On Democracy & Our Collective Future

On Democracy & Our Collective Future

This coming week, we will be celebrating July 4ththe declaration, almost 250 years ago, of the United States of America’s independence. This significant moment in world history marked the creation of a democratically designed country where challenges of governance, including individual freedom and collective action, would be answered through democratic processes as opposed to a monarchy or other authoritarian system.    


Though they were also deeply flawed – sustaining slavery for almost another 100 years, limiting the right to vote, and codifying ongoing discrimination, among other problematic factors – the democratic institutions and processes in the US and their impact on American culture have also enabled us to collectively address an increasing array of challenges over time and in significant ways. For American Jewry, the historic strengthening of democratic institutions has also been critical in enabling the growth of a vibrant and thriving Jewish community.  


As we consider the moment in which we live, with the increasing challenges of antisemitism, we must consider both the struggles facing critical democratic institutions as well as their continued potential for supporting our collective efforts to build a more inclusive society free of hatred and bigotry.  


With this in mind, Federation applauds the recently released U.S. National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism and continues to partner with the Jewish Community Relations Council, ADL, the American Jewish Committee, and others to support the implementation of many specific initiatives to combat antisemitism within our region. It is a significant initiative by the government to create change. We are also committed to bolstering American democracy as part of our own Framework to Confront and Combat Antisemitism. Fighting hatred and building a more inclusive society has never been easy. A strong democracy and confidence in our institutions enables us to collectively tackle these – and many other – collective challenges.  


So, as we look ahead to celebrating our nation’s 247th year of independence and the opportunities it has provided, it is important to take a moment to remember that our work on these fronts is ongoing and evolving to meet the needs of the moment. If our ability to respond to concurrent emergencies over the last few years is any indication, I know we’ll continue to combat antisemitism, bolster American democracy, strengthen our Jewish community, and build toward a shared vision for our future together. Together, we continue to focus on building a vibrant, engaged, caring and inclusive Jewish community while simultaneously building a stronger American society.


I am grateful to be a part of such an exceptional community. Thank you for all that you do to strengthen and sustain vibrant Jewish and American life.

Shabbat Shalom and Happy Fourth of July,