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Usury

by Administrator

  • Posted on February 28, 2010

Prohibitions against usury date back to biblical times. The prophet Ezekiel compares a usurer to someone who is a “thief, a murderer…who oppresses the poor and the needy” (18:10-13). After 1776, all states adopted general usury laws. Most states limited interest rates to under 10%.  However, beginning in the late 1970s and early 1980s, many…



Sexual Orientation Discrimination in the Military

by Administrator

  • Posted on February 28, 2010

The 1993 “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT) policy was proffered as a compromise that held the promise that would allow gays and lesbians to serve in the military if they did not reveal their sexual orientation.  Established under the premise of discretion and privacy, the policy still barred lesbian, gay, and bisexual people from serving…



Haiti

by Administrator

  • Posted on February 28, 2010

In January, portions of the island nation of Haiti, already the poorest nation in the Western Hemisphere, were devastated by a massive earthquake, resulting in the loss as many as 300,000 lives, and possibly more.   Many nations quickly reacted to provide humanitarian aid to Haiti.   As Americans, we applaud the tremendous efforts commenced by…



Food Sustainability and Local Food Distribution

by Administrator

  • Posted on February 28, 2010

“Food insecurity” is a new term in the American lexicon.  It has replaced the word “hunger” to accurately describe the experience of families who suffer from unreliable access to adequate food from non-emergency sources. One in six families in the United States are currently classified as food insecure–the highest level since the government began collecting…



Falash Mura

by Administrator

  • Posted on February 28, 2010

Israel has always been committed to helping every Jew who wants to make Aliyah, especially those from challenging situations. We recognize that the question of the Jewish status of the Falash Mura is complicated, that Israel has limited resources, and that Israel has the right to determine its own criteria for immigration. In addition, we…



Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) Movement

by Administrator

  • Posted on February 28, 2010

In recent years, the campaign to delegitimize and demonize Israel, which began in earnest at the 2001 UN Conference Against Racism in Durban, has intensified.  This campaign, which is being driven by NGOs in the Middle East and throughout the world, distorts the history and national aspirations of the Jewish people to live in peace…



Civility

by Administrator

  • Posted on February 28, 2010

Robust, vigorous debate about the pressing issues of the day is vital and essential in a pluralistic society, including within our diverse Jewish community.    Deep divisions are to be expected over how to address many issues including but not limited to the domestic economy, the environment, health care, American military involvement abroad, the Arab-Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the existential threats…



Breast cancer

by Administrator

  • Posted on February 28, 2010

Breast Cancer strikes women of all backgrounds, races, ethnicities and ages; however, certain populations are not only more vulnerable to this disease but are also at risk for higher mortality  rates.   Ashkenazi Jewish women and young African-American women have an increased risk of breast cancer. Ashkenazi women are at greater risk for carrying the…



Freedom of Expression/Defamation of Religion

by Administrator

  • Posted on February 28, 2009

  There is an international movement to restrict, and in some cases criminalize, speech that is deemed critical or “defamatory” of religions.  The Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) has been advancing this initiative in successive resolutions of the UN Human Rights Council and the Third Committee of the GA, and it has emerged as…



Federal Poverty Measure

by Administrator

  • Posted on February 28, 2009

  Driven by our mandate from Deuteronomy 15:4, “There Shall Be No Needy Among You,” the Jewish Council for Public Affairs has mobilized dozens of communities nationwide to build the political will to reduce poverty in America.   To that end, the JCPA strongly supports reform of the way poverty is measured in the United…