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PAGE 4A HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, JANUARY 4, 2013 Some New Year's resolutions for Orlando Jewish Community By Richard Ries If this is the year you're going to shed weight, let go of an addiction and be more organized, that's terrific. There are a few other things to keep in mind, though. Here are some (secular) New Year's resolutions for the Orlando Jewish community: • Learn Hebrew. It is truly never too late, and it's important to know. Particularly if you are raising kids, don't make Hebrew something only they should know. Callyour synagogue, call UCF, or get a Rosetta Stone and make sure you are at least moderately conversant in Hebrew by the end of the year. • Have more Shabbat dinners. Shabbat is truly the cornerstone of strengthening a family. If you tend to order in fast food on Fridays, or have hectic Fridays where this one is at a sleepover, and this one has a soccer game, try to schedule at least one Friday a month where the entire family is together--without handheld devices--and you do what you can to make the meal a Jewish one (candles, Kiddush, challah, blessing, songs). • Be caught living in the synagogue you wouldn't be caught dead in. There's an old joke about a Jew who is found stranded on a deserted island in the Pacific. The rescuers cannot un- derstand why he built two synagogues. His reply: "that shul is the one I go to; that shul? I wouldn't be caught dead in it." Even if you are a devotee of one synagogue, make it a point to visit at least two others during the year, to feel a part of the Orlando Jewish community, and to get a bigger picture. It's goodwill, and you never know whom you might meet. The idea of "boycotting" a synagogue or holding a grudge against one is an ideato let go of for 2013. • Visit Israel. For all the dollars you might spend on travel elsewhere, Israelis need those tourist dollars--and you probably need to go to Israel. Think it's not safe because it's on TV sometimes? You are likely far safer in Israel than in Miami, New York, Los Angeles or many coun- tries abroad where Americans aren't welcome. If you've never been--this is the year to go. • Reduce lushon horah. Lushon horah--evil tongue, or gossip--is something sometimes Ex-Muslims By Ed Ziegler In response to the violent actions and intense hatred bymany MUslims toward non-Muslims, my articles frequently attempt to acquaint freedom loving people with the undeniable fact that the goal of these Muslims is to force the world to submit to Islam. Fanatic Muslims consist of approximately 120 million followers of Islam worldwide. Many of their religious leaders advocate killing apostates in accordance with verses in the Quran such as 4:89: "Take not from among them until they fly in Allah's way. But if they turn back seize them and kill them wherever you find them." It is very important to remember the dangerwe • are inwith more than 100 million fanatic Muslins who are willing to kill non-Muslims to force the world to adhere to Islam. There is a small but growing number of ex- Muslims who realized that Islam is not a peace loving religion ,as proclaimed. "Mohammed is God's apostle. Those who follow him are harsh to the unbelievers but merciful to one another." Quran 48:29. By denouncing their Islamic faith, these apostates have put their lives on the line. Also there are Muslims such as Dr. Zudhi Jasser, founder of The American Islamic Forum for Democracy, whose mission it is to advocate for the preservation of the founding principles of the United States Constitution. There is another group "Former Muslims United" (FMU), which seeks to protect former " Muslims from persecution by those who believe in Islamic dogma that requires punishment of apostates. FMU is outspoken against honor" killings and rejects punishment for leaving the Islamic faith. A former Egyptian Muslim, Nonie Darwish, is the director of FMU, a human rights activist and founder of Arabs For Israel. She also authored books: "Now They Call Me Infidel; Why I Re- nounced Jihad for America, Israel and the War on Terror" and "Cruel and Usual Punishment; The Terrifying Global Implications of Islamic Law." Nonie said she converted because she experi- enced love, peace and compassion while attending a Christian school. • She compared this with the harsh teaching in Islamic textbooks and preached in mosques. In mosques you hear the holy man preach, "May God destroy all the infidel and Jews the enemy of God." Nonie stated that terrorism is violent