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Lincoln Z. Shlensky
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If Not Now, When? (ifnotnow.ca) organized a rockin' Chanukah fundraiser for Hand In Hand Arab-Jewish School in Jerusalem, which was the target of arson last month.
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If Not Now, Latkes!
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Mario Stocco is an expert's expert, and Advantia's VOIP technology is cutting edge yet completely reliable.

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Insightful commentary (see link below) by Mitchell Plitnick on hate speech. I think there has been some conceptual fuzziness, however, in the discussion of free speech in the context of the cancellation of rabid Islamophobe Pamela Geller's talk at the Great Neck Synagogue in New York. 

Free speech, as I understand it, means the freedom to make whatever claims you want in public discourse, short of inciting violence or physical harm. It does not mean that anyone needs to give you a podium to do so. On the other hand, free discourse in an academic setting is different. It means that any stakeholder (a student or faculty member) has the right to articulate his or her perspective in the legitimate forums of the institution without being shut down or punished. 

So the BDS opponents at Brooklyn College last February who wanted to refuse a group of stakeholders the right to articulate their views in an academic context were unethically acting against the principle of free academic discourse. But when Jewish Voice for Peace and other groups pressured the synagogue to cancel Geller's talk, they were not trying to publicly silence her—rather, they were trying to get her banned at a private institution with no such prior commitment to free discourse. This is perfectly legitimate. 

Mitchell describes the ethical imperative here as a refusal to tolerate hate speech, which he deems to be substantively different from legitimate BDS discourse. I would agree with this distinction, but I would add that we must nevertheless tolerate such hate speech—and speak back to it—in public forums where everyone has the right to speak, such as in public speaker's corners or on the Internet. But that principle does not hold in private forums, such as a synagogue, where free discourse is necessarily limited by the governing structures of the institution. In this case, it was a synagogue board that made decisions about which views would be heard within the context of the institution, and which would not.

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Pamela Geller's appearance at Great Neck Synagogue has been cancelled. The Board did the right thing in canceling it, although they disingenuously attributed the decision to "security concerns." The real reason was probably the outrage of many of their own congregants and the media firestorm generated by the decision to invite the odious Geller. What's shocking to me is the moral abdication of Jewish institutions that give Geller's racist bile a forum in the first place. Notably, Geller, as quoted in this JTA article, resorts to attributing "Goebbels-like" lies to her Jewish and non-Jewish critics. That is entirely characteristic of her prurient rhetoric and helps explain why she's recently suffered a string of cancelled public appearances – but only after activist outcry.

Passover is just winding down -- last 2 days -- but I am just beginning to learn about creative alternative foods; today: popped quinoa!

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The title, though perhaps awkward, makes implicit reference, of course, to the B'nai Jeshurun letter by rabbis "celebrating" the UN vote for Palestinian quasi-state rights in the assembly. Sadly, the congregation's rabbis couldn't take the heat their own letter generated (for example, in the NY Times, and also among grumbling congregants -- egged on in turn by the likes of the Times and reactionary figures like Alan Dershowitz) and eventually apologized for what was, in my view, a perfectly commendable emotional response to the vote. Anyway, your article is an excellent commentary -- from someone who has dedicated a great deal of time and energy to dissenting activism, and whose background cannot be impugned.
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