Why Accusations That NYU Is Anti-Semitic Are Unwarranted

Lawrence SchiffmanIn 1974, I came to New York University’s Washington Square campus as a young instructor of Hebrew. With my kipa and beard, it was obvious that I was an Orthodox Jew. Some 45 years later, I can look back and say that I have received all of the respect and friendliness that anyone could expect, never witnessing anything that can be described as anti-Semitism.

So, I was shocked to hear that I was working on a supposedly anti-Semitic campus, a charge stemming from a phony “boycott” of NYU Tel Aviv led by a single NYU department, the department of social and cultural analysis, which has nothing to do with NYU Tel Aviv, and a rogue student address delivered at a graduate school commencement. These actions violate the principles on which NYU was built and have been widely condemned on campus.       

Read the rest of this article at The New York Jewish Week.

Jews, Catholics, Parley

Much Accomplished in a Convivial Atmosphere

Jews, Catholics, ParleyFor three days, from May 13-16, about 50 Jewish and Catholic clergy, scholars and lay leaders gathered in Rome for  the 24th meeting of the International Catholic-Jewish Liaison Committee in an atmosphere of friendship and cooperation. As a result of these meetings and many other positive developments, the Catholic Church has indeed become a friend of the Jewish people and the State of Israel.

The Jewish side in the dialogue is represented by the unique International Jewish Committee for Interreligious Consultations (IJCIC), which represents Jews from all over the world and includes rabbinic and synagogue organizations and defense agencies. It is my privilege to represent the  Orthodox Union on this committee. The group is a paragon of Jewish unity, working together
seamlessly to represent the Jewish people to international religious bodies, including some much less positively disposed to Jews than the Catholic Church.

Read the rest of this article in the Long Island Jewish World.

Upcoming Lectures in Florida

May 1, Chabad Fort Lauderdale

Holocaust Remembrance Event: “Understanding and Confronting Anti-Semitism

Drinks and light refreshments will be served. Suggested donation: $10. RSVP: 954.568.1190

May 2, Jewish Museum of Florida

The Dead Sea Scrolls: Where are We Now?

This illustrated lecture will briefly review the nature and significance of the Dead Sea Scrolls and then deal with recent developments regarding the significance of the Scrolls for understanding the Hebrew Bible and its interpretation, history of Judaism, and the background of Christianity. Included will be significant texts, digitization, archaeological research, and the controversy over the authenticity of fragments that came to light after 2002.

The program is Free and open to the public.

May 5, Sunday, Chabad of East Boca

The Dead Sea Scrolls

10 AM-12 PM

Coffee and light refreshments will be served.

May 5, Chabad North Orlando

The Dead Sea Scrolls

7 PM

Tickets: $18

May 6,  Chabad of South Orlando

The Dead Sea Scrolls

7:30 PM

Tickets: $18