Mazel tov (or not) — gay wedding announcement brouhaha


The New Jersey Jewish Standard is engaged in a furious debate — with itself and its readers — over whether or not to print wedding announcements for gay unions.

In case you haven’t been following this story, in its Sept. 24 issue, the Jewish weekly from North Jersey published its first gay wedding announcement. That apparently sparked ire among local Orthodox rabbis, and the following week the newspaper issued an apology and promised never to do it again. But that reversal sparked even more furor, prompting the newspaper this week to reverse course — expressing regret for its hasty apology of the previous week. As of now, it’s not clear what the newspaper’s policy will be, (See our news brief recapping the saga here).

Meanwhile, the story has become the talk of the town online and in the NY metro area.

  • The N.Y. Jewish Week surveys other Jewish papers to see what their policies are on printing gay wedding announcements.
  • The Jewish student magazine New Voices interviews one of the grooms, Avi Smolen, whose nuptials with Justin Rosen were the subject of the announcement.
  • The New York Times considers what the story says about tolerance and diversity in Teaneck, the North Jersey community with a dominant Orthodox presence whose readers represent the Jewish Standard’s primary market.
  • Andrew Silow-Carroll, the editor-in-chief of the New Jersey Jewish News, a neighboring Jewish paper in New Jersey, takes the Standard to task for its decisions (and indecisiveness) on the wedding announcement.
  • The Jewish Channel filed this video report with an interview with the couple:


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