(photo credit: Our Friends/Really Good Sports over at Reform Judaism)
By Yekutiel Bornstein
Last Updated 10/2/2019 at 8:20 AM
Cincinnati: Last week’s Conference on Reform Judaism at Hebrew Union College apparently yielded a far-reaching and controversial ruling. Effective immediately, Reform Synagogues will also allow men to wear Tallit! As soon as The Daily Freier found out, we grabbed our funky oversized kippot and flew to Cincinatti for this historical occasion. We almost couldn’t wait until after Rosh Hashana to publish the story, but we somehow found the strength.
We first met with HUC Spokesperson Melissa T. about the big change. “This ruling is truly a symbol of Tikkun Olam. The very act of men now donning Tallit embodies the concept of Tikkun Olam.” The Daily Freier asked if she had anything to add to her statement. “Tikkun Olam!” she replied.
The Daily Freier then spoke to aspiring Rabbi Adam G. “This ruling is a real game changer. I can’t wait to wear tallit in my congregation as a new Rabbi….. I mean, just as soon as I get a passing grade in guitar class.”
Results from Israel were swift, with Prime Minister Netanyahu making a strong statement. “My message to American Jews is simple: Regardless of how you feel about today’s ruling, we in Israel stand ready to continue cashing your checks. And when it comes to questions of religious pluralism versus tradition, we in Israel stand ready to continue cashing your checks.”
UPDATE: The Reform Movement says it’s “too soon” to speculate whether they will permit Shabbat services without tambourines.
(Please Don’t Try This At Home!)
By Yekutiel Bornstein
Last Updated 12/29/2018 at 5:45 PM
Philadelphia: A member of the Reform Jewish Community is lucky to be alive this evening after engaging in a risky drinking game. Adam G. is currently in stable condition after drinking a shot of Scotch each time the Rabbi at his Reform Temple invoked “Tikkun Olam” during the Shabbat sermon. The Daily Freier spoke with bystanders about this near-tragic event.
“I was sitting with Adam in the back of the Sanctuary by that table with all the old issues of Lilith, and things started okay.” explained Adam’s friend Seth. “The Rabbi mentioned the canned food drive, and invoked Tikkun Olam, so Adam took a shot. Fine, whatever. Then the Rabbi kind of got on a roll. When he started talking about Trump, I knew Adam was in trouble. By the time the Rabbi got to his anecdote about meeting Beto O’Rourke at the Austin Rally for Justice, Adam was slurring his words. When the Rabbi started talking about the Fair-Trade Hummus at his Food Co-Op, Adam was on the floor. I started CPR, and everyone sang Bim-Bam until the paramedics arrived.”
According to Adam’s friend Lisa, this sort of risky behavior should not have been a surprise. “Ever since Adam was kicked out of Hebrew Union College Rabbinic School for failing guitar class, he’s been on a bit of a downward spiral. I guess we should have seen this coming.”
According to sources close to Adam, he is “totally done” with the Tikkun Olam Drinking challenge. But tomorrow afternoon he intends to read The Forward and do a Bong Hit every time Peter Beinart starts a sentence with “As a Jew“.
(photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
By Yekutiel Bornstein
Last Updated 12/21/2017 at 1:00 PM
Manhattan: America’s Progressive Jewish Community is currently reeling from some very very disturbing news: the publication of a Passover Haggadah that only……wait for it…..tells the Story of Passover. Random House recently published a Haggadah written by two prominent Rabbis that purports to tell the story of the Jewish People’s escape from bondage in Egypt without any allusions to Donald Trump, Gun Control, Fracking, or a $15 Minimum Wage. Well if you think our Woke Jewish Brothers and Sisters were going to take this development lying down, you are sorely mistaken. A protest tent was quickly erected outside of the publishing house and a 24 hour protest vigil began. Were there guitars? Of course there were. The Daily Freier stopped by and spoke with a few select members of the tie-dye tallit gang to get the Real Story.
