web analytics
September 26, 2016 / 23 Elul, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘justice’

Pursuing Justice

Thursday, September 8th, 2016

Tzedek (justice) is a key word in the book of Devarim – most famously in the following verse toward the beginning of this week’s parshah: “Justice, justice you shall pursue, so that you may thrive and occupy the land that the Lord your G-d is giving you” (16:20).

The distribution of the word tzedek and its derivate, tzedakah, in the Five Books of Moses is anything but random. It is overwhelmingly concentrated on the first and last books – Genesis (where it appears 16 times) and Deuteronomy (18 times). In Exodus it occurs only four times, and in Leviticus five. All but one of these are concentrated in two chapters: Exodus 23 (where three of the four occurrences are in two verses, 23:7-8), and Leviticus 19 (where all five incidences are in chapter 19). In Numbers, the word does not appear at all.

This distribution is one of many indications that the Chumash is constructed as a chiasmus, a literary unit of the form ABCBA. Here’s the structure:

 

A: Genesis – the pre-history of Israel (the distant past).
B: Exodus – the journey from Egypt to Mount Sinai.
C: Leviticus – the code of holiness.
B: Numbers – the journey from Mount Sinai to the banks of the Jordan.
A: Deuteronomy – the post-history of Israel (the distant future).

 

The leitmotif of tzedek/tzedakah appears at the key points of this structure – the two outer books of Genesis and Deuteronomy, and the central chapter of the work as a whole, Leviticus 19. Clearly the word is a dominant theme of the Mosaic books as a whole.

What does it mean? Tzedek/tzedakah is almost impossible to translate, because of its many shadings of meaning: justice, charity, righteousness, integrity, equity, fairness, and innocence. It certainly means more than strictly legal justice, for which the Bible uses words like mishpat and din. One example illustrates the point: “If a man is poor, you may not go to sleep holding his security. Return it to him at sundown, so that he will be able to sleep in his garment and bless you. To you it will be reckoned as tzedakah before the Lord your G-d” (Deuteronomy 24:12-13).

Tzedakah cannot mean legal justice in this verse. It speaks of a situation in which a poor person has only a single cloak or covering, which he has handed over to the lender as security against a loan. The lender has a legal right to keep the cloak until the loan has been repaid. However, acting on the basis of this right is simply not the right thing to do. It ignores the human situation of the poor person, who has nothing else with which to keep warm on a cold night. The point becomes even clearer when we examine the parallel passage in Exodus 22, which states:

“If you take your neighbor’s cloak as a pledge, return it to him by sunset, because his cloak is the only covering he has for his body. What else will he sleep in? When he cries out to me, I will hear, for I am compassionate” (Exodus 22:25-26).

The same situation that in Deuteronomy is described as tzedakah is termed in Exodus as compassion or grace (chanun). The late Aryeh Kaplan translated tzedakah in Deuteronomy 24 as “charitable merit.” It is best rendered as “the right and decent thing to do” or “justice tempered by compassion.”

In Judaism, tzedek, as opposed to mishpat, must be tempered by compassion. Hence the terrible, tragic irony of Portia’s speech in “The Merchant of Venice”:

The quality of mercy is not strain’d,
It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven
Upon the place beneath: it is twice blest;
It blesseth him that gives and him that takes:
Tis mightiest in the mightiest: it becomes
The throned monarch better than his crown;
His sceptre shows the force of temporal power,
The attribute to awe and majesty,
Wherein doth sit the dread and fear of kings;
But mercy is above this sceptred sway;
It is enthroned in the hearts of kings,
It is an attribute to G-d himself;
And earthly power doth then show likest G-d’s
When mercy seasons justice. Therefore, Jew,
Though justice be thy plea, consider this:
That, in the course of justice, none of us
Should see salvation: we do pray for mercy;
And that same prayer doth teach us all to render
The deeds of mercy. I have spoke thus much
To mitigate the justice of thy plea…

 

Here Shakespeare is expressing the medieval stereotype of Christian mercy (Portia) as against Jewish justice (Shylock). He entirely fails to realize (how could he, given the prevailing culture?) that “justice” and “mercy” are not opposites in Hebrew but are bonded together in a single word, tzedek or tzedakah. Adding to the irony, the very language and imagery of Portia’s speech (“It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven”) is taken from Deuteronomy:

 

May my teaching drop as the rain,
my speech distill as the dew,
like gentle rain upon the tender grass,
and like showers upon the herb …
The Rock, his work is perfect,
for all his ways are justice.
A G-d of faithfulness and without iniquity,
just and upright is he (Deuteronomy 32:2-4).

