Not in my name
The Union for Reform Judaism is the central body for reform Judaism in North America. According to its website, the URJ's
primary mission is to create and sustain vibrant Jewish congregations wherever Reform Jews live.The URJ recently held its biennial conference, and perhaps in an effort to create and sustain vibrant congragations, the organization passed its usual littany of resolutions supporting liberal political views. From one resolution opposing confirmation of Judge Alito to another opposing right-to-work laws, the resolutions could have been taken from the Democratic National Committee's position papers. (Generally, right-to-work laws state that "the right of persons to work shall not be denied or abridged on account of membership or nonmembership in any labor union or labor organization," as stated in this Virgina law.)
But to my sensibility, the most offensive resolution of all was the one calling for a "clear exit strategy" from Iraq. No mention of a victory strategy, just an exit strategy. Here is a statement by the URJ's president in the press release accompanying the resolution:
"The sentiment was clear and overwhelming,” said Rabbi Eric H. Yoffie, President of the Union. "American Jews, and all Americans, are profoundly critical of this war and they want this Administration to tell us how and when it will bring our troops home."All Americans? Please. Not this American. Not this reform Jew. Not in my name, Rabbi Yoffie.
I agree wholeheartedly with the sentiments of this campaign, soon to be launched by the Republican Jewish Coalition:
THE UNION FOR REFORM JUDAISM DOES NOT SPEAK FOR US.
The recent statement by the Union for Reform Judaism saying American Jews oppose the President on Iraq is misleading and wrong. We support the President and the War on Terrorism. We stand behind our troops and their mission of creating a safe, democratic Iraq. This mission is vital not only for the continuing fight against terrorism and the stability of the Middle East, but also for making the world a safer place for our children.
Update: More on the topic from Richard Baehr in a piece entitled "Megalomania in the Liberal Jewish Establishment":
[I]t is time for leaders of major Jewish organizations on the political left to demonstrate their ignorance and arrogance, and proclaim their special hold on the truth and justice.And from Betsy Newmark:
Reading the list of resolutions passed at [the URJ's] last convention reads a lot like the list of resolutions that the NEA regularly passes at its conventions.