Now What?

Published: February-22-2015       Author: Arieh Levi

 So, we’ve managed to get rid of Einstein, and with it two-thirds of our debt. Of an estimated $150M annual deficit, we’re now down to $50M – Einstein supposedly accounted for $100M. Which begs the question: how do we fill a $50M hole? More specifically, how do we fill it with sustainable and increasing cash flows? As always, it comes back to increasing revenues and decreasing costs. Let’s start with the former. In my conversations with President Joel, the president... Read more

The Einstein Equation

Published: February-09-2015       Author: Arieh Levi

By: Arieh Levi There’s a fine line between pessimism and realism. Where a pessimist sees a half-empty glass – careful to emphasize ‘empty’ in describing the glass – a realist sees a single cup holding water. No superlatives or adjectives are necessary to describe the realist’s world; data is simply collected, questioned, and forged into reasoned analyses. It is a mechanical and computational process, most effective when performed divorced from emotion. Our data-driven society straddles this human divide between pessimism... Read more

A Responsibility to Include

Published: December-17-2014       Author: 

Oftentimes, our community struggles with balancing the desire for inclusion with the established norms of Jewish law. I feel that it is necessary for us to always promote a path of greater inclusion within traditional bounds. Exclusion is sometimes necessary, but should never be our guiding policy. Inclusion and exclusion are more than values, they are ethics. They shape how we view all other values, determining which values and laws we emphasize or downplay. The Jewish experience has taught us... Read more

Turn Out for What? Apathy on Campus

Published: December-14-2014       Author: 

With the results of the November 2014 midterm elections announced, Republicans celebrated their wins, taking control of the Senate and increasing their majority in the House of Representatives, while Washington acknowledged the likelihood of another two years of legislative inaction. However, beyond the results, another set of statistics revealed an even bleaker story. According to the United States Election Project, the turnout rate for the voting-eligible population was 36.4%, the lowest rate since the elections of 1942; that year, of... Read more

Gender Inequality at YU: Men, It’s Our Problem Too

Published: October-01-2014       Author: 

Earlier this month, in a speech delivered at the United Nations Headquarters, actor and UN Women Goodwill Ambassador Emma Watson launched the HeForShe campaign, a “solidarity movement for gender equality” that serves as a “formal invitation” for men to join in the efforts to end gender-based discrimination. In her speech, Watson argued that feminism—“the theory of the political, economic, and social equality of the sexes”—is not just a movement for women, but one for men too. According to the campaign’s... Read more

Reflections

Published: September-10-2014       Author: 

In 1934, my grandfather, Opa Benno, immigrated to Detroit from Alsfeld, Germany, a town once known for its striking synagogue and now known for its restored medieval fortress. Friends tried to persuade Hermann, Benno’s father, to wait. After all – they insisted – Hitler would be gone in six months. Hermann’s prescient reply, as relayed by my grandfather, remained steadfast: “When he’s gone, the children will come back speaking English and with broadened horizons.” Today, no Jews live in Alsfeld.... Read more

There is Honor in the Margins: A Reflection

Published: May-14-2014       Author: 

The writing on my Yeshiva University I.D. has faded. The back is scratched, the edges smooth with wear. A lot has happened to this card. Many caf store meals bought, many library fines charged. A “Spring 2014” sticker from the registrar sits high above others: one for each semester, plus the summer, plus the library’s validation card. I have reserved a seat on many downtown shuttles—for literary events, obviously—using the number on the back and the picture on the front.... Read more

A Messenger and a Mirror

Published: April-07-2014       Author: 

“Our job in this age, as I see it, is not to serve as cheerleaders for our side,” wrote James Reston, the New York Times journalist and author of The Artillery of the Press, “but to help the largest possible number of people to see the realities.” Reston was circling around a metaphor commonly used in the industry and first articulated by Joseph Pulitzer, that journalism holds a mirror up to society. Journalism, at least the way journalists see its... Read more

Letters to the Editor

Published: April-07-2014       Author: 

Coach Halpert’s Firing: A Shame and Raises Questions about YU Decision–Making Process I am proud to say that I am a good friend of Coach Halpert and his family. I am also very proud to be a YU graduate (Class of 1969), as well as probably the staunchest present long term fan of the YU Basketball team. I have attended at least 15-20 games (both home and away) or more per season for the last 30 years or so. YU... Read more

What are We Going to Lose?

Published: February-13-2014       Author: 

I was up for the night shift at a small homeless shelter housed in a synagogue and staffed by community members and outside volunteers. The men at the shelter fell far below the poverty line, most temporarily, others for ten or fifteen years: in and out of shelters, on and off welfare. These men were wearing coats once worn by YU students that were distributed on “midnight run,” the annual charity event on campus. The men who slept amid the... Read more

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