Connect with us

Uncategorized

The battle for Jewish hearts and minds returns to the printed page

(JTA) — The last 20 years haven’t been kind to Jewish journalism, with local weeklies shrinking or folding and even big city papers suspending their print publications and going completely digital. Publishing online has allowed these papers to cut costs and given them the potential for a wide reach — albeit a potential undermined by an increasingly siloed and ideologically polarized market for news and ideas

Yet still there are those who aren’t giving up on print — at least in small, carefully targeted batches. This spring has seen the launch of two Jewish journals — Masorti, a reboot of the former Conservative Judaism, and Fragments, a product of the left-leaning Jewish human rights group T’ruah. The two magazines join a small but scrappy fraternity of journals aiming to steer the Jewish conversation.

“We’re the people of the book. I think print is having a moment,” said Rabbi Lev Meirowitz Nelson, who as director of Emor, T’ruah’s affiliated think tank, edits Fragments. “In the midst of all the [digital] bombardment people experience, there’s something very grounding about picking up a hard copy and being able to mark it up or carry it with you.”

Of course, Fragments and its more established cousins — from a legacy Modern Orthodox quarterly like Tradition to the interdisciplinary journal Modern Judaism are all available online, and few print more than 1,000 copies at a time. The goal, the editors and publishers of some of the newer publications told me, is to establish a brand and repair what each one said was a broken communal discussion about Israel, domestic politics and religion.

“I hate what’s become of discourse in Jewish life, which largely goes on on Twitter and other places like that,” said Mark Charendoff. “I think Jews like longform discussions, and we’ve become very, very impatient. I wanted to carve out a space for that long type of writing and reading.”

Charendoff is president of the Maimonides Fund, which publishes Sapir, perhaps the best known of the newish journals. It has a high-profile editor — Bret Stephens, the conservative columnist on the New York Times opinion page — and a penchant for hot-button topics that rally conservatives and enrage liberals. Recent issues of the two-year-old journal have focused on “cancel culture” and a campus environment that most of its contributors consider hostile to conservatism and Jewish life. 

“I think society and the Jewish community has become so polarized that people are afraid of articulating controversial views. We need to take a breath and say, ‘You’re not going to be harmed by reading something you disagree with,’” said Charendoff. 

T’ruah believes there are plenty of controversial views being aired, but mostly on the right: It has explicitly positioned its new journal as a “necessary alternative to well-funded right-wing Jewish publications.” The news release announcing Fragments did not name those publications but presumably they include Sapir; Mosaic, supported by the right-leaning Tikvah Fund; and Tablet, which is published by Nextbook, Inc., whose president, Mem Bernstein, is on the board of Tikvah and is the widow of its founder. Tablet has published writers from across the political spectrum, but has drawn howls from the left for its frequent articles denouncing “wokeness” and cancel culture and a recent piece questioning the motives of donors who support gender-affirming care for trans people.

(Another journal, The Jewish Review of Books, was initially backed by Tikvah, but recently spun off under its own foundation.)

The premiere issue of Fragments includes essays on concepts of freedom by Laynie Soloman, a director at SVARA, an LGBTQ yeshiva based in Chicago, and Joelle Novey, the director of an interfaith environmental group in the Washington, D.C. area.

Nelson sees two audiences for Fragments: “It’s definitely speaking to the left and offering a deepening of language and of conversation around Jewish sources and Jewish ideas,” he said. “And it’s an effort to speak to the center, which often shares our values and can be spooked by the language they see coming from the right.”

Fittingly for a magazine published by a group formerly known as Rabbis for Human Rights, Fragments leans into Jewish text and religious perspectives. That sets it apart from Jewish Currents, a legacy journal of the Jewish left that, after a relaunch in 2018, now aims for an audience of young, left-wing, mostly secular Jews who, when not anti-Zionist, are deeply critical of Israel. Arielle Angel, editor in chief of Jewish Currents, has said that the magazine has become “a reliable and essential space for challenging, rigorous, surprising work that has shifted the discourse even beyond the American Jewish left.” 

