“Gentile” or “non-Jew”? Or neither?

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We were delighted that The Jerusalem Post picked up one of two JTA stories that emerged from JOI signature program The Mothers Circle, currently being piloted in Atlanta and slated to go national next year. This program helps provide free resources to a group of unsung heroes in our community: non-Jewish women raising Jewish children. But the title which the Post gave to the article—certainly not the one chosen by the reporter or by JOI—is “A Gentile Yiddishe Momma?” To us, this raises the language question once again. At JOI, we are always thinking about language—inclusive language. So we ask the question that is perhaps implicit by the title: Do you prefer the term “Gentile” over “non-Jew”? We don’t like either term and are searching for more inclusive alternatives. What do you think?

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