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Pew Releases Massive Study of Muslim Belief
Mohels protest restriction on ‘suction’ during circumcision
Debates About Circumcision in Germany and Beyond Show Disdain for the Sacredness of the Human Body
Orthopraxy at the White House
Tangled Up in Jews
Many Claim Shul Membership But Few Pay Dues
Sao Paulo declares Yom Kippur, Rosh Hashanah official holidays
Rushing to preserve Ladino legacies
Please return to your seat, unless you’re a woman
Leiby Kletzky’s Killer, Levi Aron, Pleads Guilty to Murdering 8-Year-Old
Benching With Grace
New issue of Behind The Union Symbol
Israeli military begins drafting haredi Orthodox
The Times’ Kosher Berger
Stoney, a Jewish Mourning Robot
SALT Friday

Taking outreach to the schools
Never mind the Bible, it’s the sanity of the Talmud you need to understand the world and yourself
Zionism 2.0
Sitting down with Rabbi Lau
Shomrim Don’t Want Police To See Security Video
Snafu sends Israel travelers flying on air with low-priced tickets
After seven years, Gaza evacuees are growing distant from the settler movement
Tangled Web: Orthodox Jews And The Internet
Yitzchak Navon Relates More Of The Famous Ben-Gurion and Chazon Ish Meeting
SALT Thursday

Download first 30 pages of Koren Steinsaltz Berakhos
The Writers and Editors Behind the Astonishing Rise of Orthodox Magazines and Fiction
Founder of Elizabeth’s JEC honored at siyum
After Year, Leiby Kletzky Murder Still Hurts
Self-Hatred as Self-Help
Head in the clouds and feet in the desert, Yosef Abramowitz dreams of Israeli solar power
Schools’ secular-religious integration to begin next year
Radio host fired after calling religious Zionism ‘cancer’
Yeshiva Day School Financing: A Case Study
SALT Wednesday

After 8 Years, Body Was Relocated for Spiritual Reasons with R. Elyashiv’s Blessings
Duke acquires papers of prominent rabbi
Tarzan of the Jews
Pittsburgh rabbi files federal lawsuit over state funeral policy
European rabbis: Shechitah could come under legislative attack in EU
The power of personal connection
Dirt Cheap Tickets On El Al To Be Honored
Munich Widows Blast Olympic Chief at Memorial
1 in 5 Israelis gets married abroad
Beit Shemesh: Signs excluding women still up
SALT Tuesday

Beware of the Overhaul: A Response to Rabbi Dov Lipman
Black Hats for Brooklyn, Made to Precise Order in Spain
Long Island Eruv Opponents File Complaint To Declare Eruv Unconstitutional
Amos Hakham, Torah prodigy, dies at 91
France’s Jewish Archbishop
Educate Israeli leaders on the nuances of Diaspora life
Boy Scout files reveal repeat child abuse by sexual predators
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.

86 comments

  1. The comments on the eruv on V-I-N are interesting – the freedom that protects our rights as US citizens also protects the rights of others to their own “pursuit of happiness”. Would you want to encourage folks who you percieve as deligitimatizing your approach to life to be your neighbors?
    KT

  2. “Pursuit of happiness” (or the right not to be offended) is not a constitutional right.

    Of course, if they were honest, they could give quite a few logical reasons why more Orthodox Jews in a neighborhood (which is the root of opposition to an eruv) isn’t a good thing. I’m not saying I’d agree, but the reasons are there.

    Of course, some may be dyed-in-the-wool liberals who really think this is a violation of church/state separation. Those need to get a life.

  3. R’ Nachum,
    In our society aiui one pursues their interests by whatever means are most convenient and/or efficacious – I’m sure they are honest people and pursuing the ends they seek by whatever legal means they feel will work. Does anyone think there is a clear “constitutional right” to school vouchers or having special services provided locally rather than at a public school?
    KT

  4. From the original R’ Lipman story
    “A young man, fresh off a year of Torah study in a top hesder yeshiva and looking forward to his second year of learning in Israel, offered to drive this visiting rabbi. This boy would appear to be a yeshiva high school success story – religious and learning Torah. Of course, he was told, the rabbi will pay something to offset gas expenses and for his time.”

    IMHO the lesson is they should have come to a meeting of the minds before the trip as to what the price would be rather than allowing each to imagine in their own mind and then be disappointed in the other.

    KT

  5. I don’t consider the article against R. Lipman to be a true rebuttal. The fact that there are ever greater numbers of students in these programs says nothing about their quality.

  6. aiwac: The core points of Rabbi Ross’s rebuttal are that R. Lipman produces no evidence for his claim aside from a single anecdote which he admits is exceptional, that it isn’t clear whom he is speaking to, and that he isn’t engaging with the larger conversation about these issues that has been taking place over the past 15 years.

  7. Let me rephrase that last comment. It isn’t so much a rebuttal as a critique.

  8. In our society aiui one pursues their interests by whatever means are most convenient and/or efficacious – I’m sure they are honest people and pursuing the ends they seek by whatever legal means they feel will work.

    JR: while the people involved have every right to pursue the suit (assuming it has any merit — I am dubious), there is nothing wrong with our pointing out that for most of those involved, the reasl issue is not wanting to to make the neighborhood attractive to Orthodox families, not the eruv itself, which is barely visible and no one would even notice were it not for the other issue. (There was an interview done on one TV program where a non-Jewish interviewer canvassed the neighborhood, and most of the opponents basically said the same thing, we don’t want those Orthodox moving in.)