The aspiration that the “discourse can be shifted” by gladiators writing for small magazines harkens back to the post-World War II period, a sort of golden age of Jewish thought journals. Jewish and Jewish-adjacent publications like the Menorah Journal, Partisan Review, Commentary and Dissent provided a launching pad for an ideologically fluid cohort of “New York intellectuals” that over the years included Sidney Hook, Hannah Arendt, Lionel Trilling, Saul Bellow, Irving Howe, Delmore Schwartz, Norman Podhoretz, Paul Goodman, Midge Dector, Jeanne Kirkpatrick and Alfred Kazin. 

Partisan Review was among a spate of magazines that offered a platform for Jewish intellectuals in the years immediately after World War II. (Open Culture)

While writers like these tackled Jewish issues, or general issues through a Jewish lens, many of them influenced the wider national conversation. Angel has said she has drawn inspiration from Commentary: Founded in 1945 by the American Jewish Committee, the magazine became hugely influential in promoting neoconservative ideas and thinkers in the 1980s and ’90s. 

The “golden age” was an explosion of Jewish creativity, and political influence, that would be difficult to replicate today. Benjamin Balint, a former editor at Commentary and author of a history of the magazine, says the flowering of Jewish journals in the mid-20th century was the result of “terrific pent-up pressure among the children of immigrants who were pushed down for so long and were able to explode into the mainstream.” Small magazines “provided that release — pushing critics and writers into the larger culture,” said Balint, who previously edited Sources, the journal of the Shalom Hartman Institute of North America.

A long piece in Tablet recently argued that such Jewish influence is in steep decline “anywhere where American Jews once made their mark,” from academia to Hollywood to government. Author Jacob Savage doesn’t blame the loss of the immigrant work ethic, however, but rather “American liberalism” for marginalizing Jews. 

Whatever the cause, few of the newer journals aspire to that kind of influence on the larger culture, and acknowledge that they are trying to shape the conversation within the Jewish community. 

“We believe that Jewish leaders need great ideas to do their work well,” said Rabbi Justus Baird, senior vice president for national programs at the Shalom Hartman Institute of North America and publisher of its journal Sources, launched in 2021. “The way we invest in ideas is by cultivating a large group of Jewish thinkers and scholars who are doing not just the scholarship for its own sake, but really trying to work collaboratively on how Jewish thought can apply to the challenges facing the Jewish people.”

The Hartman Institute (which also counts the Maimonides Fund among its long list of major donors) is a religiously pluralistic, liberal Zionist think tank with outposts in New York and Jerusalem. Recent essays in Sources include lengthy essays by Yale religious studies professor Christine Hayes on the ethics of shaming and Hartman scholar Mijal Bitton on how relationships can heal the breach between the Diaspora and Israel.

Part of Hartman’s goal in publishing the journal is to provide a space for such long-form articles, filling what Baird calls “a gap between the quick, super-responsive, news-oriented Jewish publication landscape, the hot takes about what is going on, and the academic Jewish work.”

“It’s a space where ideas can really percolate,” said Claire Sufrin, who now edits Sources. “The written word, the printed word is there and can be shared in that way and people can engage with it over and over again.”

Masorti, the relaunched journal of Conservative Judaism, is also trying to bridge a gap, in this case between Jewish scholarship and the synagogue.

“Rabbis have responsibilities to serve as congregational leaders, and also the obligation to engage in Jewish learning and scholarship,” said Rabbi Joseph Prouser, the editor of Masorti.

The original Conservative Judaism was published from 1945 through 2014. The reboot is sponsored by the movement’s Rabbinical Assembly and its five seminaries, including the Jewish Theological Seminary, the New York flagship. Its readership base is rabbis and cantors affiliated with the movement. 

Masorti arrives at a critical time for the Conservative movement: In an essay in the first issue, its associate editor, Rabbi Jonathan Rosenbaum, says what was once America’s largest Jewish denomination is at a “precipice.”

“At its summit, the plurality of [North American] Jews identified with the Conservative movement, something like 40%,” Rosenbaum said in an interview. “There was something like 1.6 million Jews who were thought to be part of the Conservative movement up to maybe the late ‘80s, early ‘90s. Today, there are about 500,000.