jihad and the duty of every Muslim. She explained that the sword is a symbol for conquer- ing the world. Wafa Sultan, an apostate, was born into a large traditional Alawite Muslim family in Baniyas, Syria. Wafa is a medical doctor, an American author and critic of Muslim society and Islam. I challenge everyone to listen to Wafa's plea (Former Muslims United:Wafa Sultan- YouTube). Her short eye opening narrative will dispel any idea thatyou may have that Islam is a religion of peace. Sabatina-James, a convert to Christianity, came from a strict Pakistani family. She claims that after she refused to marry a man her parents had chosen, her father told her, "The honor of this family is more important than my life or your life" and her mother wanted her dead. James has lived in fear of being murdered for leaving the Islamic faith. Since 2001 she has moved at least 16 times. The Quran and the hadith call for the death of those who turn away from Islam. Even though, throughout the centuries, individuals around the world have openly risked their lives denouncing Islam. Go to http://www.inswering-islam.org/ Testimonies/index.html for a list of such brave people. To listen to a number of former Muslims being interviewed by the Chief Counsel of The American Center for Law and Justice go to http:// www.answering-islam.org/Testimonies/index. html. It is very important to remember the dangerwe are in with more than 100 million fanatic Muslins who are willing to kill non-Muslims to force the world to adhere to Islam. Afshin Ellian a former Iranian Muslim fled the Middle East to the Netherlands. There he became a professor of law, philosopher, poet and out-spoken critic of Islam. Ooe of Afshin's quotes is, "Radical Islamists are so determined to prove Islam is the religion of peace that they are willing to kill for it." Ed Ziegler is past president of the New Jewish Congregation's brotherhood. He can be reached at EdZiegler@embarqmail.com. THE VIEWS EXPRESSED ON THIS PAGE ARE NOT NECESSARILY THE VIEWS OF HERITAGE MANAGEMENT.   CENTRAL FLORIDA'SINDEPENDENTJEWISHVOICE   ISSN 0199-0721 Winner of 41 Press Awards Editor/Publisher HERITAGE Florida Jewish News ( ISN 0199-0721 ) is published weekly for $37.95 per year to Florida ad- dresses ($46.95 for the rest of the U.S.) by HERITAGE Central Florida Jewish News, inc., 207 O'Brien Road, Suite 101, Fern Park, FL 32730. Periodicals postage paid at Fern Park and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes and other correspondence to: HERITAGE, P.O. Box 300742, Fern Park, FL 32730. MAILING ADDRESS PHONE NUMBER P.O. Box 300742 (407) 834-8787 Fern Park, FL 32730 FAX (407) 831-0507 email: news@orlandoheritage.com Jeffrey Gaeser Editor Emeritus Associate Editor Assistant Editor Gene Starn Mike Etzkin Kim Fischer Society Editor Bookkeeping Gloria Yousha Paulette Alfonso Account Executives Barbara do Carmo Marci Gaeser Richard Ries Contributing Columnists Jim Shipley Ira Sharkansky Tim Boxer David Bornstein Terri Fine Ed Ziegler Production Department David Lehman • David Gaudio • Teri Marks Elaine Schooping * Gil.Dombrosky • Caroline Pope only Orthodox Jews discuss as a Jewish value. There is no monopoly on it. Character assas- sination of someone, particularly when they are not in the room to defend themselves, is a terrible thing. We often greenlight ourselves to engage in gabfests, gossip, and lushon horah-- sometimes the second someone leaves the room. Let's try to watch ourselves, and model better conversation patterns for our children. Great minds discuss ideas; petty minds discuss other people. Be great. • Turn off the electronics on Saturdays. I'm not personally Shomer Shabbat, but I see some of the value in not having email, texts or Tweets once a week. By all means turn it off if you go to a synagogue, but even if you don't, try to make Saturday a day that you go a few hours without the Web. You'll probably survive. Get the kids to reduce electronics on Saturdays. Take a walk. • Visit the elderly. Do you not have an elderly relative in Central Florida. So? The elderly need you, whether you are related or not. Someone in a nursing home or care center would love to chat with you. You might enjoy yourself more than you realize. Give the Jewish Pavilion a call at 407-768-9363 and set up an appointment. • Make sure everyone is reading the Heritage Florida Jewish News. Not every city in America has a Jewish newspaper. It is a vitally important cultural institution and binds the Greater Or- lando Jewish community. We can't always keep tabs on the thousands