“There is absolutely nothing in this so-called ‘Haggadah’ on Climate Change.” fumed Rabbi Allyssa Finkelstein-O’Neill. And yes, she made “air quotes” with her fingers when she said “Haggadah”. Rabbi Finkelstein-O’Neill leafed roughly through the Haggadah until she found a particularly offending tract. “There! King of the Universe??? Really? You are literally supporting the Patriarchy! The entire book is just one big Hate Crime. And don’t get me started on the word for “husband” in Hebrew.”
As the Daily Freier walked past a number of protesters wearing pink kippot shaped like Tel Aviv’s Shuk HaCarmel, we met up with a food co-op manager named Dylan. “I really can’t be in the same room as this book. It is literally everything-phobic. I mean, How can they justify a Haggadah that contributes absolutely Nothing to the intersectionality debate? Plus, the entire Plagues section needs a trigger warning….Also as a vegan, I refuse to sing Hadgadya….And no surprise here, but the book fails to mention Mike Pence once!”
The Daily Freier then spoke with a cantorial soloist named Elyse. “To tell you the truth, my issues with the Passover story go WAY beyond the Haggadah. Like, Moses telling Yithro’s daughters that they can use the well because he said it’s OK? I mean, mansplain much?” Elyse continued. “This whole Holiday just reminds me that I’m literally offended by everything. I’m just glad I have enough copies of the J-Street Haggadah from last year.”
A spokesperson for the protesters said they intend to remain at the site indefinitely, “Or at least until we get bored with singing Shalom Rav“. Also, in an attempt to break down boundaries, tomorrow’s protest might even include some tallit on men.
By Yekutiel Bornstein
Last Updated 9/24/2017 at 6:00 PM
Jerusalem: Hebrew Union College, the Reform Movement’s theological seminary, has acted quickly to remove an aspiring Rabbi who failed to meet their program’s standards. Adam G. is a native of Chicago who has failed his mandatory Guitar Class, and thus now faces expulsion.
Dean Melissa Levy-McIntosh explained. “Adam simply failed to acclimate to our Institution’s rigorous standards. I mean, he speaks Hebrew fluently, which is great, I guess. But his guitar work was simply atrocious.” The Daily Freier challenged Dean Levy-McIntosh but she was adamant. “We gave Adam plenty of chances. We even supplied a tutor. And when his instructor informed me that Adam had not yet advanced past “Bim Bam”, I decided to sit in on a class just to make sure. Let me tell you, that was the worst “Shalom Rav” I have ever heard. Also, during the break I saw him approach a classmate and ask who Debbie Friedman was.”
Hebrew Union College has urged Adam to re-apply for the Autumn 2018 Class provided he goes hiking in the Berkshires and maybe takes some tambourine lessons.
(Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons)
By Yekutiel Bornstein
Last Updated 7/2/2016 at 5:30 PM
Jerusalem, The Knesset: In a move described as “bold“, “courageous“, and “resolute“, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has vowed that despite going back on the Western Wall Agreement, he will continue accepting money from Diaspora Jews regardless of their level of religiosity or political stands. The Daily Freier attended a Press Conference in Jerusalem where Bibi explained his stand.
“Jews in the Diaspora, Make no mistake: No matter your stands on the Kotel, or conversions, or the Rabbanut….. we in Israel will never stop cashing your checks. And for those of you who are afraid that Israel doesn’t respect you, let me say again…. I will always cash your checks.”
News of this brave stance sent shockwaves throughout Israel and the Jewish world. In the United States, the Reform Movement vowed to put some skin in the game and made plans for 100,000 American Reform Jews to make Aliyah by next year in order to…. Just Kidding! They actually just put on some tie dye tallit and sang some Debbie Friedman songs.
Meanwhile, the religious parties in Israel responded with indignation. “How can these so-called Jews from North America even consider themselves Jewish?” demanded a spokesperson for the Shas Party. “I mean, their leadership has never even served a prison term for accepting $155,000 in a paper sack!”
After his Press Conference, the Prime Minister had a question and answer session, with Bibi providing the questions and answers. “In these days of a rising BDS Movement, what can we do to truly tell the World’s second biggest Jewish community that we are all in this together?” asked Prime Minister Netanyahu. “If you answered “throw Reform and Conservative Jews under the bus and renege on a previous agreement“, then award yourself a prize.”