 

The false contrast between Jew and Christian in “The Merchant of Venice” is eloquent testimony to the cruel misrepresentation of Judaism in Christian theology until recent times.

Why then is justice so central to Judaism? Because it is impartial. Law as envisaged by the Torah makes no distinction between rich and poor, powerful and powerless, home born or stranger. Equality before the law is the translation into human terms of equality before G-d. Time and again the Torah insists that justice is not a human artifact. “Fear no one, for judgment belongs to G-d.” Because it belongs to G-d, it must never be compromised – by fear, bribery, or favoritism. It is an inescapable duty, an inalienable right.

Judaism is a religion of love: “You shall love the Lord your G-d”; “You shall love your neighbor as yourself”; “You shall love the stranger.” But it is also a religion of justice, for without justice, love corrupts. (Who would not bend the rules, if he could, to favor those he loves?)

It is also a religion of compassion, for without compassion law itself can generate inequity. Justice plus compassion equals tzedek, the first precondition of a decent society.

 

Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks

The Foundation Stone: Parshat Shoftim: Seeking Justice

Thursday, September 8th, 2016

{Originally posted to Rabbi Weinberg’s website, The Foundation Stone}

A woman, suffering serious financial hardship due to the dishonesty of outwardly observant friends who are supported by the community, declares her rejection of Torah beliefs.

A man who rightfully prides himself on his honesty leaves a hearing before a Rabbinical Court wondering where was justice.

A six-year-old girl, after overhearing her parents speak of the injustice of the UN sponsored Schabas Commission is terrified that we live in a world without justice.

 

“Righteousness, righteousness, shall you pursue (Deuteronomy 16:20),” teaches us that righteousness in a specific case is insufficient. We must seek to create an environment in which people expect justice.

 

Whether speaking to us of a king, a prophet, the desire for vengeance, war, or even an unsolved murder, the Torah insists that we create an environment in which that woman would feel confident that her community would provide justice.

 

We are obligated to insist on rabbinical courts that provide us with the security of justice so that man will never leave a religious court convinced he would have done better in a secular court.

 

We are told that our society must be so clearly just that a child will not shiver whenever she hears of the UN or the NY Times.

 

The Torah clearly holds community leaders responsible. The High Priest is held responsible when someone accidentally kills someone else (Numbers 35:28). City elders are responsible for the unsolved murder of a stranger (Deuteronomy 21:6). “But you shall remove the innocent blood from your midst when you do what is upright in the eyes of God (21:9).” What shall we do when we lose our sense of what is just and upright in the eyes of God?

 

“Restore our judges as in earliest times, and our counselors as at first; remove from us sorrow and groan; and speedily reign over us, You, God, alone, with kindness and compassion. Blessed are You, God, the King, Who loves righteousness and justice (Daily Prayer).” Rabbeinu Yonah understands this almost as a challenge of God: How can You expect us to follow Your ways if you abandon us to a world without justice (Berachot 19b on Rif)!

 

Our obligation is to create a strong sense of justice in our homes, schools and communities. “Righteousness, righteousness, shall you pursue,” in all we do, in every conversation, in every interaction with a child or stranger, with every word we speak to or of another. If we succeed in developing a strong sense of justice in our homes and communities, perhaps our prayer for God to restore justice will be justly heard and accepted.

 

Rabbi Simcha Weinberg

The ‘Altruistic Evil’ of Social Justice for the Palestinians

Thursday, September 1st, 2016

As yet another indication that the university campus has become “an island of repression in a sea of freedom,” last March a pro-Israel group, Hasbara Fellowships Canada, was barred from participating in a “Social Justice Week” event organized by the Student Association of Durham College and University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT).

