Over the past year, we at A Wider Bridge have had many lively discussions (and occasional disagreements) over the nature of stories, features, and content to present here in our online magazine at awiderbridge.org. As in the editorial process for any publication, there are questions of what’s appropriate, news-worthy,and of interest to our readers. But unlike a newspaper, A Wider Bridge is an organization with a message, a mission, a passion. And our “readers” are not just readers, but a community.
A Wider Bridge’s work is to “Build LGBTQ Connections with Israel,” and so our online magazine certainly stands at a busy intersection – and often a controversial one. Sharing ideas about LGBTQ life always stokes passions. Discussing Israel, the place of Jews amongst the nations, is never a simple, straightforward topic. Put these two together and things REALLY get interesting. And they SHOULD get interesting.
One type of content in particular has raised some questions among our readers: namely some of the “lighter,” humorous, “sexy”, or celebrity focused stories that we include from time to time. These types of stories are popular on social networks and throughout the J/LGBT world. Yet some members of our community ask, “What does this silly stuff have to do with the serious, important goals of an organization like A Wider Bridge?” “There’s so much of this stuff all over the place. Why do we need it here too?”
We think that the very name of our organization answers this question: A Wider Bridge. A span to a destination where the J/LGBT community becomes closer, across orientations, across generations, across oceans. But a path broad enough to accommodate a community so diverse that challenging and sometimes painful subjects of oppression and suffering mix freely with uplifting stories of perseverance and triumph. And a path wide enough to allow all of this to march side-by-side with laughter and light-hearted appreciation of ALL of who we are.
That means that you can find in A Wider Bridge’s magazine, all sorts of news: From Israel legalizing surrogacy for gay couples to features on a gay “hot bachelor” or a sexy “Israeli Girls” photoshoot.
We choose to celebrate those who express their hopes and dreams through conferences and rallies – as well as through outrageousness and ripped abs. If the suffering and survival of the Jews and the LGBT world teaches us anything it’s that there’s no Torah without laughter. This Bridge is Wide enough for it all.
The traffic to awiderbridge.org, which is updated daily with all of the J/LGBT stories from around the world, has gone up dramatically in the past year as a result of your interest and your loyalty, and we thank you for that, as well as for your continued support of our work and our mission.
I invite you to suggest more stories to me at firstname.lastname@example.org, to continue to send us your thoughts about our website, and to keep coming back.