My Jewish identity has been a huge part of my life since I was born. I was lucky enough to grow up somewhere with a large Jewish community. I went to a Jewish summer camp, participated in youth groups, and now go to a college with a relatively large Jewish population. So, while I grew up aware of antisemitism, I’m privileged in that my own experiences of it have been pretty limited.
Unfortunately, this is not super common for American Jews. As the Anti-Defamation Leauge (ADL) reported, antisemitic attacks are only becoming more frequent across the United States. In 2019, a recorded 2,107 anti-semitic incidents took place across the country. This was a 12 percent rise from the year before and the highest number since the ADL began recording.
Antisemitism is widespread across both major parties in the United States. Sometimes, it seems like attacks on Jewish people are coming from all sides. While we would expect a normal president to denounce all types of hate, including antisemitism, this isn’t the case with Trump. Instead, he covers up his antisemitic policies and behaviors with pro-Israel policy.
For his entire presidency, Donald Trump has leaned on being “good for American Jews” because he is “good for Israel.” This week alone, during an annual pre-Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish New Year) call with Jewish leaders, Trump said, “We really appreciate you… we love your country also.”
I'm American. https://t.co/bWUCJBDSKR
— Sam Vinograd (@sam_vinograd) September 16, 2020
This isn’t the first time he has said something like this. Over the last several years, Trump has repeatedly implied that Jewish Americans should be grateful for his actions in the Middle East and his strengthened ties with the current Israeli Prime Minister. And, peace is a great thing, no matter who the President is, part of their job is helping further peace plans whenever possible. My problem isn’t with that, and honestly, I’m not even here to write about conflicts in the Middle East.
My problem is that when Trump views Jewish Americans’ electoral support as tied to Israel, he is perpetuating the idea of ‘dual loyalty.’ The concept of dual loyalty is an antisemitic dog whistle that implies that Jewish people are inherently disloyal and place the global Jewish community over the countries in which they live. In the United States, it is used to imply that American Jews can’t be 100% loyal to America because some of their loyalty is owed to Israel or the international Jewish community.
Trump’s attempts to win Jewish people’s electoral support are all based on the extremely reductive assumption that American Jews’ top policy concern is Israel. While it may be the case for some members of the Jewish community, it certainly isn’t true for everyone. By only attempting to appeal to Jewish voters through Middle Eastern policy, the Trump administration actively ignores dangerous forms of antisemitism in America.
White supremacy and antisemitism are inextricable from each other. We all remember what Donald Trump said after the Unite The Right rally in 2017: “you also had people that were very fine people, on both sides.” Many of the “very fine people” that Trump was talking about were carrying Nazi flags and shouting, “Jews will not replace us.”
Throughout his presidency, Trump has clung to white supremacists’ support, endorsed their actions, and continuously given them platforms. The most recent example of this is Trump’s embracing of the QAnon conspiracy theory, which has blatantly anti-semitic roots. The theory pushes the narrative that the Rothschild family holds control of every bank in America and alleges that a secret ‘elite’ class dominates other important industries such as the media.
A few weeks ago, when asked about the conspiracy group, Trump said, “I don’t know much about the movement other than I understand they like me very much, which I appreciate.” This is just another case of Trump not only dismissing dangerous antisemitism, but giving it a platform.
American Jews are not a monolithic group, and we care about a lot of things. Like I said, the top priority for some Jewish people may be the state of Israel, and that’s ok. However, it is neither mine nor many of the Jewish voters I talk to. In fact, around 75% of Jewish voters supported Hillary Clinton in the last election, and Jewish voters consistently make up a large Democratic party base.
This baffles Trump, who, despite his claims of being a great ally to the Jewish community, said that he thinks that if “any Jewish people that vote for a Democrat — it shows either a total lack of knowledge or great disloyalty.”
If the President actually cared about Jewish voters, he would stop perpetuating the incredibly dangerous narrative of dual loyalty and denounce white supremacy. But, I’m not really holding my breath.
Planning sucks, and bachelorette parties are a ton of work. So we’re taking all the guesswork out of planning a bachelorette party by breaking down top bachelorette destinations. Our guides will tell you where to stay, eat, party, how to get around, and give you a sample itinerary that you can follow. You’re welcome.