    If the same thing were said about other minorities, these same people would be the first to brand that as bigotry, so there is an element of hypocrisy here, and again nothing wrong in pointing that out.

    It’s not that different from the anti-shechitah forces in Europe. Some are genuinely “concerned” for the animals, but for many it is a way to make life less comfortable for Jews and Moslems, and discourage them from coming to or staying in their countries.

  9. Joel, their legal argument strikes me as a losing one. The anti-establishment clause allows for reasonable accommodation of religion. In theory, one could claim that reasonable accommodation of religion X is offensive to those who don’t believe in X. The law’s answer for this is, “Get used to it.” The type of democracy we have sometimes requires us to grow a thick skin.

  10. Tal: The reason you were sent that story was because it was a satire piece. The Daily Show is a comedy show.
    No that there isnt truth in it, but just an FYI.

  11. ▪ Long Island Eruv Opponents File Complaint To Declare Eruv Unconstitutional

    From the link I posted last week
    http://www.stevens.edu/golem/llevine/rsrh/av_ii.pdf

    “It is now no longer enough for the apostate to be able to live
    undisturbed according to his convictions, as he calls them; to him
    there is no well-being and no peace as long as his convictions have not become the only ones recognized as right and valid.
    He sees in the Law an intellectual slavery from which it is the
    Godly task of a second Moses to redeem his unfortunate brothers. In
    Torah-loyalty, he sees superstition, backwardness, and at the same
    time a calamity which is to blame for all the miseries of the past.
    He sees in ‘,’liberation” from the yoke of the Law a goal so high and so humanitarian that every means which seems capable of bringing about progress toward this great goal must be employed.
    He has so completely lost the ability to understand his Torah-loyal
    brothers that he can no longer fathom how people could be so devoted and loyal to such a Law, how people could so joyfully wear its chains, and could find so much bliss in making all of the sacrifices that it demands; he is completely unable to grasp the fact that he is dealing with a pure, deep, inner conviction.
    He now persuades himself that he must condemn what he previously
    only pitied, lamented over, and at most felt contempt for. To
    him, resistance to abandoning the Torah is malice and obstinacy. In
    his mind, all loyalty to the Law is hypocrisy which must be exposed: he considers it Israel’s national misfortune which obstructs all progress.”

    Now this:

    http://stopthewhberuv.blogspot.com/2012/03/please-read-and-donate-to-jpoe-to-help.html
    My name is Arnold Sheiffer, and I am the President of Jewish People for the Betterment of Westhampton Beach, Inc. (also known as the “JPOE”)….
    Many of the JPOE’s members are proud and observant Jews who belong to Jewish denominations which do not accept the concept of an eruv as a valid interpretation of Jewish law.
    I myself am a Reform Jew. I was formerly a Trustee and Treasurer of the Jewish Center of the Hamptons, where one of my sons was bar mitzved.

    I am here this morning, along with other members of our organization, to strongly oppose the application of a private religious group, the East End Eruv Association, Inc. (“EEEA”), to compel the Village of Quogue to permit the use of the Village utility poles for the purpose of the erection of an eruv.

    In our view, this use of property owned or controlled by the Village would constitute an unlawful endorsement of religion in gross violation of the religious liberties of JPOE’s members. This is in clear violation of the establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. The members of my organization do not wish to live in a Village whose territory has been demarcated by the erection of an eruv on government property.

    We would view the erection and public display of an eruv on Village utility poles as a symbolic endorsement, by the Village, of an interpretation of Jewish law, which we as reformed Jews personally disagree, … and our spiritual leaders expressly reject.”

    They are of course within their legal rights to do this. Let them not be insulted however when we have unkind things to say about their “judaism”. Freedom of speech does not end where the other man’s heresy begins.

  12. Ken: I understand that the piece is a satire piece, but the statements of the interviewees are genuine. At least as far as I can tell.

  13. Q: Does the Village permit the poles to be used for anything else? That is an important question, in my mind. There was a case in NJ a few years back. The Third Circuit Court of Appeals held that the town could not discriminate against an eruv by allowing poles to be used for all kinds of things (posts about losts dogs, garage sales, etc.) but not an eruv.

  14. and if it’s a losing lawsuit, so be it. I just don’t see getting so bent out of shape about people who have been living someplace for a long time wanting to retain their lifestyle – l’havdil like those who want to resist a 7-11 or a walmart or whatever – that is their right to pursue under whatever legal theory and the right of those who oppose them to their day in court.

    It’s also fascinating how far we have come from the idea of keeping a low profile in galut.
    KT

  15. and if it’s a losing lawsuit, so be it. I just don’t see getting so bent out of shape about people who have been living someplace for a long time wanting to retain their lifestyle

    LOL. There is a book that came out a few years ago (I forgot the name) that discussed these types of conflicts. It pointed out that the exact same argument you raise and that are now raised against eruvin and the like were raised in th 1950s to those opposing, for example, building permits for Reform Temples.

    So you have no issue with a town that has been predominantly Christian (or Protestant) for the last century denying a building permit for a synagogue, on the theory that its citizens are “people who have been living someplace for a long time wanting to retain their lifestyle?”

