While Jews for Judaism (“Missionary Impossible,” March 22) staff present themselves in such a straight manner as to make their outreach success to young Jews (who are at highest risk for victimization by conversion campaigners) unlikely, they do offer an important if symbolic counter to legions of Jews for Jesus and numerous Christian church activists who spend tens of millions of dollars and untold work and volunteer hours annually targeting young MOTs.
In the last year paid films placed by Jews for Judaism on YouTube have offered an important countermeasure to multitudes of Jews for Jesus and Aroodawakening ads placed on YouTube’s pages where films of Jewish content, especially Shoah subject matter, are viewed.
Using still pictures, Aroodawakening promotes the ancient canard that Jews and Romans caused Jesus’ crucifixion, and that Jews today are guilty of this crime.
But this was great! I burst out laughing on reading that rabbi Skobac “spent his first five years at Northwestern University shunning Judaism and advocating for human rights, even going on a three-week hunger strike.” All power to the people, Rav Skobac!
By advocating for human rights, the rabbi engaged in a very basic core Jewish value. For him to look back and say that he was “shunning Judaism,” inferred for not observing kashrut, Shabbat or putting on tefillin, is goofy.
Each of the main groups of American Jews today has no shortage of human rights activism to choose from. We are landsmen across the denominational divide, from Renewal to Orthodox; the younger Jews who attend independent minyanim; and Jews who synagogue hop for services; and secular Jews.
To not engage in supporting basic human rights needs is antithetical to Jewishness. Amidst our new cars, high-tech communication tools, social networking and vacations, there’s need: Poverty, hunger, insufficient health care, education, literacy, clothing, shelter, homelessness, drug addiction, alcoholism, youth at high risk, disabled and elderly in need, millions in prison, and hundreds of thousands of survivors of shootings. Be a real Torah Jew! Help heal the world (tikkun olam) by volunteering (tzedakah)! If not now, when?