The Death March of US Jewry is Nearing its End!

Yosef Rabin,

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לבן ריק
צילום: ערוץ 7
Yosef Rabin
Yosef Rabin lives and works in Jerusalem and writes on a wide range of issues affecting Israel and the Jewish world. Yosef can be contacted at
I hope the headline shocked you!

It is well known that American Jewry is disappearing.

Some well-known facts:

25% of US Jews do not believe in God

30% of US Jews no longer attend a Seder

33% have no emotional attachment to Israel

47% of US Jews do not fast on Yom Kippur

50% of US Jews do not know the Hebrew alphabet 

71% of US Jews are married to non-Jews

77% of US Jews do not light Shabbat candles

78% do not keep a Kosher home

I am hoping that the Jewish Federation and other Jewish organizations will get to the root of this problem before US Jewry ceases to exist (outside the Orthodox ghettos of course).

There are two main issues that must be dealt with:

1. Jewish education 

2. Jewish Torah observance

I wonder how many leaders of the Jewish Federation got up this morning and put on Teffillin, I wonder how many keep Shabbat, Kashtur, Taharat HaMishpacha and other central observances of the faith. How can we expect our children to marry Jewish and be an active part of our nation when we give them no foundation or meaning in their Judaism? 

When looking for a spouse we all look for common practices and lifestyles. Even in the Orthodox observing community there are many Halachic standards that cover every area of life. We are looking for a mate that will fit our Torah lifestyle and a non-Jew is not even a question. 

However, if ones has Torah lifestyle, why should he/she marry a Jew?

- A Jew who eats non-Kosher - so does the non-Jew

- A Jew who does melacha on Shabbat - so does the non-Jew

- A Jew who eats chametz on pesach - so does the non-Jew

- A Jew who eats and drinks on Yom Kippur - so does the non-Jew

- A Jew who does not know about Taharat Hamishpacha - neither does the non-Jew, (unless they watched the Opera Show about Chassidim in NY)

- A Jew who does not pray 3 times a day - neither does the non-Jew

- A Jew who does not make berachot before putting any food in his mouth - Neither does a non-Jew

- A Jewish man who does not wear kippa and tzitzit - neither does the non-Jew

- A Jewish women who does not cover her hair- neither does the non jew

Is not a refusal to marry into the non-Jewish world nothing less than racism? I as a Torah observing Jew have very good reasons not to marry a non-Jew, due to my unique lifestyle. There is practically no-difference between a secular Jew and a non-Jew day to day and your children think that it is pure racism to reject a mate from 99.99% of humanity. 

My Grandmother who ran away from Germany in 1939 came to the US and had 7 children. Those children grew up and married and had 35 children (nearly all are now married most with children). All the decedents all are fully observant, fully modern and if I am not mistaken every single one has a university degree. The members of my extended family work in every field, are strong Zionists (many have served in the IDF and live in Israel) and are uncompromising Jews. 

How is it that that 3 straight generations are fully committed Jews and fully productive members of wider society? My great grandfather wrote in his will that the Shabbat table should always be filled with signing and joy, so that the joy of Shabbat and Torah would flow to the next generation. The chorus, which began with my great grandfather is now accompanied by the beautiful harmony of probably some 100 or so decedents and is growing ever stronger.

I call upon all the leaders of the Jewish Federation to lead a revival of Judaism in America! Do not be afraid of being observant, as it has kept us as a people for 3,000+ years. Your Jewish education programs are nice, but let’s be honest, when a child comes home and tells his parents that they learned Jews keep Kosher or wear tzitzit or do not light a fire on Shabbat and the parents mocks it - all the education is wasted  and the child runs away. You cannot lie to a child!

So I beg you and anyone reading this message, come home to our traditions, laws and customs that have kept us and nourished us as a Nation until this time. 


I look forward to your feedback

PS. Part 2: /Blogs/Message.aspx/6685