For any bride who loves tanning by the beach while drinking rosé, dancing on tables at rooftop parties, and flirting with super-hot Israeli guys before
you’re stuck with one d*ck forever you marry the love of your life, there’s no better destination for a dream bachelorette party than Tel Aviv. This gem of a city is one of the few places we know of that combines all the benefits a city has to offer—shopping, bars, restaurants—and everything we love about beach vacations (doing nothing all day besides sitting in the sun and talking sh*t). So, get your notebooks out and pay attention like Elle Woods trying to get into Harvard Law, because you’re about to get the official Betches Bachelorette Guide to Tel Aviv.
How to Get There
Considering Tel Aviv is almost 6,000 miles away from New York City, getting there is no easy feat—unless your sugar daddy (or actual dad) has a private jet, or you fly business. For the rest of us, though, the first step to a bachelorette party in Tel Aviv means spending about 10 and a half hours (if you’re on the East coast) in an economy seat crammed between screaming children and college kids on Birthright. BUT it’s honestly not that bad if you just watch movies the whole time and have a few drinks. Trust me, the vigorous journey to Tel Aviv is totally worth it. From New York, you can take a direct flight from Newark Liberty International Airport or JFK for about $1,000. If that’s too much, you can take a flight with a connection in Ukraine, France, or Italy. Connecting always kind of sucks, but saves hundreds on the plane ticket. Since you’re probably dropping a rent check on flights alone, you’re going to want to stay for at least a week to get your money’s worth.
If all goes as planned, you and your
minions bridesmaids will land safely at Ben Gurion Airport ready to take over the city that actually never sleeps. Once you grab your luggage and pass customs, you’ll need to take a 25-minute cab drive to Tel Aviv. DON’T take a ride with the drivers sneaking around the airports, mumbling “taxi,” under their breath, even if they’re wearing fancy suits. If you accidentally do, don’t freak out, they won’t do anything to you except rip you off (no, this isn’t Taken). Instead, follow your fellow passengers and wait in line OUTSIDE of the airport for a taxi to Tel Aviv, which should cost no more than 180 shekels (~$50). Ever. If the cab driver tries to negotiate a higher price in his Israeli accent, which he probably will, pull up this article and use the same accent to say no, or in Hebrew, “lo!”
How To Get Around
Honestly, the overall best, most fun, most Insta-worthy, and most cost-effective way to get around Tel Aviv is—bear with me—the electric scooter. Besides the fact that this mode of transportation is environmentally friendly and reduces pollution, electric scooters are an easy way to get around the city’s super heavy traffic. All the locals use them, so DW about looking like a tourist. All you have to do is download an electric scooter app like Lime or Bird, put in your credit card information, and ride. The companies have a 5 shekel (~$1.40) starting fee, and then charge 0.70 shekels (~$0.20) for each minute you’re on the scooter. Still, if you’re not into the whole scooter thing, you can step outside and hail a regular taxi or download Gett, which is the like Israeli version of Uber. If you stay within the boundaries of the city, it’ll cost around 80 shekels or so per cab ride ($23), depending on the driver’s mood.
You can also save your sheks and take the bus using the transportation app Moovit, which tells you exactly what station to go to and how long it’ll take. Tel Aviv is only 20 miles squared, which, since numbers mean nothing to us, is about half the size of Miami. Getting around should be quick, easy, and considerably cheap (a bus ticket is only 6.70 shekels (~$1.90) if you do it right.
Some people prefer renting a car on-demand with AutoTel for 1.7 shekels a minute (~$0.48), which is an app that lets you hop into a random green car, drive to wherever you need to be, and park the car in designated spots for free. But good luck finding parking.
If none of these are doing it for you, most hotels are right on the beach, so walking is also a great option to burn off the tequila from last night if you’re one of those “I don’t go to the gym on vacation” betches like me.
Where To Stay
You’ll probably find the best deals for bachelorette parties on Airbnb, considering you can get an entire apartment to yourself with a balcony you can take Instas on, but having to do the dishes and (god forbid) clean up after yourself doesn’t exactly count as a vacation. So, if you’d rather order room service, soak in a bath, and longingly stare at the totally off-limits overpriced minibar, check out these hotel options.
