Wishing you a  elegant  Shabbat Shalom
August 12, 2016  

Hopes and Setbacks
Right now, at the Rio Olympics, there are 10,000+ athletes from 206 countries competing for 306 medals during the 19 day sporting event. But what is the true goal of these ancient games. From the pages of the International Olympic Committee website, it state: "The goal of the Olympic Movement is to contribute to building a peaceful and better world by educating youth through sport practiced without discrimination of any kind and in the Olympic spirit, which requires mutual understanding with a spirit of friendship, solidarity and fair play."
Ideally, this is a noble goal yet when reality sets in, it seems a bit harder to achieve. On the first day, before the games even began, the head of the Lebanese delegation prevented the Israeli athletes from boarding the bus headed to the Opening Ceremony, which was meant to be shared, but was occupied by Lebanese athletes who weren't willing to sit with Israelis. Olympic officials scrambled to find a van to transport the Israelis.  Then the Saudi Arabian Judo competitor forfeited her first round to avoid interaction with an Israeli athlete in a later round. But good news there, another Israeli Judo expert went on to win Israel's first medal since 2008. Another boycott happened when the Tunisian tennis player was instructed by his country "you are ordered not to play against the Israeli player."  Tunisia, Lebanon and Saudi Arabia are just 3 of the 31 UN member States which do not recognize Israel and seem to snub their noses at the Olympic Goal.  As the 19 days proceed, I'm sure there will be more insulting shenanigans.  This is Israel's 17th Olympics with their biggest delegation of 47 athletes competing in 17 different sports. Israel has won a total of 7 medals during her Olympic career with one in Gold for Sailing during the Athens 2004 games. How many will they bring home this year?
47 Israeli Olympic athletes. 

Homeless and Hopeful
There are nearly 20 Million people in our world who are either refugees or asylum seekers and this growing group, for the first time, is represented at the Rio Olympics with a 10 member team.  There are 6 runners from South Sudan, 1 marathon runner from Ethiopia, 2 from Congo who will compete in Judo and 2 swimmers from Syria. While escaping from Syria, one of the swimmers was on a deflating dingy between Turkey and Greece and she and a few others had to swim and tug the boat to safety for 3 hours. 
Refugee Olympic Team (ROT)

Destruction and Renewal
Tisha B'Av is one of the saddest days of our Jewish Calendar. It is observed this year on Sunday Aug. 14th and is a Fast Day (no food or drink).  It commemorates the destruction of our 1st and 2nd Temples which occurred about 656 years apart but coincidentally on the same Hebrew calendar date of  Tisha  (9th) day of the month of  Av .  Since the last time our Temple was destroyed till today, many attempts have been made to destroy our homeland and peoplehood. Their latest efforts include the BDS (Boycott, Divest, Sanction) movement which gains acceptance each new day. This week, the Canadian Green Party approved BDS into their platform, though with the disapproval of their leader Elizabeth May and the disapproval of the Canadian government which has a resolution against BDS. And sometimes the acts against Israel come from within, like the anti-Israel passage in the Movement for Black Lives platform which was written by a Jew, who renounced her religion and now works against her "people".
http://www.haaretz.com/world-news/americas/.premium-1.735865    And continuing with those from within and back to the Green Party platform, our US Green Party leader, Jill Stein (another Jew) states she would end military funding to Israel, supports BDS and considers Israel an Appartheid State.   Anti-Israel rhetoric keep adding as the Palestinians have been floating the idea of sueing Great Britain for the Balfour Declaration of 1917 which acknowledged a Jewish Homeland in Palestine. Sadly, there have and it seems always will be destructive efforts against the Jewish People and Israel. But renewal will always follow destruction as we continue to survive with the constant hope (Tikvah) for Peace and Security.  

Guns and Trump
It seems all the words coming out of Trump's mouth have a destructive thone to them.  The more he goes off script, the more he riles up his base and infuriates his detractors.  As many people mentioned, history should be our teacher. Yitzhak Rabin lost his life to a lone crazed gunman who took action after listening to the hateful rhetoric.  Double entendres and innuendos come across as clear messages to deranged followers.  And for the record, Hillary Clinton has no plans of "taking away guns" or the Second Amendment.  But yes, we do need sensible gun control. "How many times can a man turn his head and pretend that he just doesn't see?"
This is a truly beautiful rendition with a very relevant message.