“Part of the goal of the journal,” he said, is to “look at the problems and the means of solving them.”

In the past the Conservative Judaism journal had been a forum for debate within the movement. It published dueling papers, for example, on the decision to ordain women and what is and isn’t permissible on Shabbat. Prouser says he’ll uphold that tradition of dissent: The current issue features an essay by Michal Raucher, a Jewish studies professor at Rutgers University, who criticizes the movement’s establishment for embracing a justification for abortion that doesn’t go far enough in recognizing the bodily autonomy of women (an argument she also advanced in a JTA oped).

And Prouser does hope these arguments are heard beyond the movement, positioned between traditionalist Orthodoxy and liberal Reform. “One of the beauties of the Conservative movement is that we can talk to people to our right to our left right, we can talk to the entire spectrum of the Jewish community,” he said.

The editors of the new journals agree that there are fewer and fewer spaces for civil conversation among Jews, blaming the filter bubble of the internet and the take-no-prisoners style of current political debate. And each said they would like to be part of the solution.

Sufrin, the editor of Hartman’s journal, calls it a “bridge, because people can talk about it together, they can engage with the ideas together, and it’s in that conversation that they can develop a relationship and ultimately, talk together more productively.”

The question is whether it is too late: At a time when algorithms reward readers with the kind of material they are likely to agree with, will even an elite reach across ideological divides and listen to what the other side is saying? When institutions — from government to religion — regard compromise as surrender, who dares to concede that your ideological opponent might have a point?

“Difference and disagreement are productive when we engage with the best versions of those with whom we disagree,” Hayes writes in Sources. That sounds like a call to action. Or is it an epitaph?


The post The battle for Jewish hearts and minds returns to the printed page appeared first on Jewish Telegraphic Agency.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Uncategorized

Hating Israel Isn’t New; How the CIA and State Department Undermined the Jewish State

