THE CHICAGO JEWISH NEWS February 13 - 19, 2015/25 Shevat 5775 www.chicagojewishnews.com One Dollar ARTmatter of the Chicagoan Karen Walanka is working to get Jews to have a better appreciation of Jewish artists Aiming to put legalizing pot on Jewish agenda Why Jewish families should vaccinate their kids Rabbi Bronstein on meaning of being there Jewish Disabilities Awareness Month 2 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Aiming to put marijuana legalization on the Jewish agenda By Rebecca Spence JTA “You know, it’s a funny thing, every one of the bastards that are out for legalizing marijuana is Jewish. What the Christ is the matter with the Jews, Bob, what is the matter with them?” That was President Richard Nixon speaking to his top aide, H.R. “Bob” Haldeman, during a recorded White House meeting back in 1971. Fast forward some four decades, a new nonprofit group based in Portland, Ore., is hoping to prove Nixon right. Le’Or, founded about a year ago with seed funding from Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soap Company, wants to convince American Jews that ending marijuana prohibition belongs on the progressive Jewish communal agenda alongside marriage equality and immigration reform. “Our goal is to erode the stigma, so that the Jewish community at large can see that supporting marijuana legalization is not just the right thing to do, it’s E the Jewish thing to do,” said Roy Kaufmann, who founded Le’Or with his wife, Claire. The Oregon governor’s speechwriter by day, the Israeliborn Kaufmann, 36, is a staunch opponent of America’s decadeslong War on Drugs. Launched by Nixon in the 1970s and expanded during the Reagan era, the ongoing drug war has resulted in an unprecedented number of U.S. citizens – and a disproportionate number of African-American males – being sent to prison for drug-related offenses. Part of the answer, legalization advocates say, is to make marijuana a controlled substance on par with alcohol and cigarettes. In November, Oregon, Alaska and Washington, D.C., joined Colorado and Washington state in legalizing recreational cannabis use. The four states will tax and regulate sales of the plant, while D.C.’s law, which sanctioned possession only, has yet to take effect following a congressional move to block its implementation. Meanwhile, medical mari- juana is now legal in 23 U.S. states. While cannabis is still prohibited under federal law, as the tide shifts toward legalization, even Congress is softening its stance. Last December’s government spending bill included a bipartisan amendment that blocks the U.S. Justice Department from using funds to target patients or collectives in states with medical marijuana programs. The seeds of Le’Or – “to illuminate” in Hebrew – were planted when the Kaufmanns began to lament the lack of Jewish communal involvement in pushing for marijuana legalization. “There’s a disconnect between the civil rights issue and the number of Jewish people who, let’s be honest, enjoy the cannabis plant,” said Claire Kaufmann, now a marketing and branding consultant for the burgeoning cannabis industry. “It seems to me to be a contradiction.” Specifically, it outraged the couple that while white Americans – themselves included – Prime Pesach 2015 Aspen Laguna Beach Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis Rabbi Dr. Seth Grauer Rabbi Steven Weil Rabbi Sion Setton Dr. David Pelcovitz Award Winning Skiing Incredible Attractions Breathtaking Scenery Non-Gebrokts Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks Rabbi Eli Mansour Rabbi Marvin Hier Rabbi Abraham Cooper Malcolm Hoenlein Championship Golf Private Beach Rabbi Elie Abadie M.D. Rabbi Lewis Wienerkur Vieques Island Beaches Ranked in World’s Top 10 Spectacular Bioluminescent Bay Breathtaking Scenery Incredible Attractions Special Performances By Modi, & Lior Suchard Amazing Kids Camps [email protected] Speakers Senator Ted Cruz, U.S. Representative Ed Royce, Nick Muzin & Much, Much, More ! 212-335-0828 www.theprimeexperience.com ""#$%$'(()'*+$+ Roy and Claire Kaufmann, the founders of the nonprofit Le'Or, with their children. (JTA) could casually smoke marijuana and get away with it, their black counterparts were far too often arrested and incarcerated for the same low-level crime. A business school graduate and the mother of three young children, Kaufmann, 35, said she never imagined she’d wind up working in the marijuana industry. The Portland resident became involved, she said, because of her commitment to drug policy reform, not to reap the kind of profits that have given rise to a new crop of cannabis entrepreneurs in what has been dubbed the “green rush.” “My real passion is the racial and economic injustices,” said Kaufmann. “I see marijuana legalization as the gateway issue to a much larger and more uncomfortable issue around prison sentencing reform.” According to the Southern Povery Law Center, black people use drugs at about the same rates as whites but are three to five times more likely to be arrested as a result. In 2012, Roy Kaufmann led the first campaign to legalize marijuana in Oregon. He was struck by how few rabbis and Jewish communal leaders jumped on board. After the failed bid, he turned to Dr. Bronner’s to back his idea for a Jewish pro-cannabis group. Dr. Bronner’s has played a leading role in hemp and marijuana legalization efforts since 2001, when David Bronner, the company’s president and grandson of the spiritually minded German-Jewish soapmaker, launched a successful lawsuit against the Drug Enforcement Agency to allow hemp imports into the United States. The Vista, Calif.-based company uses non-psychoactive hemp oil imported from Canada in its allnatural line of soaps. While Bronner, 41, was raised Protestant, he also grew up reciting the Jewish Shema prayer and said he feels a strong connection to his Jewish roots. His grandfather’s universalist “All- One” message – touted on famously wacky soap labels with references to Rabbi Hillel and Jesus – remains at the core of the company’s progressive philosophy. “The major drug reform groups in the country are already led by Jews, and they’re doing it out of a deep-seated commitment to social justice,” Bronner said. “Furthermore, Israel has been a real pioneer in cannabis.” One of the world’s only countries with a national medical marijuana program, Israel has long taken the lead on marijuana research. THC, the psychoactive compound in the cannabis plant, was first identified in 1964 by Israeli scientist Raphael Mechoulam, for example. And just this year, an Israeli research company announced that it had developed an oral patch so that medical marijuana users can ingest the drug without inhaling smoke. Bronner himself helped jump-start Israel’s $40-millionyear medical marijuana industry more than a decade ago when he donated $50,000 to the country’s first dispensary, Tikkun Olam, which takes its name from the Jewish mystical tradition of repairing the world. In 2014, the Magic Soap Company donated more than $100,000 to both the Oregon and Alaska legalization initiatives, and some $250,000 to the D.C. campaign. But Bronner’s activism has been more than monetary. In 2009, he planted hemp seeds in front of the Drug Enforcement Agency’s D.C. headquarters to protest the U.S. ban on hemp farming, and three years later he locked himself in a steel cage with a dozen industrial hemp plants – they contain only trace amounts of THC – in front of the White House. Last year, President Barack Obama signed into law a farm bill that included an amendment to allow industrial hemp farming for research purposes. The SEE MARIJUANA ON PAG E 2 0 3 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Netanyahu’s U.S. speech exposes partisan fault lines on Israel By Ron Kampeas JTA WASHINGTON – The controversy over whether Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s planned speech to Congress next month is worrying pro-Israel Democrats about its possible impact on the 2016 elections. Even more worrisome, some Democrats say, are the voter trends underpinning the current tensions. The invitation to Netanyahu made by John Boehner, the Republican House speaker, without consulting Democrats or the White House, and its fallout have exposed partisan fault lines on Israel. President Barack Obama says he will not meet with Netanyahu during the visit and some top Democrats are saying they will not attend the speech. But shrinking attention spans mean bad feelings over the speech will be ancient history by 2016, despite GOP promises to keep it alive, said Ann Lewis, the senior adviser to Hillary Rodham Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign on Jewish and women’s issues. “I do not think this is a longlasting one,” said Lewis, who is widely expected to advise the former secretary of state, U.S. senator from New York and first lady in a 2016 presidential run. Of greater concern to Lewis, she said, is the increasing number of “don’t knows” in surveys of younger Democrats that include questions about support for Israel. “As I’ve looked at those numbers, I see support among Republicans has gone up, support among Democrats has stayed the same, with a higher number in the ‘don’t know’ column,” she said. “That says to me we’ve got a lot more work to do.” Obama cited the dangers of a partisan divide on Israel when he was asked at a news conference about the speech. “This isn’t a relationship founded on affinity between the Labor Party and the Democratic Party or the Likud and the Republican Party,” he said. “This is the U.S.-Israeli relationship that extends beyond parties and has to do with that unbreakable bond we feel and our commitment to Israel’s security. The way to preserve that is to make sure that it doesn’t get clouded with what could be perceived as partisan politics.” “The reason you look at polls is to figure out what to do next,” Lewis said, and what’s next includes aggressive pro-Israel campaigning among young progressives. The bad feelings are becoming somewhat of a partisan matter, with Democratic leaders in Congress saying the speech is a bad idea. Some top Democrats, including Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Patrick Leahy (DVt.), the top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, and Rep. James Clyburne (D-S.C.), the third-ranked Democrat in the House, as well as prominent members of the Congressional Black and Hispanic Caucuses, are vowing not attend. At the same time, Republi- Benjamin Netanyahu cans are gearing up to count heads at the speech and campaign against Democrats who don’t show. “If these Democrats would rather put partisan politics ahead of principle and walk out on the prime minister of Israel, then we have an obligation to make that known,” Matt Brooks, who directs the Republican Jewish Coalition, said. Boehner invited Netanyahu to address Congress a reprisal, in part, for Obama’s support for nuclear talks with Iran without consulting the White House, a breach of protocol, or Democrats, a departure from tradition. Tamara Coffman Wittes, director of the Center of Middle East Policy at the Brookings Institution, said support for Israel was increasingly contingent on worldviews that divided along SEE SPEECH YACHAD – BECAUSE EVERYONE BELONGS ON PAG E 6 Yachad, the ﬂagship program of the Orthodox Union’s National Jewish Council for Disabilities (NJCD), is the only Jewish organization whose mission is INCLUSION. 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OU KOSHER | NCSY | YACHAD | OU ADVOCACY CENTER | OUTORAH.ORG OU JOB BOARD | JEWISH LEARNING INITIATIVE ON CAMPUS | JEWISH ACTION ISRAEL FREE SPIRIT-TAGLIT BIRTHRIGHT ISRAEL | COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT WWW.OU.ORG | FB /ORTHODOXUNION T @ORTHODOXUNION SYNAGOGUE SERVICES | OU ISRAEL | OU PRESS | OU ALUMNI CONNECTIONS 4 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Contents Jewish News ■ A Polish federation of strongmen announced its partnership with an organization whose work includes moving and preserving Jewish headstones. The cooperation between the From the Depths commemoration group and the Polish Strongman Federation began last year, when two of the sport club’s athletes helped move two headstones from the garden of a resident of Warsaw. During and after the Holocaust, countless Jewish headstones were used in Poland for construction, pavement and even decoration. Some of those headstones – many of them dilapidated or brittle – are inaccessible by vehicles, making manual lifting the safest and most practical way of moving them to a place where they can be loaded onto a vehicle to be transported to the Jewish cemetery, where they were taken or to another cemetery. Several strongmen will assist From the Depths this year to return dozens of Jewish headstones that were used to build a river dam. ■ An official in a militia organized by Iraq’s Yazidi minority has issued a public call for Israeli assistance. Lt. Col. Lukman Ibrahim, speaking to Al-Monitor, said the militia needs weapons and aid, and would like Israeli assistance so it can fight Islamic State, or ISIS. He said the Yazidis support Israel and fight similar enemies. Israel has yet to respond to the Yazidi request. The militia, with 12,000 members, was organized to defend against ISIS, which has persecuted and killed the minority since capturing Yazidi cities last year. Most of the fighters are untrained. “We appeal to the Israeli government and its leader to step in and help this nation, which loves the Jewish people,” Ibrahim was quoted as saying by Al-Monitor. “In the Holocaust, the goal was to annihilate an entire people, the Jews. IS has a similar plan – to exterminate an entire people, the Yazidis.” ■ The Washington synagogue that dismissed Rabbi Barry Freundel after he was charged with voyeurism is trying to evict him from his synagogue-owned residence. Kesher Israel launched a case with the Beit Din of America to oust Freundel, who was arrested in October on charges that he spied on women, among them his students and converts, who used a ritual bath adjacent to the Orthodox synagogue. “We were informed in late December that Rabbi Freundel did not have plans to leave the house,” Elanit Jakabovics, the president of Kesher Israel, said in an email to congregants. “So, we began informal conversations to resolve this issue with Rabbi Freundel and his attorney, but to no avail.” JTA THE CHICAGO JEWISH NEWS Vol. 21 No. 19 Joseph Aaron Editor/Publisher 6 Torah Portion 8 Community Calendar Golda Shira Senior Editor/ Israel Correspondent Pauline Dubkin Yearwood Managing Editor 9 Arts and Entertainment Joe Kus Staff Photographer 10 Jewish Disabilities Awareness Month 12 Cover Story Roberta Chanin and Associates Sara Belkov Steve Goodman Advertising Account Executives 14 Death Notices Denise Plessas Kus Production Director 15 Guide to Summer Day Camps 16 Senior Living 19 Your Money Kristin Hanson Accounting Manager/ Webmaster Jacob Reiss Subscriptions Manager/ Administrative Assistant Ann Yellon of blessed memory Office Manager 20 CJN Classified 22 By Joseph Aaron On the cover: “Grant us Peace,” art by Michael Bogdanow. www. chicagojewishnews .com Some of what you’ll find in the ONLINE version of Chicago’s only weekly Jewish newspaper DAILY JEWISH NEWS For the latest news about Jews around the world, come by everyday and check out what’s making headlines. 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For Israel Advertising Information: IMP Group Ltd. 972-2-625-2933 Like Chicago Jewish News on Facebook. 