Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Why Not A Simple "Mazal Tov?"

Zach son of Rahm Emanuel is here with his extended family for his Bar Mitzvah, and the Israeli media and government are giving them the royal treatment, possibly even paying for things expensive and forbidden.  I don't like the father Rahm Emanuel's ideology, attitude  and actions against Israel, but I also don't think that protesting and disturbing the family during the visit is the right thing to do.

No doubt, Rahm Emanuel likes the circus atmosphere that has been going on this visit, but shouldn't his son's Bar Mitzvah be richer in Jewish values?  Maybe that is the problem.  The Emanuels have made it big in America.  Rahm is United States President Barack Obama's right hand man.  Keeping ethnic names is very "in" in America, as we see in their names.  Obama doesn't use "Barry," and Emanuel isn't "Ray."

What lesson in Judaism have the Emanuel kids learned from this Bar Mitzvah trip?  I have no idea of the conversations among the family, but it seems to me that they and Israeli kids learned one unfortunate thing.  Jews who make it big in Chutz La'Aretz, abroad, get treated better by the Israeli authorities than ordinary Israelis.

And if the government really wanted to give to a special Bar Mitzvah, the special group Bar/Bat Mitzvah of deaf and hearing impaired kids deserve it more than the comfortably well-off and very well connected Zach Emanuel.  Too bad the Emanuel family didn't decide to share their simcha, joyous occasion, with others.  Joining that special Bar Mitzvah would be a better lesson than eating traif (forbidden) squid in Eilat.


Anonymous said...

you missed the most important issue. Neither his wife nor kids are Jewish

Batya said...

ah hah
Thank you for that bit of info.

Anonymous said...

In which case, the last place this family should go to is the Kotel.

B"H, at least Rahm Emanuel has cut himself off from the Jewish people. Good riddance!

Anonymous said...

Emanuel's Rabbi skirts the subject:

Rahm Emanuel's Judaism Through His Rabbi's Eyes

Some things are better not interviewed.

Batya said...

Shy, I didn't find a reference to his wife's religion, conversion etc, unless I just missed it.

I do know that a cousin was rejected from MO shuls, because her husband isn't Jewish, although the kids are. So, if this MO shul accepts them, then I presume that isn't a problem, but I don't know. There's a difference of course.

Also, membership in an MO shul, or any other, doesn't require observance. There are other reasons people join.

If someone can give facts, I'd appreciate the comment. Thanks

Ibrahimblogs said...

I completely agree with you. Special treatment should be given to those who need them genuinely.

Keep blogging!!

This is Ibrahim from Israeli Uncensored News

Anonymous said...

Batya, I won't give one link I have because it's not verifiable. However, here is what Rabbi Lopatin himself said:

"Please read and reread Wikipedia carefully: It does not mention who converted Amy Rule, nor does it say that it was an Orthodox conversion. Rahm Emanuel and his family are well liked members of our Modern Orthodox synagogue, but we are proud that Anshe Sholom attracts many members who would not necessarily classify themselves as Orthodox – or as any denomination. We strive to be inclusive and non-judgmental. People would have to ask Rahm and Amy what denomination, if any, they feel they are part of."
- GUEST POST: Rabbi Asher Lopatin On Rahm Emmanuel, The Conference Call, And Pekuakh Nefesh

If I were the rabbi of someone attending my synagogue, no matter how Bedi'avad a member's conversion is, the first thing I would do is stand up for them - and especially their children - and tell everyone how disgraceful it is to question these people's membership in the Jewish nation.

But Lopatin - like in the article I linked to earlier - skirts the issue. He actually does worse.

Anonymous said...

Most 'Jews' are Middle East DNA only on the xy side of inheritance; mitochondrial inheritance is European preponderantly.

So how does that square with halacha?

Itsvan Bakony (nom de plume presumably) has some interesting insights.

Incidentally, research on
Arthur Ernest Mourant's "The Genetics of Jews" (1978) could be fruitful, especially in light of later DNA research.