“Teddy Roosevelt’s great-great-great grandson is an anti-Israel protester at Princeton,” blared a New York Post headline on May 4, 2024.
The Post reported that Quentin Colon Roosevelt, an 18-year-old freshman, and descendant of the 25th President, is an anti-Israel activist at the Ivy League university. But far from being hip and new, Quentin’s brand of anti-Zionism is old hat — he is merely continuing a long family tradition of anti-Israel activism.
There is an abundance of literature on Franklin D. Roosevelt’s views on Jews and Zionism, the belief in Jewish self-determination. Both FDR and his wife Eleanor had made antisemitic remarks. In a private conversation in 1938, then-President Roosevelt suggested that by dominating the economy in Poland, Jews were themselves fueling antisemitism. And in a 1941 Cabinet meeting, FDR remarked that there were too many Jewish Federal employees in Oregon. In his final days, FDR promised Saudi leader Abdul Aziz Ibn al Saud that he would oppose the creation of Jewish state in the Jewish people’s ancestral homeland.
FDR is the president who led the United States to victory against Adolf Hitler. He also employed Jews in high-ranking positions in his government. But he is also the president whose administration failed to save more Jews fleeing Nazism, and who refused to bomb the railway tracks leading to Auschwitz and other death camps where millions of Jews met a ghastly end. Accordingly, it makes sense that his beliefs regarding Jews have been the subject of books and belated study.
Less examined, however, is the Oyster Bay branch of the Roosevelt clan, and their beliefs regarding Zionism. In part, this is easily explained by the unique place that FDR holds in American history. He is the only president to serve four terms, and presided over both the Great Depression, World War II, and arguably the beginning of the Cold War. His branch of the family, the Hyde Park Roosevelts, were Democrats and remained active in public life for decades after his 1945 death.
At first glance, the Oyster Bay Roosevelts were more of a turn of the 19th century affair. They were Republicans, and their scion was Teddy Roosevelt, a war hero turned governor of New York state who, thanks to an assassin’s bullet, found himself as the nation’s leader in 1901.
The famously ebullient Roosevelt helped redefine the country’s idea of a president, and served as an inspiration for his cousin Franklin. But Teddy largely presided over an era of peace and tranquility, not war and upheaval.
Teddy was a philosemite. He was the first occupant of the Oval Office to appoint a Jewish American to the Cabinet. He championed the rights of Jews, both at home and abroad, and was harshly critical of the numerous pogroms that unfolded in czarist Russia.
As Seth Rogovoy has noted, Roosevelt’s “special relationship with Jews was forged during his time serving as police commissioner in New York City, a post he assumed in 1904.” When an antisemitic German preacher named Hermann Ahlwardt gave speeches in the city, Roosevelt assigned a contingent of Jewish police officers to guard the man.
Roosevelt was also a Zionist. In 1918, shortly after the Balfour Declaration, he wrote: “It seems to me that it is entirely proper to start a Zionist state around Jerusalem.” He told Lioubomir Michailovitch, the Serbian Minister to the United States, that “there can be no peace worth having … unless the Jews [are] given control of Palestine.” Six months later Roosevelt died in his sleep.
Not all his descendants would share his belief in Jewish self-determination, however.
Two of Teddy Roosevelt’s grandchildren, Kermit and Archie, served their country in the CIA during the early years of the Cold War. Both were keenly interested in Middle East affairs, and were fluent in Arabic. Both were well read and highly educated, authoring books and filing dispatches for newspapers like the Saturday Evening Post, among others.
They were also prominent anti-Zionists.
Kermit Roosevelt, known as “Kim,” played a key role in anti-Zionist efforts in the United States and abroad. He was not, by the standards of his time, an antisemite. But he was ardently opposed to the creation of Israel.
As Hugh Wilford observed in his 2013 book America’s Great Game: The CIA’s Secret Arabists and the Shaping of the Modern Middle East: “the anti-Zionism of the overt Cold War foreign policy establishment is well known” but “less widely appreciated is the opposition to Jewish statehood of the individuals responsible for setting up the United States’ covert apparatus in the Middle East.”
This began with the OSS, the CIA’s precursor. And it included men like Stephen Penrose, a former American University of Beirut instructor, and Kim Roosevelt’s boss during his wartime service in the OSS.
“Documents among Penrose’s personal papers reveal him engaged in a variety of anti-Zionist activities at the same time that he was commencing his official duties with the OSS,” Wilford notes.
Like many of his fellow Arabists, Penrose was the son of American missionaries who, failing to convert the native population to Christianity, sought to foster Arab nationalism instead. Penrose described himself as a “chief cook” who was “brewing” opposition to Zionism. He became one of Kim Roosevelt’s mentors.
In a January 1948 Middle East Journal article entitled, “Partition of Palestine: A Lesson in Pressure Politics,” Kim called the 1947 UN vote in favor of a Jewish state an “instructive and disturbing story.”
Roosevelt believed that the US media was unduly supportive of the creation of Israel, and claimed that almost all Americans “with diplomatic, educational, missionary, or business experience in the Middle East” opposed Zionism.
Kim’s pamphlet was reprinted by the Institute for Arab American Affairs, a New York-based group whose board he sat on. He also began working with the Arab League’s Washington, D.C., office and “turned elsewhere for allies in the anti-Zionist struggle, starting with the Protestant missionaries, educators, and aid workers.”