of Jews in our midst. We therefore invite everyone to partner with us in ensuring that this cultural institution is read by all. If you know of a new Subscriber, or wish to order a gift subscription, please call Paulette at (407) 834-8787. Jewish journalism matters. Richard Ries is an account executive and staff writer for Heritage Florida Jewish News. How to choose when giving tzedakah By Aryeh Rubin Also, consider not only which causes to AVENTURA (JTA)--Anyone committed to financial support of Jewish causes likely has grappled with the questions of where to give, what to give, how to give and, of course, why to give. As the end of the year approaches and organi- zations seek those last of our 2012 tax-deductible dollars, the questions are even more urgent. Why grappled? Because there are so many worthy causes, and the need exceeds the re- sources. Our difficult economic times have lent greater urgency to this dilemma. Our small foundation, Targum Shlishi, is faced with more inquiries than ever, many of which are far from the areas we typically fund. People regularly call asking for help to feed their families or pay their mortgages. At the sametime, some Jewish organizations are threatened with closure, and Israel is facing an existential threat with potentially devastating repercussions for the Jewish world. Do we give to a child in need of an extensive "operation or a website on Jewish children's books? A day school that can't pay its teachers or research that could help hundreds of educators do a better job? Fund a family waiting room at a Jerusalem hospital or an online database of Orthodox mental health professionals? These are questions that those fortunate enough to be able to allocate tzedakah think and often agonize about. In the end, it's each according to" his/her conscience. But how do we decide where to allocate limited funds whenwe must choose among Countless worthy and pressing causes? It helps to go back to the basics, to consider the very nature of tzedakah. What is charity? It's feeding the hungry and housing the poor, of course. But charity can also be supporting radical changes in Jewish education; funding an advocacy organization on behalf of Israeli women seeking divorce who are faced with an oppressive rabbinical system; helping seek justice for Nazi war crimes; or producing a biography of Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook. So how does one choose? Evaluate the cause and whether it has other potential donors. Estimate its long-term impact. Will it patch a hole or point the way toward meaningful, long- term solutions? Can the solutions be replicated in other communities? Throughout Jewish history, there have been enlightened individuals, usually behind the scenes, who helped the Jewish people move forward whether away fromslavery, out of the ghetto, toward more equality for women, or in prevailing upon rabbis to ease up on sometimes restrictive laws. In cahoots with select members of the clergy and the academies of learning, these individuals used their knowledge, money or their power to help our people evolve. The people who supported the first Bats Yaakov, an Orthodox Jewish school for girls established after World War I, had to decide whether, for example, to establish an orphanage in Lodz or set up a revolutionary new concept in Jewish education. Just imagine where we would be today if they took the traditional route and opted for the orphanage. The bottom line? Funding for concepts and the improvement of our lot serves as sacred a purpose as helping the unfortunate among us. support, but how to give. For our foundation's first 10 years, we gave almost anonymously-- the highest level of charity, according to Maimonides. Then, in 2002, we decided to go public to cultivate a higher profile. We did this for several reasons: We felt the type of venture philanthropy we were pursuing was important and innovative, and we were motivated to share our work and inspire others to take similar ac- tions. We wanted to advocate for some of our grantees by publicizing their work and encour- aging additional support. We hoped to partner with other philanthropies 6n certain causes. Given the above considerations, how do we arrive at a decision? How does one justify giving a certain sum of money to a food program in Jerusalem and 20 or even 50 timesthat amount to finding the last of the Nazi murderers, or to a movement that encourages a partisan agenda? At Targum Shlishi, which offers modest grants to organizations dedicated to innova- tive problem