Marriage is love.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

“Out of the Closet and into the Streets of Tel Aviv”

Editor's Column, The Jewish Week

The postcard depicts two young men kissing passionately and reads: “Out of the Closet and into the Streets of Tel Aviv.” The information on the back notes that Israel is the only democracy in the Middle East and the one country in the region where gays and lesbians are not persecuted for their sexual orientation.

Another postcard shows an Arab woman casting a ballot, and asks: “Where in the Middle East can Arab Women Vote?” The answer: “In Israel,” where all citizens, 20 percent of whom are Arabs, “share the same freedoms of speech, press, religion and assembly.”

The two postcards are part of a series of posters, billboards and other material — including a 20-minute DVD, distributed in gay and lesbian communities across the United States, focusing on Israel’s relative tolerance of homosexuality — created by a small San Francisco public relations firm called Blue Star PR ( It’s a new nonprofit group that produces pro-Israel and pro-Jewish public awareness campaigns with a decided edge. Some of the material is stirring up controversy, inside and outside of the Jewish community, underscoring the difficult effort to find the right message for the right audience in making Israel’s case....