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Super Bowl Stir, Songs About Circumcision, Jesus on Reproduction

January 28, 2014 By:
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Scarlett Johansson promotes Israeli product SodaStream, in a commercial set to appear during the super bowl. Screenshot.

From circumcision support to Super Bowl controversies, Jews have been making headlines at a fast and furious pace. We tracked down some of the more bizarre and fun stories for your reading pleasure.

So sit back, relax and enjoy the latest gold mine of weird and amazing in a blender.

Actress Makes Super Bowl History, er, Controversy

Every year seems to come with a new Super Bowl controversy during the game or even at halftime  — like Janet Jackson’s risque ‘slip’ while performing in 2004. This year’s controversy has taken place completely off the playing field and centered around, drumroll please, none other than Jewish actress and sex symbol Scarlett Johansson.

Johansson has become a huge advocate of SodaStream, an Israeli company that sells home soda makers and also happens to have a factory in the Maale Adumim settlement in the West Bank. She was hired to star in a Super Bowl commercial for the Israeli company — a move that has the Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement up in arms. The resulting uproar grew loud enough that Johansson has chosen to resign from her post as a global ambassador for Oxfam, the non-governmental organization that she has vounteered for since 2007.

Oxfam's position was that, since SodaStream's main facility is in a settlement, it is harming the Palestinian population and should thus not be given the benefits of endorsement. Johansson, in a statement to the Huffington Post, explained that she is leaving her Oxfam post and supporting SodaStream because the company, by employing both Jews and Palestinians in an economically and sociologically successful manner, is doing the kind of unifying work that benefits all parties in Israel.

A Capella Group Responds to Circumcision Protests

To circumcise or not to circumcise? For many new parents of baby boys, that is the question. For the majority of Jewish couples, the answer is a foreskin, er, foregone conclusion of ‘yes.’ Still, that hasn’t stopped circumcision from becoming a hot topic in the news, in Europe especially, where some have deemed the ritual unjust because the baby cannot weigh in on the life-altering decision.

Members of the University of Maryland a capella group Kol Ish, comprised entirely of Jewish men, added their voices to the debate with a parody of singer Lorde’s popular song “Royals.” In their version, called “Mohels," the singers proclaim that if they could go back in time, they would gladly give their parents consent to go ahead with the ritual and charge detractors to stop their protests.

Parents Attempt to Sell Daughter’s Naming Rights on Craigslist

A Jewish couple from Lakewood, N.J., took the concept of sponsorship to an extreme when they tried to sell the right to name their ninth daughter on craigslist for $20,000. The couple told JTA that they received four offers before craigslist removed the posting. Eventually, they settled on the name Rina — which they chose themselves.

Sarah Silverman Teams Up With Jesus

The comedic Jewess has made some strange judgment calls before, such as jokingly confessing to a fake affair with Matt Damon on Jimmy Kimmel’s talk show (Kimmel was her boyfriend at the time). But now she has utilized a newfound friendship with Jesus to promote women’s health and their right to choose in abortion cases.

In a youtube video, Silverman and Jesus hang out, watch NCIS and discuss the facts behind the reproductive process.

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