News & Links

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


An archbishop’s impression of Yeshiva University learning
Ask the Rabbi: How much matza must one eat?
Passover Profiteering
Manischewitz: It’s Not Just For Jewish Grandmothers Anymore
Brooklyn College faculty members dispute discrimination allegations
Jewish way to raise a genius
Parting With the Parsonage
Feminist Art in Traditional and Religious Judaism
The End of Feminist Seders?
Food Pantries Swell at Passover
Immigrants Celebrate Special Israeli Seder
Why Gluten-Free Matzo Isn’t Kosher for Seders
Mayor Blames Jews for Wave of Anti-Semitism
Jerusalem Opera Festival cancelled
Some Jews Say Bugs Have No Place At The Seder Table
Judaism.StackExchange.com and Embracing Online Torah Communities
SALT Friday
Of vintners and rabbis
The Rabbi Is a Cop
R Ariel: Let Us Sacrifice on the Mount
Online, Jews Sell Leavened Goods Before Passover and Get Them Back Later
Like a Player
Russians Riled Up Over State Senate Race
Adult Ed Growing, At A Distance
In survey of American Jews, questions for right and left
56% of Israelis say Chametz Law necessary
Is Tap Water Chametz?
Ben & Jerry’s Haroset Flavored Ice Cream
R Sacks: Teach Your Children Well for a Better Life
Slaves or Slave Masters in Egypt?
Judaica Store May Close in Sign of Times
A Tale of Two Boys
A Charter Network’s Emerging Imprint
SALT Thursday
Pioneering women rabbis to be honored
A Charter Network’s Emerging Imprint
Almost a trend: non-Jews doing Jewish things
Singles at Passover saying so long to cell phone, Facebook contacts
Reading between the Lists
Slavery Flourishes in Modern Times
On School Choice, Jews Can Have Their Lekach and Eat it, Too
Message from the Chief Rabbi for Pesach 5772
YU Panel Explores Solutions to Modern-Day Agunah Crisis
SALT Wednesday
The Annual Matzah Ashira Conflict
Anti-Semitic rap vs. Brooklyn College
Eda Hareidit Denounces Neturei Karta
The ‘Simple’ Solution to Passover Medicines
Israel’s army gears up for one of its biggest operations: Passover
Streit’s Matzo keeps business in the family
Jewish Gangsters Get Their Day at Museum
Knesset failing to change status quo on Haredim
Petition: Prosecute authors of ‘King’s Torah’
Some Observations Regarding the Mah Nishtannah
A Talmudic Perspective on Obamacare
Study Debunks Crisis of Zionism Myth
Clarification From HaRav Shmuel Kamenetsky Regarding Metzitzah B’Peh
SALT Tuesday
R. Metzger: Women must participate in Haggadah reading
Refugees and rabbis
Patrilineal Jews Still Find Resistance
America’s Top 50 Rabbis for 2012
Where the Debate on Judaism Began
Israel sells chametz
Peter Beinart, I Quit
Philanthropy Nation?
Tzadik Plastic Surgeon to Shadchanim: Free Nose Job for Your Clients Who Need But Can’t Afford It
R. Shmuel Kamenetsky Regarding Metzitzah B’Feh
SALT Monday
Prior news & links posts
Rules: link

About Gil Student

Rabbi Gil Student is the Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of TorahMusings.com, a leading website on Orthodox Jewish scholarly subjects, and the Book Editor of the Orthodox Union’s Jewish Action magazine. He writes a popular column on issues of Jewish law and thought featured in newspapers and magazines, including The Jewish Link, The Jewish Echo and The Vues. In the past, he has served as the President of the small Jewish publisher Yashar Books and as the Managing Editor of OU Press. Rabbi Student serves on the Executive Committee of the Rabbinical Council of America and as Director of the Halacha Commission of the Rabbinical Alliance of America. He also serves on the Editorial Boards of Jewish Action magazine, the Journal of Halacha and Contemporary Society and the Achieve Journal of Behavioral Health, Religion & Community, as well as the Board of OU Press. He has published five English books, the most recent titled Search Engine volume 2: Finding Meaning in Jewish Texts -- Jewish Leadership, and served as the American editor for Morasha Kehillat Yaakov: Essays in Honour of Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks.

193 comments

  1. FYI, I updated the announcement about the Dr. Leiman shiur with links to the audio recordings: link

  2. “Nearly three decades after the Reform movement’s landmark 1983 decision to accept patrilineal Jews, the standard has yet to catch on with Conservative or Orthodox Jewry.”

    But it still might. Nothing suprises me anymore about what might catch on in Orthodoxy.

  3. To Rafael’s point, although I suspect not the way he meant it, is this paper scheduled for the forthcoming Cardozo Law Review, Vol. 34: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2030428 (HT: Menachem Mendel).

  4. IH on April 2, 2012 at 10:50 am
    …this paper scheduled for the forthcoming Cardozo Law Review, Vol. 34: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2030428 (HT: Menachem Mendel).

    The analysis demonstrates that the virtually unanimous practice of excluding women from participation in public Torah reading exists despite long-standing ambiguity in the strictly legal realm of the tradition. This reality reveals that the prevailing practices and legal justifications have been markedly influenced by cultural considerations. Thus, the story of women and public Torah reading provides the ideal subject for exploring the synergies between law, culture, and tradition.

    Yawn. Shelo Asani Isha re-revisited for the eighth time. Throw in some sociologial gobbledygook and claim it’s sexism that’s militating against giving women aliyos.

  5. Does the author of this paper is or claims to Orthodox? If not, than the paper is not within the trend that I refer to.

  6. Flowing from R’ Metzger’s “psak”, and not specifically in regard to whether women can participate in reading the Haggadah (are women obligated in “vhigadeta l’vincha), would somebody explain the basis for seder participants taking turns reading the Haggadah? If my eighteen year old niece or nephew, who is single and without children, reads a portion of the haggadah, what does that accomplish mitzvoh-wise?

    Thanks.

  7. Rafael – The following link contains a short biography of the author.

    http://www.law.depaul.edu/centers_institutes/jljs/faculty.asp

  8. Gabriel Kaufman

    A bit old but came up in a search for new hareidi:

    http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_article.php?id=3630

    Very interesting dynamic about baby naming that we have also seen, to a lesser extent, in our community in Chu”l

  9. Rafael-why wouldn’t single men and women be included in the obligation of Sippur Yetzias Mitzrayim? Are not single men and women not included in all other obligations related to Leil Seder such as Arba Kosos, Acilas Matzah, etc?

  10. Rafael-See MB and the Rishonim quoted in the Shaar HaTziun,Piskei Teshuvos, Shoneh Halachos on Hilcos Pesach, and the ET Haggadah’s entry on Haggadah on the relevant siman in SA, and the ET Haggadah’s entry on Haggadah for some sources as to whether women are obligated in Sipur Yetzias Mitzrayim Min HaTorah or Midranan.

  11. Rafael and others-The Sefer Shoneh Halachos that I just referred to is entitled Shoneh Halachos Im Toras HaMoadim. It consists of the text of the SA as commeted upon by the MB and CI, with footnoted references ( Toras HaMoadim) to Poskim such as RSZA, RYSA, RMF and the Steipler, Zicronam Livracha. it should not be confused with the three volume Shoneh Halachos.

  12. The article you reviewed previously, but most of your readers probably didn’t have access to:

    “A Bombshell from the Rav” By Yoram Hazony

    http://jerusalemletters.com/jletters/articles/a-bombshell-from-the-rav

  13. Rafael-also see Halicos Shlomoh on Pesach Chapter 9, Pages 258-259, footnotes 207-208 re RSXA’s practices in his home with his “Bnos Ktanos” re the recitation of the Four Questions,

  14. what is the halachic status of “leading the seder”?

  15. RAFAEL:

    “If my eighteen year old niece or nephew, who is single and without children, reads a portion of the haggadah, what does that accomplish mitzvoh-wise?”

    there are 2 separate mitzvos wrt magid: lesaper benisim venifla’os and vehigadta levincha. certainly your single, childless nephew is chayav for the former?

