Never Forget. Never Again.

May 9, 2010 at 1:11 pm | Posted in Announcements + Events | 1 Comment

Young Democrats of America Jewish Caucus

Less than two weeks ago, Jews around the world sat down with loved ones and celebrated our exodus from slavery in Egypt.  This upcoming Sunday, on Yom Hashoah, we will remember a different kind of liberation.

On Yom Hashoah we recall the atrocities of the Holocaust, one of the darkest times in the history of humanity.  But at the same time, the 27th of Nisan marks on the Hebrew calendar the anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising.  This dichotomy is what Yom Hashoah is about – we take a day to look back and “Never Forget” but we also fight for “Never Again.”

This year marks the 65th Anniversary of the end of the Holocaust.  With the passage of time comes the passing of those who were there, survivor and liberator alike.  We must honor them while they are still with us.  During these Days of Remembrance – our country’s official commemoration of the Holocaust – events will be held locally and nationally to allow all of us to honor our past, present and future.  For local information, please contact your Federation, Jewish Community Center or Synagogue.

The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum organizes the national Day of Remembrance ceremony.  This year’s ceremony will bring together World War II veterans and Holocaust survivors to honor those who brought freedom, aid and comfort through the liberation of Nazi concentration camps.  The ceremony will be held at the National Capitol Rotunda on Thursday, April 15 at 11:30.  More information, including access to a live webcast, is available at the Museum’s website.

As Jews, we know and appreciate that we live in a global community and the struggle of “never again” is not just about guarding against anti-Semitism.  While 6 million Jews lost their lives, 6 million Roma, Catholics, Homosexuals, the Disabled, Political Prisoners and so many others also suffered and lost their lives.  When a Holocaust denier spouts their falsehoods, they dishonor the memory of all 12 million souls who died at the hands of the Nazis, as well as the countless survivors.  When we fight discrimination, stand up to hate and battle against genocide in Darfur and around the world, we honor the memory of those who fought back in Warsaw and other forms of resistence during those dark days.

No matter how you choose to remember, please take a moment to pause and mark this Day of Remembrance.  Never Forget.  Never Again.

Shalom,
the YDAJC Executive Board

Beyond your local ceremonies, we wanted to let you know of a couple national Yom Hashoah remembrances:

PBS will premiere two documentaries this week that honor those who sacrificed to save at least one life; as the Talmud teaches us “To save one life, is to save the world entire.”  Among the Righteous: Lost Stories from Holocaust in Arab Lands is a timely film that recounts one man’s eight-year effort to answer an important question: Did any Arabs save any Jews during the Holocaust.  Then, Blessed is the Match tells the story of Hannah Senesh.  Hannah Senesh parachuted into her native Hungary in order to save Jews about to be deported but was caught by the Nazi’s.  Hannah refused to reveal any details of the mission but spoke volumes through her poetry, which is recited to this day.  (Check your local PBS listings)

On Wednesday, April 14 at 2:00 pm, the House Subcommittee on International Organizations, Human Rights and Oversight of the Committee on Foreign Affairs will hold a hearing titled “Combating Anti-Semitism: Protecting Human Rights.”  More information, and a live webcast of the hearing, is available at the committee’s website.

Yom Hashoah evening, PBS’s Masterpiece Classic will air a re-telling of The Diary of Anne Frank.  Anne’s diary speaks for itself but, perhaps, the thoughts of a fifteen-year old girl can provide us with the message that must be remembered during this time of remembrance:  “I don’t think of all the misery but of the beauty that remains.”  (Check local listings; Additional PBS programming will feature Jewish and Holocaust topics)
Sarah Holstine
Chair, Young Democrats of America Jewish Caucus
Political Director, Young Democrats of America Mid-Atlantic Region
smarksh@yahoo.com
(202) 905-4228

(Cross-posted from: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/YDAJC/message/640)

YDA Jewish Caucus Announcements

May 9, 2010 at 1:06 pm | Posted in Announcements | Leave a comment
Shalom!
Just a reminder, for those interested in applying to be a regional representative for the Jewish Caucus, the deadline for applications is tomorrow, Thursday, January 28.  This is a vital position for the success of the caucus and a great opportunity to get more involved.  Completed applications should be mailed to smarksh@yahoo.com.
Also, a reminder that the caucus is developing a Newsletter.  If you have announcements, news stories, events, job postings, etc, please forward them to smarksh@yahoo.com to be included in the newsletter.
As always, I am available for thoughts, questions, suggestions, etc.
Sarah
P.S. Have you registered for the 2010 YDA Winter Meeting in NOLA yet?  Registration is available at http://tinyurl. com/NOLA2010 — and there is no registration fee if you participate in Thursday’s community service project!  Join the fun in New Orleans, LA February 18 – 21, 2010.
Sarah Holstine
Chair, Young Democrats of America Jewish Caucus
Political Director, Young Democrats of America Mid-Atlantic Region
smarksh@yahoo.com
(202) 905-4228
(Cross-posted from: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/YDAJC/message/635)

YDA Jewish Caucus Announcements

January 10, 2010 at 6:57 pm | Posted in Announcements + Events | Leave a comment

Happy New Year!  I hope that everybody’s year is off to a great start and you are surviving the cold and snow that seems to be hitting everywhere! 