solving in the areas of education, women's issues, Israel and justice for Nazi war crimes, we use several criteria. We consider not only the proposal itself, but how many people and foundations support it. Is the idea sellable? Will there be an annual dinner with an honoree who will draw a crowd? Is the cause appealing to the masses? If the answer to any of these is yes, we believe they don't need us. If, on the other hand, the organization has an idea that is too unconventional to attract mass support but could have wide-reaching implications if successful, that organization is likelier to get our help. Our heart is with innovative initiatives that have the potential to positively change the status quo. That doesn't mean that longstanding, well- funded Jewish organizations are unimportant, although some are bloated and bureaucratic and others have outlived their usefulness. Many do work that is critically important. If they didn't exist, we would not have the freedom to support the innovators; instead, our resources would have to go to basic survival and humanitarian needs such as feeding the hungry and running the senior citizen homes. Thus, our goal: support ideas, organizations, individuals who can make a difference. Take risks and midwife that spark. If we are lucky, we'll help start a revolution in a particular area that needs it. But even if not, and the promise of a project or organization isn't realized and all it does is get the conversation going, the mission is half accomplished. We are living in a unique time in Jewish his- tory. We have the most prosperity, freedom and power that we have had in 2,000 years. Yet this is also a dangerous time: Our enemies wish to destroy us, and the cultural demons--the at- tractions of secular society--are leading many of us down the path of assimilation and apathy. Clearly, our approaches to the challenges facing the Jewish people have not been effective. We need to explore new ideas. We all must reassess our giving, and allocate a portion of our tzedakah to creative individuals and orgaiaizations looking for new approaches. If we don't rock the boat and encourage our leadership to take us in a new direction, we will find ourselves in dangerous waters. Aryeh Rubin is the director ofTargum Shlishi and a board member of JTA. PAGE 4A HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, JANUARY 4, 2013 Some New Year's resolutions for Orlando Jewish Community By Richard Ries If this is the year you're going to shed weight, let go of an addiction and be more organized, that's terrific. There are a few other things to keep in mind, though. Here are some (secular) New Year's resolutions for the Orlando Jewish community: • Learn Hebrew. It is truly never too late, and it's important to know. Particularly if you are raising kids, don't make Hebrew something only they should know. Callyour synagogue, call UCF, or get a Rosetta Stone and make sure you are at least moderately conversant in Hebrew by the end of the year. • Have more Shabbat dinners. Shabbat is truly the cornerstone of strengthening a family. If you tend to order in fast food on Fridays, or have hectic Fridays where this one is at a sleepover, and this one has a soccer game, try to schedule at least one Friday a month where the entire family is together--without handheld devices--and you do what you can to make the meal a Jewish one (candles, Kiddush, challah, blessing, songs). • Be caught living in the synagogue you wouldn't be caught dead in. There's an old joke about a Jew who is found stranded on a deserted island in the Pacific. The rescuers cannot un- derstand why he built two synagogues. His reply: "that shul is the one I go to; that shul? I wouldn't be caught dead in it." Even if you are a devotee of one synagogue, make it a point to visit at least two others during the year, to feel a part of the Orlando Jewish community, and to get a bigger picture. It's goodwill, and you never know whom you might meet. The idea of "boycotting" a synagogue or holding a grudge against one is an ideato let go of for 2013. • Visit Israel. For all the dollars you might spend on travel elsewhere, Israelis need those tourist dollars--and you probably need to go to Israel. Think it's not safe because it's on TV sometimes? You are likely far safer in Israel than in Miami, New York, Los Angeles or many coun- tries abroad where Americans aren't welcome. If you've never been--this is the year to go. • Reduce lushon horah. Lushon horah--evil tongue, or gossip--is something sometimes Ex-Muslims By Ed