The stated reason for the exclusion? The student association (which, not coincidentally, had just approved a pro-BDS resolution against Israel) declared that since the “organization seems closely tied to the state of Israel . . . it would be against the motion to provide any type of resources to [the] organization.”

While the term “social justice” has a seemingly benign and positive connotation, the reality is that, as columnist Jonah Goldberg observed in his book The Tyranny of Clichés: How Liberals Cheat in the War of Ideas, social justice is actually “an empty vessel to be filled with any and all leftist ideals, and then promptly wielded as a political bludgeon against any and all dissenters…”

That has meant that students, and left-leaning faculty as well, are urged to advocate for social and economic goals described in decidedly liberal intellectual formulations such as “social and economic justice,” “distributive justice,” and “the global interconnections of oppression,” this latter view ideal for conflating, at least in liberal imaginations, the shared complicity of America and Israel in their long-term oppression of the indigenous people of the fictive nation of Palestine and the alleged “occupation” of their land.

So while social justice warriors on campus are quick to welcome a collection of perceived victim groups into their tent – Muslims, African-Americans, gays, Hispanics, women – they have been decidedly more hostile when dealing with the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, with the result that pro-Israel groups (such as the Hasbara Fellowships in Ontario) are regularly excluded for allegedly being part of the oppressor class.

What are the defining characteristics of those well meaning but often misguided individuals who promiscuously proclaim their commitment to social justice? A number of tactics and behaviors are common to their efforts:

* Social justice warriors are commonly infatuated with their own virtue, which manifests itself in very public “virtue signaling,” a way that self-described activists indicate that they have taken the high moral ground, that they stand for racial equality and the aspirations of the oppressed, and that they single-mindedly fight for the rights of, and make excuses for, the oppressed state in which their victims find themselves.

* Economist Thorsten Veblen identified an emerging social phenomenon in which an increasingly more affluent middle class used spending and material acquisition as a way of signaling their economic—and social—status. Social justice warriors use the same psychological device of announcing to others their self-righteous ideology through what could be called “conspicuous moral consumption,” part and parcel of their virtue signaling.

* The rectitude of students and faculty enthralled by social justice and pushing for condemnations of Israel manifests itself as what has been termed “moral narcissism,” the tendency of members of the educated elite to align with causes and ideological positions that are based not on the actual viability or worthiness of a cause but on how the moral narcissist feels about himself by committing to a particular campaign or movement.

Like other members of the academic left, who believe their worldview is correct because it seeks to create a world in which social equanimity will be realized by the downtrodden, members of victims’ rights grievance groups and movements are content to support such intellectually dishonest campaigns as the boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement because it enables them to denounce Israelis as imperialistic, colonial, racist, militaristic oppressors of wholly innocent “brown” Palestinians dispossessed and victimized by the Jewish state’s very existence. The moral narcissist’s reasoning may defective, ahistorical, counter-intuitive, or just wrong, but he still feels good about himself. In this worldview there can be only one enemy of justice, and Israel is that enemy.

* In debating the Israeli/Palestinian conflict, social justice activists, of course, demonstrate their hypocrisy by endlessly dwelling on the many evils of Israel without bothering to examine or measure the Palestinians’ own central role in contributing to the many pathologies endemic to their civil society and institutions. Like many Western elites do when choosing sides, social justice warriors infantilize the Palestinian victim and assume he has no agency to ameliorate his own conditions. In reality, pro-Palestinian activists seem to care very little about the actual self-determination and state building of the hapless Palestinians.

As is frequently the case when speaking about the Israeli/Arab conflict, the discussion often glosses over the real problems of Palestinian culture, politics, and society (including its cult of death, terrorism, and martyrdom), and targets all criticism on Israel, Zionism, and Jewish power. All of the blame for the conflict is placed on the so-called occupation, the “apartheid wall,” Jewish “racism,” the oppression and militarism of the “Zionist regime,” and the brutal humiliation, collective punishment, and even “slow-moving” genocide Israel is said to mete out on a daily basis upon the wholly innocent Palestinians. This is a clear example of another underlying factor in the social justice effort, the soft bigotry of low Palestinian expectations.