This nascent group soon received financial support from the American oil industry, which maintained close links to Kim’s OSS/CIA colleague, William Eddy.
As Wilford noted, the Arabian consortium ARAMCO “launched a public relations campaign intended to bring American opinion around to the Arab point of view.”
In addition to missionaries and big oil, Kim gained another important ally in the form of Elmer Berger, a rabbi from Flint, Michigan. Berger served as executive director of the American Council for Judaism, an anti-Zionist group that, among other things, opposed the creation of a Jewish army during World War II at the height of the Holocaust. Berger and Roosevelt became drinking buddies and close collaborators on their joint effort against the Jewish State.
Kim eventually became “organizing secretary” for a group called The Committee for Justice and Peace. The committee’s original chair, Virginia Gildersleeve, was both a longtime friend of the Roosevelts of Oyster Bay and the dean of New York City’s Barnard College, which today is part of Columbia.
Gildersleeve was “also a high-profile anti-Zionist” who “became involved with the Arab cause through her association with the Arabist philanthropist Charles Crane and the historian of Arab nationalism George Antonius.”
Crane, a wealthy and notorious antisemite, had lobbied against the creation of a Jewish state since the beginning of the 20th century, even advising then-President Woodrow Wilson against supporting the Balfour Declaration.
By 1950, the Committee had managed to recruit famed journalist Dorothy Thompson to their cause. Thompson was reportedly the basis for actress Katharine Hepburn’s character in the 1942 movie Woman of the Year. A convert to anti-Zionism, Thompson’s extensive network of reporters and celebrities proved crucial to Kim and Berger’s efforts to rally opposition to the Jewish State. In a 1951 letter to Barnard College’s Gildersleeve, Thompson wrote: “I am seriously concerned about the position of the Jews in the United States.” People, she claimed, “are beginning to ask themselves the question: who is really running America?”
Another ally emerged that year: the Central Intelligence Agency.
The CIA began funding the Committee, as well as its successor, the American Friends of the Middle East (AFME). Beginning in June 1950, Kim’s correspondence with Berger began making veiled references to the ACJ head taking on “official work” in Washington. This, Wilford believes, is a reference to working with the CIA. Indeed, the well-connected Kim and Archie Roosevelt had known top CIA officials like Allan Dulles since childhood.
With support from figures like Eddy, AFME also began encouraging Muslim-Christian alliances — ostensibly to counter Soviet influence, but also to attack the Jewish state. This led to some awkward alliances, including with Amin al-Husseini, the founding father of Palestinian nationalism and an infamous Nazi collaborator.
Husseini had ordered the murders of rival Palestinians, incited violence against Jews since the 1920s, and had led forces, equipped with Nazi-supplied arms, to destroy Israel at its rebirth in 1948. Now, along with the Secretary General of the Arab League, and Saudi King Ibn Saud, he was meeting with Eddy to discuss a “moral alliance” between Christians and Muslims to defeat communism. Kim himself knew Husseini, having interviewed him for the Saturday Evening Post after World War II.
AFME lobbied for the appointment of anti-Zionist diplomats and in favor of Eisenhower administration efforts to withhold aid from Israel. And both Berger and Thompson pushed for favorable coverage of the new Egyptian dictator, Gamal Nassar, who would wage war on the Jewish state for nearly two decades. Initially, they were successful, with TIME magazine writing that Nasser had the “lithe grace of a big, handsome, all-American quarterback.” Of course, there was nothing “all-American” about Nasser, who would become a Soviet stooge.
AFME officials like Garland Evans Hopkins would draw rebukes after claiming that Jews were bringing violence against themselves — a staple of antisemitism. Hopkins claimed that Zionists “could produce a wave of antisemitism in this country” if they continued acting against “America’s best interests in the Middle East.”
AFME itself would eventually lose influence, particularly after its boosting of figures like Nasser was revealed as foolhardy. Berger would go on to advise Senator J. William Fulbright (D-AR) in his efforts to get pro-Israel Americans to register as foreign agents.
In 1967, as Arab forces gathered to annihilate Israel, Berger blamed the Jewish State, accusing it of “aggression” and its supporters of “hysteria.” Top ACJ officials resigned in protest. That same year, Ramparts magazine exposed CIA support, financial and otherwise, of AFME.
Kim and Archie Roosevelt, however, would continue their careers as high-ranking CIA officers before eventually starting a consulting business and making use of their extensive Middle East contacts.
For some college protesters, attacking Israel — and American support for Israel — might seem new and trendy. Yet, both the CIA and big oil were precisely doing that, decades ago, forming alliances with anti-American dictators, antisemitic war criminals, the press, Protestant groups, academics, university administrators, and fringe Jewish groups claiming to represent “what’s best” for American Jewry.
As William Faulkner once wrote: “The past is never dead. It’s not even past.”
The writer is a Senior Research Analyst for CAMERA, the 65,000-member, Boston-based Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting and Analysis
The post Hating Israel Isn’t New; How the CIA and State Department Undermined the Jewish State first appeared on Algemeiner.comhttps://www.algemeiner.com/.