  16. MiMedinat HaYam

    suggest http://forward.com/articles/154077/jewish-school-unwelcome-in-texas-league/.

    in the future, dont hire rising young jewish attorneys, and dont take in jewish schools to your “little” league.

    and dont go to a jewish plastic surgeon — he discounts. but it was an excellent article. and an excellent gentleman.

  17. Rafael Araujo

    Abba’s:

    I’m not sure about that. Take a look at Sefer HaChinuch who groups both under the pasuk “vehigadata l’vincha”, which at least implies that both are connected to a hagadah to one’s children.

  18. Gabriel Kaufman

    [Oops, forgot the title…]

    A bit old but came up in a search for “new hareidi”:

    “From Miriam to Meshi: The revolution of haredi names”
    http://www.israelhayom.com/site/newsletter_article.php?id=3630

    Very interesting dynamic about baby naming that we have also seen, to a lesser extent, in our community in Chu”l.

  19. Hayim Walder’s phrase in that article on names about the yarmulke was either stated wrong or translated wrong. The actual phrase is a pun on the word “seret” meaning both ribbon and movie.

    In hebrew it is “Mi she’telech im kippah bli seret, telech the seret bli kippah”. Translation should read “Someone who wears a yarmulke without a ribbon/rim, will [end up] going to a movie without a yarmulke.”

  20. RAFAEL:

    “Take a look at Sefer HaChinuch”

    will check it out tonight.
    last night i started reading someting in r. breuer’s pirke mo’ados. i didn’t get too far into it, but as i recall he sees 2 separate mitzvot with 2 separate prooftexts. it was late and i will check again tonight.

  21. Rafael Araujo

    Please let me know. Sounds interesting.

    Steve – thanks for the marei mekomos. I will try to look at some of them.

    My personal experience is that the Pesach seder is conducted in one of two ways: As a child, attending my non-observant’s sedarim, the reading was broken up among my great-uncle a”h, uncle, cousins, and even children. Once I became frum and attended the sedarim of my kind rebbeim, they would lead to seder and I follow along quietly, interrupting with kushyes and teirutzim. I follow this approach with my own young family, with my children asking the “firrer kashyes.” So I have never seen an frum/Orthodox seder where reading of the Haggadah text is performed by many contributors.

  22. Rafael Araujo

    Rafael – The following link contains a short biography of the author.

    http://www.law.depaul.edu/centers_institutes/jljs/faculty.asp

    Thanks fellow canucker. So it appears she is not Orthodox.

  23. Re סיפור:

    Rabbi Abadi writes that סיפור does not mean everyone has to actually say words, because part of סיפור gufa is having listeners. He therefore writes that one person can read the whole time and everyone else can just listen.

  24. “So I have never seen an frum/Orthodox seder where reading of the Haggadah text is performed by many contributors”

    You should visit our house sometime :).

  25. Rafael wrote:

    “So I have never seen an frum/Orthodox seder where reading of the Haggadah text is performed by many contributors”

    At our house, we always encourage family members to read and provide Divrei Torah at the Seder, but not in a manner that would jeopardize eating Afikoman or reciting Hallel after Chatzos.

    Kol Dicfin Yese Vyecel!

  26. When I was young, my parents always had guests who were less frum than us at the seder. In order to make them feel included and engaged in the night’s proceedings, we always read big chunks of magid in English, each person around the table reading a paragraph in turn. We would stop when one of us had a vort to add, then continue on. As children, we always thought this was the natural thing to do.

  27. Rafael Araujo

    Reading magid in English is fine.

  28. “When I was young, my parents always had guests who were less frum than us at the seder. In order to make them feel included and engaged in the night’s proceedings, we always read big chunks of magid in English, each person around the table reading a paragraph in turn. We would stop when one of us had a vort to add, then continue on. As children, we always thought this was the natural thing to do.”

    I could have written this exact description. The one and only time I was away from my family and saw a single person “lead” the seder by reading everything and controlling who said what when, I was rather unhappy.

    If anything this discussion points to a minhag issue. But I still am not clear on what the word “permissible” has to do with who “leads” the seder (if anyone).

  29. emma – “If anything this discussion points to a minhag issue.” true, but i would further add its not the same type of minhag issue in halacha which may be binding to a certain degree. rather, people have a custom to run the seder in a certain way that may or may not be generational.
    it also begs the question – must there be a leader to be begin with (halachikally) – i think not. but its not a bad idea to have a facilitator.

    my family in israel, when we join them at the seder designates – weeks before-each family (there are 40 of us at the seder) one section in magid and one section in shirah to each family to prepare and lead at the seder and sing their family tunes.

  30. Flowing from R’ Metzger’s “psak”, and not specifically in regard to whether women can participate in reading the Haggadah (are women obligated in “vhigadeta l’vincha), would somebody explain the basis for seder participants taking turns reading the Haggadah? If my eighteen year old niece or nephew, who is single and without children, reads a portion of the haggadah, what does that accomplish mitzvoh-wise?

    The question seems to be based on the premise that the mitzvah is only to tell one’s children, probably based on the possuk of ve higadetah le vincha. Not so. The Rambam in the Seventh Perek of Chometz U Matzah writes:

    א מצות עשה של תורה לספר בניסים ונפלאות שנעשו לאבותינו במצריים, בליל חמישה עשר בניסן–שנאמר “זכור את היום הזה אשר יצאתם” (שמות יג,ג), כמה שנאמר “זכור את יום השבת” (שמות כ,ז). ומניין שבליל חמישה עשר–תלמוד לומר “והגדת לבנך, ביום ההוא לאמור: בעבור זה” (שמות יג,ח), בשעה שיש מצה ומרור מונחים לפניך.

    ב ואף על פי שאין לו בן, אפילו חכמים גדולים–חייבים לספר ביציאת מצריים; וכל המאריך בדברים שאירעו ושהיו, הרי זה משובח.

    ג מצוה להודיע לבנים, ואפילו לא שאלו–שנאמר “והגדת לבנך” (שמות יג,ח). לפי דעתו של בן, אביו מלמדו. כיצד: אם היה קטן או טיפש–אומר לו, בני, כולנו היינו עבדים כמו שפחה זו או כמו עבד זה במצריים, ובלילה הזה פדה אותנו הקדוש ברוך הוא, ויצאנו לחירות; ואם היה הבן גדול וחכם–מודיעו מה שאירע לנו במצריים, וניסים שנעשו לנו על ידי משה רבנו: לפי דעתו של בן

    Similarly, the Shulchan Aruch writes that even if one has no child, the wife asks the questions, and if not he asks himself. (OC 473:7) The Remah also writes there that there was a custom to say the haggadah in a foreign language so that women and children should understand it. (OC 473:6)

  31. I had one grandfather who read the haggadah himself and another who had everyone read a paragraph. We never paid attention to the grandfather who did everything himself. My wife’s grandfather also read the whole thing himself and translated into Yiddish, which no one understood. I learned some Yiddish through reverse translation.

  32. A nice summary of the pre-nup & agunah issues discussed here from time to time was highlighted in today’s JID:

    http://joshyuter.com/2012/03/30/judaism/blame-rabbis-for-agunot-but-for-the-right-reasons/

  33. ““On Pesach people don’t want anything chemical, even if it’s not chametz,” said Rabbi Shmuel Teitelbaum, the store’s mashgiach, or kosher monitor.”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/03/nyregion/ahead-of-passover-traditions-transform-borough-park.html

    LOL. I guess he doesn’t look at the ingredient lists — they tend to be even scarier on Pesach than the rest of the year.

  34. These chasidim do not buy any processed foods, hence the lack of chemicals. that is why the person stated the cereal is “for his grandchildren” because he does not eat anything processed on Pesach. Many have a minhag only to buy fruits and vegetables and apparently, based on the article, to buy unwashed fruits and vegetables that still have dirt on them.

    After reading, I am wouldnt be surprised if a minhag develops to prohibit the drinking of water on Pesach and only allow wine or juice. At least with juice or wine one can rely on “ein mei peiros machmitzin”. JK (sort of)

  35. “Philanthropy Nation?” — What they fail to realize is that without Israel “needing” American Jews, the excuses for saying in Galut shrink, and so you will find more and more Jews saying “Israel? What Israel? Next year in New York!” The article “Peter Beinart, I Quit.” is just another example of that same reality coming forth.