* Many academics in the humanities and social sciences, including activists in groups as disparate as Black Lives Matter, Students for Justice in Palestine, and the National Association of Women’s Studies, increasingly find a linkage as they seek to affirm the rights of the victimized and name the villains responsible for this oppression. The more that seemingly unrelated instances of oppression can be conflated, it is thought, the greater the ability to confront these oppressors and dilute the negative effect they have on their specific victims and on society at large.

This trend has been called “intersectionality” and it has meant that someone who is a gender studies professor or American studies expert can, with no actual knowledge or expertise about the Middle East, readily pontificate on the many social pathologies of which he accuses Israel, based on its perceived role as a racist, imperialist, colonial oppressor of an innocent indigenous population of Arab victims.

For social justice warriors, to know one victim group is to know any victim group – with Israel being a tempting and habitual target of their opprobrium. Thus, for instance, supporters of the Black Lives Matter movement have often linked racism and police violence “from Ferguson to Palestine,” as their placards have announced, making Israel somehow complicit in American racism and police brutality, and even recently proclaimed in its recent platform that Israel is practicing “apartheid” and is engaged in “genocide” against the Palestinians.

* Social justice warriors are intent on using “weaponized intolerance,” the willingness to abridge speech and human rights of opposing groups in the campaign to seek social justice for the victim. Moreover, so sure are they of their moral uprightness in denouncing white privilege and conservative thought, that the social justice warriors will not even deign to collaborate, negotiate, or even tolerate the views of those groups and individuals they have decided are essentially unworthy of having their options heard. New York’s Students for Justice in Palestine, for example, announced proudly that “We reject any and all collaboration, dialogue and coalition work with Zionist organizations through a strict policy of anti-normalization (anti-engagement) and encourage our comrades in other organizations to do the same.”

Similarly, a leaked memorandum from the Binghamton University Students for Justice in Palestine chapter revealed that members would never be required to even engage in dialogue with pro-Israel groups on their campus, they would be prohibited from “engaging in any form of official collaboration, cooperation, or event co-sponsorship with [pro-Israel] student organizations and groups,” and members “shall in no manner engage in any form of official collaboration with any student group which actively opposes the cause of Palestinian liberation nor with groups which have aided and abetted Zionist student organizations,” meaning, of course, that the so-called intellectual debate that universities purport to promote in exactly this type of discussion will never take place when SJP is involved.

* Proponents of social justice apologize for and enable grievance-based violence by abandoning moral precepts and applying a double standard by which they support murder, violence, “resistance,” and terror in the name of self-determination—but only that perpetrated by the favored victim. Anti-Israel campus events regularly include protesters ghoulishly chanting “long live the Intifada” and “’resistance’ is justified when people are occupied,” in other words, extolling the ongoing homicidal rampage in Israel in which psychopathic terrorists have used knives, guns, stones, and vehicles to randomly murder Jewish civilians. In fact, the use of the word “Intifada” is a grotesque and murderous reference to the Second Intifada that began in 2000, during which Arab terrorists murdered some 1,000 Israelis and wounded more than 14,000 others.

The fact that pro-Palestinian student activists, those who purport to be motivated by a desire to bring “justice” to the Middle East and who, presumably, care about all human lives, could publicly call for the renewed slaughter of Jews in the name of Palestinian self-determination demonstrates quite clearly how ideologically debased the human rights movement has become.

* Those purportedly seeking social justice for the Palestinians regularly exhibit a willful blindness to the quest for social justice for actual Middle East victims of egregious oppression, while obsessing, to the exclusion of all other examples, over the perceived perfidy of Israel. For example, this year the National Association of Women’s Studies (NWSA) voted to approve an academic boycott against Israeli scholars. It had evidently escaped the notice of the NWSA experts on gender and sexuality issues that if one wanted to punish any Middle Eastern country for its subjugation and abuse of women, Israel would probably not be the first nation to come under reasonable or justifiable scrutiny for a group dedicated “to principles of human rights, justice and freedom for all, including academic freedom.”