Trump and Anti-Trump
What if this Trump Thing is just an elaborate prank?  Well watch this video for a poignant yet sad laugh.
But, unfortunately it is not a prank, it is our reality.  It is so real that it pursued 50 top GOP National Security Officers (who worked under presidents from Nixon to Bush) to pen a letter of serious concern about our national security under a Trump (oy vey) Presidency.  Here is that letter:
http://goo.gl/rxo2rG  After excessive conservative frustration, a "hero" has emerged to run rampant with the Trump machine. Welcome Evan McMullin, former CIA officer who has announced his third party presidential.  His big hurdle is to secure his name on the ballot of as many States a possible at this late date. 

Happiness and Health
Trump needs some Happiness lesson. And we all can benefit from these three 3 simple reminders. These w ords of wisdom are from Marci Shimoff (Chicken Soup for the Soul author) via Kelly Victor's Kale and Kant blog.
1. Develop a Kind Mind. -  Our thoughts seem to have a mind of their own, but our actions are entirely in our hands. Many of our thoughts are of the negative persuasion but if we can become active in thinking positive by reminding ourselves of the good fortunes in our lives, that will limit our brains from those from negative thoughts that block our happiness.
2. Give Love, Service, and Appreciation. - Our biology is built to gain pleasure when we do good for others.  The more we help, give and appreciate...the more happiness we will experience.  Our physical body also benefits when we give and receive love. 
3. Live your Passion and Dreams. - Self explanatory.
If you are interested in reading the full blog, click here:

Read and Write
By the way, You Are Welcome!  Why, because apparently, a study has just been revealed that avid readers (of books, articles, maybe even this blog) live longer than those who forgo reading the written word.  So next time you feel like a marathon viewing of the Walking Dead, pick up a Dickens novel instead.  https://goo.gl/H6Ogs3

Apolitical  and Pacifist
Someone who probably read lots during his 82 years of life is the Japanese Emperor Akihito, who now wants to abdicate his (ceremonial) royal throne which hasn't happened in 200 years.  Japan has had a continuous monarchy since its beginnings in 600 BCE, longer than any other monarchy.  The Emperor is apolitical and a pacifist. Wishing Japan a smooth transition with this monumental change.

Listen and Enjoy
This week's musical selection is (of course) Brazilian, starting with the famous multi-talented Gilberto Gil:
And the not so famous (at least to us), Milton Nascimento
Hope you enjoy

Wishing you and your family a 
Sweet and Peaceful  
Shabbat Shalom 
Each week's message is now posted and backlogged here:

I'm with her!
Not with him.
Mazel Tov
Congrats to the Detroit Zoo on the arrival of a newborn female Giraffe weighing in at 166 pounds and over 5 feet tall. She joins her sibling who was born just two years ago as it seems their mom is a true Fertile Myrtle. 

Bravo to the US Olympic Team on their growing number of medals.

Aug. 12th
Daniella HarPaz Mechnikov
Alan Kaufman
Bonnie Larson
Allison Rabinowitz Baumwald (Happy 40th)
Rabbi Jennifer Tisdale Kaluzny
Rabbi Lauren Berkun
Shlomi Hammer
Aug. 13th
Sarah Wolk

Aug. 14th
Hy Safran
Jeanne Katz Maxbauer
Julie Levenson Feldman

Aug. 15th
Arthur Siegel
Andrew Beider
Miriam Liebman (Happy 30th)
Aug. 16th
David Wainer
Marcia Anstandig Seigerman
Allan (Gelly) Gelfond
Diane Harris
Sherri Walts (Happy 60th)
Gail Katz
Aug. 17th
Irwin Wright
Luke Allen
Ron Reiter
Aubrey Strickstein
Elaine Plotnik Darmon
Aug. 18th
Alexandra Mark
Danny Greenberg

Yes, I write every word of these messages...mistakes and all. 
 Please ignore the typing errors but if I missed your birthday or 
got the wrong date,  
please let me know.

Hillary Rodham Clinton and Tim Kaine
Donald J. Trump and Mike Pence

First Presidential debate is
Monday September 26th 
at Hofstra University in Hempstead, NY.