    “Refugees and rabbis” — I pray that Israel deals with this question in a better way than the rest of the world has so far done so.

  36. Do media interviews count as news? http://yishaifleisher.com/radio/radio-the-will-to-move-ahead/

    Interesting comments about Religious Zionism, I think.

  37. On R. Shmuel Kamentzky’s statement.

    He clearly had the riot act read to him.

    This shows that Gedolim today are more often figureheads and symbols to advance particular points of view.

    For an example of a Modern Orthodox use of Gedolim: see Brill’s interview with R. Shlomo Einhorn.

    http://kavvanah.wordpress.com/2012/03/26/a-chat-with-rabbi-shlomo-einhorn/

    According to Brill, Einhorn takes the ideas of the Conservative Rabbi Wolpe and puts them into the mouth of Gedolim because R. Wolpe is unacceptable to Orthodox Jews.

    While R. Einhorn has not power to tell Gedolim what to say, in the Charedi world, I doubt that most Gedolim have much freedom to say what they truly believe.

    This is my impression. I’m not an insider. I’d be interested to hear how insiders see things.

  38. I disagree. The minute I saw him quoted in the Jewish Week I knew they had misrepresented his true view.

  39. R’ Gil,
    Are you saying the JP inaccurately quoted R’SK ?
    KT

  40. I assumed they misunderstood him.

  41. I assumed they misunderstood him.

    His statement never says that. I had a similar impression to MO.

    BTW, include me as coming from an Orthodox family where everyone who can reads part of the haggadha.

  42. This is appropos of nothing aside from Pesach (which I guess counts), but the question of democratic hagada saying reminded me: Does a bar or bat chiyuva person need, halachically, to be present for the bedika done by a parent (homeowner)? It seems from the Shulchan Aruch that no, which came as a surprise.

    Thoughts?

  43. By the way, if you read the article by R. Shmuel Kamentzy carefully its quite remarkable.

    He quotes the statements that he made and then gives a peirush to try to reconcile them with the Agudah position on MBP even though this interpretation is a a dokhak at best and does not reflect what he originally said (note he never contests that he actually made the statements attribute to him).

    I wonder whether he actually wrote the article or if someone from inside the Agudah (maybe Shafran?) wrote it and gave it to him to sign.

  44. shaul shapira

    ▪ Eda Hareidit Denounces Neturei Karta

    “Last Friday, members of Neturei Karta reportedly participated in an anti-Israel march from Jordan, but were attacked by the Jordanian Arabs they were marching with.”

    Giggle. That’s NK for you and that’s Arabs for you.

  45. Lawrence Kaplan

    The impresson I received is that R. Kamenetsky backed down under pressure. It’s really very sad. At least he didn’t say he was misquoted.

  46. MiMedinat HaYam

    this is not a matza ashira issue, its flat out stam yayin issue (if its true).

    streits matzah — a good puff poiece. surprised they emphasize how they’ll never leave the LES (after trying to sell the building after the co op market tanked.)

    brooklyn college — old story, new details. as long as they give yeshiva credit, they still have a (limited, due to touro) market among O jews.

    reading hagadah — my pressburg hagadah (actually a litvish / yeshivish hagadah claiming to customs of pressburg) claims the chatam sofer would repeat everything in yiddish (prob untrue — real hungarians, esp those from germany, spoke “hoich deutch”) to “the women”.

  47. IH wrote:

    “A nice summary of the pre-nup & agunah issues discussed here from time to time was highlighted in today’s JID”

    I thought that the aforementioned summary neglected the most important fact of all-R D S Leiberman ZL was never able to represent in any of the discussions between RYBS and R D S Lieberman ZL that he could guarantee full halachic compliance by CJ and especially the RA and CJ’s laiety.

  48. I thought that the annexed link http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/03/nyregion/ahead-of-passover-traditions-transform-borough-park.html?_r=1 was illustrative of the power of tradition and communal custom, and that in an area where there are certainly grounds to be Machmir, as opposed to being Meikil, that some people are more Machmir than necessary out of a sense of both Ahavas HaShem and Yiras Shamayim. Halevai that we personally knew and were comfortable with the degree of the preparations for Pesach in the exotic locations advertised in the Charedi media

  49. I wonder if the reporter for the JW who wrote the article on MBP (Hella Winston) recorded the conversation with RSK.

    If so, it would be interesting to get the transcript and then compare that with the article that RSK wrote.

    This would help make clear the processes by which Gedolim issue statements.

  50. Steve wrote:

    “This is appropos of nothing aside from Pesach (which I guess counts), but the question of democratic hagada saying reminded me: Does a bar or bat chiyuva person need, halachically, to be present for the bedika done by a parent (homeowner)? It seems from the Shulchan Aruch that no, which came as a surprise”

    The issue re the recitation of Magid stems from whether the Mitzvah performed thereby can or should be done by a Shaliach, whether such a Mitzvah can be performed by Shmoe Koneh or rather by each person present. Why import a foreign term such as “democratic hagada saying” into a discussion with intrinsically halachic categories? As far as Bedikas Chametz is concerned, the SA assumes that one can designate or appoint another person to perform the same and the Biur if he or she will not be present at the appointed times for the same.

  51. Would love to get a peek in the shaimot truck to see what percentage of the stuff really is shaimot that requires burial vs. not.

    As far as chumrah for Pesach (and I know I’m projecting) I can’t help but wonder if sometimes HKB”H looks down from shamayim and thinks – I really appreciate it but your ROI would be much greater if instead of spending precious resources (time and money) on every chumrah you can think of, why not worry about some of the things I actually told you were important.

    KT

  52. Steve — R. Yuter responds to your point in his piece: “It does not require a Torah Sage to suggest substituting a Conservative Beit Din with an Orthodox one, nor to propose writing a second document if one objects to altering the ketubah. One must wonder why it would take forty years for the greatest rabbinic minds of 20th century Orthodox Judaism to go from Column A to Column B.”

  53. IH-we disagree. It is well See R d Marc Shapiro’s “Saul Lieberman and the Orthodox”, especially at Pages 44-45 with respect to the RA’s objections to a joint Beth Din, as well as at Pages 11-36, with respect to how RSL was viewed in the yeshiva world. R Yuter, IMO, is engaging in historical revisionism, but from the POV of CJ.

  54. Joel Rich-your point is well taken, but there is much in the writings of the Baalei Chasidus , Baalei Musar, and even in the Rishonim on Pesachim in the sugya of Bitul Chametz why we do not rely on Bitul , that Chametz is compared to AZ, the Yetzer Harah, and that Nisan is a month for tikun for all of the same.

  55. The problem with your comment, Gil, lies in one word: assume. Without a transcript or tape of the conversation/interview between RSK and the reporter, it’s impossible to know what happened. Was he misquoted? Possibly, though unlikely because he does not claim in his clarification to have been misquoted. Was he quoted out of context? Possibly? If so was it intentional? Possibly. Did he misspeak? Possibly. Did he change his mind (either upon reflection or through pressure)? Possibly. There are simply too many possibilities and too few facts to make a judgnment that his position was “misrepresented.”

  56. Like Gil, the MBP article had me scratching my head. I don’t know what RSK did with his own children, but I do know that THEIR children had MBP (I know because I asked). And I have been by several brissin where RSK was sandek at which MBP was performed, and he never said a word.

  57. Joseph Kaplan

    Anonymous at 4:15 was me.

  58. Joseph: Of course it’s an assumption. Part of it is that I don’t trust the Jewish Week to get it right. But it also struck me as something that would be easily misunderstood. If I really cared, I would call up Rav Kamenetsky and ask him. By the way, he’s smart not to say that he was misunderstood. That would just antagonize the reporters.

  59. If what cw says is correct, this opens a much more disturbing interpretation of RSKs statement, namely that his mental faculties are failing.

    If this is the case, one wonders why he is vice president of the moetzes gedolei hatorah and more generally what it means to be on the moetzes and to be considered a gadol.