  16. “during his funeral service at the Cathedral of Notre-Dame, one of his relatives recited the Kaddish, while the leaders of France’s Jewish community — including the chief rabbi — prayed by the side of his coffin.”

    really? the chief rabbi?

  17. So you have no issue with a town that has been predominantly Christian (or Protestant) for the last century denying a building permit for a synagogue, on the theory that its citizens are “people who have been living someplace for a long time wanting to retain their lifestyle?”
    ==========================================
    I have no issue with them raising whatever legal obstacles they find under the law (much as I may disagree with them from an ethical standpoint). How would you feel about granting a building permit for a use that substantially impacts the neighbors’ lifestyle (e.g. a simcha hall) in order to curry favor with voters?
    KT

  18. JR — I might or might not like having a Simcha hall next to me. But I think there is a big difference (ethical, not legal) between trying to keep out a whole community and keeping out a single facility I would find inconvenient. You can have a thriving Orhotdox commuinity without a simcha hall, or you can put it at the edge of the community in a commercial district, since generally such are only used on chol and one can drive there.

    The bottom line is that the real message of most of these people is, we don’t want Orthodox Jews in our community. Rather ironic since 50 years ago the gentiles thought the same thing about them. While they may be within their legal rights to try and stop it, their position hardly elicits much sympathy. That was really the point of the Daily Show piece.

  19. TAL:

    “Rather ironic . . .”

    rather ironic considering that in many instances frum jews themselves prefer homogenious communities. so the non-jews or reform jews don’t want us. big deal. many frum jews would be just as aghast as having reform jews or non-jews (to say nothing of people of color) for neighbors and do whatever possible–legal or illegal–to prevent this from happening.

  20. “many frum jews would be just as aghast as having reform jews or non-jews (to say nothing of people of color) for neighbors and do whatever possible–legal or illegal–to prevent this from happening”

    Other than your own bigotry, do you have anything to back up your assertion that “many” frum jews would do “whatever possible–legal or illegal” to prevent Reform Jews from moving in?

  21. shaul shapira

    Further to my point:

    Here is a ‘Rabbi’ in favor of banning the cruel practice of circumcision.

    http://intactnews.org/node/104/1311886091/jewish-voices-current-judaic-movement-end-circumcision-part-1

    “The code of the Jewish law is called “halacha” (the way). Within the Code, there is a provision that if a mother loses a son because of circumcision, she is NOT obligated to circumcise her next son. I extrapolate from this, the inter-connection of my human family, that enough deaths and maiming have occurred because of circumcision. Therefore – circumcision is no longer a requisite! Just as we no longer practice the animal sacrifices in the traditional temple, so let us not sacrifice an important piece of our mammal in the temple of tradition.”
    – Rabbi Nathan Segal, Rabbi of Shabbos Shul
    =================

    The next time someone in Germany wants to outlaw circumcision, the only ones who will actually be able to say with a straight face that Bris Milah is our God given right, duty, and obligation, are the Orthodox. The Conservative movement can always find a hetter (e.g. kavod ha’briyos, dina d’malchua etc. etc. ad nauseam) for why there is no reason to practice it nowadays. The Reform movement obviously doesn’t even need that.
    ====================

    As I realize that I’m beginning to sound like ‘Korach and the preacher’, as well as my desire to limit my internet usage, I’ll B’N be self muzzling for a week. I’m not avoiding the debate though, and will B’N continue blogging sometime after August 12th.

  22. I think the book to which Tal referred at 11:27 am is Jew vs. Jew by Sam Freedman. It’s probably the most sensitive presentation of these issues available today (although perhaps a bit dated, now) and a really good read.

  23. Indeed, before they realized it could harm their legal case, many of they including this Arnold Sheiffer, publicly expressed their hatred towards the Orthodox. The fact is they are taking a passive-aggresive approach in order to accomplish something that is ultimately illegal: discriminating against people with a different belief system. The fact that the different belief system is also their own makes them even more pathetic.

  24. R’ Elon,
    and when bike lanes are removed in brooklyn because the “locals” find women who don’t dress like them inappropriate?
    KT

  25. Dare it be asked if there are any downsides to having a large Orthodox influx into your community? I’m all in favor of the eruv, but I think we should ask ourselves- purely internally- if we can learn anything for ourselves from their opposition, maybe take a little mussar.

    Or look, maybe not. (I’m revulsed when people say the same about 9/11, for example. But that doesn’t make it always wrong.)

  26. Downsides (from pov of gentiles and non-Orthodox Jews):

    The public school system may be defunded.

    Merchants may be pressured to close on Shabbos.

  27. MiMedinat HaYam

    first of all, i want the right to forbid my employees from waering a cross and / or hanging a christmas tree in the employee lounge. etc etc.

    note too, that a certain prominent RY (in who’se shul i occasionally daven at) in rockland county is building a “yeshiva” complex that is just a real estate developmemnt, that he will “rent” to selected “talmudic students” (= kollel students) and essentially pocket the $$$. the net effects on the residents is removing the property from the (future) tax base, and increased govt expenditures in water / sewage / sanitation / road maintenance / etc services, etc, etc. but the townspeople cant complain, cause its a prominent RY!

    also, “pursuit of happiness” (preamble) is a euphemism for pursiut of earning a (capitalist) living. an eruv is a great (capitalist) monetary pursuit, since it has over and over again increased real estate values. (and brought in “those people”, a quote from mayor moskowitz of tenafly in the town council minutes, brought into record of the 3rd circuit case tal 11:19 references. which of course is what they want to prevent in west hampton.)

