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August 09, 2011

Fired For Wearing A Yarmulke?

Black Suede Kippah Ciro Rosselli’s workplace suddenly turned hostile after the Italian-American man started wearing a yarmulke to the office.


Fired For Wearing A Yarmulke?
Skullcap Draws Taunts, You’re Not A “Real Jew”
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com

Ciro Rosselli’s workplace turned suddenly hostile after the Italian-American man, a follower of Theosophy, a religious philosophy that promotes the unity of all people and that holds "there is no higher religion than truth,” started wearing a yarmulke to the office.

His coworkers at the consulting firm McKinsey & Co. allegedly taunted the non-Jewish man.

Rosselli was told that he isn’t a real Jew, that he suddenly adopted Judaism just like Madonna, and that he was wearing the yarmulke only to cover his bald spot, the New York Post reported.

"You can't be Jewish if you're Italian,” one coworker allegedly told him.

Another allegedly said, "I guess I won't be asking you for a loan.”

Even his supervisors harassed him. “Take that off!” a supervisor allegedly told him. ”You’re creeping me out!"

McKinsey & Co. fired Rosselli in April, two days after going to police with allegations that his boss sent an ex-boyfriend threaten him for complaining to the company's Human Resources Department about the treatment he was receiving he was receiving under her watch.

Rosselli filed a lawsuit that seeks unspecified money damages from McKinsey & Co. for discrimination and retaliation.

[Hat Tip: Ruthie.]


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His grievances appear to be reasonable. If he wants to wear a Yarmulke, even if not Jewish, why not? He is of Italian origin and wearing one is good enough for the Pope...

I wonder who, at McKinsey & Company, was doing the complaining about Rosselli and mocking him. I would find this story ironic and hilarious if it were determined that Jews were mocking and taunting him.

Definitely sounds like a hostile work environment.

The pope wears a zuchetto. A white one at that...mekubal or tzioni?...wait, it's got a little nobby on it, he might be Breslov...

This is the New York Post's story, not yours. So how about giving credit to the rag which published it, calling it an "exclusive," rather than burying your link down in the text?

Nor did you need to edit the Post's story. There was a line in the Post's story in which Rosselli's boss called him "Madge Rosselli," after Madonna who calls herself "Madge" and also "Esther."

Beyond the hostile and totally unwarranted nonsense by MtK, this story, sort of freaks me out:

1. I've always been curious about the "spiritual" movements of the 19th/20th century, in that they said a lot about the American mindset. This would include the LDS & Scientology. Personally, though, I had always thought that Theosophy pretty much went away with Mme. Blavatsky's death, just like the anarchist faded with WWI. Oops, my bad!

2. Covering the bald spot with a kippah simply does not work. I've tried it. Nothing for the hairpin to hold on to. Also, the various versions of Velcro (Kippon, etc.)don't work (again, nothing to grab onto). I've thought about surgically implanting the other 1/2 of Velcro, but that scares me. Maybe I'll just stick to a baseball cap w/ my favorite team in Hebrew or from the Israel Baseball League (Z'L).

I kind of enjoy being Jewish, but looking @ it objectively - why wd anyone not born jewish WANT tO be jewish or wear jewish religious articles?

Do you have a problem, Catcher50, with appropriately attributing a story to its authors? That's part of what "fair use" is about.

Aside from that, this story is silly. The guy appears to be looking for quick cash via a settlement.

This is the New York Post's story, not yours. So how about giving credit to the rag which published it, calling it an "exclusive," rather than burying your link down in the text?

Posted by: Morris the Katz | August 09, 2011 at 07:46 AM
Morris the Katz

Nor did you need to edit the Post's story. There was a line in the Post's story in which Rosselli's boss called him "Madge Rosselli," after Madonna who calls herself "Madge" and also "Esther."

Posted by: Morris the Katz | August 09, 2011 at 07:49 AM

Ah, the hot air bursts forth from the buffoon Katz again.

You're dumb as a tree stump, Morrie.

It is NOT the Post's story.

There can be no exclusive on court documents and other public documents.

Now if you were brighter – say on the level of a second grader – you'd notice that I cite the Post in the story and link to their story.

That's more than Post does in similar circumstances.

And now you will toddle off – or I'll toddle you off myself.

Got that, blowhard?

there are plenty of Italian Jews they just live in Italy

Seymour: I have met Italian Jews- both born Jewish and converts- right here in the USA. Not all Jews are pasty white Ashkenazim like me.

And the above list is not even counting the CHABAD emissaries.

