Best Of The Web
“In her statement, Ruth lists different elements of her commitment: It is geographic (“wherever you go…wherever you lodge…where you die….”), ethnic or national (“your people shall be my people”), and religious (“and your God my God”). There are not separate components, but different expressions of what it meant for Ruth to become Judean.
For Ruth, as for Jews throughout much of history, to be Judean, that is, to be Jewish (to this day, the Hebrew word ‘Yehudi’ expresses both), meant to consider Judea your homeland, to belong to the Jewish people, and to accept the God of Israel. The idea that these aspects could be separated was inconceivable.
This notion of Jewishness was challenged by the new forms of citizenship and statehood that emerged in Western Europe and North America in the late 1700s.
As a separate people living among Europeans whose identity was increasingly national, it was in the Jews interest to define Judaism as a religion so that Jews might not be rejected by the emerging nation-states in which they lived.”
JJ Best Of The Web
"Like many Western analyses of the Middle East, they reduce Iraq’s complex internal conflicts to catchall explainers of ‘sectarianism’ and ‘tribalism’ – presuming that some groups of people are intrinsically primed for antagonism."
" he's a loser in the precise sense that his singular accomplishment in American public life has been to lose a Senate race to the stupendously unpopular Republican Ted Cruz."
"While applauding the social impetus, Israelis are divided in opinions on an American-based initiative and question its grammatical integrity."
A look at the networks that churn out nonstop, formulaic Christmas movies; the actors who star in all of them; and the fans who can't stop watching.
"The Department of Homeland Security wants to use credit scores to determine immigration cases. That sets a dangerous precedent."
"Traffic. Congestion. Pollution. Hours-long commutes. What if you could leave it all behind and trade it in for an environmentally friendly and energy-efficient personal copter—all without a pilot’s license?"
"“But Qutb saw something else. The dancers in front of him were tragic lost souls. They believed they were free, but in reality they were trapped by their own selfish and greedy desires.”"
Cliches can be used as a political tool. "Prefabricated language helps everybody from prime ministers to CEOs disguise what they really want to say."
"Santa is nothing but stress for families who don’t believe in him. Trying to keep other kids from finding out the truth can cause a holiday-season-long headache."
"Umami is hard to describe in words. In the New Yorker, Hannah Goldfield defines it as “that deep, dark, meaty intensity that distinguishes seared beef, soy sauce, ripe tomato, Parmesan cheese, anchovies, and mushrooms..."
"The designer babies have thus been called the “future-we-should-not-want” for each new reproductive technology or intervention. But the babies never came and are nowhere close. I am not surprised."
"Thousands of secular Israelis became newly observant and joined Haredi communities in the 1970s and ’80s. Now, their children and grandchildren are searching for a place of their own."