  28. MiMedinat HaYam

    scott — the “tony” people of westhampton beach do not send their children to public schools. and school taxes are not that high there, anyway.

    as for stores closing on shabbat — there were accusations of that, that proved to be unfounded. besides, even today, there is only one store that also sells kosher food, limited selection, etc. they’re (we’re) not taking over main street.

    also, the article references the hampton synagogue. they (actually, the rabbi — its a one man show) got out of the eruv issue years ago. its just a group of residents that want / dont want the eruv.

  29. “Downsides (from pov of gentiles and non-Orthodox Jews):”

    This raises an interesting issue. Usually in these cases, it is the non-Orthodox Jews who are vociferously against the eruv, or whatever. The gentiles usually (although not always) are indifferent. That I think is rather telling about what is really going on.

  30. “as for stores closing on shabbat — there were accusations of that, that proved to be unfounded. besides, even today, there is only one store that also sells kosher food, limited selection, etc. they’re (we’re) not taking over main street”

    I don’t understand — is closing a store on Shabbos a crime such that this is an “accusation?”

    Let’s say, for argument sake, that one or two streets in a town become dominated by kosher establishments, which close on Shabbos. Does that really deprive the local residents from non-kosher alternatives, on Shabbos or otherwise? There are such kosher “strips” in Teaneck and the Five Towns, for example. Yet there are also plenty of supermarkets, shopping malls, and treif restaurants within a ten minute drive.

  31. MiMedinat HaYam

    tal b — the accusations were (not specific, but) of “pressuring” to stores to close.

    second, teaneck / 5towns is exactly what they DONT want.

    the question is, do they want the increased property values? the answer is no. they’ll pass. not that westhampton beach will turn into a 5towns. too many reasons not to turn that way.

    2. “Usually in these cases, it is the non-Orthodox Jews who are vociferously against the eruv”

    actually, its often is the charedi jews who oppose the eruv, even if it means someone can enjoy his shabbat, halachically. its a question of imposing their customs, which to them is a halacha. (just like they oppose our “fancy” restaurants, which they oppose, but they’ll still come in occassionally to eat in.)

  32. “second, teaneck / 5towns is exactly what they DONT want”

    MMHY: Yes I get that, the question is why? Do non-Orthodox Jews in Teaneck and teh 5Towns starve on Saturday? Or, more to the point, are they deprived of anything they cannot get by getting into their car and driving for 5 minutes (or, actually, more like walking another block or two)? Or is it the mere presence of large quantities of Orthodox Jews they find offensive?

  33. MiMedinat HaYam

    tal — for the same reason i do not want my employees to wear a cross. (by the way, these are prob the same people that dont want to park a block away from an O shul when attending, say, an O bar mitzvah. to use your car park analogy.)

    yes, these are the mere presence ppl.

    BTW, “lineman” has some articles on this topic http://eruvonline.blogspot.com/search?q=hampton.

    he used to comment here. awaiting.

  34. http://www.ynet.co.il/articles/0,7340,L-4265413,00.html

    Two interesting issues:

    First, apropos of the above discussion:

    כשחרדים מגיעים לשכונה, הם באים במספרים גדולים ומציעים מחירים מפתים לבעלי דירות חילונים. גיבלי עבר לקריית היובל לפני שלוש שנים. הוא היה החרדי הראשון בבית דירות. כעת מחזיקים חרדים ארבע משמונה הדירות בבניין, יש להם יותר ילדים והכיוון ברור.

    And second, a bigger problem for Am Yisrael’s desire for a unified Jerusalem as the State of Israel’s eternal capital:

    בשבע השנים האחרונות עזבו 20 אלף חילונים את הבירה, ומספרם ירד ל-31 אחוז. מספר החרדים דומה, אבל הם בסימן עלייה. 35 אחוז מהתושבים פלסטינים מוסלמים, והשאר נוצרים. בכתבה התייחסו לכך שמדובר במקרה בוחן לזהותה של המדינה: “זו בריחה שהרבה ישראלים עוקבים אחריה בדאגה”.

  35. IH: That’s a complete falsehood, as it eliminates all Religious Zionist Jews. Since neither you nor Haaretz can be bothered: It’s about a third of the Jewish population. (31 percent is huge for the secular. It must be lower.) So about a third Arab, and of the remaining two-thirds, a third Charedi, a third RZ, a third secular. Perhaps not ideal, but not the end of the world, and certainly not worthy of sarcasm from you.

  36. Sorry, Yediot.

  37. Try moving to Kiryas Joel or New Square. Let’s see how welcoming they are. The takeover of control of the public school system is a chillul Hashem. Why does BP have siren on erev Shabbos is it respectful of others?

  38. “After 8 Years, Body Was Relocated for Spiritual Reasons with R. Elyashiv’s Blessings”

    should read: family suspected of removing body from cemetery in a middle of night secret operation due to being buried next to a questionable frum woman with leading rabbinic approval.

    interesting that the cemetery’s burial society rejected the request and the deceased knew whom he was buried next to when he bought the plot originally.

