Thursday, July 5, 2018

By Your Hand - the Sin of Nov

Harav Yosef Blau
Director of Jewish Community Watch

Here is a trivia question:

Who dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima and what was the date?

If you answered the US Air Force on August 6, 1945 I will give you partial credit but it’s not the true answer. Let’s think out of the box.

The gemara in Sanhedrin 95a refers us to a pasuk in Shmuel B 21:16:

וישבו (וְיִשְׁבִּי) בְּנֹב אֲשֶׁר בִּילִידֵי הָרָפָה, וּמִשְׁקַל קֵינוֹ שְׁלֹשׁ מֵאוֹת מִשְׁקַל נְחֹשֶׁת, וְהוּא, חָגוּר חֲדָשָׁה; וַיֹּאמֶר, לְהַכּוֹת אֶת-דָּוִד

And Yishbi of Nov who was from the offspring of Harpa (Orpa) and the weight of his spear was 300 weights of copper…and he sought to smite Dovid.

The gemara explains that HKBH said to Dovid HaMelech: “How long must this sin be concealed in your hands? By your hand (on your account) was destroyed Nov the city of Kohanim, by your hand Doeg HaAdomi was banished, and by your hand Shaul and his three sons perished. Would you prefer that your offspring be eradicated or that you be surrendered into the hands of your enemy?”

How special. We don’t all get to choose our destiny!

In any case, Rashi explains that “this sin” is referring to the sin of Nov. This sin was an act of gneivas daas. Dovid was on the run from Shaul and he reached the city of Nov where the Mishkan was. He requested from the Kohanim of Nov to give him bread and a sword as an emissary of Shaul when, in actuality, he was a fugitive from Shaul and his men. This had quite a backlash as Shaul’s Chief of Staff, Doeg HaAdomi, accused all of the Kohanim of sedition (mored b’malchus) and, by his word, Shaul ordered them all to be executed. As a result, Doeg, who was known as the “chief of the shepherds” – i.e., the head of all Roshei Yeshiva (the Gadol HaDor) – was banished from Olam Habah and Shaul and his sons died an inglorious death at the hands of the Plishtim.

HKBH is calling Dovid HaMelech responsible for all of these calamities. Not only for the inadvertent destruction of the city and the Kohanim, but even for the doubly inadvertent banishment of Doeg and the deaths of Shaul and his sons.

Of course, Dovid HaMelech did not kill anybody. His only “sin” was not telling Achimelech that he was a fugitive. Shaul and Doeg killed the Kohanim and, for this, they met their doom. It was their fault, not Dovid’s. In fact, Dovid’s gneivas daas was a clear matter of pikuach nefesh. And why was he on the run to start with?

Well, Shmuel HaNavi anointed him as the King of Israel while the sitting king, Shaul, was still on the throne. This is usually not a very good idea. Could be hazardous to one’s health. Besides, Dovid wasn’t really interested in the job. He had lots of big brothers who were capable fellows. It’s just that Shmuel HaNavi had his number and he needed to make an early exit from our world so he wasn’t able to push it off.

All told, Dovid was the most innocent of all of the characters in this debacle and yet, HKBH put everything on his hands. Everything. The executions of the Kohanim (also innocent), the banishment of Doeg (not quite so innocent), and Shaul and his boys (Shaul was the one who “gave the order”). Everything is on Dovid’s hands. For one little infraction in a life or death situation!

This gemara is here to teach us a frightening lesson. Every person can be held accountable, not just for his own actions, but for what other people – even irresponsible lowlife people – do as a response to his actions. And if this is so even when his own actions were almost unavoidable at a time of pikuach nefesh, imagine if the initial player has no excuse of pikuach nefesh and had every opportunity to avoid it!

And if this applies when the backlash is something nobody would have anticipated, imagine the responsibility for a repercussion that one would expect to happen and should have been foreseen.

Of course, we already should have gotten this message with our mitzvah to bring an eglah arufah as an atonement because, just perhaps, we did not give a travelling Jew enough encouragement to deal with the hazards of the road. But this gemara seems to tell us how far this concept really goes.

When we do something, even if it’s not reckless, we are responsible at some level for the backlash. And when we are foolhardy and reckless, even more so!

So, by now you have probably figured out the answer to our trivia question:

Who dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima and what was the date?

