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Same-Sex Wedding Announcement Causes Stir in Teaneck

NEW YORK (CBS 2) — Avi Smolen and Justin Rosen are less than two weeks away from their wedding in Connecticut, where same-sex marriages are legal. A Jewish ceremony is to follow in Syosset on Long Island.

The Jewish Standard newspaper printed their wedding announcement.

“It was great to see our picture in color and print in the Lifecycle section and and show our marriage being recognized,” Avi Smolen told CBS 2’s Dave Carlin.

But this first for the paper quickly came under fire in the form of angry letters and comments from those in the Orthodox Jewish community, including Rabbi Yehuda Levin of Rabbinical Alliance of America.

“We have a 3,000-year-old tradition of marriage called sanctity … holiness and our religion should not be mocked. Homosexual marriage is a misnomer, which is very, very offensive,” Levin said.

He said he applauded editor Rebecca Boronson when on Monday she reversed the policy on same-sex wedding announcements.

The 79-year-old paper released a statement stating: “We set off a firestorm … We have decided, therefore, since this is a divisive issue, not to run such announcements in the future.”

Then another twist on Wednesday as the publisher of the paper released a new statement apologizing for the apology.

“We believe now that we may have acted too quickly in responding to one segment of the community,” the statement read.

CBS 2 reached out to the editor and publisher by phone and left messages Thursday, but none were returned.

“I think they are in the middle of this tug of war,” Smolen said.

Smolen said the paper’s policy is left vague and uncertain, but he and Rosen won’t spend a lot of time thinking about that.

“For the next 10 days, we have to focus on finishing touches for our ceremony and reception,” Rosen said.

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  • susan

    Ignorance by definition is one being unaware of his/her environment and/or reality. In this instance the ignorance is yours. I’m merely stating facts that the Jewish Orthodox community’s actions speak louder than their words and this newspaper would be wise to accept that their voice will most definitely be heard where this issue is concerned.

  • susan kucher

    I have no problem with this announcement had it been placed in an appropriate newspaper such as the Village Voice. However, the Jewish Standard seems to be an orthodox based newspaper/newsletter based on the articles and ads. If so, logic dictates that if this kind of announcement becomes paper policy, then it will go under. If the paper loses it’s orthodox article writers & readers it will also lose it’s larges advertisors like “Glatt Express” who would probably pull the ad if they lose their market in the paper. The paper has to face facts that this is the way the orthodox community works and always has and will never change it’s beliefs.

  • Oh Hai

    “George Bush says that gay people getting married would violate the sanctity of marriage. Is anybody here married? Does it feel like a gift from God to you?”
    -RIP Greg Giraldo

  • Roy

    what a shonda…………………..who really cares………… this newsworthy……..

  • dexter

    your comments are ignorant and vile, you should be ashamed. doesn’t god teach us not to judge?

    • susan

      not judging just stating facts. is there any intelegent non repetative remark?

  • KPMc

    Good luck guys. Hope you find and keep happiness together.

    I love when people filled with hate think they speak for god.

  • susan baruch

    stop passing judgement. i hope they live happily ever after!

  • oloyede

    these gay needs prayer n repentence from cos’ this is forbiden by God

  • RB

    Re: tt’s comment – How is this an issue of morals? It’s who they are and the lifestyle that goes with it. It may not be your lifesyle or mine, and I’m not even saying you have to be ok with it, but this is certainly not question of morality. What is a matter of morality is spreading hateful messages and ill will towards people who have done nothing to you.

  • Eve

    Straight couples that get married in Vegas after knowing each other for about 3 drunken hours and then later divorce. Oh no.. no offense to sanctity of marriage there. Never.. Curse those horrible, committed, sober gays! They just ruin everything! Them and their planned parenthood too. Just…disgusting…Who plans to have a kid and actually take care of it!? God forbid they take in a child some poor drug addicted straight woman neglected. Just Terrible!

  • joan

    nasty, rabbish, ugly, sin , nonsense, dirty work, foolish, stupid absurd, silly ,
    shameful and the worst action in the world. you should be ashamed of speaking of religion and spreading this type of actions on the internet.

  • Ffoenyx

    just gays and no one else!


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