Totalitarian and despotic regimes throughout the region have created an oppressive group of social pathologies that negatively affect women, including genital mutilation, stoning of adulteresses, “honor” killings by fathers and brothers who have been shamed, cultures of gender apartheid in which women are seen as property with no emotional or physical autonomy, ubiquitous sexual assault, and a general subjugation of women, complete with regulations governing behavior, movement, speech, and even requirements that women be covered by burqa or hijab.

Like other members of the academic Left who believe their worldview is correct and virtuous because it seeks to create a world in which social equanimity will be realized by the downtrodden, members of the NWSA, similar to their fellow travelers in other academic associations and student groups, are content to support such intellectually dishonest campaigns as academic boycotts because doing so enables them to denounce Israel as an imperialistic, racist, militaristic oppressor of innocent victims.

* * * * * *

This nearly total rejection by those seeking justice for the oppressed of any recognition of goodness on the part of Western countries (and particularly Israel), favoring without hard judgments severely flawed societies of the Third World is, according to commentator Melanie Phillips, symptomatic of activists’ belief in their own moral superiority, a feature which, at least in their own minds, gives them a more genuine, principled, and valuable worldview. “In the grip of a group-think that causes them to genuflect to victim-culture and the deconstruction of western morality and the concept of truth,” Phillips wrote, “a dismaying number of our supposedly finest minds have been transformed from people who spread enlightenment to those who cast darkness before them.”

Richard L. Cravatts

US 2nd Circuit Appeals Court Reverses Anti-Terror Verdict Against Palestinian Authority, PLO

Wednesday, August 31st, 2016

The U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan has overturned a landmark $655 million verdict made in February 2016 against the Palestinian Authority and Palestine Liberation Organization, in favor of victims of terror and their loved ones.

The federal appeals court reversed the decision this Wednesday (August 31, 2016), finding that United States courts had no jurisdiction in the case in the first place due to the limited contacts of the PA/PLO groups with the U.S. and Supreme Court.

The three-judge panel did not question the terror under which the plaintiffs had brought the lawsuit, nor did they deny the moral right of the claim.

“The terror machine gun attacks and suicide bombings that triggered this suit and victimized these plaintiffs were unquestionably horrific,” the judges said in the brief. “But the federal courts cannot exercise jurisdiction in a civil case beyond the limits prescribed by the due process clause of the Constitution, no matter how horrendous the underlying attacks or morally compelling the plaintiffs’ claims.”

On April 24, the U.S. district court imposed a $10 million bond on the defendants during their appeal of the February verdict. They were also to make $1 million monthly payments during the duration of that appeal process.

Judge George Daniels presided over Sokolow v. PLO in the U.S. District Court in the Southern District Court of New York, accepting a recommendation made by the defendants and by the U.S. government, which intervened in the case earlier this summer. The government claimed that a standard bond amount would bankrupt the Palestinian Arab organizations.

Attorneys for the plaintiffs, who included the Israeli law firm Shurat HaDin, had requested a $30 million monthly bond be paid into an account until the case is resolved, arguing there was plenty of evidence that Arab coffers are in no danger of collapse.

After the appeal was upheld and the February verdict was overturned, attorneys for the plaintiffs contended that the decision contradicted the spirit of the Anti-Terror Act under which the lawsuit had been filed, and which had been passed following the terrorist murder of Leon Klinghoffer in 1985.

Attorney Kent Yalowitz said in a statement, “The very terrorists who prompted the law have now hidden behind the U.S. Constitution to avoid responsibility for their crimes.”

He added that the plaintiffs may consider requesting a review by the full Second Circuit or possibly file an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.

“This cruel decision must be corrected so that these families may receive justice,” he said. “No one denies — as the federal jury has found — that the Palestinians carried out these attacks and killed and injured these American citizens, who will not give up seeking justice from the courts.”

He also called for intervention by Congress and the State Department.

Attorney Gassan Baloul, representing the PA and PLO, meanwhile praised the decision, saying in a statement, “We are very gratified that the court fully accepted our clients’ consistent position that the PA and the PLO are not subject to the jurisdiction of the United States courts in these matters.”

