The Jewish religious holiday of Purim is around the corner. The Jewish children are receiving ‘The Purim Superhero’, a children story book as a gift from the PJ Library. It’s the first Jewish children’s book with LGBT characters.
Elizabeth Kushner, the author of ‘The Purim Superhero’, is a lesbian Jewish mother who lives in Vancouver, Canada with her spouse Lise and daughter. She wrote the book to enter picture book contest held by Keshet, a Jewish lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) organization – and won the contest.
The book was published by Kar-Ben publishing last year. It’s based on the story of a Jewish boy who turns to his two fathers for advice after his Hebrew school classmates tell him he cannot dress up as an alien for Purim.
The PJ Library first decided to donate the book to Jewish families on a request basis only – in order not to offend the Orthodox (Torah) Jewish families which still hang-on to the “outdated” belief that homosexual activity is against the Moses Law (Torah). But after a furious campaign by the Jewish LGBT groups and the same sex couples with children, the PJ Library decided to send The Purim Superhero to all.
“As a proud Jewish mother and a proud lesbian, I aim to surround my children with a rich Jewish life. LGBT families are in synagogues. We are in Day Schools. We are in Jewish summer camps and Hebrew schools. Wouldn’t it be wonderful for the children you serve with PJ Library to see us in a book too,” Naomi Sunshine wrote to PJ Library, The Jewish Week, March 6, 2014.
The American conservatives, reform and reconstructionist Jewish communities all recognize same-sex marriage and allow openly gay and lesbians to be ordained as rabbis. A 2013 survey carried out by Israel lobby group, the American Jewish Committee (AJC) found that 71% of American Jews support same-sex marriage being legalized in America.
Purim (lot) or lottery used by Haman to choose the date for the massacre of Jews living in Persia – is one of the three most important Jewish religious holidays (the other being Passover and Chanukah). Purim is usually celebrated in the month of March (Adar 15) each year. According to Book of Esther (Magillat in Hebrew)), the Crypto-Jew Queen of Persia, Esther, pleaded to her husband, King Ahasuerus (who did not know that his wife was Jewish), to save Jews living in province of Shushan, who were declared ‘disloyal’ by King’s prime minister Haman. With the blessings from the King, Queen Esther and her adopted father, Mordechai, armed the Jews, who killed Haman and his family and carried out slaughter of over 75,000 Persian (Goyim) civilians. Haman’s entire estate was given to Esther and Mordrchai replaced Haman as country’s new prime minister.
It is not a coincident that American Jewish extremist, Dr. Baruch Goldstein, founder of Jewish Defense League (JDL), chose Purim 1994, to murder 40 Muslim worshippers inside Hebron mosque – or Bush ordering the killing of hundreds of thousands of Iraqi Muslims and Christians (Goyim) on Purim 2003 (March 18-19, 2003).
This year Purim begins the evening of March 15 and ends at sundown March 16.