5 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Point of View Why Jewish families should vaccinate their kids By Jamie Rubin Kveller via JTA Since the news of the recent Disneyland measles outbreak and the subsequent chatter on Facebook began, I discovered I have at least four Facebook friends (and likely a few more) with healthy, non-immunocompromised, vaccine-aged children who have decided, for non-medical reasons, to not vaccinate. For some of these friends and acquaintances, the news was not surprising considering their views on other issues. With one friend in particular, though, it felt like a betrayal, one that I just can’t get past. Here this person was, in my community, in my home, and I never knew how they felt and what steps they were taking to separate themselves from the herd. I spent some time thinking and talking about it with another friend and realized one of the major reasons it bothered me so much is because this family is Jewish. I naively assumed Jews always vaccinate for lots of reasons – we are a religion that values life, after all. Many of us are doctors, and there is no question in the medical community that vaccinating is the right choice for healthy children and in the best interest of everyone’s public health. We are also known to have champion hypochondriacs among us (certain “Jewish mother” stereotypes come to mind) who won’t leave much to chance if there is the promise of a cure or a preventative measure for just about anything. But mostly I assumed Jewish parents vaccinated because we have, more than many other groups of people, a deep sense of community within us. We are the people who don’t let mourners mourn alone. We don’t even let dead bodies rest in solitude until after they are buried. The first Jews to come to America in the late 19th century set up the Hebrew Free Loan Society, which still operates today. Our food banks feed our neighbors, Jewish or not. For a Jew, being communal is not an option, it’s an obligation. We can’t even have a minyan unless 10 of us are there. We are a group of people who Show Up. I see childhood immunizations through this same communal lens: Just as I pay my taxes for the good of the community, save water during a drought or don’t get behind the wheel if I’m drunk, I vaccinate my kids not just to protect them but to cover yours, too. I always assumed my fellow Jews were naturally inclined to do the same for me. And we’re not just doing it for each other either, we are doing it for those who can’t. I’m doing it for my relative who is immunosuppressed. And for my neighbor’s newborn twins. And for the stranger at Target on her third round of chemo. I get so frustrated when parents say, “This is a personal decision we are making for our family.” It’s not. Unlike the epic debates about co-sleeping vs. sleep training or formula vs. breast milk, this is one of the only parenting decisions that actually effects everybody. It is not a personal decision, it is a public health decision, and I don’t think we can be reminded of that enough. Your choice to take the risk that your kid can ride out a case of the measles unscathed means you are making that choice for dozens of other people your child comes in contact with. Unless you move into a cave or to a private island, there is no escaping community; we are all in this together. I can no longer say nothing, and I’m tired of accommodating people who are offended by the views of the entire medical community. There is a place where personal freedom ends and public safety for the entire population begins. I don’t like to judge other people’s parenting decisions, but when it comes to vaccines I have no choice. Just as I would speak up if someone in my community posted a homophobic rant or used a racist slur, I have started to speak up about this among my Jewish friends and now to the world at large. As far as I am concerned, the anti-vax position is indefensible. If you’re a Jew with no medical reason to not vaccinate your children, you are forgetting how connected we all are to one another and that it’s our responsibility to consider the community when we consider ourselves. Just as we are obligated to celebrate in each other’s joys, we are commanded to care for and protect each other, too. This isn’t just about you. As a former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations (2005-2006) and a regular contributor to major news organizations, John Bolton has continuously been one of the strongest supporters of the State of Israel and often the lone voice of reason in a tumultuous region. He is uniquely qualified to share his opinions and thoughts about the continued conflicts Israel endures and how the US can best support the Jewish nation. MORIAH CONGREGATION 200 Taub Drive, Deerfield, IL 4:00 pm Meet & Greet Reception for Sponsors 5:00 pm Speaking Engagement with Q&As 7:00 pm Dinner for Sponsors & their Guests (at the Westin North Shore) To purchase tickets, call 847-948-5340 or go to www.moriahcong.org. Sponsorships with exclusive benefits starting at $180. Business Sponsors Thank you for your support! Spend Summer 2015 with Or Tzedek JCUA’s TEEN INSTITUE FOR SOCIAL JUSTICE MAKE REAL CHANGE IN CHICAGO AND HAVE FUN DOING IT! In our 10-day Or Tzedek summer session teens will: - Learn from leaders on the forefront of activism - Create change in Chicago’s diverse communities - Meet other teens who are passionate about social justice - Find their voice and power as Jewish leaders The Or Tzedek Teen Social Justice Institute is a program of the Jewish Council on Urban Affairs 6 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Speech CONTINUED F RO M PAG E 3 party lines. “You do see an increasing partisan gap on that issue that’s rooted in populations in the United States, those that tend to vote more heavily Republican evangelicals and those that tend to vote more heavily Democrat blacks and Hispanics,” said Wittes, who was deputy assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern affairs in Obama’s first term. The evangelical community tends to take a more hawkish ap- proach to Israel policy. Meanwhile, said Wittes, “blacks and Hispanics, who are an increasingly important base for the Democratic Party, tend to look at the Israeli-Palestinian conflict more through a human rights lens and that tends to make them more interested in seeing the United States look for a compromise.” But she noted that it would take “some time” for the trends to manifest into electoral politics. “I would not draw a direct line between this Boehner speech issue and what’s going to happen in 2016 elections,” Wittes said. CANDLELIGHTING TIMES 4 Feb. 13 5:00 Feb. 20 5:09 We Buy Antiques! Collectibles, Paintings, Costume Jewelry Furniture, Lamps, Light Fixtures, Clocks, China, Etc. 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Torah Portion Being there A simple phrase can be fraught with meaning By Rabbi Herbert Bronstein Torah Columnist Torah Portion: Mishpatim Exodus 21.1-24 “Ascend up unto Me on the mountain and be there!” (Exodus 24.12) At times we have all been at elaborate social events, “fancy” parties at which there were a lot of people around, but very few, if any really, really there! If that sounds contradictory, did the thought ever enter your mind that at some such gatherings people were not being their own real relaxed spontaneous selves, but rather putting on an act? Has the thought ever even fluttered through your own mind as you were entering such a party, “How shall I behave, how shall I present myself? What manner should I put on in this particular group?” As if one’s own person was a show? A mask? In this respect, I once saw a cartoon in which two persons are depicted who are actually standing right next to each other back to back faced away from each other but wearing masks on the back of their heads, which are facing one another and smiling. Or for that matter, you may have had the experience of being apparently engaged in conversation with another person who is at the same time glancing over your shoulder scanning the group for other people? Such thoughts came into my mind when I came across a seemingly negligible phrase in the Torah portion, Mishpatim. At first, it seemed superfluous because it added nothing at all to the content of the passage. Here is the sentence: “Ascend up unto Me on the mountain and be there!” (Ex. 24.12) Why the phrase “be there”? Obviously, G-d’s instruction to Moses is “go up on the mountain” – fine! It seems superfluous, even, forgive me, stupid some might say, to add the phrase “be there.” If he gets to the top of the mountain, obviously he is there. But mindful of the ancient rabbinic dictum that there is no sentence, no phrase, even no word that is extra in the Torah but is meant to express some additional, even important meaning, I took another look at the seemingly superfluous phrase, “be there.” The Hebrew phrase that seems superfluous can only be Rabbi Herbert Bronstein translated “be there.” It cannot mean anything else. Yet translators, perhaps so worried that the phrase is obviously superfluous, have translated it differently from its plain meaning “be there.” One translator has it as “stay there,” another, “remain there”; one goes so far as to translate the simple phrase “while you are there. Only the original Jewish Publication Society Hertz translation sticks to the only possible real meaning: “And be there!” Pondering all of this I came across a simple yet profound commentary by the Chasidic master Menachem Mendel of Kotzk (1787-1859). Considering the increasing recognition over the years of his uncompromising concentration on the philosophic materialism and hyper-individualism of modernity, his views cannot be disregarded. His comment on “be there” is seemingly simple and yet profound: “At first there seems to be a difficult contradiction (in this phrase). If Moses has gone up the mountain, then of course he is obviously there. Why the additional phrase, even the strong emphasis on the words: and be there. (The Torah intends) from this emphasis that even though a person may exert great strength and effort in ascending to a height, that once he has achieved this, he is not there at all. He indeed stands physically at the top of mountain but his head is occupied elsewhere. The main point is not just the ascent but being fully present in whatever you are doing and not ‘being in two places’ – up and down, at the same time.” So much for modern multitasking! We can also understand the meaning of the importance of the seemingly negligible phrase “be there” through a current popular spiritual teaching. An item in popular contemporary religious spirituality, which derives from a Buddhist tradition, “right mindfulness,” has become a very popular cultural item in our time, either as a meditative teaching for the improvement of one’s personhood or as a therapeutic approach to increased mental health. The idea is that each and every moment in whatever each of us is doing we should endeavor to be fully aware, fully present in each and every act, whether walking in nature, in meditative contemplation or, as a Zen saying goes, “washing the dishes.” In this approach we find a parallel reverberation of the rabbi of Kotzk’s interpretation of “be there.” But we find it already in the teaching of much more ancient Jewish rabbinic teaching. We should, of course, endeavor to regularly live a life of order in religious observance. Prayer, for example. We should have ordered prayer in our lives as with other regular Jewish observance. Just because it should be regular, in order, set, this regular practice of Jewish observance is called “kevah” or “regular,” “set. But it should not be done without “kavvanah,” feeling, devotion, with the fullness of one’s presence. The ancient rabbi Shimon ben N’tan’el had long ago said, “Be careful to fulfill the mitzvah of saying the daily shema and tefilah. But do not make it merely perfunctory but a devoted act, a heartfelt plea for mercy and grace from G-d.” (Pirke Avot). Just one more story to emphasize the point: The great Chasidic Rabbi Levi-Yitchak of Berditchev (1740-1814) came over to certain persons at the end of the Amidah section of worship, which is prayed individually and quietly, and said to one of them enthusiastically and warmly, “Welcome back!” and to another “Well! Hello again!” When asked to explain this seemingly bizarre behavior, the rabbi answered: “I sensed that during the Silent Prayer you weren’t really here. You went through the prayers but you were really in the marketplace wondering how each of the goods in your store were selling. When you returned at the end of the prayer, I greeted you back! To the second person he said: And you were off at the seaport wondering if your agents were taking good care of your shipment and negotiating the best price. And then at the end of the prayer, you came back and I did the courteous thing, as I should, welcoming you warmly back to our group.” Rabbi Herbert Bronstein is senior scholar and rabbi emeritus of North Shore Congregation Israel (Reform) in Glencoe. 7 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 THEMaven Chicago Jewish News JEWS IN THE NEWS… Ellen B. Carmell ■ Ellen B. Carmell has been named executive director of the Jewish Women’s Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago. “Ellen is a wonderful match for JWF, which has grown into one of the preeminent Jewish women’s foundations in the country,” said foundation board chair Gerri Kahnweiler. “She has a long commitment to a wide range of Jewish communal efforts, and a strong focus on advocacy to further social change and strengthen families and communities. She is a recognized leader, both locally and nationally, and is skilled at working collaboratively to accomplish programmatic goals.” “I’m thrilled about this opportunity,” Carmell said, “because the mission of the Jewish Women’s Foundation resonates with me on many levels, both personally and professionally. I’m particularly drawn to this unique model of social-change philanthropy as a means to positively impact the lives of Jewish women and girls.” Since its founding in 1997, the foundation has raised a pledged endowment of over $8.6 million, and awarded more than $2.6 million to 134 projects. ■ Elly Bauman is the new executive director of Beth Hillel Elly Bauman Congregation Bnai Emunah. ■ Chicago, that super sports town, has produced two new star athletes. Shlomit Braun and Rita Gordon, both graduates of Ida Crown Jewish Academy who now play for Yeshiva University in New York, have been named to the Hudson Valley Intercollegiate Athletic All-Conference Team for the 2014 soccer season. Braun, a Skokie native and senior at Yeshiva’s Stern College for Women, “had a solid season for the Maccabees,” the women’s soccer team, according to a conference announcement. She helped the team earn a place in the 2014 conference women’s soccer playoffs, netting one goal in each of four games and an assist in one. Gordon, also a senior who will graduate next January, is a first-year member of the team, switching this year from her former sport of basketball. She “played tenacious defense all season” and netted the team’s final goal of the year in its season finale win. Gordon is a native of Lincolnwood. The two women, who are roommates at college, said during a joint telephone interview that much credit for the team’s stellar performance must go to their coach, Gabe Haber, and the closeness and coordination of their teammates. “I’ve been playing soccer since I was five years old. It’s one of the reasons why I came to Stern, to play soccer,” Braun says. “This year I felt like our coach made us all feel special and helped us to show our real talent. Playing soccer is my life. The recognition she and Gordon gained throughout the year was a sweet reward for hard work, she says. “It feels good to finally be recognized my last year at Stern and throughout the season, and to see my roommate recognized,” she says. “With all the time we put in – we practiced every single night – it feels very good to finally be appreciated.” “For me, it shows the quality of the coach,” Gordon says. “Coming from a different sport, switching to soccer, he was able to fit my unique way of playing and personality and put it directly into the sport in the most positive way. I was able to be recognized for my talents, which was really nice,” she says of the All-Conference honors. Both women played soccer at Ida Crown, but Gordon concentrated more on basketball. She switched to soccer this year without playing or traveling on Friday nights or Saturdays. Far more important, they say, is the bond they have formed with their teammates. “We’re a very close-knit team,” Braun says. “We talk every single day and we’re always there for each other. Rita Gordon Shlomit Braun because, she says, “basketball just wasn’t working out on the court anymore. But I still believed in the idea of a team, what a team does for a person. I have a strong belief in a team and wanted to be part of a team. It helps out with time management and everything else.” She decided to try out for soccer and, she says, “Thank G-d it was a very very good decision.” She will play on the team again during the fall season. Braun, who graduated from Stern this year, will follow her plans to become a child life specialist, working with terminally ill children and other children with cancer. “But I still have plans for soccer,” she says. “I want to continue playing, maybe be a coach. I don’t want to give it up; it’s part of who I am. My whole family plays – one of my sisters is on the team with me – and it’s really nice.” Gordon, who is majoring in psychology and biology, plans to study physical therapy, which means three years of grad school. Reflecting on their stellar soccer year, both women say that not being able to play on Shabbat has not had an adverse affect on their team. The schedule is planned far in advance, they say, and allows the team to get in all the required games CHICAGO FILM EDUCATES GERMAN STUDENTS… ■ Shortly before the terror attacks in Paris, a Chicago Holocaust documentary brought home the consequences of bigotry and intolerance to students in Hamburg, Germany. About 160 high school students and teachers listened as survivors and refugees at the Selfhelp Home in Chicago tell their stories in “REFUGE: Stories of the Selfhelp Home.” The award-winning film by Chicagoan Ethan Bensinger explores the lives of six Holocaust survivors and refugees from Germany and Czechoslovakia. The film was the centerpiece of a daylong program about memory and the Holocaust organized by Hamburg’s government to mark the 20th anniversary of the HamburgChicago Sister City relationship. A separate screening and reception was held the same evening at city hall co-sponsored by the U.S. Consulate General in Hamburg. Dominique Lars Ziesemer, a television journalist and the program’s moderator, said the students were tremendously moved by the film. “You could When we try getting girls to join the team this is what we stress: we’re a family. Our friendships last forever.” Gordon agrees. “Considering that it was my first year, I didn’t know anyone on the team,” she says. “Now we are all best friends.” see the faces full of tension,” Ziesemer said. He said the film accomplished what teachers try and sometimes fail to do – make the Holocaust real to kids. For many of the students, it was the first time they heard eyewitness testimony from Jews who lived through the Holocaust. After the film, students said it was important to them to hear the experiences of the last-remaining survivors. They said the stories affected them greatly. Ziesemer said Germany must keep showing Holocaust films, like ‘Refuge.’ They “tell us, the younger people, what had happened and how deeply humans can fall, so hopefully it will never happen again.” “Each student or man or woman, who sees Ethan Bensinger’s film can’t say, I didn’t know,” Ziesemer said. Bensinger said it was very clear to him that the leaders of the city of Hamburg recognized the importance of Holocaust education and dialogue especially at this point in history. “This is an especially important time for us to bring Holocaust education to Germany,” said Bensinger. “In recent months there has been a disturbing increase throughout SEE FILM ON PAG E 2 0 From left, Ethan Bensinger, U.S. Consul General Nancy Corbett, and Steffen Burkhardt of Hamburg University. 8 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Community Calendar Saturday February 14 Congregation Or Torah and Kehilat Chovevei Zion host Yael Ziegler, author of “Ruth: From Alienation to Monarchy” speaking on Shabbat morning and Shabbat afternoon respectively. For more information contact each of the shuls: ortorah.org and skokieshul.org. North Shore Congregation Israel and Aitz Hayim Center for Jewish Living host Steven T. Katz, head of Elie Wiesel Center for Jewish Studies, Boston University speaking on today’s antiSemitism in France. 1:30 p.m., 1185 Sheridan Road, Glencoe. aitzhayim.org or (847) 835-3232. Temple Beth Israel hosts journalist and author Martin Fletcher for dinner, dessert and presentation on his new book, “Jacob’s Oath.” 6:30 p.m., 3601 W. Dempster, Skokie. $20 members, $25 non-members. Dessert and presentation only, $10 members, $15 non-members. RSVP, tbiskokie.org or (847) 6750951. Congregation Beth Shalom hosts Havdallah, Dinner and a Movie with dinner, showing and Reid Schultz’s review of film “The Attack.” 5:30-10 p.m., 3433 Walters Ave., Northbrook. $15 members, $20 nonmembers. RSVP, [email protected] or (847) 498-4100 Ext. 46. Congregation Kol Emeth presents play, “Crimes of the Heart.” 8 p.m., also 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 15. 5130 W. Touhy, Skokie. $22 members, $25 non-members. OldWorldTheatre.com or (312) 857-8487. Lincolnwood Jewish Congregation AG Beth Israel shows Israeli Academy Awards Best Picture, “Fill the Void.” 8:30 p.m., 7117 N. Crawford Ave., Lincolnwood. RSVP required, (847) 676-0491. munity Center, 5050 Church, Skokie. $20-30. Free for students. elementstheatre.org or (800) 319-7809. Monday Sunday February 15 North Suburban Synagogue Beth El hosts journalist and author Martin Fletcher for presentation on his new book, “Jacob’s Oath” followed by book signing. 10 a.m., 1175 Sheridan Road, Highland Park. RSVP, [email protected] or (847) 432-8900 ext. 234. Temple Judea Mizpah holds social action field trip for high-schoolers and older to unpack food and stock shelves at food pantry. Noon-1:30 p.m., the Ark, 6450 N. California, Chicago. RSVP, [email protected] or (847) 676-1566. Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center shows film, “The Pawnbroker.” 12:30-3:30 p.m., 9603 Woods Drive, Skokie. $10 members; $15 non-members. Reservations required, www.eventbrite.com/e/face s-of-humanity-film-seriesthe-pawnbroker-tickets15354493704. JCC Chicago holds Musical Theater Workshop for ages 8 and up. 1-3:30 p.m., Mayer Kaplan JCC, 5050 Church, Skokie. $39. Register, gojcc.org/theater or (847) 763-3514.Beth Hillel Congregation Bnai Emunah hosts annual Zemer Am Choral Festival Concert. 4:30 p.m., 3220 Big Tree Lane, Wilmette. (847) 2561213. Elements Theatre Company presents Shakespeare’s “The Merchant of Venice.” 7 p.m., also 2:30 p.m. Monday, Feb. 16. Mayer Kaplan Jewish Com- SPOTLIGHT A community-wide melaveh malke and farbrengen will be held in honor of the first yahrzeit of Rabbi Daniel Moscowitz, former director of Lubavitch Chabad of Illinois, at 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 21 at Synagogue Free, 2935 W. Devon, Chicago. Guest speaker will be Rabbi Shmuel Lew , Rabbi Daniel Moscowitz Chabad shaliach in London. No charge to attend. For more information, call (773) 262-2770. February 16 Congregation Rodfei Zedek Sisterhood presents Chamber Music Concert featuring works by Beethoven and Cesar Franck performed by Elaine B. Smith, Van Bistrow and Lizbeth Bistrow. 11:45 a.m., 5200 S. Hyde Park Blvd., Chicago. (773) 752-2770. Congregation Beth Judea holds Young Families Mitzvah Program to stock food pantry at the Ark. Bring kosher canned goods for donation. 3 p.m., the Ark, 6450 N. California Ave., Chicago. [email protected] yahoo.com or (847) 6340777. Wednesday February 18 CJE SeniorLife holds Parkinson’s Support Group for Caregivers. 1-1:45 p.m., Weinberg Community for Senior Living, Gidwitz Place, 1551 Lake Cook Road, Deerfield. (847) 2367853. The Chicago Community presents Jerusalem U’s new film, “Beneath the Hemet: From High School to the Home Front” with film star lst Lt. Eden Adler and coproducer David Coleman. 6:30 p.m., Anshe Emet Synagogue, 3751 N. Broadway, Chicago, also 7 p.m. and 7:45 p.m. Monday, Feb. 23, AMC Northbrook Court, 1525 Lake Cook Road, Northbrook. $10 advance; $20 cash door. (Photo ID required for admission. All bags subject to search.) Tickets, BeneathHelmut. com/Chicago. Ezra Habonim, the Niles Township Jewish Congregation Men’s Club hosts Movie Night featuring films of Maxwell Street and South Haven. 7:30 p.m., 4500 W. Dempster, Skokie. (847) 675-4141. Thursday February 19 Oakton Community College presents “Jewish Artists SPOTLIGHT Temple Sholom presents concert featuring its Shir Shalom Choir joined by Kol Zimrah and the Jewish Community Singers of Metropolitan Chicago honoring Cantor Aviva Katzman’s 25 years at the temple. 3:30 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 22, 3480 N. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago. RSVP, (773) 435-1533, or [email protected] and the Perception of the Crucifixion” with Nathan Harpaz. 2-3:15 p.m., Room P103/104, 7701 N. Lincoln Ave., Skokie. je[email protected] Belmont Village of Buffalo Grove presents LeAndra Haight, LCSW, speaking on Stress Management for Caregivers. 5:30 p.m., 500 McHenry Road, Buffalo Grove. RSVP, [email protected] or (847) 537-5000. Congregation Beth Judea hosts dinner and conversation with Rabbi Jeff Pivo on “How To Make Holidays Meaningful and Fun for Children.” 6-7:30 p.m., Route 83 and Hilltop Road, Long Grove. $12. Reservations required, bethjudea. org or (847) 634-0777. Congregation Yehuda Moshe hosts “Grand PrePesach Wine Tasting.” 6-9 p.m., 4721 W. Touhy, Lincolnwood. $10. (847) 673-5870 Beit Yichud presents Vocal Yoga and Song Circle Workshop with Leah Shoshanah. 7-8:30 p.m., 6932 N. Glenwood Ave., Chicago. $15 online, $20 door. Registration, [email protected] Friday February 20 Congregation Beth Shalom presents Shabbat with a Twist for children up to Pre-K with challah making, stories and song. 11-11:45 a.m., 3433 Walters Ave., Northbrook. (847) 498-4100. Saturday February 21 Congregation Beth Shalom holds Dancing With The Stars dance competition. 7 p.m., 3433 Walters Ave., Northbrook. $18 advance, $25 door. (847) 498-4100. Beth Hillel Congregation Cantor Aviva Katzman Bnai Emunah shows film documentary, “This Old Song” about the Bene Menasha and “The Matchmaker.” 7:30 p.m. 3220 Big Tree Lane, Wilmette. $10. (847) 256-1213. Sunday February 22 Jewish Child and Family Services presents Help and Healing Workshop: Jewish Mindfulness led by Rabbi Jordan Bendat-Appell, Orot Center for New Jewish Learning. 10:30 a.m.-noon, location to be determined. [email protected] or (847) 745-5404. Jewish Genealogical Society of Illinois holds meeting featuring Zalman Usiskin speaking on “Making a Family Tree Coffee Table Book.” 2 p.m., Temple Beth-El, 3610 Dundee Road, Northbrook. (Facility opens 12:30 p.m. to use library materials and ask questions.) (312) 666-0100. Spertus Institute for Jewish Learning and Leadership presents Yohanan Petrovsky-Stern speaking on “The Golden Age Shtetl: A New History of Jewish Life in East Europe.” 2 p.m., 610 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago. $18, $10 Spertus members, $8 students. spertus.edu or (312) 322-1773. Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center hosts “Through Soviet Jewish Eyes,” exhibition opening event and book signing. 2-4 p.m., 9603 Woods Drive, Skokie. Free with Museum admission. Reservations required. ILHolocaustmuseum.org or (847) 967-4800. Moriah Congregation hosts former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John R. Bolton at its Biennial Distinguished Speaker Event. 5 p.m., 200 Taub Drive, Deerfield. $40. moriahcong.org or (847) 948-5340. 9 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Arts & Entertainment Argentina’s very Jewish Oscar nominee By Diego Melamed JTA BUENOS AIRES If Damian Szifron’s “Wild Tales” (“Relatos Salvajes” in Spanish) wins an Academy Award for Best Foreign Film, it will be Argentina’s third Oscar and the first for a film directed by an Argentine Jew. The film, which combines humor, suspense and violence, consists of six independent segments, many featuring Jewish characters and details taken from Szifron’s life. The final segment revolves around a Jewish wedding, complete with klezmer music. SM SM Szifron, 39, had already established himself as a popular TV writer/director before entering the film world. His series, “Los Simuladores” (“The Pretenders”) in 2002 won the Argentine equivalent of the Emmy. “The Pretenders” featured numerous Jewish characters based on real people from the small Jewish community center, Bet Am del Oeste” (Bet Am of the West), which serves a middle-class Jewish population in the western section of Greater Buenos Aires. In fact, the fictional characters bear the names of real people from Szifron’s childhood. Perhaps his newfound international film clout will enable Szifron to pursue project he mentioned at a Cannes Festival press conference: a film about how his grandfather escaped the Nazis by jumping from a concentration camp-bound train. E L E M E N T S T H E AT R E C O M PA N Y PRESENTS WILLLIIAM SH HAKEESPEARE’SS SCCEN NESS FOLLLOWEED BYY A DIISCCUSSION: A POUND OF FLESH: EXPLORING QUALITIES OF MERCY WHEN ENCOUNTERING “THE OTHER” Micchaaell Shaapiroo Visiting Professor, Loyola University Would you kill for love? She did. Rabbi Freederiick Reevess KAM Isaiah Israel Danieellee Dwyer, CJ Artistic Director, Elements Theatre Company Fr. Michaeel Sparouugh TO B I A S PICKER Bellarmine Retreat Center FEBRUARY 18, 7PM KAM ISSAIAAH ISR RAELL SYNAGGOGUE 100 E. HYDE PARK BLLVD., CH HICCAGO FREE ADMISSION THERESE RAOUIN FROM THE NOVEL BY ÉMILE ZOLA FEB 20 7:30P INFORMATION: 800-319-7809 OR WWW.ELEMENTSTHEATRE.ORG FEB 22 3:00P FEB 25 7:30P FEB 28 7:30P 205 E. Randolph St. Chicago, IL 60601 SAVE 20% WITH CODE NEWS20 $IJDBHP0QFSB5IFBUFSPSHt 10 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Jewish Disabilities Awareness Month Hands-free Sesame smartphone opening worlds for physically disabled By Raffi Wineberg JTA Keshet Annual Rainbow Banquet KESHET A RAINBOW OF HOPE FOR INDIVIDUALS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS with Keshet March 8, 2015 Sheraton Chicago Hotel and Towers 5:30 p.m. Reception 6:00 p.m. Dinner Honorees Simon Lesser and Carol Patinkin Keshet Parents, Board Members, Volunteers Giora Livne just wanted to buy flowers for his wife. But for the 65-year-old quadriplegic, who lost all but the smallest movements in his neck in an accident nine years ago, that small act of spousal romance was out of reach. He was determined to change that. Livne is the co-founder of Sesame Enable, an Israeli company building what is believed to be the first completely hands-free smartphone. The Sesame Phone is designed for people with spinal cord injuries, ALS, cerebral palsy or other disabilities that hamper the use of hands and arms – a population that has been on the outside looking in at the smartphone revolution. Three years in the works, the Sesame is a Google Nexus 5 Android smartphone that comes equipped with proprietary headtracking technology. An advanced computer vision algorithm and the phone’s front-facing camera track user’s head movements and allow them to control a cursor on screen. The cursor is essentially a virtual finger, letting users do what others can with a regular smartphone. Sesame recently won a Verizon Powerful Answers Award, which came with $1 million in prize money. The company previously received a grant from Israel’s Office of the Chief Scientist, which was matched by a private angel investor. Meanwhile, the company is using the $38,000 it raised from a recent crowdfunding campaign – the Indiegogo video showed Livne using the phone to order flowers for his wife – to donate Sesame phones to people in its target market. At approximately $1,000 per phone, Livne plans to give away about 30 phones to people with disabilities nominated by their peers. The five recipients so far include a former Israeli soldier who was injured in S E E S M A RT P H O N E ON PAG E 2 0 F O U N D A T I O N Share The Dream The Libenu Foundation’s 5th Annual Gala “Celebrating Possibilities” Featuring Musical Guests “Rogers Park” February 28th, 2015 | 8:00 pm Sumptuous Dinner Buffet Wine and Cocktails Indulgent Desserts Complimentary Valet Parking Community Service Awardee Jan Schakowsky United States Congresswoman from Illinois’ 9th District Employer of the Year Awardee Athletico Physical Therapy Premier provider of physical therapy services throughout the Midwest Guest Speaker Edward Asner Seven-time Emmy Award winner and Advocate for individuals with special needs Banquet Chairmen Barry and Elizabeth Bennett Mark and Shari Coe Mark and Carla Frisch Sidney and Lisa Glenner Avi and Batshie Goldfeder Robert and Debbie Hartman Jeff Hay Craig and Robbi Kanter David and Ronna Ness-Cohn Jules and Carol Pomerantz For more information call Keshet at 847.205.1234 or visit KESHET.ORG KESHET, A PARTNER IN SERVING OUR COMMUNITY, IS SUPPORTED BY THE JEWISH UNITED FUND/JEWISH FEDERATION OF METROPOLITAN CHICAGO At the home of Ronit and Abie Gutnicki 2936 W. Lunt Avenue Chicago For more information contact 847. 982.0340 ext. 227 www.libenufoundation.org agazine | 773-583-4001 | February 2015 Libenu Foundation is a 501 (c) 3 not-for-profit corporation The Chicago Lighthouse North (847) 510-6200 www.chicagolighthouse.org/north Coinciding with Jewish Disabilities Awareness Month, The Chicago Lighthouse North facility, which serves the north and northwest suburbs, is observing its third anniversary. Located at 222 Waukegan Road in Glenview, the agency offers many of the same world-class services in vision care, assistive technology and other areas that are provided by the main 109-year-old Chicago Lighthouse at 1850 W. Roosevelt Road, on the city’s west side. Among them are a low vision care clinic offering rehabilitation services to maximize the remaining vision of people experiencing significant vision loss; a technology center providing access to computers with magnification capabilities and other adaptive technology devices; A Tools For Living retail store featuring assistive items for independent living such as talking watches and clocks; and an array of enrichment programs for all ages, most offered at no cost. For more than 100 years, The Lighthouse has been lighting the way for thousands of people in need throughout the Chicago area. As a not-profit social service organization, it is dedicated to providing comprehensive care to people of all ages with visual impairments, regardless of their ability to pay. For further information about our Lighthouse North location in Glenview, contact Melissa Wittenberg at (847) 5106200 or visit http://chicagolighthouse. org/north. For further information about our headquarters in Chicago, contact Dominic Calabrese at (312) 666-1331 or visit http://chicagolighthouse.org. CJE SeniorLife’s LINKAGES (773) 508-1694 www.cje.net/linkages The challenges that arise as one gets older can be complicated. But for aging adults who have children with disabilities, their concerns are even more complex since they often have growing financial, social, emotional and physical issues of their own. CJE SeniorLife’s Linkages program supports older adults who have adult children with disabilities. One of only a few programs like it in the country, and the only one in Chicago, Linkages is unique in that it offers a way for older adults to connect in an effort to reduce feelings of isolation and discuss the best ways to access community aging and disability resources in Illinois. To raise awareness for Jewish Disabilities Awareness Month, CJE’s Linkages program has collaborated with a number of Chicago organizations to host its third annual policy event, “Policy, Advocacy and You: Success in Community Living,” on Thursday, Feb. 26 in Skokie to help seniors, adults with disabilities, their families, and the professionals who work with them. Learn more about CJE’s Linkages program, including upcoming events, support group, vital resources, and the latest newsletters, at www.cje.net/linkages. For more information on the Linkages proCONTINUED O N N E X T PAG E 11 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Jewish Disabilities Awareness Month CONTINUED F RO M P R E V I O U S PAG E gram or to register for the “Policy, Advocacy and You” event, contact Rosann Corcoran, Clinical