The real answer is that the Japanese Navy did it on December 7, 1941. Of course, they didn’t realize that they were dropping an atomic bomb on their own country. There was no such thing as an atomic bomb, anyway.

But when those atomic bombs came down, they were just the grand finale of the first conventional bombs that they dropped on Pearl Harbor. Legend has it (never confirmed) that the Naval Marshal General, Isoroku Yamamoto, himself acknowledged this with his legendary remark on Dec. 7, 1941: I fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.

The terrible resolve was resolved on August 6, 1945 in Hiroshima.

When one starts a war, everything that happens as a result, even to himself, is “by his hand”.

Friends (the few I have left) and relatives ask me why I continue to write about the Malka Leifer episode. Well, firstly it is a tremendous Chillul Hashem which I would like to see terminated. But, truly, this is far from the open-and-shut case that the consumers think it is. There are things that need to be said and nobody else feels like saying it.

The allegations are for events that allegedly occurred ten plus years ago and ended then. Only the accusers know what really happened and to what extent they were victims. But now, nobody is hurting them any more. They are no longer victims (they call themselves “survivors”). They are currently accusers and prosecutors. They are on offense. The Leifer camp is now on defense. The accuser is pursuing the accused.

I have pointed out that, at this stage, the Halacha does not support this redifa. It is the duty of the public – who have no idea what to believe – to either butt out or to work to put an end to this redifa and Chillul Hashem, not to perpetuate it. Anybody who actively or vocally participates in it has all of the repercussions on their hands.

Moreover, even though one could argue that Mrs. Leifer and her activities are the catalyst for what’s going on now, this war of extradition and prosecution was really started sometime in 2011 when the JAPs walked into the Victorian police station and filed a criminal complaint against a Jew who has been in Eretz Yisrael for a good three years.

This war is starting to get very ugly, as most wars do. Let’s have a quick look at one of the most recent posts on the BringLeiferBack page:

We receive constant backlash from those that support Leifer in reaction to this #bringleiferback campaign.

We can live with that.

But when Leifer’s relatives use my sisters death as proof of their power that is going way way way too far!

In the last few days, we have heard that Leifer's family have been calling members of the Jewish community. They have threatened that unless they sign letters stating that Leifer was the perfect educator and the sexual abuse has been a figment of our imagination, “bad things will happen to them”.

AND THEIR PROOF?? "We told this to someone else, they didn't listen to us, and they died'.

Absolutely sickened and horrified.

Interesting. From the way she is relating it, I don’t know how she knows that the referenced “someone else” is her late sister, A”H. I will have to assume that the details were more specific in real time. But now, let’s discuss.

First, the disclaimer. I personally am a total lone wolf in this drama and have no relationship or connection with anyone from the Leifer camp. To date, nobody on that side has ever contacted me to say “Thank you” or “No, thank you”. Nothing. So I have no involvement in these tactics and I do not condone them. I also think they are a little beneath the belt and can be called “hot oil”.

Nevertheless, the saying goes: All is fair in love and war!

This is going way way way too far? Already? My dears, this episode is far from over and I fear – like Naval Marshal Yamamoto – that you ain’t seen nothing yet.

The sheer naïveté of these JAPs is so utterly astounding. Did they think they can start a war with their 2011 Pearl Harbor attack in Victoria and then go home and sleep peacefully? Did they really think the Leifer camp, who is on the defense, is not going to fight back? Do they think this is Columbo? That the bad guy is just going to stick out his hands for the cuffs and come along quietly?

Goodness! I wrote more than a year ago that these girls are Flirting with Danger. I wasn’t kidding. There are definitely folks who hadn’t woken up yet and are now starting to. They may not be such powerful giants but, who knows who will wake up tomorrow and what they will do?

Incidentally, if this becomes a family feud, I am under the impression that the Leifer family is way bigger than the Sapper family, with some powerful figures, to boot.

So now Dassi Erlich, the aggressor, is complaining about hot oil and mustard gas. Does she realize that if it has come to abusing the memory of her late sister that this is by her hand? If Dovid Hamelech is blamed for the deaths of the “wayward” Doeg and Shaul, can these JAPs conceive that they are the ones who are violating their late sister? It is by their hand?

And what will they say when the nukes start to fall?

There’s more. I hate to say it but the dirty tricks did not start now and they did not start by the Leifer camp.