The Vice Presidential debate is
Tuesday October 4th 
(just after the 2nd day of Rosh Hashana) 
at Longwood University in Farmville, VA.

Second Presidential debate is
Sunday October 9th 
at Washington University in St. Louis, MO.

Third Presidential debate is
Wednesday October 19th 
at University of Nevada in Las Vegas, NV.

Presidential General Election is 
94 days away.
November 8, 2016

August 17th  (Wednesday)
Ort Rub-A-Dub
Franklin Hills Country Club

August 19th (Friday)
Forgotten Harvest
Crusin' to Drive Out Hunger
(Woodward Dream Cruise preview party)
Westborn Market at 27659 Woodward Ave.
Tickets $150
Contact Marc Berke for more info

August 21st (Sunday)
Jewish Historical Society of Michigan
J-Cycle 6
Starting at New Center Park
For more info, please contact Wendy Rose Bice

August 28th (Sunday)
Hazon Detroit
(First Ever) Michigan Jewish Food Festival
Eastern Market, Shed 5, Detroit

September 8th (Thursday)
National Council of Jewish Women
Women of Vision 
Congregation Shaarey Zedek
Guest Speaker:
Jenna Bush Hager
Alicia Stillman and Ellie Slovis

September  11th  (Sunday)
eRace Mental Illness and the Silence
5K Family Run/Walk
Congregation Shaarey Zedek
For more info, please contact Wren Hack
wren@shaareyzedek.org or 248-535-7110

September 8th
Jewish Historical Society of Michigan
Exhibit Opening and Fundraiser
Detroit Historical Museum
For more info, please contact Wendy Rose Bice

September 13th (Tuesday)
Hadassah's Opening Meeting
Congregation Shaarey Zedek
Boutiques and Luncheon
Guest Speaker:
Nancy Spielberg 
(Director, Producer, Screenwriter and Steven's sister)
For more info, please contact Carol Ogusky 
cogusky1@gmail.com or 248-683-5030

September 16th (Friday)
Cabaret 313
Opening night of their 4th Season
Players' Club Playhouse
7pm and 9:30pm
Featuring: Danny Gurwin and Erin Dilly
"To Broadway and Back Home"

September 20th (Tuesday)
Jewish Women's Foundation
Women Lighting the Way
Detroit Athletic Club
Keynote Speaker: (gay rights) 
Attorney Dana Nessel

September 22nd (Thursday)
Friends of the IDF Women's Luncheon
Tam-O-Shanter Country Club
For more info, please contact Paul Lebowitz
September 26th (Monday)
Dr. Gary Burnstein Community Health Clinic
2016 Esteemed Women of Michigan 
Centerpoint Marriott, Pontiac

September 27th (Tuesday)
Detroit Zoological Society
Hidden Gems of the Detroit Zoo
More details to come

September 28th (Wednesday)
Yad Ezra Annual Dinner
Honoring (the wonderful)
Rachel and Jason Zimmerman
Adat Shalom Synagogue
6:00pm Strolling Supper
7:10-8:00 Program
For more info:  info@yadezra.org

October 1st (Saturday)
Humble Design
Gigs for Digs
The Fillmore, Detroit
Concert by:
JR JR (Indie-pop band from Detroit)

October 7th (Friday)
Florine Mark's 17th Annual
Remarkable Women Charity event
Guest speaker:
Actress Lainie Kazan
The Henry Hotel, Dearborn
For more info:
Sheryl Fellows

October 10th (Monday)
MI Women Win 
Our home
More details to come

October 13th (Thursday)
Michigan League of Conservation Voters
Innovation in Conservation Awards Gala
Westin Book Cadillac Hotel, Detroit
Honoring: Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha 
Lifetime Achievement: Honorable Dr. Joe Schwarz

October 14th (Friday)
Detroit PBS
Detroit Performs Live
The Fillmore Detroit
For more info:
Michelle Gaisser

October 30th (Sunday)
Holocaust Memorial Center Zekelman Family Campus
32nd Anniversary Dinner
Congregation Shaarey Zedek
Honoring: Rozie and Bernie Friedman
Guest Speaker: Dr. Deborah Lipstadt
For more info:
Ruth Stein

I'm happy to post events important to you, however I'm unable to include a website as too many websites increase the chance that these emails will not reach your inboxes.  If you want more info about an event, please google the agency sponsoring it.