Ziegler In response to the violent actions and intense hatred bymany MUslims toward non-Muslims, my articles frequently attempt to acquaint freedom loving people with the undeniable fact that the goal of these Muslims is to force the world to submit to Islam. Fanatic Muslims consist of approximately 120 million followers of Islam worldwide. Many of their religious leaders advocate killing apostates in accordance with verses in the Quran such as 4:89: "Take not from among them until they fly in Allah's way. But if they turn back seize them and kill them wherever you find them." It is very important to remember the dangerwe • are inwith more than 100 million fanatic Muslins who are willing to kill non-Muslims to force the world to adhere to Islam. There is a small but growing number of ex- Muslims who realized that Islam is not a peace loving religion ,as proclaimed. "Mohammed is God's apostle. Those who follow him are harsh to the unbelievers but merciful to one another." Quran 48:29. By denouncing their Islamic faith, these apostates have put their lives on the line. Also there are Muslims such as Dr. Zudhi Jasser, founder of The American Islamic Forum for Democracy, whose mission it is to advocate for the preservation of the founding principles of the United States Constitution. There is another group "Former Muslims United" (FMU), which seeks to protect former " Muslims from persecution by those who believe in Islamic dogma that requires punishment of apostates. FMU is outspoken against honor" killings and rejects punishment for leaving the Islamic faith. A former Egyptian Muslim, Nonie Darwish, is the director of FMU, a human rights activist and founder of Arabs For Israel. She also authored books: "Now They Call Me Infidel; Why I Re- nounced Jihad for America, Israel and the War on Terror" and "Cruel and Usual Punishment; The Terrifying Global Implications of Islamic Law." Nonie said she converted because she experi- enced love, peace and compassion while attending a Christian school. • She compared this with the harsh teaching in Islamic textbooks and preached in mosques. In mosques you hear the holy man preach, "May God destroy all the infidel and Jews the enemy of God." Nonie stated that terrorism is violent jihad and the duty of every Muslim. She explained that the sword is a symbol for conquer- ing the world. Wafa Sultan, an apostate, was born into a large traditional Alawite Muslim family in Baniyas, Syria. Wafa is a medical doctor, an American author and critic of Muslim society and Islam. I challenge everyone to listen to Wafa's plea (Former Muslims United:Wafa Sultan- YouTube). Her short eye opening narrative will dispel any idea thatyou may have that Islam is a religion of peace. Sabatina-James, a convert to Christianity, came from a strict Pakistani family. She claims that after she refused to marry a man her parents had chosen, her father told her, "The honor of this family is more important than my life or your life" and her mother wanted her dead. James has lived in fear of being murdered for leaving the Islamic faith. Since 2001 she has moved at least 16 times. The Quran and the hadith call for the death of those who turn away from Islam. Even though, throughout the centuries, individuals around the world have openly risked their lives denouncing Islam. Go to http://www.inswering-islam.org/ Testimonies/index.html for a list of such brave people. To listen to a number of former Muslims being interviewed by the Chief Counsel of The American Center for Law and Justice go to http:// www.answering-islam.org/Testimonies/index. html. It is very important to remember the dangerwe are in with more than 100 million fanatic Muslins who are willing to kill non-Muslims to force the world to adhere to Islam. Afshin Ellian a former Iranian Muslim fled the Middle East to the Netherlands. There he became a professor of law, philosopher, poet and out-spoken critic of Islam. Ooe of Afshin's quotes is, "Radical Islamists are so determined to prove Islam is the religion of peace that they are willing to kill for it." Ed Ziegler is past president of the New Jewish Congregation's brotherhood. He can be reached at EdZiegler@embarqmail.com. THE VIEWS EXPRESSED ON THIS PAGE ARE NOT NECESSARILY THE VIEWS OF HERITAGE MANAGEMENT.   