  39. abba's rantings

    TAL:

    why was it bigoted statement?
    forget kiryas yoel that someone mentioned above. try setting up a reform temple or christian chuch in MO vacation village.
    or see what happens if a non-shomer shabbos or non-jewish family tries renting/buying in boro park in a jewish house or building. (you are the lawyer, but my understanding is that this is illegal in anything larger than a 2-family home.)

  40. “or see what happens if a non-shomer shabbos or non-jewish family tries renting/buying in boro park in a jewish house or building.”

    happens all the time and there are no issues. The reason it doesn’t happen more is because there’s a shortage of available housing in BP and the close-knit Chassidish families have their eyes on any apt that comes on the market. Prices are also way higher than elsewhere so most non-Jewish families don’t want them.

  41. MiMedinat HaYam

    a couple years ago, some rabbonim called for demonstratoons, etc against those jews who were renting to “hipsters” in north williamsburg / bushwick, till they realized it was other chassidim, and several real estate owning rebbe’s, who were doing the renting out.

    what market would there be for a reform temple in vacation village? reform have enough pblms today with their limited market and fundraising.

    kiryas joel and new square have no (public) school district. hareidiman’s argument is a misnomer. (KJ school district is something else, and not a takeover.) besides, the same arguments apply in other completly secular school districts. (monroe township, nj (sr citizens fighting with young families) comes to mind.)

    the siren erev shabbat is just as disrepectful as banning scantily clad clothing in boro park streets. a non issue.

  42. MiMedinat HaYam

    moving 8 yrs buried body — the most telling line of the article is “of the new Haredi phone news service “Kav Ha’Chasifot” (Exposé Line)” i guess competition for charedi web sites, (esp those that got into trouble for … selling their reporting services …)

    also, the person was buried next to a woman. her religiosity was not in question. other’s religiosity was in question, according to the jpost. would make an interesting civil rights case in the US. though i know of a chevra in the US that checks out its members, even going into the bedroom to see if they have separate beds.

    also, yerushalayim has a particular problem of powerful chevra kaddishot, that listen to no one.

    papers of prominent rabbi — many secular institutions have papers of orthodox rabbis. its a method to deduct the value from the estate, yet keeping access extremely limited. though this case is not of an orthodox rabbi.

    bet shemesh signs — aren’t the meah shearim signs a “kodak picture moment”? and no one is calling for them to be taken down. (i already told someone going on this months NbN flight to NOT move to bet shemesh.)

  43. I was talking about the public schools in Lakewood and Monsey that have been hijacked by the Hareidim. This is the appreciation that is given to towns that welcomed us

  44. MMY – “The men related that upon visiting their father’s grave “they suddenly saw that next to their father were buried people – possibly Sabbath observant but certainly not strict in [observing religious] commandments.”

    frum but not frum enough.

    or
    “Bechadrei has updated the story with more details, saying that the graves immediately adjacent to the dead fellow had already been populated before he had died, so when he got his plot he already knew, and seemingly had no problem with it, that he would be buried next to secular people.”

    http://lifeinisrael.blogspot.com/2012/08/inappropriate-neighbors-justify-mid.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+blogspot%2FyTdM+%28Life+in+Israel%29

    secular or not frum enough – who knows. depends which story you read – see haaretz.

  45. IIRC, most, if not of all of the challenges to eruvin, mikvaos, yeshivos and shuls being built in suburban venues on zoning and other pretense based arguments have not withstood the courts’ scrutiny-both in NY state as well as federal courts as well.

  46. MiMedinat HaYam

    harediman — you mean monsey where the jews elected a haitian american mayor, or lakewood where there is an overwhelming majority of legal jews vs vast minority of illegal minorities who cannot vote (and often have few children, most of which are transient anyway, and cannot be effectively educated?)

    i mean places like monroe township (not so far from lakewood) and other communities, where the secular majority (usually senior citizens) resents paying for artificially high school taxes (and other taxes that go to abbot districts, a whole other part of the equation).

    steve b — i disagree. most challenges (including budhhist and sikh temples, mosques, and sundry christian denominations; sometimes a RCC) are ordered to proceed by the courts. (though often, they must go to appeals courts. the district court is too politically beholden, i guess.) though i doubt chicago mayor rahm emanuel will get away with denying the chicken restaurant (currently in the news) a building permit / zoning approval.

  47. MiMedinat HaYam

    steve b — i take it back. i see we agree.

  48. “Steve Brizel on August 7, 2012 at 6:18 pm
    IIRC, most, if not of all of the challenges to eruvin, mikvaos, yeshivos and shuls being built in suburban venues on zoning and other pretense based arguments have not withstood the courts’ scrutiny-both in NY state as well as federal courts as well”

    When there is a preexisting zoning rules I am not sure if my impression is the same as Steve’s-BTW-I am aware of a case where a schul applied for building permit and town changed zoning rules before acting on application and succeeded after Appellate Ct in turning down the application.

  49. As I read the Tenafly case, had the Board not been so overtly anti-Orthodox (i.e., trying to enforce regulations against the eruv that they did not otherwise enforce and actually making anti-Orthodox statements at the hearing), I think the Third Circuit would have affirmed the District Court and not have directed the approval of the eruv. Unfortunately, in many cases anti-relifious sentiment (anti-Orhtodox in shul and eruv cases and anti-Muslim in mosque cases) rears its ugly head and is behind the decision not to allow the eruv/building etc., which results in court decisions in favor of the religious eruv/building etc.

