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JTNews | May 14, 2010

JTNews | May 14, 2010

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Published by Joel Magalnick
JTNews | The Voice of Jewish Washington edition for May 14, 2010.
JTNews | The Voice of Jewish Washington edition for May 14, 2010.

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Published by: Joel Magalnick on May 13, 2010
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 a jewish transcript publication
     i     n     s     i     d     e
vol. 86, no. 10
friday, may 14, 2010
1 sivan 5770
Morris Malakoff
 JTNews Correspondent
In 1995, Jewish Family Service moved into its cur-rent Capitol Hill location on 16th Avenue, renovating aormer eye clinic to serve as the center o operations or40 employees and about 200 volunteers.Fiteen years later, 200 employees and 1,300 volunteersare crammed into the same structure, with closets and othernon-administrative areas having long ago been convertedinto oce space, oten shared by more than one employee.Many other employees and programs are spreadacross town in rented space, adding a nancial burden toJFS and a logistical burden or clients who need to accessmultiple programs.Te current oces are so overcrowded and outdatedthat administrators worry client condentiality is at risk.“It is very uncomortable to be here or a condentialappointment and have someone you know walk in andask ‘What are you here or?’” said Ken Weinberg, JewishFamily Service’s CEO.But those days o uncomortable working conditions,awkward moments in the lobby, and other impedimentsto the high standard o service JFS strives to deliver may soon be a thing o the past.On April 28, the JFS board o directors unanimously  voted to proceed with the construction o a $9 million,19,000-square-oot building adjacent to the current13,500-square-oot structure.Groundbreaking is expected to take place in early 2011.“Tis has been a long process that was not entered intolightly,” said JFS board president Dianne Loeb. “It hasbeen a dream or nearly a decade and now it seems likeater almost 10 years the pieces have suciently alleninto place or us to eel comortable with moving ahead.”Te plan is contingent on promised money convert-ing to solid donations, something Loeb and Weinbergare condent will happen. Fundraising or the buildingis also continuing.Loeb said the unds, which are segregated rom theoperational monies used or programs, have been actively raised or many years and that a combination o sourcesavailable, including some government money, have madethe board comortable with breaking ground early next year.“Our goal is to raise $11 million,” Weinberg said.“About $2 million o that is to cover interest charges, which we are hoping to not have i enough money israised to pay or the building.”Te new building, named the Jesse Danz Building, asthe current structure is now, will rise above the currentparking lot on the north side o the JFS building with theparking being retained at street level below the rst ooro the two-story building. Weinberg said that while JFS is not building an extrav-agant headquarters, it is building a quality acility.“Te building will be LEED certied at the silver level,he said, reerring to environmental building standards.“Tat is not only good or the broader environmental ele-ments, but it has been shown that LEED buildings arehealthier working environments as well.Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design is aninternationally recognized green building certicationsystem.Te Jessie Danz Building, which will be attached to thecurrent structure, will bring an immediate cost savings toJFS when programs that are currently in rented satellitelocations are consolidated under one roo.
Nw JFS ng fn gts gn gt
Page 12
Page 5
C   e  l   e  b   r  a  t  i   o  n  s  
J Mk
The wmen  Alpha Epsln Ph, untl earler ths week knwn as “the Jewsh Srrty,” receved ther clnzatn nt the natnal ranzatn at a ceremny n Mn., May 10.The 13 Unversty  Washntn students, plus Lauren Brwn  UW Hllel and Chaya Estrn  Chabad at the UW, wh were nstrumental n ettn the srrty  the rund,receved membershp rbbns rm several  the Jewsh srrty’s alumn. AEPh had a presence n the campus untl the 1980s, s ths new clny, ater t satses a number  crtera, wll becme a ull-feded chapter and retan the prevus teratn’s charter.
h vi  jwih whingn
n ew s
P  g  E   1  3  
Kagan seen as brilliant and afable — and amystery 
Ron Kampeas
 JTA World News Service
 WASHINGON (JA) — Rabbi David Saperstein runsthrough a shopping list o superlatives on Elena Kagan —“sel-evidently brilliant” and “steady, strategic and tacti-cal” — beore acknowledging that he doesn’t have mucho a handle on what President Obama’s choice to ll a U.S.Supreme Court seat actually believes.In the Jewish community Saperstein, the head o theReorm movement’s Religious Action Center, apparently is not alone.Community reaction to Obama’s selection o Kagan,the U.S. solicitor general, is enthusiastic until ocialsconsider what it is, exactly, she stands or.Kagan, 50, has never been a judge — she would be therst Supreme Court justice without bench experience since1974. It’s a biography the White House touts as rereshing,but also has the convenience o lacking a paper trail o opin-ions that could embarrass a nominee in Senate hearings.“When someone’s a solicitor general, it is really dicultto know what is their own position and what is the positiono the state they are charged to represent,” Saperstein said.Te White House strategy going into Senate hearingsappears to be blame whatever controversy trails her on heremployer, on her client — on anyone but Kagan hersel.he irst such controversy to emerge since Obamaannounced the nomination May 10 was Kagan’s deense,as dean o Harvard University’s Law School, o the practiceo banning military recruitment through the main career
emiy’crnr 7 a Viw rm h u 9M.o.t.: Mmbr  h trib 10cndr 18liy 23th shk cifd 26
Pae 10Pae 21
Help create healthy communities in Israel at 
is the Voice o JewishWashington. Our mission is to meet the interests o our Jewish community through air and accurate coverage o local,national and international news, opinionand inormation. We seek to expose our readers to diverse viewpoints and vibrant debate on many ronts, including the newsand events in Israel. We strive to contribute tothe continued growth o our local Jewishcommunity as we carry out our mission.
