News Briefs: NYT Apologizes for Anti-Semitic Cartoons and More

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US Measles Cases in 2019 Top 700

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said the 2019 measles outbreak in the United States now includes 704 cases, many of them clustered in haredi Orthodox communities, JTA reported.

That’s the most in any single year since 2000 — the year the CDC declared the disease eradicated in the U.S. Of those 704 cases, 400 are centered in New York City and its suburbs.

The CDC said the resurgence is due to an increase in unvaccinated people, as well as those bringing it back from other countries, including Israel and Ukraine.

Although prominent rabbis in New York have pushed for vaccination, there’s a belief in haredi communities that vaccinations are ineffective or even harmful, according to JTA.

NYT Apologizes for Anti-Semitic Cartoons

The New York Times twice apologized for anti-Semitic cartoons it published in late April, JNS.org reported.

An April 25 cartoon featured Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu as a dachshund guide dog with a Star of David on his collar. The dog is shown leading a yarmulke-wearing President Donald Trump.

A cartoon in editions that weekend depicted “Netanyahu with sinister eyes taking a picture of himself with a selfie-stick, carrying in what appears to be an empty desert with a tablet featuring the Israeli flag painted on it, “ JNS.org said.

In one statement, the Times described the image as both “offensive” and including “anti-Semitic tropes.” The next day, it said the cartoon was published because of a “faulty process” that led to a “single editor working without adequate oversight.”

About 150 protesters, including former Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz, protested outside the Times’ Midtown Manhattan offices on April 29.

The Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) signed on to a Jewish Council for Public Affairs (JCPA) letter sent to the Times April 29 critical of the newspaper’s decision-making.

Survey: Jewish Americans Positive Toward Muslims

More than half of Jewish Americans have positive feelings toward Muslims, with just 13 percent holding negative views, according to the 2019 American Muslim Poll, JTA reported.

In all, 53 percent reported positive views, the most of any non-Muslim faith group surveyed. In addition, 53 percent of Jewish Americans said they would decrease their support for any political candidate who endorsed a Muslim ban.

Meantime, 45 percent of Muslim-American respondents favorably viewed Jews, while only 10 percent said they had negative views; the rest were neutral.

Numerous Jews Receive Tony Nominations

Members of the Tribe were well represented in the 2019 Tony Award nominations announced April 30, JTA reported.

Rachel Chavkin is up for best direction of a musical for Hadestown, while Sam Mendes was nominated for best direction of a play for The Ferryman.

Elaine May was nominated for best leading actress in a play for The Waverly Gallery, a semi-autobiographical play by Jewish playwright Kenneth Lonergan.

Actors Brandon Uranowitz and Gideon Glick were both nominated for best featured actor for Burn This and To Kill a Mockingbird, respectively.

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