Here is a part of a message that was sent out by the National Jewish Democratic Council:
One of America's top Jewish leaders recently noted that the far-right is trying to "'Christianize' all aspects of American life."Mazel Tov to St. Louis Cardinals 1B Albert Pujols on winning his first of what should be many MVP awards.
How did one of these ultra-conservative leaders respond? By threatening to withdraw support for Israel.
The current issue of the Forward reports that ADL National Director Abraham Foxman recently "blasted several conservative organizations, including Focus on the Family, The American Family Association and the Family Research Council" -- all key pillars of the far-right.
Speaking to ADL leaders in New York, Foxman noted these groups "had built infrastructures throughout the country... intend[ing] to 'Christianize' all aspects of American life...Today we face a better financed, more sophisticated, coordinated, unified, energized and organized coalition of groups in opposition to our policy positions on church-state separation than ever before...Their goal is to implement their Christian worldview. To Christianize America. To save us!"
In an interview with the New York Jewish Week, Foxman added, "What we're seeing is a pervasive, intensive assault on the traditional balance between religion and state in this country...They're not just talking just about God and religious values but about Jesus and about Christian values."
Tom Minnery, one of the top leaders of Focus on the Family, responded with a not-too-veiled threat to pull support for Israel. The Forward reports, "Noting that the evangelical groups Foxman cited are staunch supporters of Israel, Minnery told the Forward, 'If you keep bullying your friends, pretty soon you won't have any.'"
Pujols received 18 of the 32 first-place votes and 14 second-place votes for 378 points. Atlanta's Andruw Jones picked up 13 first-place votes, 17 seconds and two thirds for 351 points, while Derrek Lee finished third with one first-place vote, one second and 30 thirds for 263 points.The Forward has named their 50 influential Jewish Americans and I am curious as to how Ken Mehlman made that list.
The top three were the only players to be named on every ballot. The 27-point margin between first and second was the closest NL MVP vote since 1991, when Terry Pendleton edged Bonds by 15 points.
Two senators and two House members landed on this year’s edition of the Forward 50 list of the most influential Jewish Americans.Maybe, just maybe, this blogger will get on that list next year...or sometime in the future but I realize there are others more influential than me.
Selected by the editors of The Forward newspaper, the "rappers, Republicans, relief org. heads and rabbis" on the list were chosen "because they are doing and saying things that are making a difference in the way American Jews, for better or worse, view the world and themselves."
Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) made this year’s top five for being "America’s most influential Jewish lawmaker."
Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) gets the nod because "his voice is the loudest in the Democrats’ fight to block conservative Supreme Court and other federal judicial picks."
Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va.) was chosen because he’s the House’s only Jewish Republican and the third-ranking member of his party.
And "articulate, with a trademark halo of curly blond locks," Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fla.) made the list for bursting onto the national scene during the Terri Schiavo controversy.
Other notables on the list include Republican National Committee Chairman Ken Mehlman, Daily Show anchor Jon Stewart, Anti-Defamation League director Abraham Foxman and bloggers Jessica Coen and Jesse Oxenfeld of Gawker.
Specter and Cantor remain from last year’s list; Wasserman Schultz and Schumer replace Reps. Nita Lowey (D-N.Y.) and Robert Wexler (D-Fla.). Also dropping off this year’s list: Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and World Bank head Paul Wolfowitz.
But what about the Senate’s nine other Jewish members, including Joe Lieberman (D-Conn.), Russ Feingold (D-Wis.) and Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.)?
J.J. Goldberg, The Forward’s editor in chief, said that if you ask the 80 percent of Jews who vote Democratic who speaks for them, Lieberman probably wouldn’t be on top. But the "average Jewish person who opens the newspaper" would say of Schumer, "He’s my guy."