  60. Do media interviews count as news? http://yishaifleisher.com/radio/radio-the-will-to-move-ahead/

    Link doesn’t seem to work

  61. “Like Gil, the MBP article had me scratching my head. I don’t know what RSK did with his own children, but I do know that THEIR children had MBP (I know because I asked). And I have been by several brissin where RSK was sandek at which MBP was performed, and he never said a word.”

    And I saw R. Elyashiv as a sandak without MBP and he also didn’t say a word. No one says a word either way, without a controversy. Neither position is controversial, unless the goyim or the maskilim are stirring up the pot.

  62. “If what cw says is correct, this opens a much more disturbing interpretation of RSKs statement, namely that his mental faculties are failing”.
    Or perhaps that he was misunderstood/his comments were taken out of context. But if your interpretation answers some inner need of yours, let me not deny you your pleasure.

  63. MO: If what cw says is correct, this opens a much more disturbing interpretation of RSKs statement, namely that his mental faculties are failing.

    There’s no need to start spreading rumors based on questionable inferences from anonymous blog comments. Seriously, he’s a real person. Would you like it if people started spreading a rumor that you are losing your mental faculties?

    Besides which, there’s no need for such statements. Misunderstandings happen all the time.

  64. Lawrence Kaplan

    Gil: And if you called up RSK, do you think he would tell you, even if were true, “Actually, the JW quoted me correctly and in context, but I backed down under presure”? As my brother said, we can only make a reasonable judgment if we have a transcript or tape of the interview.

  65. MiMedinat HaYam

    “joel rich on April 3, 2012 at 3:23 pm
    Would love to get a peek in the shaimot truck to see what percentage of the stuff really is shaimot that requires burial vs. not”

    the smarter ones pile up the complete books and sell them for $1. i’ve gotten some good bargains for perfectly good books (my copy of “al ha’geula ve’al he’temura” comes to mind. wouldnt want to pay more than a buck for it anyway. the stupid kid who sold it to me didnt know what it was, cause we had a conversation in front of other chassidim who couldnt believe a “chassidishe yeshiva bochur” didnt know what it is.)

  66. I have no interest in spreading rumors. The reason that this case is important is because it has the potential to shed light on the inner workings of Daas Torah today.

    This is needed because so many people rely on Daas Torah without understanding how it works.

    To get to the bottom of this as has repeatedly been stated we need a transcript of the interview with RSK so that we can compare it with the original article and the retraction.

  67. The bottom line on MBP is that Litvaks and Yekkes have had no problem with using a tube for 150 years and chasidim do.

    There are a lot of politics involved, but the chreidi comm in the US has a lot of chasidic/Hungarian influence and the Litvish community does not have a separate identity. For example, in America “non-gebrochts” is everywhere come Pesach because of the Hungarian influence. As such, no Litvish Aguda member is going to publicly say that it is perfectly ok to use a tube because the chasidim are very sensitive on the issue and it is plitically volatile. However, find a litvish or yekke mohel and there wont be any hesitance and some may require it.

    I do not know the Sephardi view but assume they also would say its fine to use a tube.

  68. Steve — we’re talking past each other. R. Yuter is not suggesting the American Orthodox rabbinate should have bought into the CJ version. He is asking why it took 40 years to effectively adopt “The Lieberman Clause” — with 2 changes — as the RCA pre-nup.

  69. Sorry, Nachum:

    “It isn’t news that American Jews overwhelmingly support legalizing gay marriage. But a new survey out today puts that level of support at 81%, a few notches higher than previous polls.

    An older survey conducted last May by the same polling group, the Public Religion Research Institute, pegged American Jewish support for same-sex marriage at 76%.”

    http://blogs.forward.com/forward-thinking/154171/poll–of-jews-back-gay-marriage/

  70. “Some Observations Regarding the Mah Nishtannah”

    Really interesting. I wish the article had some “dvar Torahs” that could be tied to the discoveries as well. Would have made it more useful for the seder.

  71. “Do media interviews count as news? http://yishaifleisher.com/radio/radio-the-will-to-move-ahead/

    Link doesn’t seem to work”

    The link in your comment worked for me. What about the link isn’t working for you? Maybe you have to be in Israel to view it?

  72. I guess that explains why the pro-gay forces have to resort to undemocratic measures to get it passed.

    But who cares? If I went by majorities, I’d be a Christian today, God forbid. As Jews, we stand athwart history yelling stop.

  73. Lawrence Kaplan

    Avi: But think about all the divrei Torah about the significance of the number 4 that this article undercuts!

  74. “Avi: But think about all the divrei Torah about the significance of the number 4 that this article undercuts!”

    That is why I wanted replacement Divrei Torah!

  75. “I guess that explains why the pro-gay forces have to resort to undemocratic measures to get it passed.”

    Same sex marriage was approved by democratic processes in Vermont, New Hampshire, New York, Washington, and Maryland. In New Hampshire, an attempt to repeal it got only 29% support in that state’s House of Representatives.

  76. The City University of New York makes it difficult for ANYONE to get tenure, not just Orthodox Jews.

  77. Same sex marriage was also recently approved by the NJ legislature, but then vetoed by the Governor. Is an executive over-ride any more democratic than a judicial over-ride — they are both legitimate in our form of democracy, but if you object to the judiciary’s meddling, then so should you be about the executive’s meddling.

  78. IH-I stand by my analysis of R Yuter’s article, the sum and substance of which cannot be defended in light of the R M Shapiro’s discussion as to the joint Beth Din Proposal, and CJ’s refusal to guarantee halachic adherence on the issue. Blaming Orthodoxy for the same is historical revisionism and hagiography, only from the CJ POV and illustrative of the fact that resorting to the same is hardly a Charedi phenomenon.

  79. FWIW, a careful reading of the annexed linked book reveals that even MO and YU engage in historical revisionism and hagiography
    http://books.google.com/books/about/Orthodox_Jews_in_America.html?id=MKyLmWOSCPoC

  80. Everyone is biased. The minute you see someone claiming to give an “unbiased, objective” study as opposed to so-and-so, alarm bells should go off in your head. This doesn’t mean the scholar isn’t telling the TRUTH or trying to do so – but there’s no such thing as unbiased.

  81. Steve,
    you are not making any sense. Are reading the same article as everyone else?

  82. Prof. Kaplan
    The real number inthe haggadah is 3! Pessach matzah and Marror,- refelcted inthe orignal three “questions” (when did people get the idea that a child is supposed to say the ma nishtana anyways?). three basic elements of the seder- magid, shulchan orech and hallel- represented through three cups of wine (benching also gets a cup to bring the total to four)

  83. Moshe, as I’ve said, the shulchan orech cup *is* the benching cup. It’s kaddesh that’s extra, I’d think.

    Charlie: In those areas, the courts ruled first. Absent courts, there’d be no pressure to allow sexual deviants to “marry” in the first place.

  84. The article about agunot only reinforces the importance of a scholarly study of sarvanim. We need to understand why davka they do what they do so we can know how to reduce the problem.

  85. So how many people here support tuition tax credits for Jewish education?

  86. So how many people here support tuition tax credits for Madrassa education?

  87. “So how many people here support tuition tax credits for Madrassa education?”

    So how many people endorse forced assimilation by banning anything but public school?

  88. abba's rantings

    STEVE:

    “a careful reading of the annexed linked book reveals that even MO and YU engage in historical revisionism and hagiography”

    please explain.
    there is one possible inaccuracy in the link, which i would bet is attributable to whoever wrote that blurb rather than book author

    AIWAC:

    who is banning anything but public school?

  89. “who is banning anything but public school?”

    I was just presenting the other extreme.

  90. abba's rantings

    RAFAEL:

    r. breuer reads 2 separate obligations in the mishneh torah wrt to lesaper nisim venifla’os beyitzi’as mitzrayim and vehigadta levincha (hilchos chametz umataza 7:1) (i erred, the piece is his pirke mikraot, not his pirke mo’adot)

  91. abba's rantings

    aiwac:

    “I was just presenting the other extreme.”

    i don’t understand your point

  92. IH presented an extreme, I presented another. IN retrospect, I retract it since it doesn’t contribute to the discussion.

