Statewide Study - The Wilmington Coup of 1898

If you had a similar reaction to us in January of 2020, you were completely glued to your phone or computer as you watched an organized white nationalist formation take over the US Capitol building - intent on inspiring fear, violence, and stopping democratic process.  

Here is the thing: it is of vital importance to remember that we’ve seen this before. In this country. In our state. As Black and Brown progressive political power is built, there is a violent white political reaction. We know this from post-Reconstruction America. Look no further than our own state for one of the most violent white supremacist coups of that time, Wilmington, NC in 1898.

Led by board member Ray Katz and organizer Brandon Mond, our statewide community gathered on January 19th - the day before Inauguration Day - for a political education program on the Wilmington Coup of 1898. You can read more about this day in Black history at this link or by watching the recording of our virtual gathering below. 

CJJ’s response to January 6th, aside from continuing to take action to defend our democracy, was to call our membership into a collective study of this history. We must take a hard look at the past in order to move strategically now, and build a better tomorrow with our Black and Brown siblings.


CJJ-Triad Leaders Celebrate Their First Chapter Meeting

Member leaders met this past week to get to know each other, learn from our community partners about the campaign to stop the eviction of the Hiatt Street residents and how we can get involved, and made plans for CJJ-Triad's activity in 2022.

Want to get involved? Sign up for an upcoming new member orientation or chapter event at this link


Meet Our Interim Executive Director

This email from Interim Executive Director Abby Lublin went out to our entire email list on January 25, 2022.

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Moving together after synagogue attack

We Keep Us Safe

This email from Rabbi Salem Pearce and Abby Lublin went out to our entire email list on January 18, 2022.

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ED Transition

CJJ Board President Meredith Cohen (she/her) made the following announcement on January 12. 2022.

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How We Respond to Antisemitism

The following message was sent out to Triad-based participants of the Antisemitism Listening Project from members of CJJ-Triad. We believe strongly in this powerful message in response to blatant antisemitism. It has been lightly edited by staff for context. 

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Ocho Candelikas: A Special Musical Performance

Last week during Chanukkah, the CJJ members of the Durham-Orange County Chapter celebrated the winter holiday with a performance of the Ladino language song "Ocho Candelikas". You can enjoy the song performed by chapter members Susan Cohen and Peter Goldberg below.

"Ocho Kandelikas" ('Eight Little Candles') celebrates the holiday of Chanukkah and was written by the Bosnian-born composer Flory Jagoda in 1983. The song is sung in Ladino, a language derived from Old Spanish, and describes a child's joy of lighting the candles on the menorah. 

Lyrics for the song can be viewed at this link

Reflections on the American tradition known as Thanksgiving

During this week of the American federal holiday known as “Thanksgiving” I spent time heeding the call of Indigenous community connection and - yes, even Indigenous content creators - to seek out truth telling of their people and the history of this land. My conclusion of the truth is that genocide and mass displacement happened here.

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Thank You Judy and Frank

You are not obligated to complete the work, but neither are you free to desist from it.
Rabbi Tarfon, Pirkei Avot 2:21

Carolina Jews for Justice’s founders Judy Leavitt and Frank Goldsmith have shepherded the organization from its humble beginnings in 2013 to the robust state organization it is now. We are enormously grateful to them for their vision and leadership, as they have worked tirelessly to establish a Jewish grassroots network working towards a just, fair, and compassionate North Carolina. As they step back from their leadership now and transition to new revised roles, they share their wisdom about CJJ.

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Songs of Hope and Justice

CJJ and Jewish for Good members recently shared in some joyous rest together over Zoom between Shabbat and the week. Members were led in Havdalah by Neshama Littman, and heard some Yiddish folk songs from Jane Peppler. Local singer-songwriter Jess Klein closed out the night with some original tunes. Enjoy!