John & Lapo Elkann, Vice Chairman of Fiat (Jewish father).
Armand, Georges, Maurice & Paul Marciano, founders of GUESS.[9]
Moses Haim Montefiore, financier & philanthropist.
Adriano Olivetti, son of Camillo, industrialist and social activist.
Camillo Olivetti, founder of Olivetti typewriters.
Carlo De Benedetti, industrialist, ex-CEO of FIAT, Olivetti, CIR Group, ex-deputy chairman of Banco Ambrosiano and ex president of Gruppo Editoriale L'Espresso.
Chaim Bracha, One of the founders of Jaffa Oranges

Vito D'Ancona, painter
Cristiana Capotondi, actress (half Jew)
Gioele Dix, (b. Davide Ottolenghi) actor and comedian
Ginevra Elkann, film director, sister of John and Lapo
Arnoldo Foà, actor
Massimiliano Fuksas, architect
Itamar Harari, architect and designer
Alessandro Haber, actor
Carlo Levi, writer, painter and physician
Leo Lionni
Nicolo Cottarelli, (b. Nicolo Weisbaum), baritone and cultural critic
Emanuele Luzzati, painter
Anna Magnani, actress (Jewish mother)
Amedeo Modigliani, painter and sculptor
Moni Ovadia, theatre figure
Gillo Pontecorvo, director
Xenia Rappoport, actress
Bruno Zevi, architect

[edit] Busin

Mario Ancona, baritone
Abramo Basevi, composer and musician
Alvise Bassano, musician [5]
Anthony Bassano, musician [5]
Baptista Bassano, musician [5]
Jeronimo Bassano, musician [5]
Haim Cipriani, violinist and reform rabbi
Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco, guitar,classical and synagogal music composer
Giacobbe Cervetto, cellist[6]
Lorenzo Da Ponte (b. Emanuele Conegliano), opera librettist (born Jewish, raised Catholic)
Abramino dall'Arpa, harpist
Aldo Finzi, composer
Salamone Rossi, baroque composer
Victor de Sabata, conductor (Jewish mother)
Leone Sinigaglia, composer
Obadiah the Proselyte (musician)[7]

Umberto Cassuto: Bible scholar at Bar Ilan
Moshe Chaim Luzzato: rabbi and baal mussar

Christopher Colombus, possibly a Jew.


No list would be complete without the famous Italian Jew Tribbiani....

Ok he is not jewish but he did a great spot for Chabad Telethon a while back.


he was probably doing a crappy job, and since he couldnt become black or female, he figured he would put on a beanie and then pretend they were hassling him-this story stinks like a rotten salami.

Ok he is not jewish but he did a great spot for Chabad Telethon a while back.

His mother is Jewish.

Let's not forget Primo Levi- scientist, writer, and Holocaust survivor.

Oh, and Italo Svevo, author of The Confessions of Zeno.

Obadiah ben Abraham (Hebrew: עובדיה בן אברהם מברטנורא) of Bertinoro, near Forlì, was a Jewish rabbi and a commentator on the Mishnah, commonly known as "The Bartenura" or Obadiah of Bertinoro.

I have met Italian Jews- both born Jewish and converts- right here in the USA. Not all Jews are pasty white Ashkenazim like me.

Posted by: Yochanan Lavie | August 09, 2011 at 10:42 AM

OK, now you've triggered this lecture. Italians, whether Jewish or non-Jewish, can also be very fair-skinned--even "pasty-white" (likewise, many Sephardim and Mizrahi Jews can also be fair-skinned, and surprise!-- Arab Muslims and Christians--especially from Syria, Lebanon, Galilee, etc. also often have light skin, fair hair). For that matter, while you may be an Ashkenazi with a pasty-white complexion, that's not a necessary condition of "Ashkenazi'ut" either. There are many olive-skinned, swarthy Ashkenazim out there as well. Indeed, Ashkenazi Jews living in Germany and Poland, etc., where most of the non-Jewish population used ot be fair-skinned were stereotyped as a darker-skinned people.

re: the list of Italian Jews

Of course Jews in Italy have a proud and ancient history, but few Italian Jews seem to have immigrated to the USA, which accounts in large part for the ignorance of Jews and non-Jews in the USA about the existence of such a group. Those that did seem to have come as individuals and not as part of any wave of immigrants. I can't think offhand of any Italian synagogue founded by Italian Jews and with tefilot following nusakh bnei roma in the USA.

One Italian Jew who came here in the 1800s was Sabato Morais, he helped found what eventually became JTS. Then there is Franco Modigliani, who was a Nobel Prize-winning economist at MIT. I have a cookbook written by Edda Servi Machlin, an Italian Jewish woman who married an American Ashkenazi, about traditional Italian-Jewish cuisine. But as I think of it, every Jew I've personally met in the USA with an Italian surname is either a (A) a convert of Italian-Catholic origins or (B) someone with a Jewish mother and an Italian non-Jewish father. I wonder why so few Italian Jews came to the US and they seem not to have founded any communal institutions--given that Italy is a source of immigrants to the USA in general. Even Greek Jews founded their own distinctive synagogues on these shores--some of them preserving the unique customs of the Jews of Rhodes (a few Rhodesli shuls in LA and Seattle), others preserving the Romaniote tradtion (Kehila Kedosha Janina in NYC). I don't think they were that many in numbers either, but obviously more Greek Jews immigrated to the USA than Italian Jews. Yemenite Jews even founded their own shuls in Brooklyn as early as the 1920s. Italian Jews in the USA, AFAIK, nothing. I think they were just too few in number and most anyway too far assimilated and cut off from their Jewish roots in Italy before they immigrated.