Continue Reading

Uncategorized

Canada’s economic growth projected to be about 1% in the first half of 2024

Canada is a country with a thriving Jewish community and has traditionally offered the security of a strong economy for residents. The national economic outlook is naturally something that everyone in Canada’s Jewish community keeps track of – especially those involved in business in the various provinces.

With this in mind, the July 2023 Monetary Policy Report from the Bank of Canada made for interesting reading, projecting a moderate economic growth figure of around 1% for the first half of 2024. This is in line with growth figures that had been forecast for the second half of 2023, and sees the country’s economy remain on a stable footing.

Steady projected growth for first half of 2024

Although projected economic growth of around 1% in early 2024 is not as impressive as figures of around 3.4% in 2022 and 1.8% in 2023, it is certainly no cause for alarm. But what might be behind it?

Higher interest rates are one major factor to consider and have had a negative impact on household spending nationally. This has effectively seen people with less spending power and businesses in Canada generating less revenue as a result.

Interest rate rises have also hit business investments nationally, and less money is being channelled into this area to fuel Canada’s economic growth. When you also factor in how the weak foreign demand for Canadian goods and services has hit export growth lately, the projected GDP growth figure for early 2024 is understandable.

Growth in second half of 2024 expected

Although the above may make for interesting reading for early 2024, the Bank of Canada’s report does show that economic growth is expected to pick up in the second half of the year. This is projected to be due to the decreasing effect of high interest rates on the Canadian economy and a stronger foreign demand for the country’s exports.

Moving forward from this period, it is predicted that inflation will remain at around 3% as we head into 2025, and hit the Bank of Canada’s inflation target of 2% come the middle of 2025. All of this should help the country’s financial status remain stable and prove encouraging for business leaders in the Jewish community.

Canada’s economic growth mirrors iGaming’s rise

When you take a look at the previous growth figures Canada has seen and also consider the growth predicted for 2024 (especially in the second half of the year), it is clear that the country has a vibrant, thriving economy.

This economic growth is something that can be compared with iGaming’s recent rise as an industry around the country. In the same way as Canada has steadily built a strong economy over time, iGaming has transformed itself into a powerful, flourishing sector.

This becomes even clearer when you consider that Canadian iGaming has been a major contributor to the sustained growth seen in the country’s arts, entertainment and recreation industry, which rose by around 1.9% in Q2 of 2023. The healthy state of online casino play in Canada is also evidenced by how many customers the most popular casino platforms attract and how the user experience these operators offer has enabled iGaming in the country to take off.

This, of course, is also something that translates to the world stage, where global iGaming revenues in 2023 hit an estimated $95 billion. iGaming’s global market volume is also pegged to rise to around $130 billion by 2027. These kinds of figures represent a sharp jump for iGaming worldwide and show how the sector is on the ascent.

Future economic outlook for Canada in line with global expectations

When considering the Canadian economic outlook for 2024, it is often useful to look at how this compares with global financial predictions. In addition to the rude health of iGaming in Canada being reflected in global online casino gaming, the positive economic outlook for the country is also broadly in line with expectations for many global economies.

Global growth is also predicted to rise steadily in the second half of 2024 before becoming stronger in 2025. This should be driven by the weakening effects of high interest rates on worldwide economic prosperity. With rate cuts in Canada already expected after Feb 2024’s inflation report, this could happen in the near future.

The performance of the US economy is always of interest in Canada, as this is the country’s biggest trading partner. Positive US Q2 performances in 2023, powered by a strong labor market, good consumer spending levels and robust business investments, were therefore a cause for optimism. As a US economy that continues to grow is something that Canadian businesses welcome, this can only be a healthy sign.

