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It’s Not Just the Point System

Today on Jewcy: The culture of sexism ran deep in USY

Gabriela Geselowitz
December 20, 2017

There is a recent post in the Forward entitled “‘Super Creepy’ Game Hands Out Points For Hooking Up At Youth Group,” explaining the “myth” of the “points game” of United Synagogue Youth, the high school youth movement of Conservative Judaism. According to this apparently unverifiable urban legend, certain participants were worth certain amounts of points, based largely on their position in USY, and by “hooking up” with them (making out or more), a teen earned those relative points. There has been pearl-clutching and denial from authorities at the United Synagogue for Conservative Judaism (“At this time the point system is more of myth and legend than reality”), and insistence on social media that USY wasn’t a monolith (not all kids went there to hook up!), and that the game was an inside joke at worst.

Look, the points game existed. But it was far from the most toxic thing I witnessed during my time in USY. (The organization refused multiple requests to comment for this piece.)

Gabriela Geselowitz is a writer and the former editor of

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