The YDA Jewish Caucus has three quick announcements.

First, the YDAJC is looking to fill some vacant positions in our leadership.  Regional Representatives provide a vital role for the Jewish Caucus as we continue to expand within YDA and the Progressive community.  Primary responsibilities include outreach to states within your region to start or expand state Jewish Caucuses as well as serving as a first point of contact for state leaders.  More details are included on the application (attached).  We are accepting applications for Regional Representatives through Thursday, January 28.  Complete applications should be sent to me at smarksh@yahoo.com

Second, the YDA Winter Meeting will be in New Orleans, Louisiana February 18 – 21, 2010.  In addition to the usual caucus meetings, trainings and committee business, YDA will be doing an all day community service project on Thursday, February 18.  This is our way to give back, a bit of tikun olam, in a city that has given so much.  Details, including room block information and flight discounts, are available on the YDA website (http://tinyurl.com/NOLA2010).  Early bird registration of $45 is available through Friday, January 22, and after that, it increases to $65.  The registration fee is waived for those who participate in the community service project on Thursday.  Register today at http://tinyurl.com/NOLA2010

Finally, the Caucus is developing a more formal communications system, including a regular bi-monthly e-mail.  If you have announcements, jobs, news articles or anything that might be of interest to other caucus members, please forward them to me at smarksh@yahoo.com.  The first “issue” is scheduled to go out Tuesday, February 2, 2010.  (Don’t worry, this e-mail will not spam your inbox; in fact its designed to prevent just that.)

 As always, please let me know if you have questions, thoughts or suggestions about the YDA Jewish Caucus. 

 Thank you and stay warm,

Sarah Holstine
Chair, YDA Jewish Caucus 

(Cross-posted from: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/YDAJC/message/632)

Congratulations to YDAJC member Adam Weiss on new Job

December 30, 2009 at 3:12 pm | Posted in Announcements | Leave a comment

Adam will be joining the U.S. Senate campaign of an Iowa Democrat as the Political Director:

… On January 9th, I am moving to Iowa to serve as Political Director on Roxanne Conlin’s U.S. Senate campaign. My base for this adventure in the “Mid-Best” will be Des Moines.

If you’re looking to help capture a Democratic Senate seat and possibly build some of your own connections in the early Presidential Caucus state of Iowa, there’s now a mensch in Des Moines looking for talented volunteers.

Congratulations Adam!

YDAJC Embracing Social Media

December 26, 2009 at 8:49 pm | Posted in Announcements | Leave a comment
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The Young Democrats of America Jewish Caucus (http://www.JewishCaucus.org) is re-envigorating its online presence.  This includes a new Twitter account, a Facebook group, a YahooGroup email list, and a WordPress blog (RSS).

YDAJC Launches RJCWatch

May 5, 2008 at 12:20 pm | Posted in Announcements + Events | 3 Comments

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 5, 2008
Contact:
Stephanie Hausner, (914)980-1747, secretary@yda.org, Executive Director, YDAJC

YDAJC Launches RJCWatch.org
Blog to Document the Inaccuracies and Hypocrisies of the Republican Jewish Coalition 

New York, NY – Every year, the Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC) shows time and time again that it puts partisan interests above Jewish concerns and that they relentlessly attack anyone with whom they disagree, sometimes using only half-truths and drastically misleading statements. As Jews, we have long since known the dangers of misinformation.
Republican Jewish Coalition Watch will play the critical role of documenting the inaccuracies and hypocrisies of the RJC throughout this election and into the future. For each advertising campaign and email the RJC puts out, we will catalog both accurate statements and misleading remarks. We attempt to document these statements by referring to non-partisan neutral sources.
There is perhaps no better example than the RJC’s often conflicted relationship with Joe Lieberman. When Joe Lieberman was running for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2000, the RJC took out a full-page ad in the New York Times attacking him and attempting to link him to Louis Farrakhan (New York Times. October 5, 2000). Yet when Lieberman was challenged in the Connecticut primary by Ned Lamont in 2006, the RJC quickly used the opportunity to attack the Democratic Party and claim that “America and Israel  worse off” for his loss (http://www.rjchq.org/media/pics/lieberman.ad.jpg).
Republican Jewish Coalition Watch is a project of the Young Democrats of America Jewish Caucus.

