On Free Speech and Silencing It

free speech

I don’t like censorship. In writing, I tend to err on the side of incaution. After all, that is precisely the point of a free press. It is not to stifle voices, but to allow them to speak up, whether or not we agree with all those sharing. I’ve been thinking about free speech and […]

The OU Statement on Women: A Stern Student’s Perspective

Mindy Schwartz

About a year ago the Orthodox Union (OU) commissioned a rabbinic panel of seven prominent Orthodox rabbis to address the topic of female clergy in Orthodox synagogues. After meeting among themselves and with many other community leaders and laypeople over the course of several months, the panel issued their final ruling: women cannot serve as […]

A Great Teacher Inspires


I stared at my computer screen completely shaken, my jaw hanging open, shuddering, my eyes reddening with tears that were too raw to fall. When Elizabeth Warren was silenced during the Senate vote concerning Jeff Sessions candidacy for Attorney General, I was sickened. I felt a devastating loss of hope. It reminded me how I […]

Gun Control: Reasonable or Restrictive?


Republicans: Gun Control is Not Crime Control There has been no shortage of gun-related crimes in the past few months, let alone in the last decade. Just like Democrats, Republicans recognize this fact. What distinguishes the views of the two parties on this controversial topic is the reason behind the crime. While Democrats view crimes […]

When Common Decency Isn’t So Common


Recently, I had a dinner date with a friend of mine at Eden Wok. This friend is one of the kindest people I know, and he is also one of the most intelligent. He’s a person who would take a bullet for a stranger without a second thought, and I would trust him with my […]

Sexism, YU and the Student Newspapers

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People like to talk about how we live in a data driven society, but I don’t think we really do. After all, every day, I see people ignore overwhelming data in favor of their own biases and misconceptions. Take the view of women at this university, for instance. We are hardworking, passionate, and ambitious. However, […]

When Words Become Alive

Miriam Pearl

The first time I thought seriously and deeply about the black experience in the Unites States was Saturday night. This is an embarrassing admission. After all, I received a classic US History education. I learned about the legality of African and African American slaves in preschool and about the ratification of the thirteenth amendment in […]

The Border Wall: Isolationism or Safety?


These articles are the first in a new series, in which YU Republicans and Democrats will deconstruct and explain a new policy position every month. In this edition, they tackle the proposed border wall.  Democrats: Build Bridges, Not Walls President Donald J. Trump is a man of many promises. Throughout his unprecedented campaign and shocking […]

On Orthodoxy and Feminism: JOFA Conference Reflections


A few years ago, I was discussing my newfound identity as a feminist with a friend of mine. We debated the function of the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance, an organization dedicated to advancing change regarding gender issues in the Orthodox community: my friend contended that the name itself is a paradox in terms. She felt […]

Feeding the Keepers of the Text

Feeding the Keepers-Neta

I attended the JOFA conference, a decision that was met with mixed reactions. When fellow peers began to ask me if I would be attending, I started to question the hesitations I’d had with attending the full day conference. What would be so un-halachic? Why did I hold such a grudge against the organization? Why […]