Canada set for further growth in 2024

Local news around Canada can cover many topics but the economy is arguably one of the most popular. A projected GDP growth figure of around 1% for Canada’s economy shows that the financial state of the country is heading in the right direction. An improved financial outlook heading into the latter half of 2024/2025 would make for even better reading, and the national economy should become even stronger.

Continue Reading

Uncategorized

The Legal Landscape of Online Gambling in Canada

Online gambling has grown in popularity around the globe in recent years. While many jurisdictions have legalized land-based gambling, it hasn’t applied to online platforms. Nonetheless, Canada is one nation that has legalized online gambling with their provinces’ licensing and regulating sites.

Nonetheless, Canadians of legal age can enjoy playing their favourite online games where available. So many games like slots, blackjack, and roulette still maintain their popularity even in the digital sense.  Want to learn about what’s legal in Canada for online gambling? Let’s take a look.

What is legal for online gambling in Canada?

What is the best online casino in Canada? The list we provide you here should be a good start. It’s also important to note that most Canadian provinces do not have laws that prohibit offshore online casinos.

Many provinces provide licensing to online casinos. They even regulate them as well. For example, Alberta and British Columbia have sites regulated by their respective governing bodies. The Atlantic Lottery Corporation (ALC) allows legal online gambling and oversees the services it offers to Maritime provinces such as New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador.

However, there are some caveats to address. In Newfoundland and Labrador, online gambling that is not offered by the ALC is considered illegal. Therefore, it is the only Canadian province as of 2024 that prohibits offshore options.

In terms of the legal age, there are three provinces where the legal age is 18: Alberta, Manitoba, and Quebec. The remaining provinces establish 19 as the legal age for gambling including online.

Who are the regulatory bodies for gambling in Canada?

At the Federal level, the Canadian Gaming Association is the regulatory body for gambling in Canada. Thus, they cover both land-based and online gambling in the country. There are also provincial and regional regulatory bodies such as the Atlantic Lottery Corporation (ALC) – which covers the provinces of New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland and Labrador.  

The Western Canada Lottery Corporation covers Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Nunavut, Northwest Territories, and the Yukon Territory. A handful of provinces also have their regulatory bodies covering lottery and gaming.

Canada requires online casinos that wish to accept players from the country to adhere to regulations and licensing. These licenses are provided by provincial regulatory bodies. When licensed, online casinos must follow the regulations and security standards.

However, there is the belief that many of the laws about gambling in Canada may be outdated. This could be because these laws were created long before the advent of the Internet. Therefore, such laws may need to be modernized. Nonetheless, online gambling for the most part is legal, just dependent on the province.

Are there any legal grey areas to discuss?

The grey area that is considered a concern pertains to the use of offshore sites. As mentioned earlier, Newfoundland and Labrador is believed to be the only province that prohibits it. Even online casinos with no licensing by Canadian or provincial authorities accept residents of the country.

On the players’ end, many Canadians are allowed to play at online casinos. However, they may be restricted from certain platforms. This is to ensure that the players themselves are protected from unknowingly playing on platforms that may be illegal. 

What are the other laws and regulations about online gambling in Canada?

Online casinos have implemented measures for responsible gambling. This includes providing support and resources to problem gamblers on their site. They are also restricted regarding the marketing and advertising aspects of promoting their platform. 

One restriction of note is that marketing that is targeted at minors is prohibited. Another prohibits professional athletes from appearing in online casino ads in Ontario.

Even offshore casinos must adhere to these laws and regulations. Especially if they have obtained a license from the provincial bodies that allow them to operate.

Canada’s online gambling is legal – but will things change

As it stands right now, the legality of online gambling in Canada seems to fall under the purview of provincial laws and regulations. Canadian citizens must perform their due diligence further to see which online casinos are allowed by their respective provinces. Just because it may be legal in one province, it may not be the same in others.

Nonetheless, the question is: will any laws relax certain restrictions? Will Newfoundland and Labrador change their tune regarding offshore casinos? It’s unclear what the future holds – but watch this space for any changes about online gambling in Canada.  

Continue Reading

Copyright © 2017 - 2023 Jewish Post & News