The Norman: Unlike Drake, I’m starting from the top. This is one of the most expensive hotels in the city (RIP savings), but since you only get married
probs twice once, go big or go home, right? This hotel is everything. The rooms are equipped with an espresso machine, 300-thread count cotton sateen sheets, complimentary homemade treats, and, you guys, fresh flowers. There’s also a world-renowned sushi restaurant that I’ve only been to once considering dinner there is, like, half of my monthly paycheck, but omfg, everything on the menu is mouthwatering.
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Bite me! ❤️ . Signature Tartare Chips @dinings_tlv on our 3rd floor roof terrace. . *NOW OPEN FOR WEEKEND LUNCH TOO * 🎉 03 543 5444. [email protected] . #sushi #telaviv #restaurant #luxuryhotel #japanesefood #awardwinning #culinary #foodporn #goodstuff #freshfish #instafood #datenight #weekend #lunch #dinner #tartare #instalove
The Setai Tel Aviv: This place is an urban resort with only 120 rooms and it will give you and the Mediterranean feel that you can’t get anywhere else. It used to be a jailhouse, but has since turned into a five-star hotel and spa that you’d probably be fine with being held captive in, tbh. The rooms have original stone walls, rainfall showers, and an enormous bed that you might actually mistake for a cloud. Oh, and don’t get me started on the Spa at the Setai. This spa is known for its Traditional Eastern experiences, which basically means they lather you up with heavenly oils until you unwind and relax like the deserving bride-to-be you are. By the time you’re done, you’ll be feeling healthy and glowy, and no one will have any idea you downed copious amounts of rosé
that morning last night.
Hilton Tel Aviv: What can I say about the Hilton? For a more affordable, but still Insta-worthy, hotel, this place is my go-to. It’s located smack dab in the middle of the city, right on the most hopping beach you could ask for. With beach parties, electronic house music, and bottle service, you might think you’re at the Scorpios in Mykonos for a second. Honestly, this hotel is the perfect place for you and your girls to GTL: get drunk, talk sh*t, and lay out.
Where to Eat
Café Popular: Can’t decide between having dinner at a restaurant or getting drinks and appetizers at a bar? This place is both. You get amazing food and the dimly lit lounge atmosphere that makes everyone look good. Order the Dardar cocktail, eggplant falafel, and Foie Gras Baklava. Make a reservation for as early as you can, and ask for seats at the lounge and not at the restaurant, because that’s where all of the hot guys are. Oh, and during the day, this place has the best brunch.
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TYO: As we all know, no bachelorette is complete without a sushi and sake night. Most of the food at this place is raw or grilled, and the salads are delish. Plus, the music is lively and the waiters are cute. Plus it’s right in the center of the city, so it’s close to tons of other great bars and clubs in the area.
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Port Said: This is a Middle-Eastern outdoor restaurant by the most famous chef in the country, Eyal Shani. Order the baked sweet potato and the minute steak, and the French toast for dessert. There’s a catch, though, because sometimes things are too good to be true. The wait time to get a table there is at least an hour if you go for dinner, and they don’t accept reservations. It’s worth it, though, I promise.
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Romano: I’m literally tearing up thinking about this place, that’s how amazing it is. Romano is the perfect spot for you and girls to grab dinner and drinks, and then just stay there to dance. How fun is it to not have to take a cab to another place and wait in line to get in? If you have dinner at the Romano, you’re already in, and most nights they have DJs. The food is to die for, and the atmosphere is hipster meets “we still shower, though.” Perfect combo.
Teder: This place is the downstairs area of Romano, but it’s so good it has its own name. If you don’t feel like spending a fortune on dinner and want something quick and delicious, this place literally has the BEST pizza in the city. There aren’t that many pizza options to choose from, just cheese and vegan (!) and, honestly, that’s all you really need. Sometimes you’ll see Eyal Shani (the famous chef) hanging outside the kitchen, but you probably wouldn’t recognize him considering he isn’t Gordon Ramsay. You’ll be rubbing elbows with other celebrities there too, especially Israeli models… not that you would recognize them either, but still.
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Tonight: staying warm under our winter roof with hot pizza + fiery radio shows ~ Upstairs at the Ballantine’s TMS: Club Media #6: the Rise of the Machines – Analyst & digital mastermind @eyalbason discusses the impact of artificial intelligence & algorithms on the music industry ~ 9pm | free entry At Heder: lo-fi beatmaker @ninjaman420 launches his new remix compilation out on @watashiwa_records ~
Shila: At this high-end seafood restaurant, every entrée is more Instagrammable than the last. Caution: there are four $$$$ on Google Reviews for this place so don’t hate me when you wake up hungover with a v empty wallet.
