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Rabbi Eric Yoffie is a writer, lecturer, and President Emeritus of the Union for Reform Judaism. His latest articles are below. 

Political Space for U.S. Jews Is Shrinking

Posted by on Nov 2, 2017 in Haaretz | 1 comment

Political Space for U.S. Jews Is Shrinking

As America fragments before their eyes, American Jews, who’ve learned to be cautious and wary in periods of severe political disruption, are deeply uncomfortable. The chaos is not confined to the right or the left. Both political parties are in turmoil. The Democrats are leaderless, the Republicans in the midst of their own civil war. President Trump seems to delight in this battle. Often...

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Millennials Ask about Israel

Posted by on Nov 1, 2017 in Articles, By Eric | 0 comments

Millennials Ask about Israel

“Is There a Generation Gap When Talking About the Jewish State?” Question: As a young person, I feel like there is often a gap between how I talk about Israel and how older Jews talk about Israel because of our differences in education. My mom, for example, is uncomfortable using the word “occupation” whereas I am not. My parents’ education focused a lot more on the promises of the Zionist...

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Israel’s Jewish Religious Fanaticism Is Infiltrating America

Posted by on Oct 16, 2017 in Haaretz | 5 comments

Israel’s Jewish Religious Fanaticism Is Infiltrating America

Israelis have long suffered from the lies and distortions of the ultra-Orthodox politicians of the Shas and United Torah Judaism parties. But American Jews are now suffering as well, as the extremism of Israel’s religious establishment has made its way to America’s shores. The American Jewish community is usually happy to receive exports from Israel, but not in this case. The export here is the...

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We Will Not Give Up on Gun Control

Posted by on Oct 3, 2017 in Huffington Post | 0 comments

We Will Not Give Up on Gun Control

This article was published on April 18, 2013. Sadly, it is very relevant today Our leaders have failed us, again. And I don’t know about you, but as a religious person, I’m angry. Approximately 90 percent of the American people believe that their fellow Americans should undergo a background check before they are permitted to purchase a gun. But the legislation mandating those...

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Mike Pence, God may never forgive you

Posted by on Sep 24, 2017 in Huffington Post | 5 comments

Mike Pence, God may never forgive you

Vice President Pence, the fate of the Graham-Cassidy bill is hanging by a thread.  Your party is one or two votes short of the 50 that it needs in the Senate.  If it gets them, you will break the tie and determine whether the bill passes and is sent along to the House for almost certain approval. VP Pence, please consider that voting for this healthcare bill will cause human suffering on a scale...

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Who are Jewish Role Models Today?

Posted by on Aug 23, 2017 in Articles, By Eric | 4 comments

This article, written by  Joseph Aaron, appeared in The Chicago Jewish News, August 3, 2017 “…who are the Jewish role models of our time, who lives a life, acts in ways that exemplify the best in Judaism, that inspire the rest of us to better ourselves, act more honorably….Rabbi Eric Yoffie, former head of the Reform movement, showed amazing courage in speaking up and standing...

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Why I’m Thankful for America’s Immigrants and Religion

Posted by on Jul 2, 2017 in Time | 0 comments

Why I’m Thankful for America’s Immigrants and Religion

These reflections on the 4th of July, written in 2014 for Time Magazine, seem even more relevant in the Trump Era. The Fourth of July is nearly upon us. As always, we Americans will barbeque in our backyards, watch fireworks, and celebrate America. And there is much to celebrate. Americans are informal and down-to-earth. We introduce ourselves by our first names to practically everyone. We say...

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The Problem With No-Share Parenting

Posted by on Apr 21, 2015 in Time | 1 comment

The Problem With No-Share Parenting

A child who is 3 or 4 can be conditioned to share, to empathize, and to be generous. Don’t force your toddler to share. In fact, don’t encourage it all. It’s not even good for your child. Parents who insist that their kids “take turns” and give up their toys to other children on the playground are doing it mostly because they don’t want to be embarrassed in front of other parents. In short, we...

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Six Shared Values and the American Jewish Future

Posted by on Dec 9, 2014 in Jerusalem Post | 0 comments

Six Shared Values and the American Jewish Future

American Jews are a fractious lot.  Our religious differences are real and important.  Our community, after all, is known for its passionate pluralism, which in many ways is a blessing and a source of strength. I recently read an interesting take on these differences in a blog post by David Strulowitz published on the Wexner Foundation site.  Mr. Strulowitz provides a fascinating and...

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Stop bashing America

Posted by on Oct 27, 2014 in Jerusalem Post | 3 comments

Stop bashing America

American Jews are apoplectic. While they watch in astonishment, Israel’s leaders are doing everything they can to disrupt and degrade Israel’s relations with her most important ally, the United States of America. Jewish leaders are not only dismayed but genuinely puzzled.  Why in heaven’s name, they wonder, would Israeli officials do things that are guaranteed to undermine the goodwill so...

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