    In response to IH, I’m not concerned about American Muslim radicalization in Madrassahs (as opposed to other countries). Most just want to get on with their lives. At most you can establish criteria for what institutions are entitled to tax-credit status and remove schools that preach hate or violence.

  93. I did not “present an extreme” nor did I imply that Madrassa were dens of Muslim radicalization. My point is simply that the question you posed can only be answered considering that such a law would need to be applied equally across the board.

    And, of course, one would then have the further complication of state interference in religion which similarly is a double-edged sword.

  94. “remove schools that preach hate or violence”
    this would be a disaster for jewish schools, esp. the ones that barely teach secular subjects. not because they preach hate or violence but because it is higly unlikely that once $ is made contingent on the content of the education, the content standards will not be nore serious than “don’t be terrorists.”

  95. IH,

    I would support a tax credit for Madrassahs and Christian schools no less than Jewish schools.

    emma,

    You’re right.

  96. abba's rantings

    any halachic problems with supporting religious schools through taxes? obviously throughout most of our history we’ve lived in areas with established churches and we didn’t really have a say in how our taxes were allocated, but now we’re specifically agitating for a framework in which we will be contributing to christian, ec. education. perhaps this isn’t an issue with tax credits rather vouchers or other forms of aid?

    AIWAC:

    “I would support a tax credit for Madrassahs and Christian schools no less than Jewish schools”

    you would. but i’ll bet (and i thought this was IH’s point) that many frum jews want aid for jewish schools but would recoil at the idea of muslims, christians, jews for jesus getting money for their schools.

  97. abba's rantings

    EMMA:

    “not because they preach hate or violence”

    perhaps not violence (does timche es zecher amalek count 🙂 ), but hatred is certainly taught. in many cases it just old fashioned racism and bigotry. in other cases it is benign theological election, etc.
    in any case, now the state is involved in deciding which theological “hatred” is to be tolerated and which isn’t. entanglement?

  98. abba's rantings

    AIWAC:

    “I’m not concerned about American Muslim radicalization in Madrassahs (as opposed to other countries). Most just want to get on with their lives”

    you don’t think they have the problem we have of schools that are more RW than the families that patornize them 🙂

  99. Is a tax credit taxes (as opposed to vouchers)? I was under the impression that it’s something else.

  100. “you don’t think they have the problem we have of schools that are more RW than the families that patornize them :)”

    I’m sure they do. But you’re looking only at the Orthodox community, not the whole Jewish community. The Muslims are also spread out faithwise.

    “in any case, now the state is involved in deciding which theological “hatred” is to be tolerated and which isn’t. entanglement?”

    You’re right. They shouldn’t be.

  101. abba's rantings

    AIWAC:

    “Is a tax credit taxes ”

    i don’t think so. that’s why i thought it isn’t halachically problematic as perhaps (?) other types of aid would be.

    in any case, i don’t understand why the orthodox leadership isn’t doing more to push for sme type of state aid. there is a lot of “talk” (jewish press editorials, statements at educational conferences, etc.), but no percievable action. why do they come out full force on gay marriage or other issues that have no direct impact on us, but not tuition? is there really a lack of orthodox lawyers and machers with political connections to try and push it through?

  102. My views on this issue have changed over the years. (For the record, I’m out of the business of paying yeshiva tuition [just one more year of college tuition].) From being opposed to receiving aid (however it is worded; tuition credit, voucher etc.) I think that there should be some aid for the secular part of the education provided by the schools. The problem that I don’t see discussed enough, however, is what type of governmental involvement in the education being provided will this entail. Perhaps it would be like charter schools which get money from local boards of education but those boards do not control what goes on in the schools. OTOH, if those schools are not doing a good job, the state can pull their charter. So are we willing to give up some control for the money.

    Even here, though, my views have changed. Once I came around to the position that receiving money for the secular part of the education met constitutional standards, I thought that as a matter of policy it would not be a good idea because of governmental involvement. As a result of the tuition crisis and the serious financial problems many parents are having in this regard, I think that while it is certainly not optimum, we should try to get some type of aid.

  103. abba's rantings

    JOSEPH KAPLAN:

    “As a result of the tuition crisis and the serious financial problems many parents are having in this regard, I think that while it is certainly not optimum, we should try to get some type of aid”

    and this is why we face an uphill battle, at best. for the most part (FL might be an exception), state aid to non-public school education (it does’t matter in what form) is generally structured to assist low-income families in failing districts. despite the way it is presented in the press and the local community at large, the goal isn’t to offer school choice, bolster ethnic pride or ease financial burden of an upper-middle family, but rather simple academic improvement (look at a charter school charter). so the state isn’t going to be sympathetic toward the typical MO/moderate-haredi family that enjoys upper-middle class income and whose kids meet academic benchmarks. (urban jews, e.g., in certain nyc neighborhoods, might have a better chance because they are more likely to live in low-performing districts)

    “Perhaps it would be like charter schools which get money from local boards of education but those boards do not control what goes on in the schools.”

    charter school is given leeway wrt to hiring (and firing), budgeting, etc., but otherwise must meet board of ed standards in admissions, curriculum, health requirements, calendar, record keeping, etc.
    and realistically in order for the charter to be approved, school must not just meet, but rather exceed board of ed acadcemic benchmarks. (above is wrt to NY/NJ, don’t know about FL)

  104. abba's rantings

    JOSEPH KAPLAN:

    in other words, it’s a tough sell to claim poverty when we are in the 90th+ income percentile and there is an acceptable (from the state’s view) local public school

  105. If Sarah Horowitz (and her handlers) is trying to claim how moderate her promotion is, she should stop participating in symposia like this. And…”Open Orthodox movement”? Terrific.

  106. nachum, at least learn how to spell her name. (other than that i somewhat agree that she/they can’t have it both ways…)

  107. Lawrence Kaplan

    I agree with Nachum that Sara Hurwitz is making a mistake in participating in this panel. BTW, She was a classmate of my niece, and I renmember her well from her pre-Rabba days when she would spend the first days of Pesach at my sister’s.

  108. When she is admitted to the RCA, rules can be imposed on her. At present, as I understand it, the only restrictions apply to R. Weiss. Perhaps Nachum’s complaint should be directed at those who made such a tumult about her status.

  109. I wonder what the calculus is in deciding to accept such an honor -what are the long term plusses and minusses?
    KT

  110. Rafael Araujo

    How about using good ole’ common sense. Don’t need rules for that.

  111. Common sense might say to ignore those who would be actively opposed to such an honor because they just want to pretend her smicha never happened anyway and put the genie back in the bottle.

    She was not the first female Orthodox smicha and won’t be the last. If the objection is to her participating in a forum with non-Orthodox rabbis, then treat her as an Orthodox rabbi and then demand she abide by the rules. But, one can’t have it both ways.

  112. Abba wrote:

    ““a careful reading of the annexed linked book reveals that even MO and YU engage in historical revisionism and hagiography”

    please explain.”

    When one reads the book in detail, one detects a smirking sense of superiority for LW MO, especially at HIR, without any disclosure until the end of the book that the author is a long term member of HIR, and absolutely nothing that discloses that the author was at least at one time a YCT board member. The book passes over in almost silence the roles of YU’s JSS, and the OU’s contributions to MO. That, IMO, is hagiography writ large.

  113. IH: She was not the first female Orthodox smicha and won’t be the last

    I invoke the No-True-Scotsman rule in stating that there was not and will never be female Orthodox semikhah.

  114. IH-I agree with R Gil’s most recent comment.

  115. IH-take a look at Adlai Stevenson’s comments to the UN during the Cuban missile crisis That is about as long as you will be waiting for female Orthodox semicha.

  116. For those interested in Ambassador Stevcenson’s comments, see the annexed link. http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/adlaistevensonunitednationscuba.html

  117. shaul shapira

    IH on April 4, 2012 at 3:15 pm
    “When she is admitted to the RCA, rules can be imposed on her.”

    Who imposed rules on her? Are people not allowed to complain?