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 The opinions o our columnists and advertisers donot necessarily refect the views o 
W wo ov to  fo o! O g to wtng  tt to t to cn  fon on o W st: www.jtnws.nt/n.pp?/tts_gns.tThe deadliNe FOr The NexT iSSue iS may 18
FuTure deadliNeS may be FOuNd ONliNe
friday, may 14, 2010 
Rabbi OlivierBenHaim
Bet Alef MeditativeSynagogue
 As my irst name suggests, I wasborn in France. Te France I grew up inofered only one Jewish denomination,one orm o practicing Judaism: Ortho-doxy. For French Jews like my parents,practicing Judaism was virtually an all-or-nothing endeavor. My parents wereuncomortable — to say the least — withmost Jewish Orthodox practices. As Jewsrmly grounded in modern French sec-ular culture, they restricted their Jewishcelebrations to Passover and Yom Kippur,the purpose o which was to get together with extended amily twice a year. As a good rebellious teenager, Idecided to embrace Orthodox Judaism,to the utter dismay o my entire amily.I practiced modern Orthodoxy throughmy teens and into my 20s both in Franceand, later, in Israel, where I emigratedater graduating rom high school. JewishOrthodoxy was not only all I had everknown, it was all I ever knew existed. You can imagine my surprise then, when, having moved to the U.S. in my late20s, I discovered numerous denominationsavailable to American Jews. I was stunned!I ound mysel wondering, “How wouldJewish lie have been diferent or my par-ents — or French Jews in general? Wouldthey have ound it easier to attend syna-gogue had such diversity been available inmy youth?”It soon became apparent, however,that the pluralism I had ound so reresh-ing does not necessarily oster harmony.Many conversations taught me that thenorm o existing discourse within the American Jewish community is that o discord. Members o the more “liberal”denominations disparage the more tra-ditional ones, while the latter criticize thepractices — or lack thereo, in their opin-ion — o the ormer. Tose in the liberalcamp are accused o being accomplicesto the growing number o intermarriages— raising the specter o Jewish disappear-ance — while those in the Orthodox campare decried as being anachronistically patriarchal and stuck in an irrelevant iso-lationist past — raising the same specter.Te list o grievances continues romall sides,
ad nauseam
. Ultimately, every-one believes his or her particular methodo practicing Judaism is the correct andauthentic way. Most — in the name o political correctness — would not pub-licly admit as much; nevertheless, ourJewish Home is deeply divided. Where might this divisiveness lead us?Te almud ofers us one particularly dark possibility: “Why… was the second emple— wherein the society was involved inorah, Commandments and acts o kind-ness — destroyed? Because gratuitoushatred was rampant in society.” (Yoma
9b) We have yet to reach this level o conten-tion. Tankully, even amid great inter-nal rumblings, the House o Jacob is noton the brink o collapse. We might be dis-pleased or uncomortable with the waysothers choose to practice Judaism, butthat is a ar cry rom hatred. Perhaps inour generation we have the opportunity to ofer an alternative ending to that o thealmud’s; we can seed a diferent visionor the unolding o the Jewish story, i weheed a proound teaching gleaned romthis week’s orah portion:
Sinai, in the wildernesso Sinai, “the Eternal spoke to Moses…saying: ‘ake a census o the wholeIsraelite community…’” (Num. 1:1–2)Tere, through the census, every tribe isaccounted or, each one given a place inthe composition o the community as it isabout to march through the wilderness.Te metaphor o the wilderness, itsel, ismost telling. Here is a space welcoming o all and belonging to no one. In this space we are able to receive orah, or metaphori-cally speaking, to awaken to the most un-damental teachings. Tis is the spiritualspace all o us always travel through. Temarching tribes o our ancestors couldrepresent, in our days, both the multipledenominations o modern Judaism, andthose o us non-denominational Jews; all wandering through the
together.I we are to pay attention to this aspecto this week’s teaching, not only do all o us, aliated or not, need to be countedas part o the “Israelite community,” butall o us need the unique space we take upin the arrangement o the tribes — in thebreadth o Judaism — to be recognizedand armed by all others, as we marchthrough the
as one people.rouble begins when we believe weown Te ruth. No one does. Rather, eacho our denominations expresses a wholebut partial truth. By “whole” I mean that,deeply grounded in our convictions,steeped in our unique orm o practicesand worldview, we hold an absolutely  valid and necessary orm o Jewishexpression — a whole truth. But our truthis also part o a greater whole, the whole we call Judaism. And thereore, it is a par-tial truth on the spectrum o truths thatmake up Judaism. Tis is why I believe allthe denominations are needed.Te congregation I personally gravi-tated toward, and o which I now lead, isBet Ale Meditative Synagogue. Toughounded by a Reorm rabbi — Rabbi edFalcon — Bet Ale is an independent con-gregation. As a Jew, I am blessed withbeing able to ind a community thatmatches my current spiritual orienta-tion and preerence. Not only that, but asan evolving human being, I am also wellaware that diferent times in my lie may call me to diferent orms o practice, and,thereore, to diferent denominations.In our orah portion, the Hebrew wordsusually translated as “take a census,” liter-ally mean: “lit the head.” By accountingor the entire range o denominations, by counting us all as integral whole-partso the modern Israelite community, werestore the pride and sense o belonging o all Jews, and allow all to hold their headsup high. As we wander through the wilder-ness, each other’s presence enhances theremarkable experience o being Jewish.May we be able to nd within our heartsthe benevolent love that will unite ourpeople in the essential acceptance o ourdiferences, here in America, and mostcritically in our time, in the land o Israel.
