MaNishtana’s bio states that he is a writer, speaker, rabbi, playwright and author. It goes on to explain that he is also black, Jewish and Orthodox.
Growing up in the Orthodox community of Monsey, New York, as the son of an African-American mother who converted to Judaism and a white Ashkenazi father who became religious later in life, Isaiah Rothstein knows what it’s like not to fit in.
They were older than me, by at least five years, and I was afraid. Though my Satmar Hasidic neighbors were my friends, their cousins usually approached me with disdain whenever I’d go over for a playdate.
Today I am a yeshiva student studying Torah full time. Before this, I was a Republican candidate for Congress.
But when? and how?! How do I harmoniously keep inclusion as a central value in my life, while also recognizing the need for boundaries?