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The Young Democrats of American Jewish Caucus is an organization dedicated to building the young Democratic Jewish political community. YDAJC seeks to engage young Democrats in issues of particular Jewish concern and to invigorate young Jews to engage in politics from a progressive Democratic perspective. YDAJC accomplishes this task through a combination of education, awareness, and social interaction as well as political advocacy on issues of Jewish concern. Please visit us athttp://www.jewishcaucus.org.

Young Jewish Democrats Announce the Tom P. Lantos Award

February 19, 2008 at 3:32 pm | Posted in Announcements + Events | Leave a comment
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(YDAJC Press Release)

An award in Memory and Honor of the Late Chairman Lantos

We have lost an incredible advocate and an amazing man and leader for not only the Jewish Community, but for all people.  Chairman Tom Lantos leaves a legacy and commitment of fighting for many important issues that include, human rights, civil rights, ending genocide in Darfur, combating anti-Semitism and Israel’s safety and security.  The news coverage, memorial service, and public statements from the past week only begin to touch upon the great legacy that he has left behind.

The Young Democrats of America Jewish Caucus has instituted the Tom P. Lantos Award to not only honor his memory, but to remind all of us what is possible and what we can do when we have great people like Chairman Lantos who dedicate their life to public service.  

The Tom P. Lantos Award will be given annually to a public figure who exemplifies Chairman Lantos’s dedication to public service and who serves as an advocate for individuals who cannot speak for themselves.

All of our blessings and deepest sympathies go out to his wife Annette, his daughters, and his grandchildren. Chairman Lantos will be dearly missed.

Tom Lantos: A Human Rights Hero Passes

February 17, 2008 at 6:25 pm | Posted in Announcements + Events | 1 Comment

(Washington Post)

ONE OF Tom Lantos’s first initiatives in Congress was to reward human rights work. Back in 1981, the Hungarian-born congressman sponsored a bill to offer honorary citizenship to Raoul Wallenberg, the missing Swedish diplomat who saved more than 100,000 Jews — including Mr. Lantos himself — from Nazi extermination. Mr. Lantos’s intention was to thank and honor a human rights hero; by the time he passed away last Monday at age 80, the California Democrat had become one himself.

As chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and founder of the Congressional Human Rights Caucus, Mr. Lantos worked tirelessly to promote human rights. He turned the world’s attention, and when successful its fury, to travesties across every region of Earth. His efforts to inspire — or, if necessary, shame — individuals, companies and governments into honorable behavior were exhaustive and creative; at the tender age of 78, Mr. Lantos himself was arresting for disorderly conduct and unlawful assembly while protesting the genocide in Darfur outside the Sudanese Embassy.

His genuine concern for human dignity earned the respect and admiration of leaders and human rights advocates around the world. Fellow Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel, pop singer and AIDS activist Bono and U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon were among the luminaries who attended Mr. Lantos’s memorial service on Thursday. Even the North Korean government — a frequent target of Lantos’s criticisms — sent its condolences.

Mr. Lantos pushed the U.S. government, and in particular congressional Democrats, on a path of leadership in human rights issues. We hope that his work will inspire further championship of the world’s downtrodden — just as Mr. Lantos took his cue from Raoul Wallenberg.

Blue and energized

February 13, 2008 at 6:24 pm | Posted in Announcements + Events | 2 Comments

(Washington Jewish Week)

For Joanna Blotner, Tuesday’s Democratic presidential primary was unusual. Instead of voting for the lesser of two evils, she was excited to be choosing between “the better of two greats.”

“They’re both such good candidates, I want to vote for both,” the 22-year-old District resident said on Thursday evening of last week at a happy hour sponsored by the Young Democrats of America Jewish Caucus in the District’s Woodley Park.

Blotner’s inability to choose between Sens. Barack Obama (Ill.) and Hillary Clinton (N.Y.) just five days before the Potomac Primary was shared by a number of her friends and others in the 150 or so person crowd.

Continue Reading Blue and energized…

Jewish Senators Weigh in on Obama

January 22, 2008 at 6:24 pm | Posted in Announcements + Events | Leave a comment

(Forward)

Seven Jewish U.S. senators wrote an open letter to the Jewish community repudiating rumors about Sen. Barack Obama’s religion.

“We find it particularly abhorrent that these attacks are apparently being sent specifically to the Jewish community,” said the letter initiated by Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.) and also signed by Sens. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Ben. Cardin (D-Md.), Russ Feingold (D-Wisc.), Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.). “Jews, who have historically been the target of such attacks, should be the first to reject these tactics.”

The letter, made public over the weekend, echoed another by the leaders of nine Jewish groups last week addressing a spate of e-mails that falsely claim Obama, a leading candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination, is a secret Muslim.

There are 13 Jews in the Senate – 10 Democrats, an Independent and two Republicans. All of the seven signing the letter have yet to endorse a presidential candidate.

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