  118. Steve — or one could turn to Rabbis Broyde and Brody invoking Rabbi Lamm:

    So my answer, when I was asked by a reporter about what I think about women rabbis, was, basically: ““It’’s going too fast.”” I did not say it was wrong, I did not say it was right. It just has not paced itself properly. I was criticized, of course. People asked, ““You mean that al pi din they’’re allowed to become rabbis?”” My response: ““I don’’t know——are you sure they’’re not allowed to?

    Gil — I did enjoy your response which needed no further amplification.

  119. On the earlier discussion about whether one person reads the Haggadah, or all participants, I just now came across the following passage in Profs Safrai Haggadah of the Sages on p. 146 in the context of the bracha at the Netilat Yadayim before Motzi Matza:

    However, in spite of the clear words in the Talmud and in the Geonic literature, some of the Rishonim have reservations about this blessing and believe that if a person did not become distracted he should not wash or say a blessing, or that only the person reciting the Haggadah, who is distracted during the reading, should say a blessing and the others should not. And one Sage writes: “And in my opinion all those present have to wash, since in their times one person would recite the Aggadah and include everyone…But now when we all say the Aggadah, because we become distracted everyone has to wash their hands” (Etz Hayim. p. 328).

  120. IH- R Lamm is a great rav, darshan, and thinker( the recently collected Drashos and Haggadah, and almost everything that he has written is top notch) and was an excellent president of YU, even if one can criticize certain moves during his tenure such as almost closing BRGS and MTA, and presiding over the documented deterioration of JSS. However,In this context, I think that Ambassador Stevenson’s comments are far more accurate than R Lamm’s views.

  121. Steve — and what praise will you sing for Rabbis Broyde and Brody?

  122. Lawrence Kaplan

    This is one of the rare occasions– almost as rare as my agreeing with Steve Brizel!– where I’m with Rafael Araujo.

  123. Steve, you do realize that Prof. Gurock teaches at, erm, YU, yes? A very long time and very proud faculty member there. He was the top assistant to R’ Lamm.

    Speaking of this:

    “IH- R Lamm is a great rav, darshan, and thinker”

    One does not have to be a great thinker to see the condescension in that line. He deserves far more than that.

  124. Prof. Kaplan — you have twice agreed, but stated no reason. Please enlighten us with an explanation, as perhaps I am missing something.

  125. shaul shapira

    “Slavery Flourishes in Modern Times”, is written by:

    “Rabbi Rachel Kahn-Troster is the director of North American programs for Rabbis for Human Rights­­-North America.”

    I just found it odd/HP

  126. Am I the only person who thinks that the arguments against procreation and children in the linked article are nothing more than an intellectually elitist, and ultimately selfish argument that children add nothing to this world? HaShem Yerachem if the same ever become even a secondary argument with respect to what is eupehemistically called a “woman’s right to choose”http://www.newyorker.com/arts/critics/books/2012/04/09/120409crbo_books_kolbert?currentPage=all

  127. Rachel Kahn-Troster’s “Slavery Flourishes in Modern Times” would have been stronger for mentioning the thousands of women, many from Eastern Europe, still in sexual slavery in Israel. Progress has been made in fighting this horror, but more is needed.

  128. re: no true scotsman, I am reminded of another famous quote, “it’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.” You could say “and probably never will be.” But “never” is too strong, and especially in this case where there are other concededly orthodox rabbis who disagree. Reminds me of like the rabbis who said there would never be a “disengagement.” Better not to bet the farm.

  129. “thousands of women, many from Eastern Europe, still in sexual slavery in Israel. Progress has been made in fighting this horror, but more is needed.”

    ???!??

  130. Nachum-I am well aware of Professor Gurock’s background and remain utterly unimpressed by his book on the subject at issue.

    Viewing MO solely from the prism of The Jewish Center, KJ , LSS , Ramaz and HIR is IMO a profound mistake, and not just for reasons of historiography. Discussing YU without even mentioning the role of JSS is tantamount to dismisssing its importance, when, for many years, JSS alumni were a substantial component of RIETS talmidim who were seeking smicha.The book in question had a stereotypically dismissive POV towards Baalei Teshuvah, and didn’t even discuss YU’s own TLS , let alone NCSY.

    Prior to my writing a letter to the Commie about an article that documented the presence of Chillul Shabbos among JSS students, I wrote R Lamm about preserving the unique Mesorah of JSS. The only response was a letter from DR Gurock advising me not to worry about the Mesorah of JSS. Obviously, the subsequent Commie article picked up on an issue that had been festering. Consequently, JSS has been restructured, with an attempt on returning to its view of providing a place to learn “it and not about it.”

    Like it or not, the OU played and continues to play a major role in the development of MO, with its contributions to Kashrus, Chizuk and Kiruv. The question remains whether YU views itself as having any message in spreading the depth and profoundity of a firmly committed MO way of life, or is merely interested in preserving the Daled Amos of its primary feeder communities against the twin ravages of a generation that either flips out or goes OTD. I stand by my comment and assessment of R D Lamm on all of the above issues.

  131. IH_R Broyde is a fine Talmid Chacham with a great sense of intellectual honesty who tries hard to negotiate a fine line between his RY in RIETS and justifying halachically questionnable conduct by LWMO and its leaders. R Brody is a fine writer and editor of the RCA blog.

  132. Joseph Kaplan

    As Wikipedia notes: “No true Scotsman is an informal logical fallacy, an ad hoc attempt to retain an unreasoned assertion.” Don’t think I’d would proudly invoke that logical fallacy.

  133. No-True-Scotsman is my favorite brand of whiskey.

  134. Joseph Kaplan

    Better get rid of it before yom tov.

  135. “Our problem is that the media identifies them as members of the Eda Hareidit. [Eda Hareidit] has come out against them in an official letter, so how can it be said that they are a part of us?” a senior Eda Hareidit member said, speaking to Kikar Hashabat.

    “It’s true that we oppose the path of the Zionists,” he continued. “But from there, to going and meeting terrorists who murder children? Who told them that was permitted”

    It is standard that many Hareidim will refer to Israeli police as nazim.

  136. ” reveals that even MO and YU engage in historical revisionism and hagiography”
    Certainly YU does-and certain people in MO do also.

  137. http://www.timesofisrael.com/59256/

    “Roni Saslove likes to have meetings in her wine cellar, surrounded by casks of aging Saslove wine. The far end of the cellar is cordoned off with a chain link fence safeguarding more casks of wine with a sign that reads: The Vault. These are the kosher casks of the Saslove Winery that are under lock and key because the Sasloves, as non-religiously observant Jews, are not allowed to touch them.”

  138. Lawrence Kaplan

    IH: Nothing very profound. I agree with Nachum and Rafael Araujo that Sara Hurwitz’s paticipating in the panel was a mistake in judgement on her part, and will serve to weaken her standing even among those segments of the Orthodox community that are sympathetic to her.

  139. Re the Daily Beast column re slaves and slave masters, the Meshech Chachmah refers the reader to the same Yerushalmi re Shliuach Avadim by Shevet Levi as the prerequisite to the Yetzias Mitzrayim.

  140. IH linked to the following article and quoted part of the same:

    “http://www.timesofisrael.com/59256/

    “Roni Saslove likes to have meetings in her wine cellar, surrounded by casks of aging Saslove wine. The far end of the cellar is cordoned off with a chain link fence safeguarding more casks of wine with a sign that reads: The Vault. These are the kosher casks of the Saslove Winery that are under lock and key because the Sasloves, as non-religiously observant Jews, are not allowed to touch them.”

    I thought that the article was a huge exercise in apologetics and ignored a basic Halacha-a Mchalel Shabbos is Pasul Ledus, because by transressing the Shabbos, he or she denies that HaShem created the world , brought the Jewish People out of Egypt so that they could accept His Torah.

  141. The Forward article re the LES was more about demographics than anything else. For many years, the LES was a great place to buy Seforim, English Judaica and Tashmishei Kedusha. As the neighborhood changed, stores such as Biegeleisen moved across the river, and most frum communities worthy of the name have at least a store that sells basic seforim, English Judaica, etc.

  142. Steve — then, perhaps, you ought not drink and enjoy any wine made by people that don’t meet your standard. Or do you resort to apologetics to bridge the gap between your rhetoric and your palate?

