Weekly Round-Up: March 3, 2017

Author: A Wider Bridge Staff
Published: March 3, 2017

Stay up-to-date with our many communities: Here’s what’s been happening this week in the intersecting worlds of Israeli, LGBT and Jewish life!

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TOP NEWS

Transgender activist and organizer of Miss Trans Israel pageant Israela Stephanie Lev tops A Wider Bridge’s 2017 list of LGBT Israelis to follow on social media. Check out the complete top 10. A Wider Bridge

Lesbian couple Liat and Sean Benishty met in prison when Sean served a 2-year sentence at Neveh Tirtza’s women prison and Liat was a prison guard there. The two appeared at the season premiere of the hit Israeli docu series Baby Boom, a show that tells stories from the delivery room. WDG

Liv Or-Shay shared her story of coming out as a transgender woman on Israel’s i24News. A Wider Bridge

LOCAL NEWS

CALIFORNIA — Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) wrote a letter to DeVos Tuesday asking that she commit to issuing new guidelines for protecting LGBT students. LA Times

INDIANA — Etai Pinkas, an LGBTQ activist from Israel, spoke in Bloomington about the history of LGBTQ rights in the country. Indiana Daily Student

NEW YORK — House of Peace, Jewish-Muslim outreach initiative of LGBT congregation Beit Simchat Torah in New York, gathered to greet worshippers at the N.Y.U. Islamic Center. Villager

OHIO — Steven Greenberg, the first openly gay Orthodox rabbi, will visit Kent State University on Monday to spread the message of inclusion and diversity in collaboration with Hillel and the university’s LGBTQ Student Center. Kent Wired

WASHINGTON DC — Join A Wider Bridge and LGBTQ and allied supporters of Israel for a community cocktail reception featuring alumni of AWB’s LGBTQ Leadership Missions to Israel. Facebook

IN ISRAEL

Dozens of people came to Tel Aviv’s Beit Hachayal (Soldier House) on Thursday evening for the launch of “Israeli Pride Times Two,” a project that aims to double the number of female and LGBT combat soldiers. The Jerusalem Post

ACTIVISM

Jewish organizations are railing against the removal of Obama-era protections for transgender youth. The Forward

Gay Jewish Senator Brad Hoylman wants to strengthen the Dignity For All Students Act to make sure – among other protections – that transgender students are allowed to use the bathroom and locker room of the gender with which they identify. TWC News

CULTURE & ENTERTAINMENT

Alex Galbinski spoke with the authors of a new book that sheds light on what it’s like for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people raising children in today’s world. Jewish News UK

He’s a role model for members for the LGBTQ community, a do gooder and a Bar mitzvah beast: NY Blue Print magazine gives seven reasons to have a Jew crush on Andy Cohen. NY Blue Print

OPINIONS

Atlanta-based educator, activist and writer Robbie Medwed reminds us that according to Judaism, when someone’s life is on the line, we must do everything in our power to keep them safe. The Times of Israel

When she first posted her song on Israeli music and art website “First Stage,” she recieved comments like ‘you’re a disgusting lesbian,’ Now, at 27, aspiring Israeli singer Noy Roitenberg is recording her debut album, and is ready more than ever to come out. Mako Pride

Blue and White Pride‘s new project “Pride x2 to Israel” has been criticized during its opening event and after, by LGBT people who disagree about the role of the Israeli army. Omer Nahmany, the project’s Executive Director, addresses the criticism, saying that the project is not about the political role of the army, but about the army as a fabric of society. A Wider Bridge

On March 1st, Keshet launched Kavod Achshav | For the Sake of Dignity: A Campaign for Trans Youth to mobilize the Jewish community in support of trans youth, in response to the recent federal roll-back of protections for transgender students in public schools. Joy Ladin underlines the urgency of taking action today to support trans students. My Jewish Learning

PHOTO OF THE WEEK

The Israel Air Force posted a Hebrew-language post on its official Facebook page on Sunday featuring a number of pictures of families of career members of the air force under the heading “living here happily.” Timed to mark Family Day in Israel, one of the pictures was of Capt. Adir Gabbai, a gay air force officer, along with his husband, Dean. Haaretz