The Shortest Month of the Year? Could have fooled me! This month was so jam-packed full of fun. Here’s some of the great things that happened in February.
- New Achvat and Hineinu Cohorts
- This month, a Achvat Amim’s Spring Cohort moved into their apartment in Jerusalem, and a new Hineinu cohort has begun their sustained solidarity project in the South Hebron Hills. Give them a warm ATL welcome!
- Climate Glam Drag Ball
- One Climate and Imbala hosted the Climate Glam Drag Ball at HaMiffal on the 17th. Attendees are reported to ‘have had a jolly gay time’. And the photographer took a really nice photo of me! You can find that photo and other photos from the event here.
- Sheikh Jarrah Safety Training and Demonstrations
- This month, as in past months, ATL has been a consistent presence at the weekly Friday demonstrations in Sheikh Jarrah. Some members began organizing a meetup at Imbala before going to the protest, helping provide for community safety with informative training sessions and a buddy system. To all involved, thanks 🙂
- Work Days and Overnights in Umm Al-Kheir
- Work Days and overnight shifts in the South Hebron Hills have continued to be a staple of ongoing opportunities for solidarity. Fun, friends, food, physical labor, fighting fascism!
Oh When the Saints Go March-ing in
After such a great February, we can’t wait for the fun to come in March. See some activities with links for registration below.
- Rosh Chodesh Healing Justice Circle
- The Rosh Chodesh Healing Justice circle is a place for activists and allies of all genders, religions, and nationalities to cultivate a community of shared resilience and spiritual healing. We will explore what healing justice looks like through a diasporic Jewish lens with gratitude and respect to the southern Black organizers, activists, and educators who created this framework for movements to address collective harm and trauma. Register here!
- Community Safety and Sexual Violence Training
- Community Safety and Sexual Violence Training part 2 is happening on March 11! (even if you weren’t at part 1). We want everyone in the collective to participate in this seminar, so if you’re planning on being a part of ATL in the coming year, please join us! The training will take place 10:00 – 15:00. We’ll send you the location, which will be somewhere in Jerusalem. If you’re unable to join us for any reason but are planning on being part of the collective in the coming year, please fill out the form so we can follow up with you. Sign up here.
- Sheikh Jarrah Demonstrations
- Weekly demonstrations against the ongoing evictions and demolitions in Sheikh Jarrah are continuing every Friday. ATL Members have begun to meet at Imbala before heading to the demonstration each week. For updates and more information, join the ATL Big Group on Signal using the QR Code!
- All That’s Write, the official blog of All That’s Left (this website) is back online and accepting submissions! Anyone can send a piece they’ve written, of any kind, to be posted on the blog. Details about submission, content, and non-hierarchical editing structure at the Big Meeting 🙂
- Big Meeting
- There will be a Big Meeting on March 24! Stay tuned to the Signal groups for updates as they come.
Interview with Lexie Botzum
Hi! I’m Lexie! I’ve been living in Jerusalem since I graduated college almost three years ago. My time is spent learning & teaching Torah, engaging in solidarity work, and literally nothing else (like, nothing) (maybe occasionally reading a fantasy novel?). Mostly care about Torah & liberation & how the two intertwine.
Who is the parallel universe, evil eyepatch Lexie?
I’ve been told my right-wing shadow self is a woman named (REDACTED) who runs the post-college program at (REDACTED). She lives in (REDACTED) with (REDACTED) children, has Lindbenbaum’s I Can’t Believe It’s Not Smicha!™️, gets into frequent & passionate fights about halakhah, and believes in Jewish settlement of Eretz Yisrael at any cost.
If you got to try being one religion besides Jewish, which one would you be? (Why?)
My default answer for this is Muslim, but it’s a bit of a cop-out—mostly it appeals to me because it seems like the most comparable framework to halakhic Judaism. I like laws and frameworks! And they’re even better at not doing avodah zarah than we are!
Fun hilchos or masoret for non-Shomer people?
I’ll give two random fun halakhot. One has to do with the halakhot of kiddushin, i.e. halakhic engagement. Traditionally a man is mekadesh a woman, and for her to be mekudeshet, she has to consent. So the rabbis wonder: what constitutes consent?
Well! For example. If you offer me some bread and say “let’s get married” and I reply “give your kiddushin bread to that random dog,” I am not mekudeshet! That was me refusing you. If you offer your kiddushin bread and I say “please give it to my dog Cauchy,” I am mekudeshet. Cauchy has accepted it on my behalf, I’ve gotten indirect hana’ah, we’re having a great time. It’s like the halakhic version of when goyim make their pets ring-bearers. But! If I am running away from a rabid dog and you say “would you like this kiddushin bread!” and I say “please give it to that dog!” I am safek (uncertainly) mekudeshet. Perhaps I wanted to marry you, perhaps I just wanted you to distract the rabid dog chasing me down. Who’s to say!
And on a very separate topic: you’re supposed to either cover knives or remove them from the table during birkat hamazon. One source for this has to do with metal and the temple altar, but the Shibolei HaLeket says this practice is based on a maiseh where some dude was benching, got to “boneh yerushalayim,” and was so overwhelmed by grief that he stabbed himself. Later sources note that people are probably no longer righteous enough to be overcome by such pious tzuris, but we cover the knives to remind ourselves that we should be.
Give a shout-out to one Jewish institution you like
I really love the Conservative Yeshiva! It is an incredibly heimishe place of torah learning!
Give a shout-out to one Jewish institution you revile
Can I say something like AIPAC or ZOA or StandWithUs or is that too parve?
Oh also, Eretz HaTzvi.
Niche hobbies or interests we might not know about?
Nothing that niche, to be honest? I was on a Bollywood-fusion dance team in college, which is a medium-known fact.
First celebrity crush?
Don’t think I had any tbh
Last year I made a joking tiktok about my shidduch resume that accidentally went viral on Modern Orthodox twitter. The positive side of it included:
-good cook & baker
-big fan of Torah
-only 1/2 Ashkenazi genes so less likely to give our kid Tay-Sachs
-can posken for our kosher kitchen
-kinda cute idk
-decent seforim collection
-have a cat
The negatives read:
-might not give our kid Tay-Sachs but will def give them mental illness
-proponent of mixed dancing
-will absolutely never make enough money to put the kids through day school
-cannot decide which continent to live on
-might get arrested sometimes idk
-nicer tzitzis collection than u
-like 5 cities in the world with thriving trad egal communities that I’m willing to live in
-will spend all your money expanding aforementioned seforim collection
-can teach the children gemara but 0 practical life skills
-have a cat
TikTok or Twitter?
Twitter for news & doom-scrolling, TikTok for entertainment and gayness.
Comfort show/movie you watch over and over?
I’ve watched Buffy the Vampire Slayer six or seven times through.
חיים מאושרים רק ללא אינטרנט וסרטים?
What is the future of halachik trad egal?
Investing time and energy in supporting/building community for the non-men and the queers and becoming less obsessed with Modox men who eventually deign to become egal.
FMK: Soloveitchik, Spinoza, Schechter?
Not necessarily consistent with my ideology, but fuck Spinoza, kill Schechter, marry Soloveitchik. idk, I think I can change him
Non-fiction: Wretched of the Earth; Decolonizing Israel, Liberating Palestine
Fiction: Uprooted by Naomi Novik—gorgeous and fun fantasy with a surprisingly excellent portrayal of transformative justice. Also, the Lumatere Chronicles.
Hang out along the paths going into Emek HaMatzleva. Tucked away benches and gorgeous views. Good for picnics, dates, sitting alone contemplating life and the eventual heat death of the universe, etc.
Chazak v’ematz, let’s destroy empires and learn Torah, etc. etc.
All That’s Left collab with JewBelong.com
JewBelong.com and the ATL Newsletter have collaborated this month to bring you some hot hot snappy graphics perfect for your Instagram story. Check (and follow) the ATL instagram to see them all!
Mutual Aid (Settler Spending Sunday)
Are you living on stolen land with too much capitalist cash on hand? Assuage some of that neoliberal guilt with the soothing ointment of mutual aid.
Gaza Mutual Aid Collective is on Patreon.
Activists in Tuba are raising money for an Emergency Response Vehicle to rapidly respond and record ongoing aggression from Settlers or Occupation Forces in the South Hebron Hills. To help with their cause, you can find the PayPal link here, or the PayBox link for Israeli bank accounts here.