Today it's another edition of Living Questions, our monthly series on religion in the public sphere, produced in collaboration with the Institute for Islamic, Christian and Jewish Studies.
We focus today on the persistent problem of anti-Semitism. Acts of bigotry and intolerance toward the Jewish community in the US are on the rise, with a particular spike after the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, this summer. There have been 60 more incidents in our region this year than occurred in 2016. And we’re not talking about anonymous trolls on the internet. These are physical incidents of bullying and vandalism, which often take place on school and college campuses.
Tom's guest on today's Living Questions segment is Ira Forman, a distinguished visiting professor at Georgetown University and senior fellow at the University's Center for Jewish Civilization. Professor Forman, who has worked for more than forty years as a leading advocate for Jewish culture and community, is currently teaching a course in Contemporary Anti-Semitism. Previously, he spent four years as the State Department’s Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism. Forman and most other Obama political appointees were asked to resign their positions this past January by the incoming Trump Administration; the Special Envoy post is still vacant. What does that vacancy signal about current U.S. engagement in programs to combat anti-Semitism? What has the US Government traditionally done and what should it be doing at home and abroad to stop the curse of religious intolerance?
The ICJS is hosting a special lecture "American Anti-Semitism on the Rise: An Evening with Ira Forman" on Tuesday, December 5 from 6:00-8:00 pm, at Chizuk Amuno Synagogue (8100 Stevenson Rd, Pikesville, MD 21208) Click here for registration info.