I started writing a monthly column for The Jewish Standard (“the oldest Jewish weekly in New Jersey“) back in March. Many thanks to my friend, Larry Yudelson, for the opportunity.
The first installment, “Ask the right questions,” was published on March 6:
With the arrival and maturation of my generation, the Millennials, the question “Who is a Jew?” is rather passé.
Forget the halachic dimensions to this endlessly debatable topic. Forget all the moralizing arguments over the issue. Forget the demographically induced paranoia, the post-Holocaust hand-wringing, the Israeli legal maneuvering (not to mention the pandering that comes with it), and the denominational infighting. And — for heaven’s sake! — forget the Pew study.
The fact is that “Who is a Jew?” is the wrong question. To maintain our relevance — to regain it, really — the question we must ask today is “Why be Jewish?”