Vote Jewish! Vote Reform!

This month, as the primary elections make their way to Ohio, there will be no shortage of campaign ads flooding our inboxes, robocalls on our phones and political promises on our television. As always, but particularly in a period of time when anti-Semitism has been more evident and on the rise, we absolutely must bring our Jewish voice to the polls and make sure that we participate in our democracy. I ask all of us eligible to vote in March and in November to take the obligation seriously and make sure that our community’s voice is noticed by our representatives.

But I want to give attention to an election that you will not hear about on television, listen from your voicemail or see on a flyer in your mailbox. Every five years, the Jewish community of the world is asked to participate in the World Zionist Congress Election. These elections have taken place since Theodore Herzl founded what was then known as the Zionist Congress. The election serves to choose representatives from around the world who will serve as the “Parliament of the Jewish People”. This body of 500 representatives meets every ve years to discuss the agenda of World Jewry and to allocate funds to non-governmental organizations in Israel.

Do not get lost in the noise of our political environment. There are a lot of voices, shouting a lot of messages at us. The power to vote requires that we listen, but the act of voting is our chance to speak up. Let’s make our voices heard at home and in our Jewish homeland. It is our obligation and it is the key to a future that speaks to us, wherever we are.