Is JTA Out of Touch?

Over at Cross-Currents, Eytan Kobre has referenced a recent JTA report as proof that the secular Jewish media doesn’t understand Orthodoxy.

He may be right about his general point (I don’t know) — but this specific comment makes me feel like I don’t understand Orthodoxy. (Maybe I don’t?)

The JTA report in its entirety:

A thousand Orthodox rabbis are sending an emissary to Atlanta to pray for rain.

Rabbi Yehuda Levin will perform an ancient prayer ritual Wednesday seeking divine help to end the drought in the South, the Christian Newswire reported. Levin reportedly performed the ritual in 1986, after which there was four days of rain.

“Orthodox Jews wish to show solidarity with those suffering from the drought and other natural disasters,” said Levin. “We want to kick off a nationwide movement of prayer. Furthermore, we wish to announce a program which we believe could curtail much of the disaster our country has been experiencing.”

Eytan’s response:

I’ve been thinking of posting a piece or two on Jewish media bias and I still hope to do so. In the interim (which, in my case can last months . . .), however, I can’t resist posting the below item from today’s JTA News Bulletin, without comment.

No comment because even a thousand-word post couldn’t possibly make as clear as this item does just how profoundly out-of-touch JTA and other secular Jewish media outlets (who also get much of their material from JTA) are about the realities of Orthodox Jewish life. Unless, perhaps, using its telepathic powers or other forms of divination, it knows things about us that we don’t. (MORE)

I posted a comment at Cross-Currents asking for further explanation. But if anyone else has any ideas, feel free to chime in.

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