e Ps un
 Just as in the Torah, to each his own place
rabbi’s turnDefinition of insanity
The editorial by Rainer WaldmanAdkins and Teri Citterman (“Sharing Jeru-salem: The key to peace?” April 30) sup-portive o a “two-state solution” andBarack Obama’s public criticism o Jewishconstruction in Jerusalem reminds meo Albert Einstein’s denition o insanity:“Doing the same thing over and over againand expecting dierent results.”The ailed Oslo process and past Israeliconcessions have not resulted in Palestinianabrogation o violence to obtain its polit-ical goals. Let’s look at the acts. First, todate the Palestinian National Covenant hasnot explicitly omitted the language deny-ing Israel’s right to exist. Ocial Palestin-ian pronouncements continue to assert thatthe Jews have no historic claim to Jerusa-lem and no Jewish Temple ever stood onwhat they call the “Haram-al-Shari” — TheTemple Mount. Second, all Israeli territo-rial withdrawals over the past decade havebeen reciprocated not with compromise byArabs but with increased violence. Israel’sunilateral withdrawal rom Lebanon in May2000 was met with an emboldened Hez-bollah, kidnappings o Israeli soldiers, andthe bloody second
. Moreover, thenumber o rockets red at Israel rom Gazamore than tripled ater Israel’s unilateralwithdrawal rom the Gaza Strip in August2005 — with nearly 6,000 rockets andmortars were launched between August o 2005 and the January 2009 Gaza war.In light o these undisputed acts,Adkins and Citterman now suggest thata cessation o building in Jewish neigh-borhoods in Jerusalem will lead to peaceand a two-state solution — notwithstand-ing the act that all prior concessions andeorts made by Israel have been met withPalestinian violence. This is insanity. Jewish blood should not have beenshed in vain, and over 20 centuries o prayers to return to Jerusalem dismissed,because o the political let’s severe cogni-tive dissonance. As simply stated by GoldaMeir, “We will have peace with the Arabswhen they love their children more thanthey hate us.”
Steven A. HemmatSeattle
Diversity of opinion
Thank you or publishing Rabbi AnsonLaytner’s essay on dialogue between andamong Jews with diering viewpointsregarding Israel and Palestine (“We needto talk,” April 16). It amazes me, as a com-mitted Jew, just how obvious our dislikeo Arabs/Palestinians is when our ancientright to
Israel is asserted. In act,some Jews say there are no Palestiniansand no Palestine, even.I don’t understand how a gap this bigcould develop rom a people known,admired and envied or their history o major intellectual accomplishments,achievements and survival against theodds. That’s our story. Why are Jews split-ting and actionalized, earul o stating toeach other diering opinions on Israel’spolitical policies?I applaud the
or running arti-cles rom a wide range o rabbinic andintellectual opinions in the Seattle com-munity. Americans live in a democracy.As Jews and Americans, upholding those“inalienable rights” and having the right toexpress dierent opinions are essential tomaintaining that democratic standard. As Jews, we must also try to respect and careor one another — especially in times o divisiveness. Many rabbinic quotes can becited, at the very least the great Rabbi Hil-lel’s, ”I I am not or mysel, who will be orme? I I am not or others, what am I? Andi not now, when?”That question o the ages remains as rel-evant today as ever. We must strive to nd amiddle ground. That is what I will pray or.
Charlene KahnSeattle
Page 22
Te report on the state o the day schools (April 30) noted the JewishFederation o Greater Seattle hasgiven nearly $450,000 to each o the day schools. Tat gure was thetotal amount o money allocated toschools and area education organi-zations in the past year, plus addi-tional emergency grants.
regrets the error.

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