The JAPs are complaining about the defense tactics that are “going way way way too far.” You mean to say there are boundaries? You mean to say that the Sapper camp has any boundaries whatsoever? Not that I can see.

I have been following Dassi’s posts on her Facebook page for well more than a year and all of the suggestions that they get from “their” supporters that they thank them for. Things such as organizing protests in front of the court building (not the worst thing) and obstructing funding for her legal defense so her lawyer cannot do his job as well as to deny her of a legal defense council - which is essentially obstruction of justice. 

The story that really inflamed me was in the comments of her post on March 6, 2018 (there are lots of comments and these are in the "Reply" section of one comment). 

It began with a sensible comment from a more objective reader (and a religious woman) named Shoshana who, at that point was a supporter of the extradition campaign. She wrote:

At the end of the (say) [day] the most important thing is that there be a fair trial in Australia and this matter gets resolved …

Okay, a "fair trial". This reasonable comment was immediately countered by one Nicole Iglicki Gold who wrote:

… “A fair trial in Australia”-who are you kidding? She doesn’t deserve anything fair. I don’t know these girls but I am human and am sensitive to their pain…She is a criminal and deserves to be in jail and to have the key thrown away

Here is a typical commenter who admits that she doesn’t "know these girls” (the Sapper sisters) which indicates that she certainly doesn’t know Mrs. Leifer, as well. She doesn’t know anything at all, yet she "knows" that Mrs. Leifer is an “evil evil lady” and a “criminal” and “deserves to be in jail and the key thrown away…” Just because Dassi Erlich said so!

And what does Nichole Sapper Meyer say about the one who says “she does not deserve anything fair”?

Nichole Meyer: Nicole Iglicki Gold thank you ... your words mean a lot to us

Get that? Nicole Sapper Meyer thanked the lady who said “she doesn’t deserve anything fair”. She did not thank Shoshana. Evidently, Nichole Meyer likewise does not believe that anybody she accuses deserves anything fair!

So it appears that the Sapper sisters want what they want and don’t believe in playing “fair”. And now Dassi says that when the Leifers take extreme measures to defend themselves that “that is going way way way too far!”??

What were we discussing previously about Double standards??

Now, I do have something to say in favor of the Leifer camp. I am sure they have seen the grand proclamation from Rabbi Shmuel Feurst, Shlita and 106 prominent American Rabbanim which says that:

The Torah's statement in Leviticus 19:16, "Do not stand by while your neighbor's blood is shed," obligates every member of the community to do all in one's power to prevent harm to others.

Now, I personally wrote that this is really a mistake. It should read “all that is necessary to prevent harm” and not “all in one’s power to prevent harm” but who am I to argue with HRHG Rav Shmuel Feurst and 106 American Rabbanim – some of whom are even my age or older?

As I said earlier, at this stage of the game, the Sappers are on offense and the Leifers are on defense. Mrs. Leifer is currently the nirdaf[et]. I am certain many readers think that Mrs. Leifer’s blood doesn’t qualify for Lo Taamod (I will abstain for now), but I can say that to her relatives it certainly does. As such, they have the psak of HRHG Shmuel Feurst and 106 other prominent Rabbanim who say that not only are they allowed to do “all that is in their power” but they are obligated to.

So the Leifers have a hetter - if not a chiyuv - for their tactics. What hetter do the Sappers have?

And this is all by their hand.

Most readers do not know how low some of the Sapper maneuvers really are. These ladies have poured plenty of hot oil of their own. I know this first hand and it is right there on the Internet. I can link to it but I won’t (right now). It is really that bad.

And what makes it really bad is that the people who perpetrate this travesty are people who sport pious beards.

As I have repeatedly said, this whole episode is one great Chillul Hashem and it is getting ugly and it will not end well for anybody. It needs to end. And who is keeping it alive?

Obviously, the JAPs who started this war are in it till the end. By they cannot do it without help. Yes, they have thousands of fair weather grandstand supporters that cheer them on on their Facebook page (and they block out all dissenters). But they have a little bit more organized help. Consequently, this debacle is just as much by the hands of these organizations.

Who are they?

I can name two very misguided organizations that call themselves Rabbinic.

The first are my good friends at the Rabbinical Council of Australia and New Zealand (RCANZ). This organization provides no Jewish services for the community whatsoever. Its sole raison d’etre is to be a spokesman for the Jewish community to the outside world on social issues.