Thai House: When you’re wasted after a day of drinking, what’s better than stuffing your face and digging into enormous piles of pad Thai, delicious platters of beef pad see ew, and crunchy pineapple chicken? Since you’ll probably be craving Thai food at least once during this trip, make a reservation sooner than later because this place gets packed.
Where to Party
Abraxas Bar: Grungy but still classy, this darkly lit lounge and nightclub is right in the center of the city. Get escorted to your table, order as many tequila shots as you want, and get ready for a night to (not) remember.
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JIMMYWHO Bar & Lounge: This OG Tel Aviv club has been around for a while and is still going strong. Tuesdays and Saturdays are hip-hop night, and if for some reason you’re looking for tourists and 7-foot-tall basketball players, this is where you’ll find them.
Veranda: When it’s hot as hell in Tel Aviv, you probably don’t want to spend your evening outside, right? Wrong. Veranda’s outdoor bar has a magical breeze and the cocktails are amazing. Go here before clubbing to watch the sunset and snap some Instagram stories that your followers will just swipe through anyway.
SpeakEasy: As per my last suggestion, you really can’t go wrong with a rooftop bar. Located on the roof of the same building as the Jimmy Who, Speakeasy is a gem and is considered one of the most exclusive addresses in town. Locals might find it tricky to get in, but they’d never say no to a cute group of American girls on a bachelorette, so don’t even worry about it.
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Emesh: When I think “dancing like a wild child on the bar, accidentally falling off, and then getting back on”, I think of the Emesh. This description may or may not have been just my personal experience, but either way, I totally recommend going to this club for one of the craziest nights of your bachelorette. This place blasts our fave artists, from Beyoncé to Israeli superstar Omer Adam, and I can promise you zero dull moments. Be sure to make reservations on the bar for drinks and food, and let the night escalate from there because whether you like it or not, it will.
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Haiku Skybar at the Lighthouse Hotel: This place is one of the most stunning rooftop cocktail bars in Tel Aviv and also serves delicious sushi. Drinks, a gorgeous view, beautiful people, and sushi? Have I died and gone to bachelorette heaven? What could be better?
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Thursday, Day 1
Pro Tip: The weekend in Tel Aviv is on Friday and Saturday instead of Saturday and Sunday (aka their Sunday is our Monday) so Thursday is fun AF to go out in the city.
- Check in to your hotel, change into your favorite swimsuit, and head to the pool, where you can order drinks and bar snacks, since you’ll probs be super hungry after the flight.
- After bathing in the sun and catching that deep mocha tan only Tel Aviv can offer, head up to your luxurious hotel room and take a nap. You deserve it.
- Wake up and get ready for dinner at Romano, which is the perfect option for Night 1 because it’s also a bar/lounge (see above) so you don’t have to go anywhere afterwards (yay!).
- Thursday night is the night everyone goes out, so if you’re not too jet lagged, get ready for a fun but still considerably chill night.
Friday, Day 2
Pro Tip: everything except bars and restaurants closes early on Friday, so if you’re in dire need of Band-Aids or Advil, make sure you get your errands done before 2pm.
- Wake up, dial room service, and order coffee up to your room while you get ready. Bring a bathing suit in your bag or wear it under your clothes.
- Brunch at Café Popular where you can stuff your face and order mimosas.
- When you’re done, you can walk to Tamara, a smoothie place everyone loves.
- Take your smoothie with you and walk along the Tel Aviv Promenade.
- Spend a few hours at the promenade taking pictures and tanning.
- Go back to the hotel and CHILL.
- Do dinner at TYO.
- Friday night is THE night to go out in Tel Aviv, so while you might be tired, get over it, you can rest tomorrow.
- Take a shot of espresso at the end of your meal, because next stop is Emesh to dance on the table.
Saturday, Day 3
Pro Tip: Saturday is the best day for the beach because nobody has work and everyone just wants to chill and tan and drink under the sun. Bottoms up!
- Wake up and chug four full cups of water.