The PA and the PLO pay high salaries to the family members of terrorists who are convicted of carrying out attacks against Israelis and Jews; the higher the number of dead and/or the longer the prison sentence, the higher the salary to the prisoner and/or his surviving family. Upon his release, he is greeted as a hero and presented with a lump sum, along with assistance in resuming life in society. Terrorists who die in attacks are lauded by the Palestinian Authority government as “martyrs” and heroes, with public squares, streets and children’s events named in their honor.

Hana Levi Julian

3 Justice Department Field Offices Wanted to Investigate The Clinton Foundation.

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2016

One of the greatest sins of the Obama administration has been the absolute destruction of the Department of Justice. Once the agency tasked with keeping American government honest, the DOJ has now become a designated political hit squad led by the White House. The latest evidence: three separate DOJ field offices wanted to fulfill the FBI’s request to investigate the Clinton Foundation, but the DOJ turned them down.

The Clinton Foundation has, of course, been under heavy fire for its significant coordination with the State Department. The Clintons used the Foundation as a slush fund; big donors were then granted special access to Hillary and her aides at the State Department.

And the DOJ doesn’t care.

Most Americans now shrug at such improprieties.

That’s because Barack Obama has hollowed out whatever moral core was left at the DOJ. As early as 2011, former DOJ attorney J. Christian Adams revealed that the DOJ had dumped its investigation into the Black Panthers for voter intimidation for racial reasons. According to Adams, “The end result when racial extremists dominate such a powerful division of federal law enforcement is, in a word, lawlessness.” Adams reported that the DOJ hierarchy implemented a “long campaign of political resistance to the Panther lawsuit that ultimately resulted in the dismissal of most of the case – after we had effectively won it.”

And of course, the DOJ, headed by Eric Holder was involved in corrupt dealings from Fast and Furious gunwalking to the racially-motivated investigations into the Trayvon Martin shooting and the Michael Brown shooting. The Holder DOJ spied on journalists from both the Associated Press and Fox News. They refused to prosecute the IRS’ Lois Lerner for clearly abusing her power in targeting conservative 501(c)3 applicants. In June 2012, Eric Holder was held in contempt of Congress, and Obama promptly defended him by utilizing executive privilege.

Now, Loretta Lynch’s DOJ has become the rightful heir to Holder’s dishonorable legacy. But that’s no surprise: when government is this big and this powerful, Democrats will use that power to their own advantage.

No wonder Hillary Clinton can sleep well at night. She knows that no matter what she does, her defenders at the DOJ will shield her from harm.

Ben Shapiro

Literacy And Justice For All

Monday, August 1st, 2016

The bottom line is clear: a rich range of course offerings isn’t a nicety. It’s a vital part of a thorough education and a crucial element of social justice.” – Dr. John King, Jr., US Secretary of Education, April 15, 2016.

 

I’m always on the literacy story, and the Secretary of Education, Dr. John King, Jr., is clearly on the same page. On April 15 of this year, he called for the school system to ensure that all children get the knowledge-rich, awe-inspiring education that is essential for literacy, curiosity, and lifelong learning. In fact, he in his statement he argued against the current shift in reading instruction that takes time away from art, science, and other “non-essential” courses. How does that make sense?

One of the top reading researchers in the country explains, “Perhaps the greatest obstacle to improving primary-grade reading is a short-term orientation toward instruction and instructional reform. When the aim is to show reading improvements in a short period of time, spending large amounts of time on word-reading skill and its foundations, and relatively little on comprehension, vocabulary, and conceptual and content knowledge, makes sense…. Yet the long-term consequences of failing to attend to these areas cannot be overstated.”

In other words, reading comprehension is largely a reflection of a child’s overall education. If we provide children with a rich education in science, social studies, and the arts, we are ultimately helping them gain reading comprehension skills.

Dr. King mentioned low-income families and minority groups as the children who are most affected by this shift towards reading instruction at the expense of other courses, but how can we implement these important ideas into our schools?

