The headline at the bottom of the November [2020] “Jewish Rhode Island” issue – “American Jews grapple with profound political shifts” – reminded me of a concern I have with the placement of noun and adjective when referring to our community. The Jewish community in the United States is predominantly referred to as “American Jews.”
Other communities are predominantly referred to as Catholic Americans, French Americans, Irish Americans, Asian Americans, African Americans, etc., but not our community. I have believed for some time that this reverse phrasing promotes and supports a subtle, nuanced and subliminal way that we may be viewed as “the other” by our fellow Americans.
We are the Jewish American community and should be referred to in that way. But maybe is just my mishegas.

David M. Hirsch
Providence, R.I.