Supervisor and Linkages Coordinator, at (773) 508-1694. Keshet (847) 205-1234 www.keshet.org Keshet is the premier provider of educational, recreational, vocational and social programs for individuals with intellectual disabilities operating according to traditional Jewish values. Keshet was founded in 1982 by a small group of Jewish parents concerned about the futures of their children with special needs, and looking for ways to provide them with a Jewish education and identity. Keshet’s goal is to enable children with disabilities to participate as fully as possible in the mainstream of community life while providing an excellent education. Woven into the fabric of everyday life, Keshet programs enrich the lives of these young people as well as those in the greater community. The following are testimonials from Keshet parents and friends that illustrate the powerful impact Keshet has had on our community: “As parents, Scott and I were more nervous about Zoe going away to overnight camp than she was. She had the time off her life! Thank you Keshet!” “Michelle can’t wait for Sundays and Keshet Buddy baseball. She loves being part of the team and has a look of pure joy on her face throughout the game. Thank you Keshet!” “One of the aspects we love about Keshet is its seamless integration between special and typical kids. The Keshet summer camps are the only time during the year where our special son gets on the same bus as his typical sibling and they go to the same place. Keshet programs give them this wonderful opportunity to have fun together, as siblings.” At Aspen, wounded IDF vets learn to ski – and overcome obstacles By Uriel Heilman JTA After Yinon Cohen lost his legs in an accident involving a rocket-propelled grenade, it wasn’t clear he’d ever be able to walk again, much less ski down a peak in the Rocky Mountains. A fresh-faced soldier in the Israel Defense Forces’ elite Golani brigade, Cohen was in an advanced weapons training course in February 2003 when his sergeant inadvertently fired an RPG, an explosive weapon capable of piercing armored vehicles, straight into his legs. Just moments before, Cohen had been nodding off, and his exasperated sergeant ordered him to stand for the remainder of the class. That ended up saving Cohen’s life. Had he been seated, Cohen would have been struck in the torso and almost certainly killed. Instead, he found himself dazed in the smoke-filled room, trying to piece together what was happening as soldiers around him panicked. When he awoke a day later in the ICU unit of Rambam Medical Center in Haifa, a psychologist delivered the grim news: He had lost both legs below the knee. Cohen’s response was instinctive, he recalls. Looking at his parents’ tearstained faces, he said, “Be thankful that I’m alive.” Then his father recited the Kiddush – it was Friday evening – and they all cried. the snow about one day a week, Mintz got the idea for it from a program for wounded U.S. veterans whom he spotted one day on the slopes. Golshim, which brings about a dozen Israelis each winter, is focused on skiing and physical activity. The group eats breakfast and dinner together at the Chabad center, and most nights local community members join the group for some kind of program or recreational activity. The program is free for the Israeli participants. “Imagine someone without legs coming here to ski and a week later skiing down Aspen,” Mintz said. “They feel they can do anything after that. The local SEE SOLDIERS ON CJE SeniorLife … Enriching the Quality of Life for Older Adults and Families of Older Adults with Disabilities CJE offers vital support to older adults with disabilities and their families through: Linkages The only program like it in Chicago devoted to families who have adult children with disabilities, it offers: t Support Group – Parents of adults with disabilities meet for support and sharing. Libenu Foundation (847) 982-0340 www.libenufoundation.org The Libenu Foundation is a not-forprofit organization that provides kosher housing and vocational opportunities for Jewish adults with developmental disabilities. Libenu, from the Hebrew word meaning “our hearts” reflects a heartfelt commitment to enabling adults with disabilities to maximize their independence and self-determination in an inclusive community setting. Predicated on a philosophy of inclusion, Libenu believes that these individuals must have residential and employment opportunities that enable them to live with dignity and respect, in a setting that is comfortable, safe, reassuring and familiar. Help support Libenu by attending the 5th Annual “Share the Dream” Gala on Saturday, Feb. 28, at 8 p.m. at the home of Abie and Ronit Gutnicki, 2936 W. Lunt Ave., Chicago. For further information and reservations contact (847) 982-0340, ext. 227, email [email protected] or www.libenufoundation. org. Fast forward to 2014, and Cohen, a native of the Tel Aviv suburb of Petach Tikvah, found himself standing on a snowy mountain 8,000 miles away and more than 8,000 feet above sea level, insisting to his incredulous ski instructor that he didn’t need any special equipment other than his prosthetic legs to ski down. It was Cohen’s first day on the slopes as part of Golshim L’Chaim – Ski to Live, a Colorado program that brings wounded Israeli veterans and victims of terrorism to Aspen to learn how to ski – and boost their spirits. Now in its eighth year, Golshim is the brainchild of Aspen’s Chabad rabbi, Mendel Mintz. An avid skier himself who is on t Monthly Information Meetings – Guest speakers discuss current topics about disabilities. t Social Events – Twice-yearly gatherings for celebrating and socializing. t Quarterly Newsletter – Provides updates on current disability issues and events. Consumer Assistance Our Resource Specialists provide information and referrals about long-term services for adults with disabilities and other government and community resources. For more information call 773.508.1000. CJE SeniorLife™ is a partner in serving our community, supported by the Jewish United Fund/ Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago. 3003 West Touhy Avenue | Chicago IL 60645 773.508.1000 | www.cje.net 835.2.2015 PAG E 1 8 12 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 ART matter of the Chicagoan Karen Walanka is working to get Jews to have a better appreciation of Jewish artists By Pauline Dubkin Yearwood Managing Editor Karen Walanka is not an artist. There wouldn’t be anything extraordinary about that except for the fact that the Deerfield woman is the new president of the American Guild of Judaic Art, a national organization designed to promote contemporary Jewish art and artists. How Walanka came to hold that position is a story that really begins with her wedding, 43 years ago. She and her husband received four Chanukah menorahs as gifts. They didn’t want to return them, so they began a collection. Fast forward to today: the Walankas have more than 40 menorahs, as well as many other Judaic ritual objects. Walanka, in other words, became a collector. She is the first non-artist (“I do needlepoint, but that’s all”) to become president of the guild, which was founded in 1991 and has more than 100 members, including several from Chicago. Its mission, as stated on its website (jewishart.org), is “to celebrate the rich diversity and sacred beauty of Judaic Art around the world, and to establish a community for those who are inspired to fulfill the commandment of hiddur mitzvah by creating, collecting & exhibiting Jewish art.” The guild also sponsors an initiative to promote Judaic art with Jewish Arts Month, which takes place in March, designed to coincide with several Torah portions that describe how Moses appointed an artisan, Bezalel, to oversee and design and creation of the Mishkan, the tabernacle used in the desert after the exodus from Egypt. (Check the website for special online initiatives and educational programs related to Jewish Arts Month.) If Walanka’s name sounds familiar to Chicago-area residents, though, it’s not because of her collecting. She retired last year after nearly 23 years as executive director of Moriah Congregation, a Conservative synagogue in Deerfield. One of her duties involved putting together the synagogue’s justly famed juried art show, the largest in the area, an event that every two years allows the public to see and purchase (and in many cases meet the creators of) Judaic art in all its forms. Through her involvement with the show, Walanka, along with the congregation, joined the American Guild of Judaic Art and got to know many of its members. “It seemed like the thing to do,” the warmly enthusiastic Walanka said in a recent phone conversation. “The congregation joined both to promote Jewish art and to promote ourselves to Karen Walanka (photo by DejaViewsUSA.com) the artists in the guild. Over the years we’ve publicized our shows through the guild and many guild artists have applied and been juried into the show.” And here let’s pause a moment to consider just what Judaic art is and is not, a point that Walanka considers very important. She notes that many local galleries hold shows of work by Israeli artists. That’s a worthy project, she says, but “there is a difference between the art (some) Israelis do and the work done by the members of the guild. Guild members do Judaic art, either ritual items” (say a menorah or seder plate or mezuzah) or thematic items (a picture of Moses receiving the tablets, for instance). “It could be Hebrew calligraphy, papercuts, scenes from the Torah – all have Judaic art in them. Being a Jewish artist and doing Judaic art are different things,” she says. In the Moriah show, she notes, except for some jewelry, “the work has to be either ritual or thematic.” Meanwhile, over the years, Walanka’s involvement with Judaic art deepened as she traveled to meetings of various Jewish organizations, which often had art shows attached, and she kept up with the artists and board members of the guild. In 2012, the then-president of the organization called her. “We were kibitzing, and he asked me if I would consider curating their online exhibition for that year” – an exhibition of guild artists that stays up for a full year on the group’s website. She did so. Then, in 2014, she engaged in informal conversations with guild board members about extending the organization’s reach to include collectors. Collecting is a subject that Walanka has strong opinions about. “Lots of people in lots of synagogues, especially in smaller communities, may not know you can have five different Chanukah menorahs, different seder plates. I must have five different papercuts in my house that are renderings of the parsha of the week when my husband and I got married,” she says. “It was the one where Jacob built the ladder, so we’ve collected ladders over the years by Jewish artists. They are all different.” “Radwin Family Tree” by Leah Sosewitz from Highland Park, who often uses laser and paper cutting in her Judaic art. One well-known artist and guild board member, Flora Rosefsky, suggested to Walanka some ways the guild could begin to educate Jews, especially ones in smaller communities, about Judaic art. “If you could get three or four artists to loan to a synagogue three or four of the same artifact – seder plate, dreidel – just to begin to educate Jews that there is such a medium as Jewish art, it could be a ritual object or it could be a modern painting or a thematic piece,” Walanka says. “Some of this work will be purchased, and this is the goal of the guild.” She is surprised, she says, at the number of Jews – many well connected within the Jewish community – who know little or nothing about Judaic art. “We constantly run into people who are very active in the community but have never heard of the Moriah show, even though we advertise and send out postcards. It’s still very insular.” After she retired from Moriah, Walanka says, “I wasn’t sure what I was going to do.” But as a member of the congregation, she continued to work on the art show (the next one will be in February 2016). With the guild, “my goal was to get some collectors besides Karen Walanka to join,” she says. “The collectors would support and help these Judaic artists. For most of them it’s hard to make a real living. One conversation led to another and next thing I knew I was president.” Another goal now is to interest smaller synagogues – perhaps in places like Munster, Ind., Milwaukee, Racine, Wis. – in putting together a small exhibit of Judaic art. “That would begin to introduce the subject of Judaic art into the communities that may never have known it,” she says. “You have to have a certain mentality to understand that, for instance, you can have a number of dreidels – dreidels can be metal, glass, wood.” She recalls that when she was first married and received the four menorahs as gifts, “we got that you could like more than one menorah. When my daughter was small, we would have par- 13 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 ties every night and people would all have their own menorahs. The last night was like a fire hazard,” she says with a laugh. “But it’s the concept.” The Moriah show, she says, has ingrained in many people’s mind the concept of hiddur mitzvah, or beautifying the mitzvah – making everyday items objects of art. “I get it, my friends get it, but I think the greater community may or may not get it,” Walanka says. Being a collector of Judaic art “is more than going into someplace like Hamakor (Gallery) or Rosenblum’s (World of Judaica) and buying something beautiful. That’s important and we should support those places, but (it’s also important) to support the artist. At the Moriah show, the artists come and you can talk to them. Once you know the artist, it becomes a whole different thing, a thing of ownership.” She recalls that, when she looks at her wedding presents from so long ago, “I can still point to something and say, oh, my mother’s closest friend gave me that, or my friend so-and-so made that. That’s what we want to expose people to. If you look at a piece of art and you know who made it, it brings that extra depth to you. That’s very important.” For people who want to start collecting, Walanka has some advice. “Start with something small,” she says. “Go into any synagogue gift shop or Judaica store and buy a mezuzah, or some other ritual item – it doesn’t matter what it is, a Kiddush cup, menorah, seder plate, dreidel. Start with one, and if you like it get another one. When people know you do this they’ll start giving them to you. But start small.” When she has to give a wedding present, she usually chooses a menorah, mezuzah or seder plate, hoping the gift will be the start of a collection. Another way, she says, is to go to a Judaic art website, either the guild or the site of an individual artist, find something you like and buy it. Many collectors are now active on social media, she notes. Encouraging synagogues to have art shows, even small ones, is another way to help people become interested in collecting Judaic art, she says. “When we started the Moriah show, we bused people in from Northbrook Court,” she says. “I thought, who’s going to take a bus? Now people stand in line for it.” At the guild, meanwhile, she and other members “are thinking outside the box,” she says with satisfaction. “You have a president who is a collector. There’s a new website. They are on Facebook, LinkedIn, doing social media stuff. The more you do, the more likely you are to get people’s attention. People will see something and be like, I want to have that in my home.” Chicagoan uses his family history to create Jewish art By Pauline Dubkin Yearwood Managing Editor Howard Schwartz has two passions: art and history. Both go back to his teenage years. Schwartz, a Chicago artist and retired art teacher, can almost pinpoint the day, when he was 17 years old (he’s 62 now) when he realized how conjoined the two obsessions were. “I always liked to draw and do art,” he said in a recent phone conversation. “One day my father came home from work (the family owned shoe stores, beginning with Louis Schwartz Shoe Co. on Maxwell Street) with a picture of a greatuncle that his uncle had brought him when he came in to the store.” The great-uncle had died in the Holocaust. “My father knew I liked that kind of stuff” – that is, creating artwork from photographs, especially family photographs, Schwartz says. “I thought, that’s all that’s left of this man is this photograph,” he continues. “I used that picture and it started a lifelong interest in family history. This was before ‘Roots’” and before tracing one’s ancestry became the common pastime it is for many people today.” Schwartz started working on a family history; 45 years later, he says, “I’m still working on it, researching it. It’s not just names and dates; I have all kinds of artifacts and documents.” He has documented Chicago neighborhoods where his family had businesses; family history reaching back to his great-grandparents; pogroms in Europe; and the Holocaust. As of today he has amassed 15 cases of photos, documents and artifacts, most relating to his own family’s history. Nurturing his other passion, Schwartz majored in art at the University of Wisconsin and eventually received a master’s in fine arts. He continued making art and, after graduation, “pieced together a living” teaching painting and drawing part time at Oakton Community College, a now-defunct Skokie arts center, and