The Italian nusach may be one of the oldest known. It is practiced in very few places, being displaced by more mainstream Sephardi, Ashenazi, and Chabad nusachot. We've met both "hidden" and open Italian Jews.

Mike Manieri - jazz musician
Rita Levi-Montalcini - neurologist (and 102 years old, B'H)
Alberto Moravia - writer (father was Italian-Jewish)
David Brancaccio - journalist (father Italian, mother Ashkenazi)
Laura Nyro - songwriter and musician
Jon Favreau - actor (Italian father,Jewish mother)

And not Italian-Jewish, and included just for fun:

Two of the most famous Italian-American characters on TV were played by Jews:

Arthur Fonzarelli by Henry Winkler

Colombo - Peter Falk

And the most famous Puerto Rican Jew on TV, Juan Epstein, was played by Robert Hegyes who was of Hungarian and Italian descent.

"You can't be Jewish if you're Italian,”

I wonder if anyone would have said that to Randy "Macho Man" Savage's face.

Get into a conversation with a Roman Jew and ask if they are Sephardic or Ashkenazic and be prepared. They trace the community back 2000 years.

Also, I first tried my "death row dish" in a Kosher restaurant in Rome: deep fried artichoke hearts. If you've never tried it, do yourself a favor.

@CLR...I thought that Geraldo Rivera was the most famous Puerto Rican Jew.

Lot of them in NY. Many keep homes in Italy as well.

Speaking of Puerto Rican Jews, didn't Freddy Prinz have a Jewish father?

Randy Savage was half-Italian, half Jewish. I believe Jon Favreau's dad is French-Canadian.

@Yochanan re: Freddie Prinz

Prinz himself liked to say that his father was Hungarian Jewish, but his father was really German Christian.


re: Your attesting to lots of Italian Jews in NY. I am sure there are individuals scattered around, in NY and elsewhere in the USA, but they don't seem to form any sort of cohesive Italian-Jewish kehila that I can tell. And again, I am not talking about people who are of mixed Ashkenazi (or otherwise) Jewish heritage on one side and Italian-Christian heritage on the other, sure there are alot of "Italian Jews" with that background in NY as well--including my cousins, who have an Ashkenazi mother of Polish descent and a Italian-American father who converted. I'm talking about people whose families were Jewish in Italy, who were part of the Jewish communities there, and who subsequently came to the USA. I'm sure you can find individuals, but no entire community of people fitting that description in the USA. And in Italy itself, many of the Jews there are more recent arrivals from Libya, Eastern Europe. I know there is an Italian synagogue in Jerusalem on Hillel Street, every time I am in Jerusalem, I seem to pass by it and it's always closed or I have no time.

>>There can be no exclusive on court documents and other public documents.<<

So are you telling us reviewed curt documents to write this story?

Or did your investigative reporting simply consist of reading the NY Post?

Is that your original writing at least? You merely cribbed all the research into the facts from the NY Post's work and at least wrote your own story?

Or are you positing in your attempted rebuke of MTK that if facts are in the public domain anyone is free to plagiarize someone else's journalism about them?

Posted by: ICALLBS | August 09, 2011 at 05:30 PM


What I'm telling you – and what you are too stupid to understand – is that the writing is mine, the facts are in the public domain, and I cited the Post and linked to it.

If you were more alert, you'd notice that newspapers do this all the time – and so do blogs.


Because that's the industry standard and meets and exceeds all ethical requirements.

Now toddle off.

@Catcher - Yes re Geraldo. I meant to write Puerto Rican Jewish character, in keeping with the other two fictional characters in that section, but goofed that up.

@Morris - Randy was indeed half Italian, but his mother was Jewish, so he's all Jewish halachically. Thus he's Jewish and Italian.

- Jon Favreau's father has some French-Canadian ancestry, hence the surname, but according to sources he's mostly Italian.

His choice in wearing a kippah makes me remember a saying...

"Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery !"

One more for the list: Umberto Pugliese - admiral

Also, writer Natalia Ginzburg.

Is the boss "Gina Denardo" a woman?

The skullcap was not invented by Jewish people. It is a Greek invention and has been worn for thousands of years by many cultures, including Chinese, Muslim, and yes Italian. It has fallen out of fashion as we now have an newfangled invention called a "brim" which makes hats more useful.
Christians (This versions are square, but there are rounded too):

DeNardo was probably having an acid flashback from all the drugs she did in High School (yes, *High*School*). What trash!

Hi there,

Hey such similar stories are much heard on news nowadays


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