Sadly, these are a group of very liberal Rabbis who put the emotions of the crowd ahead of the guidelines of the Shulchan Aruch. In a previous post I mentioned some of the ringleaders: Rabbi Yaakov Glasman, Rabbi Alon Meltzer, Rabbi James Kennard and Rabbi Benjamin Elton. These are all left-wingers, Modern or Open Orthodox. Into interfaith dialog and LGBTQI rights. They are all younger than I am so as far as I am concerned, they are a bunch of children pretending to be "Rabbis".

Despite all this, their misguided support has given some sense of legitimacy to this campaign. Thus, even though it does not look like they have actively intervened in this controversy, what is happening is by their hand.

At best, RCANZ will get the Oscar for Best Screenplay Editor. But the Academy award for Best Supporting Actor goes to…the envelope, please…

Jewish Community Watch!!

Jewish Community Watch is a boiler room operation with a very impressive web site. As opposed to some of the other more sincere organizations like Ohel or Amudim who focus on helping victims of abuse, JCW is not very interested in the victims of abuse. Their primary focus is to hunt down and prosecute those who they are convinced are molesters. It doesn’t really matter if they are molesters or not. As long as JCW thinks they are, there is no line they won’t cross to do them in.

One of their features is their shameless Wall of Shame. Here they feel they are saving the world by seeing to it that anyone on their hit list is posted. Now, I have written in my post about the 3 Ps that one of the most effective tools is indeed, publicity or pirsum. But even this has limits. It is sufficient to have an online list of known and even potential predators with a clear description as to where they are holding in their predatory career, but an officially called Wall of Shame puts everyone in one basket. It’s not just that some may be true psychopaths and others are not really so, but also, many have “done their time” and need a chance to rehabilitate themselves. But what is the worst thing, and indeed applicable in the Malka Leifer case, not every person on their list is even a confirmed predator.

In most of the WOS entries, JCW puts a little box with a short description of what the person is guilty of. Often they can write that X confessed to this or Y was convicted for that. But there are plenty of exceptions. As an example, one person on the JCW WOS has one small note in his little box: Convicted in 2012 for possession of child pornography.

Though we may say that this person has a very bad habit (understatement) and maybe needs to be watched, there is no indication that he ever harmed or tried to harm a single soul. It is common that people have perverse fantasies and use imagery to gratify themselves but have no intention of crossing the line into predatorship. All of their sins are bein adam L"Makom. And who says that he didn’t get help to kick the habit? So perhaps he needs to be avoided and there are grounds for awareness, but why is he a predator and why does he need to be “shamed”??

Incidentally, JCW doesn't have anything on this fellow as of 2012. This was six years ago. What is the Halacha? Is it permissible to shame anybody for something he did in the past but as far as anyone knows is not being done now?

Dovid Hamelech himself gives us the answer in Sanhedrin 107a: One who has engaged in adultery (past tense) is worthy of strangulation but has a place in the World to Come. One who shames one in public, has no portion in the world to come!

Another person only has:  JCW has interviewed multiple people who recounted sexual abuse… So this person hasn’t been charged or convicted of anything. We don’t know how many people are “multiple" and how credible they are. At the end of the day, it is he said/she said. Same thing here, what are the grounds for “shame”?

But, after these, there are quite a few people that have no little box at all! At most, some links to some news items which talk of their unconfirmed allegations. Malka Leifer is in this group. And there were some that didn’t even have any links! It’s anybody’s guess why they are up there.

The most irresponsible thing of all is that they have multiple entries for "predators" without posting their picture. Besides the fact that the key shaming that they want to do is to post the villains mug on to the Net for everyone to see, so what do they gain by pictureless posts? But there is a very serious issue here. And let's take one entry as the prime example - a confirmed offender named Avraham Rosenfeld.

There are six Avraham Rosenfelds in the Jerusalem Chareidi phonebook and these are just the married people with phones. And this doesn't include Bnei Brak or Kiryat Sefer or anywhere out of the Jerusalem area. If you don't show his picture, how do we determine the correct Avraham Rosenfeld and avoid mixing him up with the incorrect AR? Do you know how much damage this can cause to totally innocent people?