  50. In a bit of meta-news: An abbreviated version of the Forward is distributed with the English Haaretz. This week there was an announcement that next Sunday will be the last time, and invited subscribers to sign up online.

    1) Is the American print version being ended too?

    2) Will the website become pay-only?

    3) Will anyone care?

    Speaking of Haaretz: It is well-known that its only real source of income comes from the fact that its presses are used by Yisrael HaYom and B’Sheva. With Maariv apparently poised to go web-only, there’s word that Adelson will be buying their presses. Of course, the owners of Haaretz have pledged to lose however much money it takes to continue publishing their drivel, so we may have to stomach it for a while yet.

  51. “▪ After 8 Years, Body Was Relocated for Spiritual Reasons with R. Elyashiv’s Blessings”

    Once again a news article and it’s headline lie… and the truth is buried somewhere in the words.

    R. Elyashiv said that the son should be burred next to his father for Kivud Av.

    The nonsense about being burred next to a woman or someone who is less religious had nothing to do with the answer at all.

  52. “Duke acquires papers of prominent rabbi”

    LOL, not what I thought the article was about at all. I thought this was some court case in England about a long dead immigrant… Not Duke University getting the writings of a famous Rabbi.

  53. Larry Lennhoff

    i mean places like monroe township (not so far from lakewood) and other communities, where the secular majority (usually senior citizens) resents paying for artificially high school taxes (and other taxes that go to abbot districts, a whole other part of the equation).

    My mom used to live in Monroe Township, in one of the active senior communities there. She uses it as a counter-example to the 5 towns (which is near where she lives today). According to her, the seniors in Monroe township support the school district, including voting to pass the budget. A quick google of the township’s school district data seems to show it doing well academically. They have an overcrowded high school and are purchasing land for expansion – that doesn’t sound like a community with a majority of anti-school people in it.

  54. As I read the Tenafly case, had the Board not been so overtly anti-Orthodox (i.e., trying to enforce regulations against the eruv that they did not otherwise enforce and actually making anti-Orthodox statements at the hearing), I think the Third Circuit would have affirmed the District Court and not have directed the approval of the eruv.

    JK: had they not done that, the eruv would have been put up. That’s the whole point. The eruv, at least in NJ, is on private property — the telephone company’s poles. They tried to stop it by selecting enforcing rules not enforced against anyone else.

    (On Long Island, the fact that LIPA is a public company complicates the issue.)

  55. avi – “The nonsense about being burred next to a woman or someone who is less religious had nothing to do with the answer at all.”

    from haaretz’s article: i didn’t see the video but assume this is right till otherwise proven.

    “A video clip posted on the Haredi website Behadrei Haredim showed Elyashiv responding affirmatively when the family asked whether they are required to move their father’s bones from a place that constituted “contempt for the dead.” The clip is dated just five days before Elyashiv was hospitalized.

    The video also shows another rabbi explaining to Elyashiv that after the man was buried, his relatives “suddenly saw that next to him were buried people who may have been Sabbath observant, but certainly weren’t careful about keeping the commandments. All the families come from terrible licentiousness.”

  56. avi – the video – they were not frum enough (the dead) – yes to shomer shabbat of the other folks nearby but i guess not medatakim enough for them (whatever that means). please explain why the article was wrong or the headline.

    http://www.bhol.co.il/article.aspx?id=43407

    avi – “R. Elyashiv said that the son should be burred next to his father for Kivud Av.” ? please see video – r’ elyashiv doesn’t say anything really except chayavim

  57. ruvie, I’m not going to watch the video because I can’t. That being said the article states:

    ” The question was posed to R. Elyashiv by his student, Rabbi Ben Tzion HaCohen Kook, and R. Elyashiv’s response was that it was a matter of “Honor your father” to execute the relocation.”

    This conflicts with the headline.

  58. Wow, found the transcript.. it’s terrible.

    So many different ways to interpret what was said.

  59. Joseph Kaplan wrote:

    “As I read the Tenafly case, had the Board not been so overtly anti-Orthodox (i.e., trying to enforce regulations against the eruv that they did not otherwise enforce and actually making anti-Orthodox statements at the hearing), I think the Third Circuit would have affirmed the District Court and not have directed the approval of the eruv. Unfortunately, in many cases anti-relifious sentiment (anti-Orhtodox in shul and eruv cases and anti-Muslim in mosque cases) rears its ugly head and is behind the decision not to allow the eruv/building etc., which results in court decisions in favor of the religious eruv/building etc”

    Like it or not, anti Orthodox sentiment in many of these cases is masked and cloaked via pretextual excuses such as zoning, traffic concerns, etc.

  60. “what happens if a non-shomer shabbos or non-jewish family tries renting/buying in boro park in a jewish house or building”

    I know a non-Jewish Lesbian who lives in Boro Park. She loves being in a Jewish neighborhood and says she is treated wonderfully!

    ” siren erev shabbat”

    From where I live in Riverdale I regularly hear church bells even though the synagogues outnumber the churches. It isn’t a problem.

    “you mean monsey where the jews elected a haitian american mayor”

    Teaneck elected a Muslim mayor. He is according to his Wikipedia site the son of immigrants from India.

