since the Jewish Week relies on the UJA Federation for the largest share of its subscriptions. (I posted my own piece on that a year ago, but not as eloquently, expertly, or prominently.)

I was going to post my own thoughts on the latest extreme to emerge from the climate of villification, demonization and doom (i.e., the Atlanta Jewish Times publisher proposing to ASSASSINATE President Obama in order to help Israel!!!) and the delusional denials by many right-wing friends that each such case is anything but an isolated event. But then JJ Goldberg beat me to it, and I couldn't say it better myself -- I'm just getting too lazy to reinvent the wheel. So here's the link to JJ's column in The Forward.  (Here's the link to an earlier, related post of my own.)

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