other venues. Eventually he became the full-time art teacher at Glenbard West High School in Glen Ellyn, a position from which he retired last year. He is married and has three grown children. Meanwhile, in his own work, he continued exploring what he calls “the long tie between what I do for art and the history of my family. I was inspired by these images and photographs,” he says. Explaining further, he writes on his website (https://howardschwartz.wordpress.com). “I have always felt towards my ancestors that I was, in some way, literally there with them. I was a part of them, and, as in the theory of genetic memory, they continue to live on “Resnicks in Chicago,” art by Howard Schwartz. through me. In my art, these generations merge. Sometimes portraits of my children pose with their great grandparents. The heavy textures and layering of media are used as a device to portray these overlapping and worn looking images of time.” One of his paintings, for instance, titled “Resnicks in Chicago,” depicts his grandfather, who was a rabbi in Ukraine but in America earned his living as a shochet (ritual slaughterer) on Maxwell Street. The artwork shows his grandfather and grandmother, with her mother in an insert below, and the two men who owned the meat market where he worked holding bloody knives. Many of Schwartz’s most recent paintings are mixed media, often depicting individuals from his family history or bygone Chicago neighborhoods, such as Maxwell Street and the Milwaukee and Ashland area, where his family owned businesses. “My grandfather came here as a shoemaker and started out on Maxwell Street,” he says. “In 1944 he got to Milwaukee Avenue. In a lot of my pictures shoes show up. Shoes are symbolic” – not only because his family owned shoe stores, but in a more emblematic, broader sense. “You go to the (U.S.) Holocaust (Memorial) Museum and you see piles of shoes,” Schwartz says. “They symbolize the people who have come before us.” Over the years Schwartz’s art has become more abstract while retaining its core subject of family history and, more broadly, Eastern European Jewish history. “I’m not an illustrator,” he says. “I don’t try to illustrate scenes. The images come from the photographs, which are sort of frozen in time. I use those images as they are, then the art takes over. I try to make them more expressive and ‘painterly’ by putting them into an art situation, not an illustration.” His art has changed over the years, Schwartz says. “It used to be more specific and look like the photograph” that was the inspiration, he says. “But little by little the space around the figures became more and more important, and I started playing up the subjects Howard Schwartz and textures.” Schwartz has had several shows, including one at Northwestern University and another at a gallery in Freeport. He received a grant from the state to finish a large work, a three-paneled drawing that depicts a family group of 24 people in a pencil drawing on wallpaper. “They are sort of ghostly figures coming through the wallpaper,” he says. “All the people in my paintings are Jewish, but not all relate to my family history,” he says. “A lot of the images are inspired by the history but then the art takes over, the art then becomes the most important thing. I’ll get rid of people (in the paintings), change people around. The history is just a jumping-off point.” At the same time Schwartz continues to research his family history and the history of many Chicago neighborhoods and hopes to publish something about it eventually. “A yeshiva in Cincinnati asked me for a copy,” he says. “When people hear about it they wished they had started (researching their own family’s history) when they were younger. I have boxes and boxes of material that a lot of people would find interesting.” Among them is such memorabilia as his grandfather’s ledger book – in Yiddish – from his Maxwell Street days. Schwartz’s goal now is to get more exposure for his art. He would like to show it alongside some of the photos, documents and artifacts that inspired it. “That way it becomes a complete work,” he says. “You can see the paintings and the inspiration for them. That is my goal.” “I have always felt towards my ancestors that I was, in some way, literally there with them. I was a part of them.” 14 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Death Notices Ida Kainov, nee Brown, age 97. Beloved wife of the late Nathan. Loving mother of Noreen (Kenneth) Walter. Devoted grandmother of Lauren, Kathleen and Rachel. Dear sister of the late Flora Lee (survived by Emanuel) Karbeling. Loving Aunt of Michael (Ann), Kenneth (Valerie), and the late Jerome (survived by Margaret) and Howard (survived by Margery) Karbeling. Arrangements by Mitzvah Memorial Funerals. Edna Sultan, nee Finkelstein, 93, beloved wife of the late Leonard, devoted mother of Harve (Chrystal), Michael Sultan (Craig Davis), Larry (Rici) and Greg (Carol Johnson) Sultan. Loving grandmother of Joanne (Erik) Morales, Suzan Sultan (Jeremy Mann), Sean (Serena) Sultan, Michele Sultan (Chris) McKee, Eric (Erica) Sultan, Bradley (Sara) Sultan, Jodi Shapiro, Nikki (Mike) Lubesnick, Charles Rita and David (Amy) Rita. Great grandmother of 11. Dear sister in law of Florence (Jerry) Sultan. Special care was given by Cece and Pura. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Edna’s name to Beth Hillel Congregation Bnai Emunah, 3220 Big Tree Lane, Wilmette, IL 60091, or the charity of your choice would be appreciated. Arrangements by Mitzvah Memorial Funerals. Allen Leslie Dubner, 19322015, died Feb. 9 of natural causes at Bethany Terrace Nursing Centre in Morton Grove. Allen was a devoted husband to his wife Joy, and a loving brother to Nina (Leon) Hertzson of Long Island, NY; he was a caring step-father to Beth (Jack) Lammers, Verne (Julie) Noparstak, and Claire (Jeff) Newman; and a doting grandfather to 6 stepgrandchildren (Sean, Nathan, Theodore, Samuel, Richard, and Chas). Allen was born in Chicago to Joseph and Luba Dubner. He attended Roosevelt High School and the University of Illinois, where he made many lifelong friends. As a manufacturer’s representative, selling home furnishings and specializing in lamps, he trekked across the Midwest region. Through his expertise in Contract Bridge, he became a Life Master in the game, and he spoke several languages with a fluency that allowed him to communicate easily with people around the world. Arrangements by Lakeshore Jewish Funerals,(773) 6258621. Milton Warman, “Papa the Great”, patriarch of the Warman Clan, 92, loved dearly by his family. Born in Chicago in 1922, resident of Orland Park and Lauderhill, FL., veteran of WWII, served as a deputy Coroner, Cook County, and built custom homes in the Chicago area. Milt worked in the floor-covering business for more than 40 years. First as a partner at Warman and Sons Furniture and Carpeting; then he started Coloramic Tile and Carpet Fair, where he worked with his son, Rick, until his retirement. In semiretirement he traded at the Midwest Commodities Exchange in Chicago. He was a golfer, story-teller, joketeller and beloved by all who knew him. He is survived by his wife of 70 years, Shyrl, sister Adele Ballis, his children Rick (Barbara) Warman, Caryn (Rick) Matalone, and Shellie Warman: his 7 grandchildren, Jeffery (Meg) Alexander, David (Deena) Alexander, Daniel (Hillary) Warman, Susan (Jay) Zuckert, Scott (Debra) Matalone, Jay Warman, and Dana War- man: and 12 Great Grandchildren, Megan Moulton, Brandon and Madeline Alexander, Samantha, Max and Madison Alexander, Spencer, Wyatt, and Jesse Warman, Simon, Sydney, and Adam Zuckert. We love you Papa. Condolence call information can be obtained by emailing [email protected] In lieu of flowers, please send memorials to the American Heart Association. Arrangements by Lakeshore Jewish Funerals (773) 625-8621. Still Directing! Mitzvah Memorial Funerals 630-MITZVAH (630-648-9824) coming together to better serve our community. WITH MORE THAN 200 YEARS of combined service, Weinstein & Piser Funeral Home is dedicated to honoring heritage and faith. Let us help you and your loved ones create a meaningful service that truly captures the essence of the life it represents. Proudly serving your family (clockwise from left) are William Barr, Licensed Funeral Director; Alan Yaﬀe, Former Owner and Licensed Funeral Director; Robert Sheck, Manager and Licensed Funeral Director; Todd Lovcik, Licensed Funeral Director; Jamie Greenebaum, Licensed Funeral Director; and Arlene Folsom, Licensed Funeral Director. WEINSTEIN & PISER Funeral Home 111 SKOKIE BLVD., WILMETTE 847-256-5700 Names you have trusted for decades... Still here to serve you when needed I.Ian “Izzy” Dick Seymour Mandel In December of 2014 Izzy and Seymour celebrated their 91st and 80th birthdays respectively. This make them the two oldest practicing and most experienced licensed Jewish funeral directors in the state of Illinois. Izzy and Seymour serve the families that call them through Mitzvah Memorial Funerals. Combined with Lloyd Mandel, Bill Goodman and Larry Mandel, Mitzvah Memorial Funeral has the most experienced staff of Jewish funeral directors in Chicago with over 200 years of combined experience. Mitzvah Memorial Funerals also provides the lowest price! In most cases we save families $2000-$5000 versus what Chicago Jewish funeral homes with chapels charge for the same or similar services and casket. If your Synagogue has a discounted funeral plan that we are not currently a provider of you can still choose us. We guarantee to be at least 25% less!* Founder, 4th generation Jewish Funeral Director, also licensed in Florida (no longer with Levayah Funerals) Seymour Mandel 3rd generation Jewish Funeral Director, Past President of the Jewish Funeral Directors of America (J.F.D.A.) (Formerly with Piser) William Goodman Funeral Director, Homesteaders Insurance Agent (no longer with Goodman Family Funerals) Ian “Izzy” Dick Oldest licensed Jewish Funeral Director in the State of Illinois Lawrence “Larry” Mandel If you have already made pre-arrangements elsewhere you can switch to us. In most cases we will refund your family thousands of dollars. 4th generation Jewish Funeral Director, Homesteaders Insurance Agent (Formerly with Piser) 847-778-6736 We also offer pre-arrangements and fund through Homesteaders Life. Find out why Mitzvah Memorial Funerals was entrusted to direct more than 800 funerals since opening. www.comparemitzvah.com *Guarantee is on base price of funeral plan including services, casket and miscellaneous items. Not included in this are the cemetery charges, vault and cash advance items. Proudly owned and operated by Alderwoods (Chicago North), Inc. Lloyd Mandel 500 Lake Cook Road, Suite 350, Deerfield, IL • 8850 Skokie Blvd., Skokie, IL 630-MITZVAH (648-9824) • www.mitzvahfunerals.com 15 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Summer Day Camps ChinaFriends (773) 525-6000 www.chinafriends.org Since 2005, ChinaFriends has been teaching Mandarin Chinese and Chinese culture to both children and adults. Classes are offered seven days a week and taught by our experienced and talented staff of native Chinese teachers. We are unique as a language school in Chicago in that we specialize just in Chinese. Our curriculum, methods, and materials are tailored to meet the specific and varied needs of our students. We take a systematic, spiral-up approach aimed at building up capabilities and internalizing the language through practical application and consistent usage. Although ChinaKids (now ChinaFriends) was originally founded with the focus on providing language classes at our center, over the years we have branched out to provide off-site private and group instruction. Fred’s Camp (773) 818-8027 www.fredscamp.com The #1 Day Camp for Summer Fun in the Chicago Sun Since 1994! Fred’s Camp has the key ingredients to make your child’s summer special. We encourage a warm family atmosphere at camp. We provide personalized attention to each camper’s individual needs. We recognize and respect our campers as unique individuals and provide a flexible and challenging program designed to enrich their development. Sports Broadcasting Camp (800) 319-0884 playbyplaycamps.com The nation’s #1 Sports Broadcasting Camp for boys and girls 10-18 returns to Chicago for our ninth year July 6-10 at the Holiday InnSkokie. Campers will learn from the pros in the industry. Meet sports celebrities, make sports anchor, reporting, and play-by-play tapes. Host your own sports talk radio shows, participate in trivia and stump the schwab contests, as well as sports taboo and password games. Day and overnight sessions available. fwparker.org/summers Francis W. Parker School’s Summer Programs at Parker 2015 offers exciting summer educational pro- grams and recreational activities for students entering JK through 12th grade. Our campus offers access to many fun-filled day camp activities, enrichment courses, sports conditioning camps, performing arts classes and a wide range of STEM-based course offerings. SUMMER Programs at Parker 2015 Educational and Recreational Activities for Junior Kindergarten through 12th grades Register online at fwparker.org/summers Summer Programs at Parker 2015 (773) 797-5104 PRIVATE SUMMER DAY CAMP Located on the Lincoln Park Campus of DePaul University Co-Ed • Pre K - 8th grade June 22 - August 14, 2015 Extended morning & afternoon hours available Fred’s Camp - Where Your Child’s Happiness is our Greatest Concern. REGISTER TODAY! (773) 818-8027 www.fredscamp.com SUMMER 2015 Beijing Summer Camp We offer a multi-faceted program including instructional swim, field trips, sports & games, special activities and more. plus optional Xi’an/Shanghai excursion* We are a family owned business. Nation’s #1 Sports Broadcasting Camp THE AWARD-WINNING SPORTS BROADCASTING CAMP 2-WEEK LANGUAGE IMMERSION $2995 DEPARTING CHICAGO 6/20 RETURNING 7/5 OR 7/12 is back for our 10th year in Chicago JULY 6 - 10, 2015 • Boys and Girls age 10-18 will have an opportunity to learn from the pros in the industry • Make sports anchor tapes from a TV studio • Make play-by-play tapes of the Super Bowl and NBA Finals • Make reporting tapes at a professional stadium • Meet sports celebrities… and much more Day/Overnight sessions available For more info call 800.319.0884 or visit www.playbyplaycamps.com facebook.com/sportsbroadcastingcamps youtube.com/sportsbroadcastcamp This landmark experience will expose beginner to advanced students, ages 11-18, to half day Chinese classes complemented by half day of fun workshops and Beijing classic tours. For further enrichment, students can join an optional weeklong Xi’an and Shanghai trip. FEE INCLUDES: DOES NOT INCLUDE: • hotel accommodation (2 students per room in close proximity to the school) with 24 hr supervision • international airfare • 1:10 teaching ratio • local transportation if arriving/departing separately from the group • separate local guide and logistics manager • Chinese tourist visa • private coach and driver for all excursions • personal expenses • admission tickets and fees for all tours and activities listed • activities not included in the itinerary • all meals, drinking water and snacks • all gratuities, fees and wages for local experts, venders and assistants * optional Xi’an/Shanghai excursion is additional $1495 (includes domestic travel) ChinaFriends’ Zhaoyi Liu will personally lead this group from start to ﬁnish. Parents are welcome to attend (parent fees and schedule TBD). F O R M O R E I N F O R M AT I O N A N D T O R E G I S T E R , P L E A S E E M A I L Z H AOY I @ C H I N A F R I E N D S . O R G 16 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Senior Living Nobel laureate Martin Karplus shows his photos at embassy of country he fled at 8 By Menachem Wecker JTA WASHINGTON – The opening of an exhibit at the Austrian Embassy in Washington of more than 50 photographs by an 84-year-old Jewish Nobel laureate was something of an amateur hour – twice over. Both Austria’s ambassador and Martin Karplus, the photographer, referred to the pictures – postcard-style views of Europe in the 1950s and a more recent series on China and India – as hobby rather than high art. Then at a reception, many of the approximately 250 guests handed their phones to strangers to snap pictures with Karplus – amateur shots of themselves with an amateur photographer. “I’m not a photographer,” said Karplus, a Harvard professor emeritus who shared the 2013 Nobel in chemistry. “I’m an amateur at this.” Karplus fled his native Vienna as an 8-year-old with his family. Like many European Jewish refugees, he barely returned to Austria for years. Then everything changed. “Once I got the Nobel Prize, Austria suddenly realized that I was an interesting person,” said Karplus, who will receive an honorary doctorate in May from the University of Vienna, which will also exhibit his photographs. The photos, which span continents and decades, show people and landscapes that Karplus encountered on his world travels. One photograph from the 1950s shows Karplus’ parents in Rockport, Mass., standing in front of what appears to be a well-known fishing shack often referred to as the most painted structure in the United States. His father holds his hat in hand while his mother holds her husband’s arm. The work is a study in verticals – a pole behind the father, the wharf pylons and distant telephone lines – balanced by the deep blue of the water visible in the bottom right corner. A photograph of an Indian boy taken in 2009 fills the composition with the barefoot, crouching boy. The photo is overwhelmingly heavy on cool blues and grays, except for a bright orange bike in the top right corner. The boy’s gaze, intense as he stares at what appears to be rags in his hands, evokes a secular Madonna cradling her child. Martin Karplus, left, and Austria's U.S. ambassador, Hans Peter Manz, at the opening of an exhibition of Karplus' photographs at the Austrian Embassy in Washington, (JTA) Many other photos in the exhibit, such as a picture of boats Actual Spectrum Residents Life with... security There’s comfort in knowing we’re here to help and are always nearby. Save $1,500* * Move-in by 2/28/15 847.666.5417 777 Church Street Lake Zurich, IL 60047 CedarLakeAssistedLiving.com A SPECTRUM RETIREMENT COMMUNITY Located on Midlothian near Lakewood Lane taken in Hong Kong in the 1960s, offer the sort of pretty colors and composition that one would expect of postcards – or perhaps an Instagram feed. But in this case, the shots are taken by a Nobel Prize winner. “Now that I have a Nobel Prize, somehow my value as a photographer has increased a little bit,” Karplus said. “When you get a Nobel Prize, you’re supposed to know everything.” Karplus initially exhibited his photos at a two-month show at the Austrian Cultural Forum in New York last year. Angelika Schweiger, the cultural officer at the forum and the curator of the embassy exhibit, heard about Karplus from colleagues in New York and decided to bring his work to Washington. Though he is now celebrated by Austrian public institutions, Karplus freely acknowledged in an interview how shocked he was to discover on a trip to Austria a decade ago how prevalent antiSemitic sentiment was in the country. “Unlike Germany, which basically admitted its guilt, Austria still says to many people, ‘We were invaded by Hitler,’” Karplus said. Hanno Loewy, director of the Jewish Museum of Hohenems in Austria, agrees that the country was “late in comparison to Germany” with critically examining its past. “For long, the myth of Austria as the ‘first victim’ of the Nazis prevailed,” he said. An artist statement on Karplus’ website notes that his parents gave him a Leica camera after he earned his doctorate in 1953 and that he subsequently started photographing his European travels. “Meeting people and being exposed to their cultures, art, architecture, and cuisines was an incredible experience, which has had a lasting effect on my life,” reads the statement. Karplus only began exhibiting his work in 2005. But for all his achievements, Hans Peter Manz, Austria’s ambassador to Washington, declined to claim Karplus as his own. “Remember when the German pope was elected? Suddenly [the Germans] were saying, ‘We are pope,’ which is ridiculous,” Manz said. “The same thing happens when one of these guys wins a Nobel. Suddenly you find out, ‘Ah. He’s Austrian.’ The guy left when he was 8 years old. When I introduced him, I didn’t mention it. He did. To claim any piece of his Nobel as a national success is ridiculous.” 17 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Senior Living Survivors return to Auschwitz determined to share their stories By Toby Axelrod JTA KRAKOW, Poland (JTA) – What kept you alive? Did your non-Jewish friends reject you? Could you ever forgive? Those were some of the questions posed by Jewish young adults to Holocaust survivor Marcel Tuchman at the Galicia Jewish Museum here. “What kept me alive was having my father with me,” said Tuchman, 93, a physician from New York who was born in Poland and survived several concentration camps, including Auschwitz. “And another thing was the hope I had that one day I will be able to tell the story to the likes of you, so you can tell it to the next generation.” His meeting with young Jews was one of many such encounters taking place in and around Krakow on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the Soviet army’s liberation of Auschwitz, where an estimated 1.1 million people were murdered – many of them gassed. In a tent set up around the gaping entrance to the Auschwitz-adjacent Birkenau concentration camp, survivors and their companions were joined by dignitaries from more than 40 countries for ceremonies that may well mark the final time that so many Auschwitz survivors are together here again. Halina Birenbaum, who survived Auschwitz as a child, described to the crowd of 3,000 her impressions of the Nazi camp 45 miles east of Krakow, calling it “a bottomless pit of hell that I could not get out of.” “All around us was electric barbed wire. Rows of barracks, stinking mud ... a disgusting mass of people all in lousy wet rags, with numbers and shaven heads,” she said. “Those gray faces with legs like sticks, wearing those muddy clogs. Nothing reminded you of anything human.” Roman Kent, president of the International Auschwitz Committee, which was founded by a group of Auschwitz survivors, said his experience in the camp was “more than enough to keep me awake at night until the end of time.” He added: “How can I ever forget the smell of burning flesh that permeated the air” or “the cries of children torn from their mother’s arms.” While survivors cannot forget, others simply must remem- ber. Otherwise, Kent said, “the conscience of mankind would be buried alongside the victims.” The event also featured the screening of a short documentary, “Auschwitz,” co-directed by the famed filmmaker Steven Spielberg, who started the Shoah Foundation. In a moment of disequilibrium, survivors watched the film about their former place of imprisonment, sitting in front of the very gate through which cattle cars once passed, delivering so many Jews to their deaths. Just outside the tent, a light snow was falling on the remaining barracks of Birkenau, surrounded by barbed wire. Ronald Lauder, president of the World Jewish Congress, addressed the crowd. “Auschwitz never goes away,” he said. “This awful place stands as a reminder that propaganda leads to anti-Semitism ... that anti-Semitism will grow if nobody speaks out.” Anti-Semitism, he said, “leads to places like Auschwitz.” He added: “After the recent events in Paris and throughout Europe and around the world, I cannot ignore what is happening today. Jews are targeted in Europe once again because they are Jews.” The ceremony was the culmination of several days of events and meetings attended in total by some 300 Holocaust survivors. Few of them were actually liberated at Auschwitz. But all passed through its gates. Today they are in their 80s and 90s, and fit enough to have traveled from Israel, America, Argentina and elsewhere. A group of survivors who was to visit the Auschwitz exhibit never got beyond the infamous gate, marked “Arbeit Macht Frei” – so crowded was this threshold with eager journalists who had come from around the world. And yet the hubbub didn’t seem to faze them a bit. In fact, most of the visitors seemed determined to tell their stories to all who inquired. “I know that we’re getting old and have to make sure that the memory doesn’t die with us,” said Irene Weiss, 84, of Fairfax, Va., who traveled with her daughter Lesley. Her key message to today’s youth: “[Don’t] be deceived by demagogues.” Spielberg, whose Oscar-winning movie “Schindler’s List” was filmed partly in Krakow, told the survivors, “I found my own voice and my own Jewish identity thanks to you.” invites you to its Memory Support Group Meeting ALZHEIMER’S/DEMENTIA MAXIMIZING LIFE PROGRAM o Presented by Bob Tucker, Qualified Dementiaia Care Provider Mr. Tucker will speak about determining what is normal aging versus aging with dementia, the physiological changes that occur and helping people determine the level or stages of dementia. He will also provide techniques in helping manage difﬁcult behaviors and ways to improve the lives of those suffering with dementia and their families. D WAR N O EE, A A FR G DVD HER NIN ND OT ALS N I W ERI IA A ENT MAT DEM TIONAL IDED TO V CA . 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From the name you trust, talk to Dobson Plaza about our therapy programming. Approved by Medicare/Medicaid/Leading Insurance Providers To schedule an appointment, call Cathy Singer t %PCTPO 1MB[B t %PEHF t &WBOTUPO *- “Where warmth and superior nursing care offer peace of mind.” 18 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Senior Living Soldiers CONTINUED F RO M PAG E 11 community gains more than we give. It’s truly inspirational.” The logistics are daunting, starting from transporting the wounded Israelis from Israel over multiple flights. Some come with a spouse or sibling to assist in their care, and on the mountain each Israeli may be escorted by up to three or four instructors. Medications must be managed, doctors must be consulted and Golshim keeps oxygen on hand in case the altitude becomes difficult for the visitors. For the ski instruction, Golshim L’Chaim hires Challenge Aspen, an organization that runs adaptive ski programs for people with physical and cognitive disabilities, including wounded U.S. soldiers. Many participants ski with specially equipped chairs, tethers and outriggers – poles with mini-skis on the bottoms. “Our goal is to have the soldiers become as independent as possible,” said John Klonowski, director of Challenge Aspen’s military program and a veteran ski instructor with the Golshim L’Chaim groups. “The learning curve is pretty quick. It doesn’t really matter if you’re in adaptive equipment,” he said. “We’ll get folks out on a ski hill, and they have an opportunity to feel like they’re just like everyone else. Especially for people in wheelchairs, this is one of very few opportunities to be out of the wheelchair. Once you’re out there, everybody’s doing the same thing – feeling the speed, the wind in their face, out in the great outdoors.” When Cohen turned up his first day, the instructors presented him with a monoski, a chair connected by a shock to a fat ski. “I said no, I’m doing it on my legs,” Cohen recalled. “They thought there was a language miscommunication. In the end I did it on the legs.” Always athletic, Cohen had tried not to let his disabilities limit him. His initial rehab after the RPG explosion had lasted Let us help make this chapter one of your best. It begins with the right setting. Comfortable surroundings that please the eye and senses. A responsive staff for resident support needs, with a licensed nurse on-site 24/7. Professionally guided fitness and therapy for an active lifestyle. Delicious, chef-prepared cuisine. Concierge and transportation services. Enriching activities for mind, body and spirit. What happens next is up to you. After all, it’s your story. 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Cohen joined other Israelis on their post-army trips to the Far East and South America, though instead of trekking he rode horseback or on scooters. Back in Israel, he enrolled in BarIlan University, studying criminology. “Without strong faith in G-d, I couldn’t have gotten through it,” Cohen said, noting that the part of his legs left intact were what had been covered by the tzitzit ritual fringes he wears every day. “You talk to the man upstairs and you know you’re not alone.” But there were limitations. Cohen couldn’t run. He often found himself the subject of curious stares. And like many wounded veterans, he struggled at times to keep his spirits up. At Aspen, Cohen says, his success skiing gave him a new boost. “When I skied all the way down, I saw that anything is possible,” said Cohen, now 31. “I came back to Israel and it gave me strength to believe in myself. If I look at myself as handicapped, people will treat me that way. If I consider myself a healthy person, people will look at me that way.” Ariela Alush, 37, who also was on the Golshim L’Chaim program last year, said her Aspen trip proved transformative for her. Alush was vacationing with two friends in Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula in October 2004 when terrorists detonated a car bomb just a few feet from her bungalow. She suffered a spinal injury, a head fracture, a broken hand and shrapnel in her ear; one of her friends was killed. After two years of ear surgeries and rehab, Alush eventually was given a clean bill of health. But she remained traumatized by her experience, disoriented and anxious. She was fearful of traveling overseas and never took vacations. After the bombing, she temporarily lost her sight, and she associated the idea of vacation with the darkness that had befallen her in Egypt. “When you have post-traumatic stress disorder, you never feel safe. You’re always bothered by something,” Alush said. “But as soon as I got to Aspen I felt embraced by the Jewish community there. I felt like I was in a safe place. I experienced something primal. Just as in Sinai I had my first difficult, dark experience, Aspen was a good, positive experience of light.” But when Alush tried skiing, her first bad fall triggered a flashback to the bombing in Egypt 10 years earlier. She couldn’t get up. Alush panicked. A ski patrol rescue team was called in to bring her down the mountain. For two days Alush sat disheartened, traumatized anew. Then one of the program participants gave her a camera. Alush, a film student, perked up. She filmed the snow, the mountains, her friends on skis. Slowly, she says, she felt she was regaining control through the camera lens. Finally, she felt ready to try skiing again. “I only skied for two days that week, and not even alone. But the therapeutic value of the experience was, in my eyes, worth everything,” Alush said. “In Aspen, something in my pace of life changed. I went back to Israel and I returned to work in a different way. I went back to working on my movie, I had ambition again. Something new had awakened in me.” This year’s Golshim L’Chaim program will include several soldiers injured in last summer’s Gaza war, according to Mintz. “When you see what these people have gone through and what they’re able to do, it’s mindboggling,” Mintz said. “It puts life in perspective.” 19 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Health & Fitness Your Money Pomegranate juice a vehicle for Chasidic help and healing More than 6,000 Israelis on list of secret Swiss bank accounts By Uriel Heilman JTA NEW SQUARE, N.Y. – Get Rabbi Shulim Greenberg talking about the health benefits of pomegranate juice and he sounds like a homeopathic nutritionist – with a Yiddish accent. Every January, the Hasidic charity run by Greenberg obtains some 40,000 pounds of California pomegranates, squeezes them into juice and ships the product in eight-ounce plastic bottles to ailing Jews. The recipients – mostly residents of the haredi Orthodox strongholds of Brooklyn, Lakewood, N.J., and New York’s Rockland County, where the New Square Hasidic village is located – apparently believe in the nectar’s healing powers. “People think it heals, but it doesn’t heal,” Greenberg says on a tour of the juice production line during its annual two-week run in January. “It’s keeping the blood count up, mainly for people taking chemo. If the blood count is good, the body has strength to fight the illness.” Many manufacturers of food and dietary supplements promote the supposed health benefits of JERUSALEM (JTA) More than 6,000 Israelis have secret bank accounts at the Swiss branch of the HSBC British bank that had documents leaked to the Internet. The documents, which showed 100,000 private individuals from over 200 countries holding the secret bank accounts, were obtained by the Washington-based International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. The 6,222 Israeli-connected people on the list, which is from 2007, reportedly hold some $10 billion in the accounts. Seventeen of the Israelis hold a total of over $100 million. Only about half of those on the list associated with Israel hold Israeli citizenship, according to the documents. Fast, free pickup—IRS tax deductible Donate Your Vehicle CAR tMOTORCYCLE tRV tTRUCK tBOAT to For two weeks every winter, laborers work in two eight-hour shifts daily to squeeze the 40,000 pounds of pomegranates used in Chesed 24/7's juice. (JTA) pomegranates, which are high in antioxidants, and the fruit also occupies a prominent place in Jewish tradition. Pomegranates are said to have 613 seeds – the same as the number of mitzvahs, or commandments, in the Torah. Pomegranate decorations adorned the Holy Temple in Jerusalem and the robes of its high priest. Greenberg says there is also a reference in a medieval Jewish commentary to the fruit’s healing qualities. But scant scientific evidence exists to establish these hypothe- Do you experience the intense pain, tenderness and swelling of gout? Gout and kidney problems? If a healthcare provider has told you that you have decreased kidney function, local doctors need your help with a research study testing an investigational medication. You will receive all study-related procedures at no cost if you qualify and may be compensated for your time and travel. To learn more about this study: 888-308-4812 www.cisresearch.com 4709 W. Golf Rd., Suite 111 Skokie, IL 60076 ses as fact, and in 2010 the Food and Drug Administration issued a warning to the nation’s largest pomegranate juice manufacturer, Pom Wonderful, for making unproven claims about the fruit’s disease-fighting properties. It is Pom Wonderful that donates the pomegranates to Greenberg’s charity, Chesed 24/7. None of that has deterred Greenberg, who says his product differs from manufactured pomegranate juice in one small but crucial way: His juice is unpasteurized. “Pasteurized is garbage,” Greenberg said of the heating process meant to kill bacteria and prevent spoilage. “The whole natural is out.” The pomegranate seeding work is painstaking. Some 40 manual laborers working in two eight-hour daily shifts stand alongside a row of tables banging on pomegranates with kitchen mallets to release the seeds. Before bringing their bins to the juicers, they sift through the ruby-red kernels to weed out any stray membrane – a process that is repeated by a rabbinic supervisor wearing a plastic beard protector. His concern is not kashrut but quality control. In the early years of the pomegranate operation, Chesed used manual juicers to produce the liquid. Now a modified machine designed to grind beef gently presses the kernels to release their juice into a large vat, spitting out the bitter dross generated from the centers of the kernels into waste buckets. Once the juice is bottled, the bottles are placed in a subzero freezer in a rented facility in upstate New York until they are ready to be shipped. In all, the operation produces 20,000 to 25,000 juice bottles. The ARK Help The ARK help the thousands of needy families who depend on us. Call 773-681-8978 www.arkchicago.org Scan the QR code to visit us online. Illinois Non-Profit Organization. Community Funded. JUF Grant Recipient. One more reason to love your bank First Bank of Highland Park is a community bank that puts the emphasis on community. For 60 years we have supported local organizations and events in our community. It’s our way of giving back to you, even if you bank somewhere else. At First Bank of Highland Park, community really does come ﬁrst. Contact one of our personal bankers today and let us show you what we can do for you. www.ﬁrstbankhp.com | iTunes | GooglePlay Highland Park 1835 First Street, Highland Park, IL 60035 (847) 432-7800 Northbrook 633 Skokie Boulevard, Northbrook, IL 60062 (847) 272-1300 NMLS# 421795 20 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Marijuana CONTINUED F RO M PAG E 2 amendment was co-sponsored by Jared Polis, a Jewish Democratic congressman from Colorado who recently introduced a bipartisan bill to allow hemp production for commercial purposes as well. Jewish advocacy groups, however, have largely hung back on issues of marijuana legalization and drug policy reform. But according to Doug Kahn, executive director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of San Francisco, “the lack of engagement on this issue by the organized Jewish community is not because it’s a taboo issue, it’s because we have to set priorities. And this issue has not emerged as a priority.” “The core priority for us has been addressing the sentencing disparity between white Americans and black Americans who are convicted for drug-related offenses,” said Barbara Weinstein, the RAC’s associate director. For some prominent Jews, however, it’s not merely about whether or not to prioritize other issues, but about actively working to block marijuana legalization. In Florida, where a November bid to legalize medical marijuana lost by 3 percentage points, Jewish billionaire Sheldon Adelson pumped $5 million into the campaign to defeat its passage. The casino mogul’s Israeliborn wife, Miriam, is a drug addiction specialist who runs a rehabilitation center in Las Vegas and believes that marijuana is a “gateway drug” to harder, more dangerous substances – a belief that legalization advocates dispute. But if Le’Or has its way, Florida could indeed legalize medical marijuana in the next election cycle – and California might well take the next step and allow recreational use. “We’re talking about some of the biggest Jewish communities in the U.S.,” Roy Kaufmann said. “I look at 2016 and I think, ‘This is an opportunity to start building something now.’” Film CONTINUED CEMETERY LOTS FOR SALE 2 Cemetery Plots (side by side) Located in Shalom Memorial Park Palatine 10,590 • Negotiable 847-869-3539 [email protected] Memorial Park Skokie, IL Makom Shalom Section 4 Adjacent Plots $3800/plot or $15,000 for all four Contact Sandie (323) 393-0702 or [email protected] UNDER A TREE SHALOM MEMORIAL PARK Single plot for sale. Hebron section. Estate 153 A. Value: $5295 Asking: $3750 (or best offer) contact Philip 773.848.3638 [email protected] HELP WANTED DENTIST WANTED Far north side group dental practice looking for associate to work in our family dental practice. Great work environment. Excellent earning potential. Days and hours flexible. 773-478-5520 [email protected] For only $50, you can place your classified ad in this space! To take advantage of CJN Classified page call 847-966-0606. Recycle this paper FOR RENT APARTMENTS FOR RENT Two bedrooms and 2 bath apartments on the first floor of a totally renovated building - Walking distance to all the amenities and necessities of downtown Highland Park. In-unit washer and dryer, security system, granite counters, stainless steel appliances. Small pets accepted. Call Coldwell Banker at 847.681.4116 7 Europe of forms of anti-Semitism that have not been seen since the 1930s.” Even before the horrific series of attacks by Islamic extremists that left more than 16 dead at the offices of French satirical paper Charlie Hebdo and a kosher grocery store in Paris, anti-Semitism has been on the rise. Over the summer, a synagogue in Wuppertal, Germany, was firebombed, and crowds in many European cities have chanted that Jews should be gassed. Bensinger said he was encouraged by how warmly he was received in Hamburg and by how well both the young people and members of the city administration received his film. Smartphone CONTINUED CJN Classified F RO M PAG E F RO M PAG E 10 the Entebbe raid of 1976 and a little boy in the United Kingdom with muscular dystrophy. Prior to the phone’s development, Livne said he was “completely dependent” on people around him. Simple things like making a phone call – no less a private one – were no longer possible, as someone needed to dial, hold the phone and hang up for him. “My life quality jumped from the Stone Age to the smartphone age,” he said. Now Livne regularly texts and sends WhatsApp messages to his friends and three children, and the phone has helped ease some of the social isolation experienced by many disabled people, especially the young. “Disabled people are the largest and loneliest population in the world,” said Jay Ruderman, president of the Ruderman Family Foundation, which advocates on behalf of people with disabilities in the Jewish community. A smartphone is not just a window into the social world; it’s necessary for many lines of work. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has reported that only 17.6 percent of persons with a disability are employed. “We live in an age where you have to use technology to compete and function in the workforce, and if that technology isn’t built in a way that allows you to participate, you are essentially frozen out of the workplace,” Ruderman said. “This isn’t just for one individual; we are talking about millions of people around the globe in the same situation.” Livne came up with the idea Bensinger comes from a German Jewish family who fled Nazi Germany in the 1930s and eventually settled in Chicago. The documentary grew out of a series of interviews with the last remaining survivors and refugees at the Selfhelp Home on Chicago’s North Side. Ruben Herzberg, principal of the Klosterschule in Hamburg, said the level of antiSemitism may be lower in Germany, than in countries like France and even England, because of the tremendous amount of education about the Holocaust in German schools. For Herzberg, the former president of the Hamburg Jewish Community, teaching about the Holocaust is very personal. “What is important to me is that I’m a Jew,” said Herzberg who was born in Israel. “My grandparents were killed in Auschwitz. Teaching about the Holocaust means teaching about my family.” Herzberg said at least 10 percent of his students come from Muslim families. When asked whether this affects how his school teaches about tolerance and bigotry, Hertzberg called the Holocaust “a very special question for immigrants in Germany.” “It can be a struggle to make the Holocaust relevant to them,” Herzberg said. They’ll say ‘okay, the Germans killed the Jews but I’m not from Germany and it’s not my problem. ‘ ” Herzberg tells them the antiMuslim racist graffiti they see on the subway stations is no different than the anti-Jewish graffiti of 70 years ago. He also tells them, “If you don’t understand the Holocaust, you will never understand how to prevent atrocities like that – perhaps to you own family.” Lisa Pevtzow for Sesame after seeing a TV demonstration for a game controlled with head movements. With a background in electrical engineering, he immediately recognized the technology’s potential to help him. “Being [an] engineer, and especially an electrical engineer, I had so much envy for the people who could use the new gadgets, and my engineering mind helped me come up with the idea,” he said. “When I saw them playing the game with head gestures, it just clicked to me.” He called up the TV station, which put him in touch with the game’s designer, Oded Ben Dov. Turns out Ben Dov and Livne lived just three blocks from each other. After meeting with Livne, Ben Dov closed his software house and began working on Sesame. “Once I met with Giora, my focus switch was pretty immediate, said Ben Dov, who has a background in mobile development and computer vision. “I realized there was a real need. “With games, you can make 1,000 of them,” he said, shrugging. “But here there was a real use for this technology.” Ben Dov said the first phones that were ordered via Indiegogo will be shipped in March, and a larger tablet version will be released later this year. Sesame is just one of many Israeli technology start-ups in a country hailed as the Start-Up Nation. And Ruderman said there is a growing emphasis on creating technology solutions for people with disabilities. Notably, the Israeli company VoiceITT recently developed an application called Talkitt that enables those with motor, speech and language disorders to communicate using their own voice. Where Sesame differs from Talkitt and other ultra-popular Israeli tech products like Viber and Waze is that it is not an application. Because Sesame’s software controls the whole phone, the company needed to gain something called root access so it could preinstall the technology in its labs and sell the phone touch-free out of the box. The step is necessary, although one that keeps Sesame’s operational costs high. “Since our users couldn’t operate a phone before, it’s not really a question of them just downloading an app because they didn’t have a phone to begin with,” Ben Dov said. “The first phone they buy will be the touch-free Sesame Phone.” It’s an exciting prospect for some like Jacob Williams, a seventh-grader who was in a car accident when he was six weeks old and has been a quadriplegic and on a ventilator ever since. Michael Dadey, the assistant vice principal at Jacob’s Pennsylvania school, stumbled upon Sesame when researching handsfree devices for Jacob. “All Jacob has ever talked about to people is being able to use a phone,” Dadey said in an email interview. “Most teens can’t wait to get a driver’s license – Jacob knows that will probably never happen for him – so the next big moment for him in his life is to have his own smartphone.” For Ben Dov, the prospect of helping change lives has been transformative. “It’s been incredibly rewarding,” he said. “I have learned so much. … These devices are literally a window into the entire world. We called it Sesame because it indicates our desire to open up worlds for people.” In fact, the phone turns on with two simple words: Open Sesame. 21 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 By Joseph Aaron CONTINUED F RO M PAG E Get Home Care 22 Obama made at the recent National Prayer Breakfast. In it, he made the historical point that while today it’s Isis that is acting in horrific ways, in the past it was others from other religions who have done the very same. “This is not unique to one group or one religion,” he said. “There is a tendency in us, a sinful tendency that can pervert and distort our faith. Lest we get on our high horse and think this is unique to some other place, remember that during the Crusades and the Inquisition, people committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ.” People committed terrible deeds in the name of Christ. Indeed they did. As Jews know all too well. How many Jews over how many years in how many places have paid a bitter price at the hands of Christians believing they were acting in the name of Christ? Indeed, Hitler, a devout Christian, believed the Nazis were acting in the name of Christ, a notion reinforced by the pope at the time, by Christian teachings at the time. So no you don’t have to go back 1,000 years to the Crusades, just 70 to the Holocaust to see Christians committing the most barbaric of acts, mass murder on a truly stunning scale, all in the name of Christ. The other thing that struck me about the president’s speech was, could you ever imagine anyone ever saying this: “Lest we get on our high horse and think this is unique to some other place, remember that people have committed terrible deeds in the name of Moses.” Terrible deeds in the name of Christ? Yes, history is full of examples. Terrible deeds in the name of Allah? Yes, today’s headlines are full of examples. But terrible deeds in the name of Moses? Can’t really think of any, then or now. That says a lot, and a lot good, about the Jewish people. Look, I’m not saying we’re saints or that some Jews haven’t done some terrible things. Meir Kahane comes immediately to mind, as does Baruch Goldstein, the madman who slaughtered 27 Palestinians in the Cave of the Patriarchs, as does some of the actions committed during Israel’s War of Independence and, as a new movie shows, done even during the Six Day War, with those who were Israeli soldiers then admitting they did some not very pretty things. So no we’re not perfect, but as a religion, as a people it is pretty much unimaginable for us to be accused of committing terrible deeds in the name of Moses. That’s not how we roll, that’s not who we are. Amazing enough, considering all Christianity and Islam are guilty of doing, but even more amazing because we sure have good reason to take our anger out on others, to do unto others some of what has been done to us, to seek vengeance for our suffering. Almost everywhere in world we have lived, we have been persecuted, gone after just because of who we are. And yet we have never become like our tormentors, have never responded to what has happened to us by acting like those who did it to us. We have never used our religion as an excuse, a reason, a pretext to commit terrible deeds. Very much to the contrary, we have always picked ourselves up, dusted ourselves off and began building. Raising families, educating our kids and ourselves, supporting institutions, turning to G-d for help and salvation. We don’t use Yiddishkeit as a weapon, but rather as a guiding light. As one watches the behavior of Isis, beheading people, raping women, burning people alive, one sees believers using their religion to justify the most despicable acts. And sees many other adherents of Islam either stay silent or cheer the barbarians on. As one looks back at history, at the Crusades, at the Inquisition, forcing people to convert or be killed, burning at the stake, one sees believers using their religion to justify the most despicable acts. And sees popes and priests and ministers, egg them on, provide them theological justification. One sees no such thing when it comes to the Jews. We have given so much to the world, great doctors and scientists and philosophers and entertainers, but never great evil. We have shown the world that “even if you’re justified, you still act dignified.” We have shown the world that our way is to commit great acts of kindness and sanctity and goodness in the name of Moses, in the name of Hashem. Obama made an important point. It’s easy for Christians today to point fingers at Islam but they are in no position to do so. And while he didn’t explicitly say it, he reminded us that there is only one religion on earth of whom it is inconceivable to say they have committed terrible acts in the name of Moses. Moses taught us many things, things that we have used to heal, to build, to learn, to grow, to create. We have not, do not, will not commit terrible deeds thinking that’s what our religion expects of us. We know that’s not the case. Which is why when a Kahane or Goldstein comes along, we are the first not to cheer him or proclaim him a hero, but to denounce him. For all our faults and flaws, Jews are an amazing people, Judaism an amazing faith. And that prayer breakfast speech that invoked Christian history to put Islamic behavior in perspective, reminds us of who we, as a people, are and how we, as a people, are. It is something we should be very proud of. using your Long Term Care Insurance Benefits We help our clients attain approved for Home Care and maximize the value of their Long Term Care insurance benefits with our FREE support services. Mitch Abrams Managing Director Call us to schedule a free evaluation. (847) 480-5700 ; Care for people of ALL ages www.TheHomeCareSpot.com ; Scheduling available 24/7 ; Around the clock care ; LTC pricing review ; Free claims processing and benefits management The Chicago Jewish News gratefully acknowledges the generous support of RABBI MORRIS AND DELECIA ESFORMES 22 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 By Joseph Aaron In the name of Moses Working Out Keeps You Active and Healthy At Park Plaza, we know that keeping physically active keeps your mind active, too. That’s why we offer 11 exercise classes every week as well as an afternoon walking club. Work out in our Fitness Center or attend lectures on health issues to stay informed. Enhance your well-being and enjoy a healthy lifestyle every day. With a choice of luxury apartment rentals, social events, inspiring classes and cultural outings, our residents thrive in a vibrant, care-free environment. Call to arrange a visit and see how senior living is meant to be! Pri startces in at g $ 1,750 6840 N. Sacramento Avenue, Chicago www.park-plaza.org Y 773.465.6700 (Yehuda) www. chicagojewishnews .com The Jewish News place in cyberspace Either I’m getting older or the world is getting crazier. Fact is, I am, thank G-d, getting older. Got a big milestone birthday this year. More about that some other time, provided, of course, I have the strength. But the fact also is that the world is not getting crazier. Though, I must admit, it sure sometimes feels like it. Take the last few days where we learned that Brian Williams, one of the most trusted men in America, is a big fat liar pants on fire. Learned that Bruce Jenner, once the world’s greatest athlete, will soon become a woman. Learned there are an incredible number of wackos in this world, mostly ironically right-wing gun toting Fox News watching nuts and left-wing granola eating tree hugging nuts, who don’t believe in having their kids vaccinated. Thanks to G-d and a lot of Jewish scientists, diseases once almost eradicated are making a comeback because too many are buying the baloney peddled by that eminent physician, and Playboy bunny, Jenny McCarthy. So, yes it does seem like the world is going nuts, anchors becoming liars, manly men becoming girly women, major politicians like Chris Christie and Rand Paul afraid to say yes of course you should have your kids vaccinated, for fear of offending the hicks who vote in the Iowa Caucus. But the truth is the world is saner and safer than ever before in human history. And yes, I’ve heard of Isis or Isil or Is or whatever you want to call that band of evil butchers, so insane that they were negotiating for the release of a prisoner they had burned alive a month before. But if you look back at history, and certainly at Jewish history, you will see that the world was a much harsher, scarier place then than now. The difference is that we know a lot more now, know everything that happens everywhere and know it immediately. Here’s an interesting little nugget for you. There are more facts in one day’s Chicago Tribune than the average person in the 14th century would learn during his entire life. The point is that things do seem nuttier, even though they aren’t, because there is this never ending bombardment of news coming at us, on our smartphones, computers, via twitter and Facebook. You know, when I was a kid, if you left your house, no one could reach you by phone. Impossible. In that wired world, you were completely untethered. And if someone called you at home and you weren’t at home, you would never know. Now our wireless world has us wrapped around its little fingers. We are reachable all the time at any time at any place. We can hold in our hands a small device that immediately alerts us to any news story, happening anywhere, as it’s happening. We are constantly dealing with texts and emails and voicemails and on and on. It’s enough to drive you nuts. Which it does, which is why we think everything is nuts, the world is out of control. It isn’t, but it sure feels like it. Which is why some historical perspective is needed and so valuable. Yes, there are dangers and conflicts, but no major war anywhere. There is but one superpower, us, and we’re good guys not trying to grab the land of others or rule over others. Thanks to modern medicine, we live longer, better, healthier lives. Almost everyone has a refrigerator to keep their food fresh and safe, something not to be taken for granted. Which is why I was so pleased by recent speeches made by National Security Advisor Susan Rice and by President Obama. In presenting the administration’s 2015 National Security Strategy, Rice noted that “Yes, there’s a lot going on. Still, while the dangers we face may be more numerous and varied, they are not of the existential nature we confronted during World War II or the Cold War. We can’t afford to be buffeted by alarmism and an instantaneous news cycle.” Bingo. And did you hear the part about today’s threats not being “existential.” Ah, existential threats. Why can’t Bibi Netanyahu be more like Susan Rice? Bibi loves to throw around the term “existential threat.” Iran is an existential threat to Israel, he says over and over. He never stops talking about it, mostly because he so wants to please his now dead father. His father, you see, was an historian whose research led him to the conclusion that the world has always hated Jews, will always hate Jews, that no one has ever helped the Jews and no one will ever help the Jews. His father’s focus was the Spanish Inquisition and so Bibi has decided today’s Inquisition is Iran. But enough about Bibi. What struck me as containing some very important truths Jews should take notice of was the speech SEE BY JOSEPH AARON ON PAG E 2 1 23 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 ADVERTISEMENT in Our Midst A Letter toExtremists the World from Jerusalem Insanity: doing the same think over and over again and expecting different results.—Albert Einstein Since the handshake on the White House lawn on September 13, 1993— almost 22 years ago—there persists a willingness on the part of some American Jewish organizations to deny that perhaps our "Palestinian" Arab partners are not as interested in peace as they are in winning – a victory that doesn't include a State of Israel. In candy-filled celebration of dead Jews, the Arabs glory in emulating their Nazi mentors. Amiram Goldblum of Peace Now admitted, "The name 'Peace Now' is... a source of embarrassment for me. I can't even put the movement's sticker on my car. ... I feel people would say, 'What idiot is driving this car?' I listen to people who were talking of peace yesterday. ... These people don't understand anything." Having sold their pliant followers a phony bill of goods, they are too vested in their peace agenda, willfully blinded in their refusal to see reality. J Streeters, Peace Now-niks and Kool-Aid-imbibing "Pinky Rosenthal" (Moe, Curly and Larry, respectively) would like to believe the fault lies with successive Israeli governments including that of dovish Ehud Barak who, after Camp David 2000, embarrassingly came back to reality. In a speech at the World Policy Conference in December 2011, Barak said, "[Ariel] Sharon evacuated the Gaza Strip and took out every last soldier and civilian, gave instructions to tear down all buildings...so as not to supply any excuse to the Palestinians. And what happened? Hamas fired over 10,000 rockets at Israel." What outcome from the disengagement did Barak expect? Hamas touted the Gaza withdrawal as their great victory. Yet, as if Barak wasn't pathetic enough, after Sharon's stroke in 2006, Ehud "peace-at-any-cost" Olmert was designated Acting Prime Minister. In New York at an Israel Policy Forum event, Olmert infamously whined, "We are tired of fighting, we are tired of being courageous, we are tired of winning, we are tired of defeating our enemies." Rousing words of encouragement to homicidal Arab murderers? At another leftist love-fest, Olmert predicted that the pullout from Gaza "will bring more security, greater safety, much more prosperity, and a lot more joy for all the people of the Middle East. [How did that work out?] We want them to be our friends, our partners, our good neighbors [kumbaya]. Friendship is within reach if we will be smart [?], if we will be prepared to take risks [i.e., more dead Jews] ... and if we will spare no effort to convince them, not by fighting with them but by sitting with them and talking with them [insert laugh track here] ... so the Middle East will indeed become...a paradise for all the world!" [Hamas' "blessed shahid" hopefuls lined up for their one-way trip to Virgin Paradise, merrily building their tunnels of death, to the tune of "I Love Paris in the (Arab) Spring Time."] If history foretells the future, pro-Palestinian uber-leftist Ha'aretz columnist Gideon Levi once noted that "everything the Arabs have gained has come about through force... after intense terrorist violence. ...The shortsighted Jewish [peace movements] are playing into the hands of Israel's foes and are in large part responsible for the continuation and extension of the terror." (Chicago Jewish Star, 12/26/02) It was Cicero who wrote in 42 B.C.E: A nation can survive its fools and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from [enemies] within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and he carries his banners openly. But the traitor... infects the body politic. ... A murderer is less to be feared. Yet today there are still a few loony leftists in our community who are tied for their very lifeblood to the two-state solution fraud, demanding Israel withdraw to indefensible borders which an eloquent dove, former UN Ambassador Abba Eban z"l, dubbed "Auschwitz borders." But no worries for Kool-Aid-guzzling Jeremy Ben-Ami, cheerleader for the J Street Obamacrats, who writes,"Israelis will have the opportunity... to tackle the issues of regional peace." Israel will solve the conflicts of Syria, ISIS, Yemen, etc. Really? He asks, "Will [Israel] take steps to safeguard its Jewish character while remaining a democracy, or will it slide in the direction of deeper isolation, occupation, intolerance and xenophobia? ... As they face these questions, they need to hear from the pro-Israel, pro-peace community here in America. Here at J Street we refuse to let the extremists win." After 22 years of broken promises of peace, over 2000 dead Israelis, and Mahmoud "Mr. Moderate" Abbas inciting his Palestinians and blessing terrorists as holy martyrs, Who are the real extremists? Abbas' election as president was rigged. When Hamas was finally allowed to participate in the election, Abbas and his band of terrorist hustlers not only lost, but were unceremoniously thrown out of Gaza, while this U.S. administration continued to support Abbas even after including Hamas – a registered terrorist organization – in a unity government. And then there is "Jiminy" Klutznick, real estate mogul and Peace Now-nik since 1981, the current chair of Americans for Peace Now. You'd think he'd be worn out after 34 years of being wrong so often; but obviously at this point he has too much vested in his Peace Now-ing. APN "fights for democracy and tolerance in the face of extreme right-wing hate violence." Do his lofty platitudes apply to his Palestinian bastions of democracy and tolerance? The latest poll in Israel (12/9/14) by Khalil Shikaki of the Palestine Center for Policy and Survey Research "shows strong Palestinian support for violence and for a new uprising against Israel. ...The Hamas militant group would win presidential elections if they were held today." Democratic? Tolerant? "Jiminy" insists "there is a Palestinian partner who is willing to negotiate," it's just that no one can seem to find him! Not to leave his Pal pals hanging, "We now need an Israeli government with the political will to reach an agreement with a Palestinian leadership that can deliver." Which Palestinian leadership is that? Fatah? Hamas? I guess the Let's Make a Deal twins, Barak and Olmert, weren't giving away enough. In 1993, Arafat's first promise was to amend the Palestinian Covenant. Didn't happen. In fact, ten agreements later, it still hasn't happened. "Jiminy" is in real estate; he should know something about signed agreements—except when it comes to his Pal pals. But perhaps Mr. Peace Now is at his most devious when he heroically boasts, "It was Peace Now that tipped off the world to what others were ignoring: ... a plan for construction of a new settlement in East Jerusalem – Givat HaMatos. That move came on the heels of the takeover of seven properties by settlers in Silwan, an ancient Arab neighborhood in East Jerusalem." Mr. Peace Now is not stupid—just deceitful. It is not in East Jerusalem—a purposely inflammatory phrase—and it never was ancient Arab land. Working to block construction of low-cost homes for poor, Jewish Ethiopian and Russian immigrants, the ignoble Mr. Peace Now must take great pride in his discrimination against fellow Jews. But even more deceitful is his reference to the "takeover of seven properties in Silwan." I guess it was a real estate conundrum for "Jiminy" the real estate mogul. He knows Jews purchased the properties legally, yet he deliberately terms it a "takeover," intentionally misleading his supporters while asking for their money. Playing on the ignorance of his Peace Now supporters, honesty doesn't seem to be in his playbook of cheerleading for his Pal pals. And then there is "Pinky" the Opinionator –"Mr. Pollyanna," who doesn't like Bibi. "If only Bibi would stop being so difficult ..." and according to his foggy crystal ball, "We all know what the 'final solution' will be." Really? But what upsets "Pinky" is that Israel's good friends, the "surrender monkeys" of Vichy France, voted yes to a virtual Palestinian state. Mon Dieu! Perhaps he's overlooking that France is currently scared out of its multicultural wits! But"Pinky" is certain—just as he was about Oslo and Arafat—that "all Israel has to do is recognize reality, ... make reasonable compromises [like Gaza], understand that a Palestinian state is not only inevitable but in Israel's best interest [Come again?], get on the right side of history [Is that Muslim/Arab history for non-believers?] ... recognizing that Jerusalem should be Palestine's capital too." It sorta takes your breath away when an Orthodox Jew, not affiliated with Neturei Karta, advocates dividing Jerusalem to "share" it with a bunch of depraved terrorists. For "Pinky," Arafat was never the obstructionist; and Abbas looks so darn credible in his impeccably tailored Armani, as he denies the historic Jewish connection to the Land. After so many years and so many columns devoted to his illusory peace, is the reality that difficult to comprehend, or is the fraud too difficult to accept? Ever faithful to the demography-fabricators of the Left, "Pinky" clings to the canard of the "demographic time bomb" conclusively debunked by American demographic researchers. "Pinky" puts more stock in the lies of our enemies than in the rigorous analysis by American and Israeli demographers confirming today a 68 percent Jewish majority from the river to the sea, excluding the cesspool of Gaza. "Pinky," the weekly preacher of good news for the Jews, grudgingly dismisses the good news about the 450,000 Jews in Judea/Samaria growing lots of Jewish families and having lots of Jewish babies. Yet, if Jeremy, "Jiminy" and "Pinky" are so enamored of a two-state solution transferring Jews out of Judea/Samaria, are they equally willing to transfer to that virtual Palestinian state all the Arabs currently residing within the green line? Surprisingly, there came a clarion call from a former leftist-turned-realist. His profundity makes me smile. Rabbi Danny Gordis writes: ... One can already hear the lip smacking, the self-congratulatory satisfaction of those who believe that in helping to force Israel's hand, they're doing Israel a favor. ...A North American Jewish woman said to me, "I'm working to make Israel better." Really? The hubris of the certainty was astounding. Are you sure that Israel is "better" when it has both less land and 170,000 rockets pointing at it? Are we sure that Israel is "better" when settlers, some of whom represent the most vibrant, selfless form of Zionism, will be told that their project is to be abandoned? ... Are we sure that a move to the never-recognized pre-1967 lines will not then lead to a push to the once-recognized 1947 lines? One day, we are likely to have only choices even worse than the ones we have today. ... ("A Dose of Nuance: A tale of Too Many Certainties" – 2/6/14) I am kvelling! Menachem Begin would have been proud. "Auschwitz borders," incitement of terrorists, dead Jews ... These things don't seem to bother Moe, Curly and Larry (Jeremy, "Jiminy" and "Pinky"). Putting Jewish lives in the crosshairs is no big deal. Yet, in the words of a U.S. War College General who analyzed Israel's minimal security needs, "Any American Jew who talks about giving up the West Bank is no friend of Israel. And any Israeli who talks about giving up the West Bank is suicidal." Your call: U.S. War College analysis versus the vacuous, peace-mongering quisling triplets: Who are the real extremists? Is reality really that tough to grasp? Shabbat Shalom, 02/13/15 Jack "Yehoshua" Berger 24 Chicago Jewish News - Feb. 13-19, 2015 Culture Experiencing the arts, music and literature. 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