  61. Joseph Kaplan

    “JK: had they not done that, the eruv would have been put up. That’s the whole point. The eruv, at least in NJ, is on private property — the telephone company’s poles. They tried to stop it by selecting enforcing rules not enforced against anyone else.”

    I understand. My point simply was that as a legal matter, a township can impede an eruv without violating the First Amendment. In practice, though, those that aren’t interested in blocking religious rights tell eruv supporters go right ahead (wonderful recent article on building an eruv in New Haven), and it’s only the anti-Orthodox who try to block it.

  62. Joseph Kaplan

    “Like it or not, anti Orthodox sentiment in many of these cases is masked and cloaked via pretextual excuses such as zoning, traffic concerns, etc.”

    I agree. But if they’re careful, cross their t’s and dot their i’s and don’t say stupid things out loud, they can get away with it. Luckily, the anti-Orthodox are, in eruv cases, usually sloppy and stupid.

  63. MiMedinat HaYam

    ” and don’t say stupid things out loud, they can get away with it.”

    thats true in all litigation.

    note here, too, the local mayor supports the eruv.

    “applied for building permit and town changed zoning rules before acting on application and succeeded after Appellate Ct in turning down the application.”

    that wouldnt fly in any commercial (non religion) building permit case (but, i’ve seen it happen, too.)

    one major pblm in such cases is that the shul thinks its a regular zoning case, and uses its regular real estate lawyer, till it realizes they are in over their heads with specialized litigation, requiring specialized (read expensive) lawyers.

    2. kibud av vs kibud ha-met. seems more like paranoia, and lobbying of a gadol. was he completely familiar with the facts? what about those who picked that spot to be buried near this “important ” personage? didnt they invest specifically in such a “neighborhood”? (odd couple fans — felix’s “babbling brook”. double trivia question — where was felix buried, in the end?)

  64. MiMedinat HaYam

    charlie h — “I know a non-Jewish Lesbian who lives in Boro Park. She loves being in a Jewish neighborhood and says she is treated wonderfully! ”

    there are plenty of non jews in boro park. and generally, they conform to accepted standards. no PDAs, no inappropriate attire, etc.

    just like many non african americans conform to prevailing customs in african american neighborhoods.

    i remember when italians were waiting for jews to buy their houses in BP at what they felt were inflated values. (of course, bay ridge property values went up similarly. (bay ridge = neighboring italian neighborhood.))

    tal b — and LIPA also consents (for now). the municipal utility is more of a private business in utility operations matters, legally speaking. but …

  65. Would just like to point out that the link to the “first 30 pages” of Steinsaltz requires having your name put on an e-mail list. On the other hand, the pdf they sent me had 258 pages so I think they meant 30 daf, whose elucidation requires much more than 30 pages

  66. abba's rantings

    “Jacob Daskal, coordinator of the Boro Park Shomrim, said that a centralized system linked to the police would make it too easy for them to make arrests in domestic violence cases.”

    i’m not sure how cameras on the street would catch so many cases of domestic violence, but in any case, what is so evil about arresting the perpetrator of domestic violence? what happened to lo taamod al dam rei’echa? and even if the woman (ok, or spouse), is willing to continue undergoing such abuse, what about if kids are in the household?

    would the shomrim be happy if the police left boro park altogether?

  67. R’ Abba,
    I can understand their concern, it would be very difficult to live your life if you thought someone was always watching you.

    Wait-
    Good thing I’m ahead on the daf –
    Thereupon they said to him “Rebbi, please bless us”. He thereupon told them “If only your fear of heaven be equal to your fear of man”. “And not more?” they asked. “When a person sins he is always afraid lest a person see him,” was his reply. “If only you realize that HaShem is always watching.” (Berachot 28)
    KT

  68. By the way, why are people under the impression that Monsey has a Haitian-American mayor?

  69. abba's rantings

    R. Joel:

    “I can understand their concern, it would be very difficult to live your life if you thought someone was always watching you.”

    the question of right to privacy vs. the need to maintain public safety often involves a very fine line and many points worthy of debate. wrt to cameras, i will merely point out that if you spend time in parts of new york (particularly manhattan), a lot of your life is already being documented by a web of commercial, residential and police cameras.

    but in any case, the shomrim aren’t arguing against the cameras because it will deprive residents of right to privacy. in fact they aren’t arguing against the cameras at all. they want the cameras! just they want to be the ones controlling them rather than the police.

    this isn’t about privacy. it’s about autonomy and internal policing.

    are you really convinced by the domestic dispute example in the article?

  70. r’ abba,
    read the seifa of my comment, I was attempting a bit of tongue in cheek. No, I am not convinced at all and suspect that taking public money for a private security camera setup will only lead to heartache down the line.
    KT

  71. Mycroft wrote:

    “When there is a preexisting zoning rules I am not sure if my impression is the same as Steve’s-BTW-I am aware of a case where a schul applied for building permit and town changed zoning rules before acting on application and succeeded after Appellate Ct in turning down the application”

    That may well be the case in that circumstance. Yet, all too often preexisting zoning rules are used as a pretext for anti Orthodox NIMBY type arguments which are accompanied by rhetoric from those who claim to be tolerant and urge others to also act in such a manner, but show a decided lack of tolerance for Orthodox Jews.

    I read Sam Freedman’s “Jew vs Jew” years ago-parts of it are excellent-such as the chapter on the Yale 5, but the chapter on the zoning fight in Beechwood struck me as bordering on anti Charedi caricature-I simply cannot imagine anyone walking over to someone who may appear Jewish but isn’t Torah observant and asking them not to mow their lawn or drive, etc.

  72. Stev Brizel wrote

    “I read Sam Freedman’s “Jew vs Jew” years ago-parts of it are excellent-such as the chapter on the Yale 5, but the chapter on the zoning fight in Beechwood struck me as bordering on anti Charedi caricature-I simply cannot imagine anyone walking over to someone who may appear Jewish but isn’t Torah observant and asking them not to mow their lawn or drive, etc.”

    Are you serious?

  73. “am aware of a case where a schul applied for building permit and town changed zoning rules before acting on application and succeeded after Appellate Ct in turning down the application”

    That may well be the case in that circumstance.”-That jurisdiction had fought even Conservative day schools for building permits. Essentially no one wants to live right nest to a house of worship/yeshiva etc.

    “Yet, all too often preexisting zoning rules are used as a pretext for anti Orthodox NIMBY type arguments”
    or frankly used by existing schuls to keep out what they perceive as potential competition even if over a mile away.

    “which are accompanied by rhetoric from those who claim to be tolerant and urge others to also act in such a manner, but show a decided lack of tolerance for Orthodox Jews.”
    Or also a possibility that existing homeowners usually suffer when an institution builds in their neighborhood.

  74. MiMedinat HaYam

    mycroft — “Or also a possibility that existing homeowners usually suffer when an institution builds in their neighborhood.”

    terrible suffering (satire) — almost always leads to increased property values, if an O institution. (if oversaturated with O institutional buildings, the increase may be incrementally marginal, but by then, there is little opposition. or controlled by the “powers that be”.)

    i am remided of an O shul (in westchester conuty) that couldnt get their variance; during the litigation, it was suggested they purchase the historical (secular) cemetery next door for their expansion. (the shul wisely argued they dont want to get involved in moving christian bodies, which was no problem to their appropriate authorities.)

    regarding the reburial issue — wait till a family moves their loved one’s body cause its next to a major charedi rav. or charedi personage accused of financial (or sexual) improproprieties. imagine the hue and cry.

  75. Harediman-I am absolutely serious about my prior post, and would seriously question the propriety of asking a non observant Jew not to mow his lawn on Shabbos.

  76. As an addendum to my comments on the Siyum HaShas-if you weren’t there and wish to find out what it was like-ask someone who went, as opposed to reading the articles in the various Charedi media. The Charedi media’s take, including, and especially the pictorials that accompanied the articles on the siyum, portrayed DY as an almost exclusively Charedi vehicle-when in fact , if one watched the superb videos, many MO and RZ in many decidedly non Charedi venues also learn DY, and many of the Magidiei Shiur listed in the program were RIETS Musmachim. RE Wasserman ZL, HaShem Yimkam Damo, once commented , IIRC, that were certainly great Talmidei Chachamim who were not members of the Moetzes Gdolei Torah or affiliated with Agudah. One hopes that the sponsors and organizers of the next Siyum realize that the same reality is evident today, and that many Talmidei Chachamim , both in EY and the US, who are not members of the Moetzes, but who are eminent Talmidei Chachamim, do exist, and should be invited to participate in the Siyum. IMO, articles that proclaimed the Siyum as a participation in “our Torah”, that seek to improve the Siyum without discussing how to translate and demonstrate how Achdus can be a reality, as opposed to a nice way of saying “our way or the highway” and that all but ignore whose memory the Siyum was dedicated to, strike me as triumphalistic, as opposed to having Hakaras HaTov for those who learn DY or any form of Torah Shebicsav or TSBP Bkvius, and those who helped enable the Siyum to be a great Kiddush HaShem of demonstrating of how we celebrate a simcha.

  77. MiMedinat HaYam on August 10, 2012 at 11:51 am
    “mycroft — “Or also a possibility that existing homeowners usually suffer when an institution builds in their neighborhood.”

    terrible suffering (satire) — almost always leads to increased property values, if an O institution. (if oversaturated with O institutional buildings, the increase may be incrementally marginal, but by then, there is little opposition. or controlled by the “powers that be”.)”
    No one would want to live next to a schul or a Yeshiva-a couple of blocks away yes. BTW-most cases if the Yeshiva follows building codes they will get approval. For some strange reason some heads of some Yeshivas/that they build who are located in areas of liberal zoning laws try and spread impression that they have pull when in reality they just comply with zoning. No one wants to live near a halfway house but are necessary and no one wants to live next to a house of worship or school.

  78. So then enforce the same zoning laws, as with a Reform synagogue or a church. Zoning fights are always fierce. I have experience with several, and every large institution always has to fight tooth and nail for a building expansion. It should have nothing to do with being an Orthodox institution.

  79. “Elon on August 10, 2012 at 6:38 pm
    So then enforce the same zoning laws, as with a Reform synagogue or a church. Zoning fights are always fierce. I have experience with several, and every large institution always has to fight tooth and nail for a building expansion. It should have nothing to do with being an Orthodox institution.”

    Orthodox institutions try and argue we don’t need parking-we don’t drive to schul.

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