  143. IH wrote :

    “then, perhaps, you ought not drink and enjoy any wine made by people that don’t meet your standard. Or do you resort to apologetics to bridge the gap between your rhetoric and your palate?”

    Ain Haci Nami-I wouldn’t entertain the possibility of drinking such wine , nor would many on this blog. Denying or rationalizing away or attemting to rationalize away the halachic ramifications of Chillul Shabbos, as merely refraining from drinking and enjoyong wine made by “people that don’t meet your standard” strikes me as apologetics writ large.

  144. re: the woman rabbi event, is the objection that participating in interdenominational events grants legitimacy to the other denominations? News flash – that horse left the barn a long time ago. Try as I might, I have a hard time envisioning just who might have rejected Reform/Conservative/Reconstructionist as inauthentic, but reconsidered after seeing that an Orthodox leader deigned to appear on the same panel as one of theirs.

  145. shaul shapira

    “It is standard that many Hareidim will refer to Israeli police as nazim.”

    No it’s not. I lived among them for two years and can count on one hand how many times I heard that epithet.

  146. R’SS – that’s one hand too many
    R’ Cyberdov – IMHO the issue is that one who wants to win their bona fides as an orthodox religious leader might consider the impact of their decisions in matters such as these in light of the likely impact on fence sitters (i.e. the hard core of either camp will not be impacted, the fence sitters might be more impressed with a learned commentary etc. rather than attendance at recognition ceremonies such as the one noted)

    KT

  147. Joel Rich – OK, However Rabba Hurwitz is primarily a pulpit/community rabbi. I don’t wish to speak for her nor imply that she is not a scholar, but from what little first hand knowledge I have, she has won over fence-sitters in her own shul via community and personal involvement, not by writing commentaries.
    Granted that she is also a standard bearer for Open Orthodoxy in the broader community, and so perhaps your point is well taken, but perhaps she should simply do what she thinks is right – integrity can win people over too.

  148. The wine article was lame. No one is forcing the wineries to keep kosher, and at the beginning many didn’t. Now economics has forced some to comply with the laws of kashrus. Well, boo hoo, you want to service a market, you have to comply with what the market wants.

    As for the armchair scholars, there is no Orthodox poseik that I know of that would permit a winery to be run by Mechallelei Shabbos. Not in Israel, and not in America where religion is totally private. The OK may be more business savvy and user-friendly than the Rabbanut, but they both come to the same halakhic conclusion.

    Why doesn’t the armchair scholar sell the wine under his own hechsher. See how many kosher consumers he gets.

  149. r’ cyberdov,
    perhaps the commentary was a poor example but I see you got my general drift. As today is avi mori vrabbi’s yahrtzeit, I have to quote what he drilled into me – “keep your eye on the bouncing ball” which meant keep your focus on your ultimate goals and don’t get sidetracked by small things that may feel/seem good but divert you from the prize (you may be correct and perhaps that is what she is doing)
    KT

  150. R’ Joel — I agree, but see a different ball. The ball she should be watching is doing her job, not “worrying about what the goyim will say” so to speak.

    Let’s not kid ourselves, anyone who raises a hue and cry over her participation is likely not going to grant her any legitimacy anyway, so why be distracted by the politics — keep your eye on the ball which is about how female clergy can enhance the synagogue experience for both male and female members.

  151. And “long life” as they say in the UK to someone observing a yahrzeit.

  152. Now economics has forced some to comply with the laws of kashrus.

    Perhaps, but more likely is that economics has forced some to comply with the kosher certification business. The pendulum could still swing back, if the wine can sell enough volume on other benefits such that they are not dependent on the Orthodox (American) market.

  153. Shaul Shapira

    R Joel Rich- Of course it is. But it’s less than the amount of invitations you’re likely to recieve if you randomly pop into Toldos Aharon or Stolin for Kabbalos Shabbos. You wouldn’t believe how many Srugies can be found at the Shabbos meal of Neturei Karta-nik Koyf-mohn on rechov Shmuel Hanavi.
    (Of course the ones shouting Nazi usually aren’t the ones doing the inviting)

  154. Tal – “you have to comply with what the market wants.” like the article an over simplification.t

    “no Orthodox poseik that I know of that would permit a winery to be run by Mechallelei Shabbos. ”
    if you know halacha and read the article – which many things weren’t clear – you realize that is not the issue. you can run a winery and be mechalel shabbat and they are many wineries that fall into that category.
    “The OK may be more business savvy and user-friendly than the Rabbanut” – what does that even mean vis a vis halacha? the question is from the article – is there a difference in the ok’s approach to kashrut and rabbanut? are there solutions they use that the rabbanut doesn’t. or is it do it my way and screw you attitude? the article isn’t clear on many issues including whether we are discussing mevushal or non mevushal and what are the exact problems.

  155. I agree with Tal. The difference is that the Rabbanut just said no while the OK tried to isolate what steps in the process mechalelei Shabbos can do. That was savvy.

  156. “no Orthodox poseik that I know of that would permit a winery to be run by Mechallelei Shabbos. ”
    if you know halacha and read the article – which many things weren’t clear – you realize that is not the issue. you can run a winery and be mechalel shabbat and they are many wineries that fall into that category

    Ruvie, the article states that some owners resent that they cannot touch their own wine and have to give the keys to to where the wine is stored to someone else, i.e., the masgiach. That is what I meant by “run,” not act as the corporate president.

    Point is, everyone today agrees that one cannot make kosher wine unless it is only touched by shomrei shabbos (unless, perhaps, if it is completely mechanized from grape to bottle, but I don’t think you can make fine wine that way, grape juice maybe). So if you want to sell “kosher” wine, that is what you have to comply with acc. to every hasgocho.

    As for economics cutting both ways, yes it does. That is the way a free market runs. What Dannon, for example, cannot do, is claim to be kosher when it is not, that would be a fraud.

  157. MiMedinat HaYam

    i remember a winery near san fran (not napa valley) that had the same issue a number of years back. dont know the current status. you couldnt “visit” there, unless the rav hamachshir (from SF; actually it was a national hashgacha that used the SF rav, who otherwise was not accepted by many; i guess the deal with the wine / national org was diff) was there.

    LES — many ppl come from central america to LES since (they think) thats where all the sofrim are. i had a client from mexico who brought a whole sefer torah section to have it fixed; he was told to go to essex st to get it. (consult your LOR before using that fix; i wont vouch for its halachic acceptability, but i know its done, even by “good” O shuls here.)

  158. MiMedinat HaYam

    tal b — wine in america was produced using the (supposed) never touched by anybody till cooking / pasturization / bishul.

    kedem changed all that in 1948, and that is now the standarsd.

    though the o-u never said how they gave welch’s a hashgacha.

  159. MiMedinat HaYam

    there is a (non kosher) winery (clover hill winery) in pennsylvania that the owner cannot drink his own production — he is underage.

    and jack daniels (i may be wrong, but its one of the major bourbons) is produced in a “dry” county, so no one can drink it. but the other side of the distillery grounds is in the “wet” county.

  160. Tal – “That is what I meant by “run,” not act as the corporate president.” then i don’t disagree. when people use the word “run” – at least in my circles – it means operate, control or have the final word – the decision maker -and not just to be able touch the product during the process. again, if its mevushal then at some point they can.
    btw, castel was one of the first wineries to go from non kosher to kosher in 2002 when they had both line – kosher and non kosher – being sold. it is recognized as the best of the small or large wineries.

  161. MiMedinat HaYam

    ruvie — a real winemaker wants to be “hands on” like an artist. not handle the business end of things.

  162. It is Jack Daniels. They can sell mini souvenir bottles in their gift shop, but that’s all.

    I think the reason people are uncomfortable with this event is simply that R’ Weiss & Co. have been protesting how moderate and halakhic this whole process has been, and then they proudly participate in a panel with women whose ordination was neither. It feels wrong. And sometimes, yes, that’s important both for how it’s viewed as well as for what it really is.

