Archive for the ‘Jewish Vote’ Category

>Endorsements for Obama

October 1, 2008

>Today’s post is not for those easily offended. It’s humorous and serious at the same time. I have to explain these things to some people.

The Jewish Council for Education and Research has endorsed Barack Obama for president. Their spokesperson, at least for their ad is Sarah…Silverman.

“As a community organizer, a law professor, a parent, a state senator, and a United States Senator, Barack Obama has embodied the Jewish community’s strongest values. Barack Obama knows our history as Jewish Americans – one of persecution and immigration, of resilience in the face of tragedy and difficult odds, of hard work and our devotion to education, to strengthening community, and to our country. Barack, whose name comes from the same root as the Hebrew word Baruch, or “blessed,” has traveled to Israel and witnessed Israelis’ determination in the fight against terrorism and their yearning for peace with their neighbors. His commitment to Israel’s security, to the U.S.-Israel relationship, and to Israel’s right to self-defense has always been unshakable…”

Here is the ad, not endorsed by the Obama campaign. The ad is not politically correct, nor is it suitable for work. NSFW, I tell ya.
The Great Schlep from The Great Schlep on Vimeo.

Question. The ad says “Barack” means “lightning.” The web site says “Barack” means “blessed.” Which is true?

Answer: Both.

“Barack” is a word that is shared among several languages. First, it is a word in the Semitic family of languages. As such it has a root in Hebrew (but written baruch), a version in Aramaic (berek), a version in Arabic (baraka).

Barack or Barak means ‘lightning’ in Hebrew. The name Barak is also mentioned in the Bible in the book of Judges. Barak was part of the story of the prophetess Deborah. Baruch (or Baruwk, Baruk, Strong, 1263) and its cognates berek and baraka all mean the same. Strong, 1288, says “barak, baw-rak’, a primitive root; to kneel; by implication to bless God (as an act of adoration), and (vice-versa) man (as a benefit).” Regardless of how one spells the name, it gives two possible and not contradictory meanings. One is “a blessing from God,” and another is “a blessing from God that the individual may pass on to others as a benefit to them.”

Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore made an ad as well. this one is approved by Barack Obama. It’s kind of cute, and Ashton plays pocket pool (!) while speaking.

Sort of brings to mind his performance on Saturday Night Live a few years ago. Now this was on TV, and repeated on Entertainment Tonight.