Newsletter Issue # 83 – July 4, 2013

A Dutch court on ordered one Anne Frank charity to give the Frank family archive back to another charity in Switzerland, following an uncomfortable public dispute over the Jewish teenager’s legacy.
The Amsterdam District Court ruled the Anne Frank Foundation in Amsterdam must give the archive back to the Anne Frank Fund in Basel, Switzerland.

Major American Jewish organizations roundly praised the US Supreme Court  for striking down the Defense of Marriage Act as unconstitutional and for demanding that federal benefits be extended to gay couples in states where their marriages are recognized. The top court also overturned California’s Proposition 8 – which took away the previously granted right of gays to marry in the state on a technicality..

A new initiative in Israel’s ultra-Orthodox sector sees haredi women in Jerusalem learning first aid in order to cater to the needs of women giving birth who feel uncomfortable being treated by male paramedics for modesty reasons. A meeting attended by several women from the sector recently concluded with a decision to open a unique course for 50 women, who would learn free of charge how to care for women in the process of childbirth on their way to the hospital.
An amendment to the Economic Arrangements Bill that would condition the funding of elementary haredi schools on the teaching of math, Hebrew and English generated a heated argument in the Knesset Education, Culture and Sports Committee with haredi MKs denouncing the legislation as an attempt to destroy ultra- Orthodox society. During the session, senior UTJ MK Moshe Gafni was so incensed with the proposals that he denounced committee members MKs Ruth Calderon and Yifat Kariv as evil who came to the Knesset to do evil.

The Star K joined a collection of no-name hechsherim in creating a new criteria for gaining kashrut status. Brands must have an SFK name.  You can even get a hechsher on bacon donuts, you just need an SFK name on the branding. What’s SFK?  Internet savvy folks know what NSFW means. It’s not safe for work, a.k.a. pritzus and other content that you could get you in hot water with your HR department at work. Cutesy restaurants and food vendors have inadvertently created a new category  NSFK.

Even though the ordinary Israeli who attends synagogue does not even own a necktie, a social scientist has proven that Israeli Jewish adults attending synagogue happy and healthier
In fact the researcher involved already knew the answers before he even conducted his studies. Professor Jeff Levin has spent his career proving the health benefits of religion for the world. This discovery though for a specific reason. We’ve been criticized for discussing a rule requiring tie-wearing by Jews in a local synagogue if they want to receive a Torah-honor on Sabbaths and Holidays.

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