Judaism

Equal Stature for Religious Holidays in the Schools

December 5, 2002

Source: St. Petersburg Times

On December 5, 2002 the St. Petersburg Times reported that "Hillsborough school [FL] officials have decided they no longer will penalize high school students who take time off to observe a religious holiday. As always, students who miss class for a religious observance will receive an excused absence. But that absence will no longer cost them the exemption from semester exams awarded students who maintain perfect attendance. Such exemptions are a coveted privilege in many high schools. The new policy comes nearly two years...

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St. Cloud State University Settles Discrimination Suit

December 4, 2002

Source: Star Tribune

On December 4, 2002 Star Tribune reported that "St. Cloud State University will create a Jewish Studies and Resource Center and require anti-Semitism training for faculty members under a $1.1 million lawsuit settlement announced Tuesday. Settlement of the federal discrimination suit also requires the university to implement several higher-level, more visible procedures in addressing discrimination complaints and disputes about hiring, retention and promotion... The agreement ends a three-year legal battle that drew international...

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U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Renews Anti-Discrimination Message

December 4, 2002

Source: The Washington Post

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A5995-2002Dec3.html

On December 4, 2002 The Washington Post reported that "amid heightened tensions between the United States and Iraq and continued concerns about terrorism, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has renewed its message to employers that it is illegal to discriminate against foreign-born workers. The agency issued updated anti-bias guidelines yesterday...

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Religious Groups Speak Out Against War with Iraq: Dec. 2002

December 4, 2002

Source: Connecticut Post

http://www.connpost.com/Stories/0,1413,96%257E3750%257E1029127,00.html

On December 4, 2002 the Connecticut Post reported that "with the prospect of war with Iraq increasing, prayers for peace were offered by clergy of many faiths during a midday service Tuesday at Housatonic Community College. Despite bitter cold, about three dozen leaders of churches, mosques and synagogues gathered under a sunny sky in the college courtyard...

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The Lighting of the National Menorah

December 2, 2002

Source: The Washington Post

On December 2, 2002 The Washington Post reported that "the... lighting of the National Menorah... ceremony marked the 24th annual lighting of the National Menorah, which each year has been organized by Lubavitch, a Jewish outreach group that sponsors thousands of other public menorah lightings around the globe. The menorah is a symbol of events that happened more than 2,000 years ago after the Jewish Maccabean army defeated Syrian enemies for the right to practice their religion. According to Jewish tradition, when the Jews...

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December: Celebrations and Dilemmas, 2002

December 2, 2002

Source: religionwriters.com

http://www.religionwriters.com/public/tips/120202/120202a.html

On December 2, 2002 religionwriters.com reported that "the first week in December includes the celebration of Advent, Hanukkah, and Eid al-Fitr, and Christmas and Kwanzaa aren't far behind. After a year of constitutional controversies regarding religion, the winter holidays are yet another venue for debating the meaning of religious symbols in the public square....

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Survey on Religious Diversity in Marin County, California

December 2, 2002

Source: The San Francisco Chronicle

On December 2, 2002 The San Francisco Chronicle reported that "a recently released survey by San Francisco's Institute of Jewish and Community Research shows that a far higher percentage of people in Marin County [CA] than in the rest of the country embrace alternative religions or no religion at all. The findings, gathered from random telephone interviews of 604 people in April and May of 2000, do not mean the famously wealthy and liberal suburban county is full of barefoot pagans wearing robes and worshiping in the...

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Hispanic Jews in the United States

November 30, 2002

Source: The Times-Picayune

On November 30, 2002 The Times-Picayune reported that "combining... two cultures makes an integrated holiday celebration, but it  can be a challenge for Hispanic Jews in the United States. The Michans of Fort Worth are among the mere handful of Hispanic Jews in the  area. About 100,000 Hispanic Jews are thought to live in the United States,  although no formal survey has been done, said Dina Siegel Vann, United Nations  and Latin American affairs director for B'nai B'rith, the Washington, D.C.-based  organization that works on...

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Hanukkah in America, 2002

November 30, 2002

Source: The Boston Globe

http://www.globe.com/dailyglobe2/334/metro/Some_Jews_objecting_to_menorah_ceremony+.shtml

On November 30, 2002 The Boston Globe reported that "when a 6-foot electric menorah is lit on Westford Common tomorrow afternoon, it will be with the blessing of the town's Board of Selectmen and the community's Christian clergy. It's some of the town's Jewish residents and at least one area rabbi who would like to see...

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Update: Menorah in Cincinnati's Downtown Plaza

November 29, 2002

Source: The Associated Press

http://www.austin360.com/aas/news/ap/ap_story.html/Washington/AP.V0092.AP-Scotus-Display.html

On November 29, 2002 The Associated Press reported that "the Supreme Court late Friday upheld a federal judge's ruling that the city of Cincinnati cannot bar a Jewish organization from displaying a menorah on a downtown plaza during the holidays. The court lifted a stay by the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of...

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Hanukkah in America, 2002

November 29, 2002

Source: The Chicago Tribune

On November 29, 2002 The Chicago Tribune reported that "some rabbis downplay the importance of Hanukkah, calling it a minor Jewish holiday that has gained stature mainly because of its nearness to Christmas. But for many American Jews--religious or not--Hanukkah is the time they assert their identity in a land overrun with tinsel and holly. In a more public arena, the Lubavitch Chassidim have fought court cases to win the right to put up giant menorahs to assert the importance of Judaism during the holiday season. 'Part of the...

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Interfaith Thanksgiving 2002

November 29, 2002

Source: Rocky Mountain News

On November 29, 2002 Rocky Mountain News reported that "held in a different worship center every year, Denver's oldest Thanksgiving interfaith service was begun in the 1880s by two churches and a synagogue. The event has expanded to include three more Christian and Jewish groups and the Buddhist Temple, which has participated for almost 30 years. The one-hour service was capped by a bread-sharing ritual and closed with America the Beautiful. The service will be held next year at Central Christian Church in Denver."

Interfaith Thanksgiving 2002

November 28, 2002

Source: Austin American Statesman

On November 28, 2002 Austin American Statesman reported that "at Barsana Dham [in Texas], a Hindu temple, there were gathered a Roman Catholic bishop, an Episcopalian priest, Protestant ministers of various stripes (Presbyterian, Methodist, Lutheran, Unitarian and Baptist), a Jewish rabbi, Buddhist monks, a Muslim imam -- and more. That's not all. There were about 1,000 black people, brown people, yellow people and white people, men, women and children, and everybody took off their shoes in respect for Hindu ways."

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