            Create rich, abundant libraries with consistent access. The exposure to exciting and relatable books is an important piece of the literacy puzzle. When surrounded by books on a range of topics from science fiction and World War II to graphic novels and deep sea exploration, students will uncover a thrilling and electrifying world. Keeping the library open throughout the school day so that students can wander in and pick up a book will also enhance the pleasure of reading. This contact with books that are not inherently for reading instruction will make them more likely to be invested in reading in the future.

            Encourage principals to make time for all subjects. Even though your goal might be better literacy, research shows that piling on the literacy instruction does not necessarily lead to gains. Therefore, petition the school to keep the curriculum varied. Children should do science experiments, learn about historical movements, and listen to Beethoven’s “Symphony #9.” Students who are invested in their own learning will ultimately be more committed and better readers in the future.

            Schedule varied extracurricular activities during the lunch hour. While we all know elementary students have tight schedules and need recess to play and give their minds an academic break, schools can also use lunch periods as a way to entice students into extra learning. Students, even in first or second grade, might be interested in eating their lunch while working on an art project or listening to music. Students in the higher grades might enjoy eating their lunch while working on interior design or learning about the history of Jewish athletes. The goal is to create a rich learning environment – and also to engage in learning for learning’s sake. When we do this, we spark creativity and curiosity.

            Read all genres of books at home. I cannot stress enough the importance of reading to your children even as they get old enough to read to themselves. This time with your children not only allows them to gain a closeness with you (and associate reading with pleasant time with a parent), it also exposes them to rich vocabulary and new ideas. Choose books from all genres – non-fiction, fantasy, and even almanacs. Your children will learn more words and more worlds.

Rifka Schonfeld

Trump Wants Justice Ginsburg to Resign for Attacking Him

Wednesday, July 13th, 2016

“I think it’s highly inappropriate that a United States Supreme Court judge gets involved in a political campaign, frankly,” Republican presumptive nominee Donald Times told the NY Times following a Monday interview with Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg in which she confessed, “I can’t imagine what this place would be — I can’t imagine what the country would be — with Donald Trump as our president. . . . For the country, it could be four years. For the court, it could be — I don’t even want to contemplate that.” Ginsburg cited something her late husband used to say on such occasions, “Now it’s time for us to move to New Zealand.”

“I think it’s a disgrace to the court and I think she should apologize to the court,” Trump told the Times. “I couldn’t believe it when I saw it.”

Trump then tweeted early Wednesday morning: “Justice Ginsburg of the US Supreme Court has embarrassed all by making very dumb political statements about me. Her mind is shot – resign!”

But Ginsburg, 83, did not seem to shy away from a good bar brawl when she said about Trump on Monday, speaking to CNN “He is a faker. He has no consistency about him. He says whatever comes into his head at the moment. He really has an ego.”

Which could also be said about a Supreme Court Justice shooting her mouth off in the middle of a heated political campaign.

The Justice’s unusual outbursts have not been accepted with approval by the legal community. New York University law professor Stephen Gillers wrote a Times op-ed titled It’s Clearly Not Right for Justices to Say Which Candidate They Support: “Apart from judicial ethics, the structure of the U.S. Constitution makes the judiciary the nonpolitical branch of government. The executive and legislature are the political branches. Members of Congress and presidents have constituents and seek votes. Federal judges do not.”

“Why do we keep judges out of politics? To protect the rule of law,” Gillers continued. “We want the public to view judicial rulings solely as the product of law and legal reasoning, uninfluenced by political considerations. Acceptance of court rulings is undermined if the public believes that judicial decisions are politically motivated. It’s not that judges don’t disagree among themselves. But disagreements must be over legal principles, not a ruling’s effect on a political candidate or party.”

Stetson University law professor Louis Virelli said that “public comments like the ones that Justice Ginsburg made could be seen as grounds for her to recuse herself from cases involving a future Trump administration.”

“I don’t necessarily think she would be required to do that,” Virelli wrote, “and I certainly don’t believe that she would in every instance, but it could invite challenges to her impartiality based on her public comments.”

JNi.Media

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/trump-wants-justice-ginsburg-to-resign-for-attacking-him/2016/07/13/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: