For those of us of the jewish faith,we have much to be thankful for as Americans.Certainly not in modern times have we enjoyed the rights as equal citizens to practice our religion,and attain economic heights without fear ,as we enjoy today..
Yes there is still seen anti-semitism (as in OWS) ,however these are rare events, even in an economic downturn.
If there is any complaint,it is that the "golden" opportunities,have fostered a lost generation of Jews.I see it in Florida,and in our hi-rise in N.J.
Senior citzens either totally ignorant of their traditions (and that of their grandparents) or so weddded to golf,card plying,trying out the new restaurant and so on,that even Yom Kippur has little meaning or attraction for them.In essence it is a spiritual holocaust.For not only have we lost them, but their children and so on.
Thank G-d ,the yeshiva movement has grown exponentially.Outreach programs like NCSY and Chabad are reaching more young people on the college campus(and high school).NCSY in one program alone has 40,000 young people.
The demographic truth is that were it not for the Orthodox and Charedi poulations, there would not be an authentic Jewish tradition in America in 50-100 years.The Conservative movement is shrinking,the Reform 50% intermarried,the secular couldn't care less.
As we prepare to go to Boynton Beach for the season,yesterday I completed my portion of the Good Samaritan Hospital Talmud shiur.I believe we are going on to our 24th year.This to me is a very exciting class, that illustrates that educating adults,not for the purpose of making them Orthodox,but to inculcate our traditions and our Judaic philosophy does work.It is up to each individual to decide what to do with the knowledge they accrue.
In truth both I and the members of the shiur have all become more attuned to Jewish needs and the central role of Israel in our lives.Our shiur has visited Israel 5 times,and among other contributions were a Sefer Torah to the Navy at Ashdod,and an x-ray machine to Shaare Zedek Hospial in Jerusalem.
During the months that I am away,Dr. Michael Muschel a cardiologist and torah scholar teaches the class.Today he sits shiva for his mother Sara of blessed memory.May he be comforted among the mourners of Zion and Jerusalem.
HAPPY THANKSGIVING TO ALL