The Bulletin

1. Not That Kind of Motivational Video

On his first date with his now ex-girlfriend, Connor Betts, the gunman who killed nine people in Dayton, Ohio, showed her a video of the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting. Online forums and resources are without a doubt fueling the hate flames.

"What is 8chan, the site linked to shooters in Christchurch, Poway and El Paso?" This JTA article helps us answer that question. "Unlike other online forums, such as Reddit, 8chan lacks moderation measures meant to curb hateful content. It is rife with racism, misogyny and anti-Semitism posted by users. The site has a ban on illegal content but it is not closely enforced."

In the aftermath of the deadly weekend, NPR offered insights into gun violence and gun laws around the world.

As for my personal opinion, I grew up in a country where almost every adult serves in the military and is therefore trained to use guns. For several years I was required to have one on my person at all times, even to sleep with one on or next to me - not to mention using one in combat. Yet gun ownership for civilians in Israel is very restrictive (even to former officers in the military) and owning more than one hand gun is practically impossible. Other than trying skeet shooting once about 20 years ago (not something I enjoyed really), I have not fired a gun since the early 80s and probably never will.  
The right to bear arms and the Second Amendment are more than 200 years old; hanging gun policy (or any policy) on a 200-year-old reality is frankly idiotic. Of all the partisan conflicts in America today, gun policy is far and away the dumbest. 
2. Stack It Up

In Afula, the capital city of our partnership region in Israel, it was record-setting time this week when the Yamiz restaurant went for the world record pancake tower. In the end a new record of two meters (that's about two pancakes taller than Gronk) was set with pancakes covered in chocolate, syrup and - well - take a look in this Facebook video.

3. J. Lo and A-Rod ♥ Israel

"It's really simple: Tel Aviv and Israel deserve Jennifer Lopez, and Jennifer Lopez deserves Israel," was the quote from Benny Medina, J. LO's manager. A camel ride, The Kotel, Via Dolorosa and even the inevitable "everyone gets lost in the Dizengoff Center mall" happened last week as they traveled with their kids. Jennifer Lopez and Alex Rodriguez had the time of their lives in Israel. And there was of course an intimate concert for 50,000 in the park too.
4. Second Best Is Very Good

Massachusetts is home to the second best hospital in the country according to the latest rankings from U.S. News and World Report (Mayo Clinic was #1, in case you were wondering). 
So should we be surprised that they are leaders in looking at the hospital experience with an innovative view? Not at all. Dr. Suzanne Koven is MGH's inaugural writer-in-residence.

Koven recently spoke to JewishBoston about her new role in the hospital: "The long-running monthly group was initially made up of nurses, administrators, doctors and chaplains. Now that the program has expanded, I've led reading and writing workshops with chaplains, Ph.D. researchers and just about anybody who works in the hospital. My goal is to extend even further and engage interpreters, maintenance staff and cafeteria workers. Working in a hospital exposes you to human vulnerability and drama in a way that other workplaces don't. The MGH cafeteria is not the same as a cafeteria in an office building."

Want to know more about this master of both sides of the brain? Read on at suzannekoven.com.
5. Duets Are Her Thing

Babs made news this week for a duet she did with Ariana Grande. But back in 1978 she asked Mr. Zimmerman to make a record together too at a time when she shared the following hits with Kris Kristofferson, Neil Diamond, Donna Summer and Barry Gibb:
Lost Inside of You
You Don't Bring Me Flowers
No More Tears (Enough Is Enough)
Almost reads like a bad poem.  
Bob was too cool to board that train and for that we can be grateful, leaving both their legacies of equal-but-separate talent intact.
6. Cher Had One

The Nosher brings us the success story of the Bagel Boy, the 20-something hand delivering bagels thorughout New OrleansBrendan Dodd probably isn't Jewish, but spreading the love of bagels gets him the nod. (Fortunately the neon atrocities pictured below are not part of his regular menu.)  

"After graduating from Loyola University in 2016, Dodd, 24, started working at Humble Bagel's uptown location in New Orleans. At the end of the workday, leftover bagels were tossed in the garbage. So, being the mensch that he is, Dodd figured he'd salvage the stale goods and hand them out for free to students at Tulane University." And from that start his business evolved. Be sure to have Bagel Boy NOLA product delivered to your hotel the next time you're in The Big Easy.


Rhode Island International Film Festival
Thursday, August 8, 7:30 PM -- Tevye's Daughters
Sunday, August 11, 12:00 PM -- Dave Grusin: Not Enough Time
Sunday, August 11, 2:30 PM -- Eva
Dwares JCC, 401 Elmgrove Avenue, Providence
Tickets $10.00, available at the door

August 13 - 25
Citizens Bank Opera House, Boston

Shabbat Shalom,


The Bulletin is a weekly email from Amir Cohen, executive director of the Jewish Federation of Greater New Bedford.  I welcome your feedback at amir@jewishnewbedford.org.

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