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In My Own Words: America’s social contract by Rabbi Rachel Esserman

Social contract: “an implicit agreement among the members of a society to cooperate for social benefits, for example by sacrificing some individual freedom for state protection.” – Oxford Languages

The fundamental basis for American democracy is a social contract. That includes accept…

From the Desk of the Federation Executive Director: With gratitude 1/15/21

Editor’s note: This column was written before the January 6 events in Washington, DC. For Jewish Federation of North America’s response to those events, see the Federation Alert on page 1. The Jewish Federation of Greater Binghamton is in agreement with JFNA’s response.

Looking for so…

In My Own Words: A new beginning? by Rabbi Rachel Esserman

Editor’s note: This column was written before the January 6 events in Washington, DC. 

A new beginning? Does anyone really believe that 2021 and a new presidency really means a new beginning? Americans believe that we can always start anew, leaving the old behind like clothes we discard.…

In My Own Words: Looking back at 2020 by Rabbi Rachel Esserman

When looking back at the first essay I wrote for this column in 2020, I almost laughed. The column wished a happy good-bye to 2019. At that time, I was glad to see the end of 2019 because of family problems, particularly the fact that my mother now lived in a nursing home. Little did I know …

In My Own Words: Slogans and nuance by Rabbi Rachel Esserman

Slogans can be great: a few words or a short phrase can give us the essence of a matter. Sometimes, though, they can be counterproductive, especially if you think about them in any depth. After all, what does “Coke: It’s the real thing” mean? We think we know because the ads featuring …