- Spend the entire day at Hilton Bay beach reading and relaxing. Don’t forget a beach towel.
- You know what’s next—go back to the hotel and NAP!
- Wake up, find something cute to wear, and settle in for some of the best food you’ll probably ever eat at Shila.
- If you’re looking for something a little less intense than the night before, go to the SpeakEasy for cocktails and a rooftop view.
Sunday, Day 4
Pro Tip: Sunday mornings in Tel Aviv are like Monday mornings in the USA, which basically means that everyone’s busy, horns are honking, and traffic is heavy. So why not take it easy today, since everyone has work and you don’t?!
- Sleep in late and enjoy the luxuriousness of the hotel bed like you’re Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman.
- When you’re finally up, dial room service and order breakfast.
- Throw on your bathing suit and drink, tan, and sleep by the pool.
- Have dinner at Thai House (YUM).
- Since you relaxed all day, you will have enough energy to get drinks at the Haiku sky bar and see where the night goes from there.
Monday, Day 5
Pro Tip: Shopping in Tel Aviv means that nobody else will be wearing what you’re wearing for the inevitable return home.
- Hop in a cab, grab a croissant or mini sandwich at Brasserie Bakery, and walk down Dizengoff Street for some hardcore shopping, because what kind of girl party is this if you’re not spending money on unnecessary sh*t?
- Keep going, stopping in stores along the way, until you get all the way to Dizengoff Center, an indoor mall, and spend an hour walking around one of the oldest shopping malls in the city.
- Walk back and grab an authentic Israeli lunch at Port Said.
- Go back to the hotel, shower, get somewhat presentable, and have sunset drinks at the Veranda.
Tuesday, Day 6
Pro Tip: If I haven’t said this yet, make sure you have a water bottle and two Advils by your bed at all times so you don’t faint at the beach.
- Spend the day at the beach eating watermelon and drinking Chablis or whatever.
- Go to the hotel and put on your shortest skirt
- Take a cab to the JimmyWho—it’s hip-hop night, so get ready to dance.
Wednesday, Day 7
Pro Tip: If you want to survive the flight home, pack a bachelorette essentials bag for the flight made up primarily of Advil.
- Scrape yourself out of bed, pack up your sh*t, take a cab to the airport, and hop on a night flight back to reality.
Images: Shai Pal / Unsplash
Just when you thought shit had stopped popping off for one gd second, the president went and messed up the Middle East. Amaze. President Trump has officially recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, and plans to move the U.S. embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. Now obvs, any the Arab-Israeli conflict is like, muy complicado, but here’s why this shit is a BFD:
Why TF Does This Matter
President Trump is the first president to ever recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital since Israel was founded in 1948. This issue is a major shit-stirrer in the region because not everybody agrees that Jerusalem even belongs to Israel in the first place. By agreeing to have our embassy in Jerusalem, the U.S. is basically publicly taking sides in the debate, and if middle school cheer taught us anything, it’s that publicly taking sides always leads to problems.
Why TF Is The President Doing This Now?
Well, basically because he said he would do it during the campaign. Also, because he’s a messy bitch who lives for drama. The president also signed a waver to state that the embassy move won’t even take place for another six months, and potentially won’t happen until many years in the future. So basically, he’s stirring up a bunch of shit with his base and the Middle East for no fucking reason. Six words: messy bitch who lives for drama. What’s new?
WTF Is Everyone Saying About It?
Ever since Trump made the official announcement, Palestinians, and people all over the world, have been freaking the fuck out. If you can believe, a lot of people think Trump’s decision is a total dick move, and are calling out the US for making yet another mistake. UN Security Council members condemned Trump’s announcement, the head of the Arab League called Trump’s decision “dangerous and unacceptable,” and even Trump’s
celeb crush BFF, Vladmir Putin, criticized this decish. Wow, drama.
WTF Happens Next?
Tbh, we might be in for a total shit storm. The plan has been dubbed by Palestinian authorities as the “kiss of death” for the peace process, and will also make it kind of hard for the U.S. to remain a “neutral mediator” in the debate if we’re basically wearing Israel’s friendship bracelet. On the bright side, this is going to make Middle East Peace Envoy/First-Son-In-Law/Soon-To-Be Felon Jared Kushner’s job more difficult, and that’s always a good thing.
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