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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A J Street Passover

Lenny Ben David rips J Street's Jeremy Ben Ami's false Passover message (Hat Tip: My Right Word).
I don’t recall seeing in Ben-Ami’s bio any reference to his ordination as a rabbi. Maybe it was from some Deconstructionist divinity school, but it certainly wasn’t from the ancient schools of Moses, the sages Rabbi Gamliel or Rabbi Akiva, or from modern day rabbinical seminaries.

Oh, yes, I remember: Six months ago, the religious authority Ben-Ami presented to the New York Times his different and unique vision of how Judaism and Israel can survive and how to observe Passover:

“The average age of the dozen or so [J Street] staff members is about 30,” the Times profile reported. “Ben-Ami speaks for, and to, this post-Holocaust generation. ‘They’re all intermarried,’ he says. ‘They’re all doing Buddhist seders.’ They are, he adds, baffled by the notion of ‘Israel as the place you can always count on when they come to get you.’ Living in a world of blogs, they’re similarly skeptical of the premise that ‘we’re still on too-shaky ground’ to permit public disagreement.”

Ben-Ami sent out and posted on J Street’s website his “Four Questions for the Seder” handout. His distortions of Judaism and his attacks on the pro-Israel community and the Israeli coalition government cross the line – whatever line you chose, it’s crossed.


As I’ve written elsewhere, Ben-Ami is the shaliach tzibbur (prayer leader) for "Newest Testament" Jews: Jews who have embraced the new American Jewish religion of tikkun olam [fix the world] liberalism. Tikkun olam is the new overarching mitzva that guides them, even though it was never one of the 613 precepts of the Torah. The founding of Israel and the creation of Palestinian refugees may not have been the Original Sin in their theology as it is to others on the Left, but the settling of the West Bank following Israel's victory in 1967 is definitely viewed by them as Israel's Golden Calf.

The universalism of tikkun olam is a direct challenge to the exclusive “chosenness” of the core traditional Shma prayer. Shma Yisrael – Hear O’ Israel (why only Israel?), Hashem Elokeinu --the Lord is God (isn’t God dead or maybe She’s retired?), Hashem Echad –the Lord is One (doesn’t declaring the Oneness of God exclude the believers in Jesus, Buddha, Krishna, Wiccan gods, or Elvis?)

I’m sure Ben-Ami’s intermarried Buddhists are wonderful people, but in 25 years they and their children will not be filling the synagogues, temples, and day schools in the United States, nor will be they sitting in the classrooms of Hebrew University or Yeshivat Kerem B’Yavne, nor guarding the borders or flying the aircraft over the State of Israel. To them, Passover Seder will be a quaint custom observed by their grandparents.
Read it all.


At 10:28 AM, Blogger Alexander Maccabee said...


Reminds me of Rabbi Meir Kahane [may his blood be avenged] vs. the Kibbutzim. Let them have their pork.

At 8:36 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

At least the pork eaters on the kibbutz are already better Jews than Jeremy Ben Ami's Jews will ever be. They have already fulfilled the commandment to live in the Land Of Israel.

Can the J-Street Jews say the same? The children of the kibbutzniks will probably become observant. The same can't be said for J-Street's mavens, for whom Judaism has been supplanted as the true faith by liberalism.


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