CENTRAL FLORIDA'SINDEPENDENTJEWISHVOICE   ISSN 0199-0721 Winner of 41 Press Awards Editor/Publisher HERITAGE Florida Jewish News ( ISN 0199-0721 ) is published weekly for $37.95 per year to Florida ad- dresses ($46.95 for the rest of the U.S.) by HERITAGE Central Florida Jewish News, inc., 207 O'Brien Road, Suite 101, Fern Park, FL 32730. Periodicals postage paid at Fern Park and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes and other correspondence to: HERITAGE, P.O. Box 300742, Fern Park, FL 32730. MAILING ADDRESS PHONE NUMBER P.O. Box 300742 (407) 834-8787 Fern Park, FL 32730 FAX (407) 831-0507 email: news@orlandoheritage.com Jeffrey Gaeser Editor Emeritus Associate Editor Assistant Editor Gene Starn Mike Etzkin Kim Fischer Society Editor Bookkeeping Gloria Yousha Paulette Alfonso Account Executives Barbara do Carmo Marci Gaeser Richard Ries Contributing Columnists Jim Shipley Ira Sharkansky Tim Boxer David Bornstein Terri Fine Ed Ziegler Production Department David Lehman • David Gaudio • Teri Marks Elaine Schooping * Gil.Dombrosky • Caroline Pope only Orthodox Jews discuss as a Jewish value. There is no monopoly on it. Character assas- sination of someone, particularly when they are not in the room to defend themselves, is a terrible thing. We often greenlight ourselves to engage in gabfests, gossip, and lushon horah-- sometimes the second someone leaves the room. Let's try to watch ourselves, and model better conversation patterns for our children. Great minds discuss ideas; petty minds discuss other people. Be great. • Turn off the electronics on Saturdays. I'm not personally Shomer Shabbat, but I see some of the value in not having email, texts or Tweets once a week. By all means turn it off if you go to a synagogue, but even if you don't, try to make Saturday a day that you go a few hours without the Web. You'll probably survive. Get the kids to reduce electronics on Saturdays. Take a walk. • Visit the elderly. Do you not have an elderly relative in Central Florida. So? The elderly need you, whether you are related or not. Someone in a nursing home or care center would love to chat with you. You might enjoy yourself more than you realize. Give the Jewish Pavilion a call at 407-768-9363 and set up an appointment. • Make sure everyone is reading the Heritage Florida Jewish News. Not every city in America has a Jewish newspaper. It is a vitally important cultural institution and binds the Greater Or- lando Jewish community. We can't always keep tabs on the thousands of Jews in our midst. We therefore invite everyone to partner with us in ensuring that this cultural institution is read by all. If you know of a new Subscriber, or wish to order a gift subscription, please call Paulette at (407) 834-8787. Jewish journalism matters. Richard Ries is an account executive and staff writer for Heritage Florida Jewish News. How to choose when giving tzedakah By Aryeh Rubin Also, consider not only which causes to AVENTURA (JTA)--Anyone committed to financial support of Jewish causes likely has grappled with the questions of where to give, what to give, how to give and, of course, why to give. As the end of the year approaches and organi- zations seek those last of our 2012 tax-deductible dollars, the questions are even more urgent. Why grappled? Because there are so many worthy causes, and the need exceeds the re- sources. Our difficult economic times have lent greater urgency to this dilemma. Our small foundation, Targum Shlishi, is faced with more inquiries than ever, many of which are far from the areas we typically fund. People regularly call asking for help to feed their families or pay their mortgages. At the sametime, some Jewish organizations are threatened with closure, and Israel is facing an existential threat with potentially devastating repercussions for the Jewish world. Do we give to a child in need of an extensive "operation or a website on Jewish children's books? A day school that can't pay its teachers or research that could help hundreds of educators do a better job? Fund a family waiting room at a Jerusalem hospital or an online database of Orthodox mental health professionals? These are questions that those fortunate enough to be able to allocate tzedakah think and often agonize about. In the end, it's each according to" his/her conscience. But how do we decide where to allocate limited funds whenwe must choose among Countless worthy and pressing causes? It helps to go back to the basics, to consider the very nature of tzedakah. What is charity? It's feeding the hungry and housing the poor, of course. But charity can also be supporting radical changes in Jewish education; funding an advocacy organization on behalf of Israeli women seeking divorce who are faced with an oppressive rabbinical system; helping seek justice