    Then again, they threw out all pretense of moderation when they called her “maharat,” claimed that was all, and then changed her title to “rabbah” within, what, a year? Nice and slow and moderate there. I can’t speak about the halakha.

  163. MMY – “not handle the business end of things.” – i would suggest that a real winemaker doesn’t have to pick the grapes for the winery but select the soil and where it grows and which grapes or vines are acceptable or which grapes to pick. he can taste the wine from the barrels – he can be very hands on and is not relegated to the”business” end. btw, do you think the masgiach “makes” the wine?

  164. Nachum — what would the “moderation” of which you speak gain Rabba Hurwitz, or her shul? Would she be welcomed into the Orthodox clergy chevra if she “behaved”?

    It seems to me that those who would like her to not participate in fora such as this panel need to offer some form of recognition of her status in the clergy if they want to influence her decisions.

    Trying to have it both ways is not a reasonable response to the reality in which we live.

  165. “tal b — wine in america was produced using the (supposed) never touched by anybody till cooking / pasturization / bishul”

    I don’t think you would call the wine of that era fine wine. That is what we are taking about — wine made by a small winery. Not manufactured in a factory.

    If someone could come up with such a system, I suppose it would be kosher. Whether anyone would want to drink it is another matter.

  166. “Nachum — what would the “moderation” of which you speak gain Rabba Hurwitz, or her shul? Would she be welcomed into the Orthodox clergy chevra if she “behaved”?”

    Could be.

  167. It seems to me there is a common thread between the Manischewitz story and the feminist Seder story. Ideas that start off as radical to many become mainstream and implementations of those ideas that needed to be made explicit to effect change, no longer do.

    Thirty-seven years ago, that the quintessentially American Ashkenazi Manischewitz would be owned and significantly modified by a Moroccan Sephardic immigrant would have raised eyebrows and generated much talk among Jews. Today, American Ashkenaz Jews have a much more relaxed view of Ashkenazi/Sephardi integration. It’s just not a big social issue. Similarly, the feminist options in American Jewish life (up to and including Modern Orthodoxy) have changed so much since that first private feminist Seder, it’s just not a big social issue to American Jewry.

  168. IH: True, but did you read the feminist story? Tamara Cohen (my old friend?) laments the lack of feminism in the seder, including the recently published New American Haggadah.

  169. Gil — I did, that was my indirect point (contra the article).

    Incidentally, Kazablan dates from 1974 and the first female Rabbi was ordained by the Reform movement in 1972 (and 1974 for Reconstructionist).

  170. Lawrence Kaplan

    IH: I do not find your gezerah shavah convincing.

  171. Prof. Kaplan — fine, but such a responses is only interesting if they offer an explanation of why. That is what makes a conversation as opposed to a like/dislike button 🙂

    Chag Sameach

  172. Err, pardon the singular/plural confusion: such responses are only interesting if they offer an explanation of why.

  173. Perhaps, the Israeli vinter who complained about the need for religious certification because he is a Mchallel Shabbos never has experienced what the Kedushas Levi described in the annexed article or in any Torah observant neighborhood, either in the US or Israel, as the rush and preparation for Shabbos and YT reaches its peak, and then the stores, restuarants, and even the streets segue from the Erev Shabbos and YT rush towards the anticipation of the Kedushas HaYom into a community where Kedushas HaYom becomes not just an aroma in the house but a complete change in the atmoshere. Halevai that we all could sense more of the same in our lives. http://www.ou.org/jewish_action/02/2012/shabbos-judaisms-priceless-treasure/

  174. Lawrence Kaplan

    IH: There are no halakhic issues or issues of mesorah, such as are raised by the issue of women rabbis, involved in the Manischewitz changes, which are matters of ethnicity and a wider variety of foods. Perhaps they might have raised a few eyebrows. Certainly, they would not have elicited any resolution by the RCA. I really think your comparison is a stretch. Hag Sameach.

  175. I agree “There are no halakhic issues or issues of mesorah, such as are raised by the issue of women rabbis, involved in the Manischewitz changes” but that is not what the linked article (“The End of Feminist Seders?”) is about.

  176. Beautiful words from the archbishop – a shame sometimes we can’t lives Robert Byrnes dictum in a positive sense – “would some power the gift to gie us to see ourselves as others see us”
    CK”vs

  177. “Incidentally, Kazablan dates from 1974 and the first female Rabbi was ordained by the Reform movement in 1972 (and 1974”

    and Richard Nixon resigned in 1974-and the DJIA was abouit 1/20th the current figure -so what

  178. “(Its remaining competitor, Streit’s, has figured out another—more inventive—way to keep profits high. They now market their matzo to churches and are one of the major producers of Communion wafers in America”

    hmm.

  179. Interestingly, while feminist Seders are a ywan in the US, the phenomenon may now be be hitting Israel: http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4207643,00.html

    Not hard to understand given the socio-political context that has emerged there in the past few years.

  180. MiMedinat HaYam

    ruvie — if he picks (directly) from the barrel, its no longer kosher. and yes, the mashgiach does do work, in those situations. story about how the tzelemer rav used to accompany the kedem family, and they wee all very tired after a full day work. i know someone who did grape juice for someone else and he said he’ll never do it again.

    my point anyway, is that the idea of no touching the grapes / wine is not accepted, but the welch’s grape juice issue was never publicly addressed by the o-u, when they have a short lived hashgacha. (i presume it didnt sell so well, as doesnt dannon yogurt, etc.)

    nachum — you went to kentucky, and didnt bring me back a bottle? (now we were “yotze” the final four issue.) i mean a liter, not souvenier size.

    steve b — vintner — grape expert. oeniphile (sp?) — wine expert.

    regarding the maharat rabba, she was already on 92st y panels (with R and Recon female rabbis), broadcast on national tv, at least a year ago. whats new about this?

  181. MMH: Nope, never been to Kentucky.

    IH: Israel always takes a decade or so to catch up to American trends (religious or otherwise), for better or worse.

  182. “Israel always takes a decade or so to catch up to American trends (religious or otherwise), for better or worse”

    That’s also true in the reverse; Israeli RZ circles were the ones who launched the Tanach pshat learning revolution.

  183. A bottle of Gush Etzion Winery “Lone Oak” we enjoyed over Chag, in addition to 2 Israeli hechsherim, has an OU P, with the words “New Bottle” below that and, sic, “Kosher Lamadrin for Passover” below that.

    What is the significance of “New Bottle” to the kashrut certification?

  184. IH: I see that all the time now. I think it’s for Pesach only- fear it was used for non-Pesach wines.

  185. at the sedarim i’ve been at, everyone reads the haggadah out loud together. i thought that was standard practice.

  186. What (if any) is the halachic basis for “New Bottle” on wine even if it’s intended for Pesach? Will we also start finding it on other bottles and jars for Pesach certification, or only wine?

    Or should I just get used to this like the Glatt (sic) Kosher certification on sliced turkey breast (also from OU P)?

  187. It’s interesting to look at this Pesach product guide for Sephardim, particularly re kitniyos: http://www.jsor.org/PassoverList_2012_RevC.pdf

    Note on page 3 “We strongly suggest that even those cereals in which the listed ingredients are 100% kosher for Passover, should not be used as they are in constant contact with grains that are real hames.”

    And on page 6: “According to knowledgeable people in the Kashrut world, one should avoid the use of any product containing vinegar even if the company assures that the vinegar used is not of grain origin. We therefore recommend that all mayonnaise, ketchup and mustard, etc., should have proper Passover supervision.”

    And on page 7: “Sodas must have Kosher for Passover certification due to possible Hames in the flavoring base.”

  188. “aja on April 9, 2012 at 5:03 am
    at the sedarim i’ve been at, everyone reads the haggadah out loud together. i thought that was standard practice”

    I thought standard practice was leader of Seder read it-otherwise how does Rambam shitah that leader of Seder reads MaH nishtana make sense.

  189. Joseph Kaplan

    ” i thought that was standard practice”

    I thought standard practice was…”

    I always thought the standard practice was for each family to do what best suited that family for that particular year, which sometimes changed depending on the age of the children and who the guests were. If there was ever a Jewish ceremony that had many many “standard practices’ it’s how to run a seder.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: