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Social Policy

Climb Every Mountain

I am starting a new tradition, right here, right now.

Why are there so many prominent Jewish pro-choicers in politics?

Michigan State Representative Lisa Brown has become a new heroine of the pro-choice movement, and she achieved this status both by invoking her Judaism and by using the word “vagina” on the State House Floor, during a heated debate of an omnibus anti-abortion bill.

Jewish women and marijuana: Yay or nay?

If you listen closely, you may hear people wishing one another a "Happy 4/20" today. Why?

Lucy Kramer Cohen, 1907 - 2007

“She never put herself in the limelight to lead and yet she was a leader.” This is how Navajo educational leader Joy Hanley, a longtime colleague and friend, described Lucy Kramer Cohen. During the 1930s Lucy campaigned for the rights of Native Americans; she continued to support American Indian causes for the next 50 years. Although she preferred to work behind the scenes, Lucy was exceptionally warm and outgoing — talking with people wherever she went, making friends, learning about their lives.

Miri Shalem of Beit Shemesh and dance as a tool of social change

Before most of us ever heard of the small town of Beit Shemesh, Miri Shalem the orthodox mother of four children and a long-time resident was directing the town’s JCC.

Will Jan Perry become the first African American Jewish woman mayor of LA?

If Jan Perry has her way, Los Angeles will elect its first female mayor and its first Jewish mayor come 2013 – her. The 56-year-old Perry, who has represented Los Angeles’ 9th District for three terms, is one of four Democratic candidates seeking their party’s nomination in June’s primary. She is not the only Jewish candidate or the only female candidate in the running – but she is the only candidate who is both. She also happens to be African-American.

"Personhood" amendments would write Christian perspectives into law

Tomorrow, Mississippi will vote on Initiative 26 and decide whether to dramatically alter their state constitution with the addition of the words:

The term ‘person’ or ‘persons’ shall include every human being from the moment of fertilization, cloning or the functional equivalent thereof.

Reinventing Rituals: June, a month of Pride and same-sex marriages

June is full of irony: not only is June Pride month, but it is also the unofficial start to wedding season. So many are still fighting for equal marriage. As I write this, lawmakers in Albany are struggling to garner enough votes to make same-sex marriage legal in New York state (see resources to get involved at the end of this post).

Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum stands up for gay marriage in the face of Jewish prejudice

Yesterday a scuffle broke out between a group of Rockland Hassidic men and Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum of Congregation Beit Simchat Torah. The incident occurred during a protest outside the New York state senate where a gay marriage bill is currently under debate.

Arizona's first Jewish Congresswoman with attitude

The lead story in the first edition of the New York Times yesterday began this way: “Unusual is a relative term in American political life, but Representative Gabrielle Giffords fits the bill: avid equestrian and motorcycle enthusiast, repository of arcane health care data, successful Democrat elected three times in a Republican Congressional district, French horn player and wife of an astronaut.” Only near the end of the article did the Times mention another unusual fact about Gabrielle Giffords: that she was the state’s first Jewish congresswoman.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Social Policy." (Viewed on December 12, 2017) <https://jwa.org/topics/social-policy>.

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