Jewish Resistance Table

Join us for the
Jewish Resistance Table
launch call on
September 12, 2:30pm ET
 
RSVP HERE

Purpose and Vision:

During a time of unprecedented threats to our democracy and constitution, the elevation of violence against vulnerable communities (including but not limited to immigrants, Muslims, people perceived to be Muslim, people of color, Jews), the rise of white nationalism, and the visible role Jews are playing in this Administration, we need a powerful and compelling Jewish Resistance to meet this moment.

The Jewish Resistance Table is a platform to help us organize and amplify a wide-reaching, morally courageous and effective Jewish response to face this unpredictable and existential time. Rooting our conversations, interactions, and strategies in our Jewish values, the Table will be a space to connect, share ideas, test strategy and generate momentum so that others may join us. While the organizations and formations who join the Table may have significantly different theories of social change as well as methods for addressing our current crisis , we come together with the shared recognition that we believe the Jewish community has a meaningful role to play in mitigating and opposing some of the most egregious changes taking place in our country. You have a role to play! Join us

Outcomes and what this Table IS:

  • Create a more cohesive and/or visible Jewish Resistance/Jewish response effort across the country that is seen and felt by our partners in directly impacted communities, by decision makers and influentials, and by the Jewish community itself
  • Create the space for Jewish organizations and groups to share what we are doing to help us see the big picture and identify the gaps
  • Deepen our individual organization and [potential] collective impact through expert education on critical issues and/or strategy
  • Build and/or deepen relationships among organizations and leaders who don't always work together
  • Provide a space where groups who do not agree on all issues or who strongly disagree on many issues can come together with a defined focus on taking action to protect ourselves and other vulnerable communities in the U.S. during this dangerous political period, to disrupt/slow/block the current Administration's ability to do more harm, and to make progress in places where possible
  • Experiment with and model what it looks like to break down the “red lines” within our community to work towards a common purpose
  • An experiment that will last between 3-6 months, with the option to extend if it is providing value:
    • After 3-6 months Bend the Arc will collect the evaluations from participants and facilitate a conversation among the participants to determine if the table should continue or disband
    • If the conclusion is to continue, we will evaluate how to enhance the form/function of the collaboration (number of calls, who participates, etc) and put those improvements into place for future meetings
    • If the conclusion is to disband, we will reflect on any lessons learned or next steps

What this Table IS NOT:

  • A new organization, coalition or standing network
  • A place to posture, police, or denigrate the people or organizations who join the table even if there is strong disagreement around strategy or tactics (or with any organization on other issues outside the scope of this table’s focus)
  • A place where we need consensus on anything other than our commitment to nonviolent social change rooted in Jewish values opposing the dangers stemming from this unchartered political moment and the current Administration
  • A place to strategize around issues and impact of this Administration and its supporters outside the U.S. (though we live in a globalized world and issues of Israel/Palestine impact people in the US- as do many other issues -this is not the table for that focus and we encourage others to form a different space if those conversations feel needed)
  • Off the record- although it is not intended to be a public facing initiative
  • Partisan (i.e. while much of our focus may be on issues/outcomes that target or originate with the current Administration, this table is not associated with any political party nor does engagement with the table necessitate political and/or electoral participation) 

Group Norms for Participation (starting list, we can add and adjust with input):

  • Commitment to keep behavior and participation aligned with the purpose, vision and desired outcomes of the Table
  • Embodying (through behavior and participation) the value of b’tzelem elohim/holding the inherent value and dignity of each participant
  • Active listening for understanding
  • Embracing a ”yes/and” and “both/and” orientation
  • Make space/take space (self-awareness about sharing the space so that everyone's voices can be heard and included)
  • Confidentiality of statements attributed to any individual or organization, and confidentiality more broadly on a particular topic if requested by the presenter of that topic
  • Assume best intent, attend to impact: willingness to address and productively resolve challenges that come up related to issues of oppression and/or power dynamics
  • Joining this experiment with a spirit of curiosity, generosity, and humility

How will participants in the Jewish Resistance Table meet? Do I need to travel?

  • We will meet monthly, using video conference technology to minimize the barriers to participation. We are aware that forming relationships virtually can be challenging, and we will use the technology and agenda design to provide as much support and connection as possible
  • All participants are respectfully requested to join the call using the video function in an effort to create more connectivity
  • Each monthly meeting will be between 1.5-2 hours. The first meeting is 2 hours 

Who is invited to the Jewish Resistance Table:

  • Any Jewish organization working to oppose the policies/orders/culture shifts catalyzed by this dangerous  Administration and its supporters (knowing that many of these issues are not new, but are playing out in a new and dangerous context)
    • Organizational representatives should have enough institutional power to effectively represent their organization in the meeting (which could involve decision making in the meetings) and have the ability to influence their organizational leadership to take action (i.e. we want to avoid populating the meeting with individuals who have an interest in the topic but who lack the authority and power to engage their institution in any next steps or actions generated at the table)
    • Organizations may send 1-2 people to the meetings but in service to building connectivity and relationships we request consistency in the representatives as much as possible
    • Representatives of each organization commit to sharing back to their organization any information they believe is relevant to amplifying or increasing their organization’s efforts in the Prophetic Jewish Resistance
  • Any individual leader who is not affiliated with an organization but who has a “following” of 10 people (by “following” we mean this leader can consistently influence 10 or more people to take sustained action
  • Any individual leader who has a platform to reach over 100 people to take sustained action, has a track record of effectively using that platform to generate action,  and is using/will use that platform in service to this work

Who is not invited to the Jewish Resistance Table:

  • Funders are not invited to the calls (due to the possibility that participants might have a different dynamic with one another if funders were present), but we may seek opportunities to involve or inform funders knowing they are also partners in this work
  • Media/representatives of the media are not invited to the calls

Roles/Responsibilities:

  • Bend the Arc Jewish Action will be responsible for convening the group and facilitating the meetings
  • Bend the Arc staff will hold all: overarching facilitation, logistics, technology, agenda setting, note taking, etc
  • Depending on topics and agenda items, different leaders/organizations/external experts may join different calls and lead segments or the full call

 

>> Click here to join the next call on September 12, 2:30-4:30pm ET/11:30-1:30pm PT <<