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THE FLORIDA TRAGEDY
Area Jews are bracing for devastating news out of Surfside, Florida, where an apartment building collapsed in a heavily Orthodox enclave.
- Dozens are unaccounted for after the collapse; COLLive, a news site that covers the Chabad-Lubavitch community, published dozens of names on a list of people to pray for, including parents and children.
- Chabad of South Broward in Hallandale Beach told the South Florida Sun-Sentinel that at least 34 of the 159 people unaccounted for are Jewish.
NEW YORK, NEW YORK
Reps. Jamaal Bowman (Bronx/Westchester) and Mondaire Jones (Rockland/Westchester) were two of the 73 Democrats in the House asking President Biden to reset the clock on U.S.-Israel relations.
- In a letter, the lawmakers ask Biden to firmly consider Israeli settlements illegal and the West Bank occupied, reversing polices of the Trump administration, and to abandon Trump’s peace plan, which envisioned an Israeli annexation of portions of the West Bank, our partners at JTA report.
- Why it matters: The document reflects growing calls among Democrats to take a tougher stance with Israel, contra Biden’s continued closeness to the state. J Street, the liberal Jewish Middle East policy group, praised the letter.
Remember the deadly fire in March at a kosher senior center in Spring Valley? The investigation has widened.
- Rockland County’s district attorney led a raid of Spring Valley’s Village Hall Wednesday, Lohud reports, carting off documents as they probe whether the village’s fire and safety codes and inspections have been adequate.
- A firefighter and a resident died in the fire at the Evergreen Court Home For Adults; investigators are also asking whether the facility’s alarm system was turned off because staff were using torches to clean ovens for Passover.
While progressive candidates fizzled in the mayoral race, reports of the electoral irrelevance of the left in New York were greatly exaggerated, writes Mik Moore in a Jewish Week essay.
- Progressive candidates won or are leading the heavily contested races for Manhattan and Brooklyn borough presidents, Manhattan district attorney, city comptroller and public advocate.
- “On balance, independent progressive Democrats continue to get stronger, but still have a way to go.”
The Jewish Week won two first-place awards as the American Jewish Press Association presented the 40th Annual Simon Rockower Awards for Excellence in Jewish Journalism.
- Gary Rosenblatt’s essay, “What Adin Steinsaltz and Pete Hamill Taught Us All,” won first place for Excellence in Single Commentary.
- Hannah Dreyfus’s article, “Orthodox Jewish Health Care Workers Give Covid Advice that Few Want to Hear,” won the award for Excellence in Writing About Health Care.
- Hella Winston’s investigation into the murky marketplace for antique Torah scrolls, “How Much Is an Unkosher Torah Worth?”, won a second-place award for Excellence in Enterprise or Investigative Reporting.
ARTS AND LETTERS
Our partners at Alma talk with Sarah Schulman, author of “Let the Record Show: A Political History of ACT UP New York, 1987-1993,” about the grassroots group that fought to end the AIDS pandemic.
- Schulman, a playwright, describes how she was influenced by Isaac Bashevis Singer’s “Enemies, A Love Story” (1989), which she adapted into a play.
- Singer’s novel “is the most sophisticated depiction of victims I have ever seen, because when you stigmatize a group — whether it’s Jews or people with AIDS — you dehumanize them,” she says.
Art dealer Eli Bronner, son of former New York Times Israel correspondent Ethan Bronner, was married May 30 to Maheshie Cabraal, a senior manager at a home health care service in Manhattan. Rabbi David Schuck officiated at the groom’s parents’ home in Mount Vernon.
What’s the opposite of a role model? A Torah portion named after an enemy of the Jews suggests we can learn from the bad guys, writes Steven Genack in our weekly Sabbath Week column.
- More wisdom: Our columnist, Rabbi David Wolpe, writes how flexibility keeps relationships whole.
“When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit,” a new film from director Caroline Link, will be screened in person in the Museum of Jewish Heritage’s Edmond J. Safra Hall. The historical family drama is based on the semi-autobiographical book with the same name by Judith Kerr. Tickets are $5 each. Sunday, 4:30 pm.
Friday, June 25, 2021
Tammuz 15, 5781
Light candles at 8:13 pm
Torah Reading: Balak: Numbers 22:2 – 25:9
Haftarah: Micah 5:6 – 6:8
Shabbat ends 9:22 pm
CORRECTION: Yesterday’s item on a Hasidic woman who became a physician incorrectly gave Dr. Alexandra Friedman’s age as 50. Her husband is 50; her age wasn’t indicated.