aired June 21, 2015 on Dave’s Gone By. Youtube clip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bwhh_GkJs8g&feature=youtu.be
Shalom Dammit! This is Rabbi Sol Solomon with a Rabbinical Reflection for the week of June 21, 2015.
After World War II, the nation of Israel was so depleted that Hitler’s final solution felt most of the way there. But we survived, and at least the way the Orthodox are being fruitful and multiplying, we’re on the right track, and on the welfare track, but still. . . We also must be grateful for converts: people from other religions who are crazy enough to switch from Benson and Hedges to Bernstein and Hedgowitz. Sammy Davis Jr., Elizabeth Taylor, Tom Arnold, Joan Lunden, Helen Reddy, the late Anne Meara–they all put down the rosaries and picked up the rugelach.
Most of them did this for marriage. The nice Jewish boys these women hijacked from their mothers, the boyfriends said, “Look, I’d like to marry you, but the idea of a Christmas tree in the living room, or our baby, Herod, taking communion–it’s just too much. It’s like Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof tolerating every obstacle except intermarriage. Jewish boys will date a debutante, they’ll shtup a shiksehs (if they’re lucky), and they’ll even co-habitate with a Catholic. But when you bring marriage into it and the continuation of the Jewish race, well, it’s easier for you to give up Jesus than me to swear off Purim.
Now, the issue of who is a Jew–convert or otherwise–has been plaguing the various sects of Judaism for decades. For some, if your mother’s Jewish but your daddy’s not, fine, have a brisket. If your daddy’s Jewish and your mommy’s not, goodbye, get a ham sandwich. If they’re both Jewish, but they like mayonnaise and sailboats, that’s confusing. Talmudists wrangle with all sorts of permutations to ensure the so-called purity of Jewish lineage. I understand the impulse, but from where I stand–which is usually three inches away from the refrigerator–I say we must welcome those who wish to join our people. It’s not as if we have such a surplus of Jews that we can afford to turn away a few hundred. So if converts are willing to abide by the rules–and I don’t even mean kashrut, daily prayers, and the holidays–I just mean no New Testament and, at 68, you have to move to Florida. If you’re willing to be part of our misunderstood, maligned but magnificent people, by all means welcome. Bring pastry.
I mention all this because news broke last week that Jenna Jameson—oh, don’t make believe you never heard of her—Jenna Jameson, the former pornographic actress, will be converting to Judaism. She’s marrying an Israeli Jew, a diamond merchant noch besser, and to make him happy–though I’m sure she makes him happy in other ways–Jenna has begun keeping shabbos, cooking Jewish foods, and doing all the things a Jewish wife does, like . . . bitching and nagging.
Some Jewish feminists are not happy about adding Jenna Jew-ison to the fold. They ask, “How can this woman who’s had so much sex on camera become Jewish, since Jewish women never want sex anywhere?” These ladies find Jameson’s behavior degrading to women, not to mention that her husband to be is a typical Jewish man: instead of going out with dumpy J-Dates, he has the hots for a skinny blonde shikseh.
I object to this objection to Jenna Jameson’s years as a sex object. Who among us, Jewish or not, is without blemish or has no kinky fetishes? Me, I like to dip my testicles in warm borscht while I’m being spanked with a yad. As did Rashi, by the way. Let he who is without sin throw the first stone. The rest of us will enjoy her skin and grow the worst boners.
For even if Jenna Jameson had not retired from the intercourse industry, what’s so terrible and anti-Jewish about her past? She showed off her beauty? She gave men a thrill? She proved that a tuchas could be used for more than constipation and proctology?
I just hope that if she ever goes back into the porn business, she’ll bring some Jewishness into her films and even her film titles. Instead of her famous, “Where the Boys Aren’t,” she could do, “Where the Goys Aren’t.” Instead of “Jenna’s Built for Speed,” she’ll do “Jenna’s Built for Shopping.” Instead of “I Love Lesbians” she could do . . . well, she can still do “I Love Lesbians”; that totally works for me.
So if Jenna Jameson Judaifies, God bless her, literally. If some frummie wommies resent her intrusion into our culture, maybe that isn’t prudishness at all. Maybe they just feel threatened by a woman who made it rich on her own, can whip up a gourmet meal, can boink like a buffalo and is used to faking it, and doesn’t mind putting something in her mouth bigger than a Midol once in awhile. So welcome, Jenna Jameson, and baruch habah, which literally means “blessed is the comer.” You may find it hard at first, and sometimes you’ll blow it, but I hope you can feel me deeply behind you.
This has been a Rabbinical Reflection from Rabbi Sol Solomon, Temple Sons of Bitches in Great Neck, New York.
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