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In the News

The issues really motivating US Jews to vote

Jerusalem Post | November 5, 2012

Abby Levine, Director of the Jewish Social Justice Roundtable: "When I go into the voting booth, a candidate’s views on Israel’s security help inform my vote, but don’t dictate it... The reality is that local Jewish leaders are coordinating on a national scale to educate, activate and organize voters on the urgent social justice issues keeping us up at night. This type of activism around social justice issues is not new, but today’s coordination between organizations is unprecedented."

Jews push for Prop. 30

The Jewish Journal | November 1, 2012

With recent polls showing that support has fallen below 50 percent for Proposition  30 — Gov. Jerry Brown’s temporary tax hike initiative that would help fund education across California — Jewish organizers working on behalf of the measure are working hard to convince Californians to approve the measure. Over the last month, Bend the Arc has held four house parties to talk about its recommendations for how to vote on the different California ballot measures, paying particular attention to Proposition 30. 

Who Shall Live and Who Shall Die?

The Huffington Post | November 1, 2012

When the Bible commands us "Justice, justice shall you pursue," the repetition is to teach that not only we must have just ends, our means to those ends must be equally just. Our commitment to that core teaching will be tested next month by our community's response to Proposition 34, which would replace California's death penalty with life in prison without parole, save $130 million each year, devote $30 millon per year for three years to help solve unsolved murders and rapes and require those convicted of murder to devote prison earnings to pay restitution to the families of their victims.

Prop. 34: Repeal the death penalty

The Jewish Journal | November 1, 2012

Religious leaders, civil-rights advocates, human-rights organizations and others for years have been calling for an end to the death penalty, which has been banned in most democratic nations. But now, death-penalty opponents have been joined by a chorus of unlikely allies, including victims’ rights advocates, prison wardens and law-enforcement officials. These leaders cite the risk of executing the innocent, the fact that the death penalty is used predominantly against the poor and people of color, and that the high cost of the death penalty (including trials, special prison housing, constitutionally required appeals, extra security and administrative costs) is far more expensive than permanent incarceration.

Proposition 36: Modifying law corrects horrible injustice

J Weekly | October 31, 2012

The three strikes law deprives Californians of a fair chance at restitution and rehabilitation. It ensures that prisoners will not be treated with dignity and decency or offered conditions and support needed to become contributing members of society.

What does it say about our own culture and our own sense of justice when we lock men and women away for life, in decrepit and overcrowded prisons, without any opportunity for redemption? The moral costs to society are serious.