for Nazi war crimes; or producing a biography of Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook. So how does one choose? Evaluate the cause and whether it has other potential donors. Estimate its long-term impact. Will it patch a hole or point the way toward meaningful, long- term solutions? Can the solutions be replicated in other communities? Throughout Jewish history, there have been enlightened individuals, usually behind the scenes, who helped the Jewish people move forward whether away fromslavery, out of the ghetto, toward more equality for women, or in prevailing upon rabbis to ease up on sometimes restrictive laws. In cahoots with select members of the clergy and the academies of learning, these individuals used their knowledge, money or their power to help our people evolve. The people who supported the first Bats Yaakov, an Orthodox Jewish school for girls established after World War I, had to decide whether, for example, to establish an orphanage in Lodz or set up a revolutionary new concept in Jewish education. Just imagine where we would be today if they took the traditional route and opted for the orphanage. The bottom line? Funding for concepts and the improvement of our lot serves as sacred a purpose as helping the unfortunate among us. support, but how to give. For our foundation's first 10 years, we gave almost anonymously-- the highest level of charity, according to Maimonides. Then, in 2002, we decided to go public to cultivate a higher profile. We did this for several reasons: We felt the type of venture philanthropy we were pursuing was important and innovative, and we were motivated to share our work and inspire others to take similar ac- tions. We wanted to advocate for some of our grantees by publicizing their work and encour- aging additional support. We hoped to partner with other philanthropies 6n certain causes. Given the above considerations, how do we arrive at a decision? How does one justify giving a certain sum of money to a food program in Jerusalem and 20 or even 50 timesthat amount to finding the last of the Nazi murderers, or to a movement that encourages a partisan agenda? At Targum Shlishi, which offers modest grants to organizations dedicated to innova- tive problem solving in the areas of education, women's issues, Israel and justice for Nazi war crimes, we use several criteria. We consider not only the proposal itself, but how many people and foundations support it. Is the idea sellable? Will there be an annual dinner with an honoree who will draw a crowd? Is the cause appealing to the masses? If the answer to any of these is yes, we believe they don't need us. If, on the other hand, the organization has an idea that is too unconventional to attract mass support but could have wide-reaching implications if successful, that organization is likelier to get our help. Our heart is with innovative initiatives that have the potential to positively change the status quo. That doesn't mean that longstanding, well- funded Jewish organizations are unimportant, although some are bloated and bureaucratic and others have outlived their usefulness. Many do work that is critically important. If they didn't exist, we would not have the freedom to support the innovators; instead, our resources would have to go to basic survival and humanitarian needs such as feeding the hungry and running the senior citizen homes. Thus, our goal: support ideas, organizations, individuals who can make a difference. Take risks and midwife that spark. If we are lucky, we'll help start a revolution in a particular area that needs it. But even if not, and the promise of a project or organization isn't realized and all it does is get the conversation going, the mission is half accomplished. We are living in a unique time in Jewish his- tory. We have the most prosperity, freedom and power that we have had in 2,000 years. Yet this is also a dangerous time: Our enemies wish to destroy us, and the cultural demons--the at- tractions of secular society--are leading many of us down the path of assimilation and apathy. Clearly, our approaches to the challenges facing the Jewish people have not been effective. We need to explore new ideas. We all must reassess our giving, and allocate a portion of our tzedakah to creative individuals and orgaiaizations looking for new approaches. If we don't rock the boat and encourage our leadership to take us in a new direction, we will find ourselves in dangerous waters. Aryeh Rubin is the director ofTargum Shlishi and a board member of JTA.