Let's go one step further and ask what is accomplished with this particular "shaming" (along with many of the others). Is it protecting anybody? Well, as long as this fellow is in jail (as noted), he is not a threat to anybody on the outside. Should he be released from jail, this is still totally worthless because there is no picture of him and not even a place of last residence (and he certainly will not be back in the school in Tel Aviv where he was).So it doesn't affect him. It only affects his innocent relatives or another innocent Avraham Rosenfeld who may be mistaken for him. 

So the score is: People helped - 0; Innocent People hurt - who knows?

Bottom line is that Jewish Community Watch is dedicated to shaming, hurting, and punishing whoever they set their sights on and making sure not to fix anyone who may be fixable. Actually they prevent this. And they don’t really care who else gets hurt in the process, even some of those they claim they are trying to protect. (See my post about Victim Turned Predator). I devoted a special post (HERE) to explain why this approach is not too effective.

Jewish Community Watch has certainly taken a more active role in our episode.  As mentioned, our suspect has a prominent spot as one of very few females on their Wall of Shame. But, despite all the Halachos I discuss that seem meaningless to them and despite the futility of this needless Chillul Hashem and despite the fact that nobody in Australia is in any danger from this person no matter what, they could not rest.

At a time when the forbidden extradition process seemed deadlocked, and the newspapers were silent, JCW (see HERE) very valiantly paid megabucks (of their donors' money??) to have somebody follow this woman with a video camera for 200 hours to catch her doing what?

Doing absolutely nothing! Riding buses, buying things, writing checks, talking on her cell phone. All this just to show the world that she is fit to be sent to Australia where she is no threat to anybody! 200 hours of being normal and not a single minute of molesting anybody!

Well, of course all the newspapers woke up and the police took action and Shana Aaronson and Manny Waks got great video shoots, and the war is back on and the Chillul Hashem perpetuated. Three Cheers for JCW!

Essentially, Mrs. Leifer is now sitting in jail in Neve Tirtza accused of being capable of riding buses and using her cell phone. And I and my fellow Israeli citizens are paying for this.

It is by their hand.

No question that Jewish Community Watch is a very misguided organization, but who is misguiding them?

Well, their key players are two very devoted and very hot-blooded individuals. Meyer Seewald in the US and Shana Aaronson, the Chief Operating Officer here in Eretz Yisrael. True heroes for our long suffering victims – oops, I mean, survivors. But we must assume that these Malachei Nekama are paragons of virtue and wouldn’t lift a finger without exemplary guidance from great Torah authorities.

Let's recall that Dassi Erlich wrote in the initial post that this "is going way way way too far". This episode is getting messier and messier and the Chillul Hashem is getting stronger and stronger and we have the wizards at JCW to thank.

Wizard? Well, who is the man behind the curtain? Who is the great Torah authority?

His name is Rabbi Yosef Blau. Yes, I am talking about the senior Mashgiach ruchani at Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary. He is also the president of the Religious Zionists of America.(Wikipedia).

It is by his hand.

Rabbi Blau is on the Board of Directors. But he also has some elves. If you check out the JCW Advisory Board we find some other very distinguished people who must be advising them. These include:

·       Rabbi Elchonon Tauber – the dayan of Hancock Park in Los Angeles, California.

·       Rabbi Moshe Soloveitchik – the president of the Merkaz HaRabanim of Chicago.

על פיהם יהיה כל ריב וכל נגע!

Apart from JCW, I have a lot of respect for all of these people. They are all genuine Orthodox Rabbis and are all older than I am. Amazingly, I have in some way crossed paths with all of them in previous years.

As concerns Rabbi Tauber, Shlita, I shared a ride with him from Yerushalayim to Ben Gurion Airport about twenty years ago. We had a wonderful conversation about dayanus and Choshen Mishpat. As for Rabbi Soloveitchik, I once heard a shiur from him in Rabbi Karno’s shul in Chicago when I spent a summer bein hazmanim there visiting relatives.

And Rabbi Blau?

Aside from attending the same yeshiva as his son, Binny, some four decades ago and being a chavrusa to his nephew from Elizabeth at the same time and place, I must add that my aishes chayal used to be one of Rebetzin Dr. Rivkah Blau’s [Shaarei] Bnos Chayil. (The best one, in fact.)

So we have some very prominent Rabbanim behind this monstrosity. Everything they damage, hurt and ruin is by their hand. And every bit of this Chillul Hashem.

There is only one thing that Dassi Erlich says that I can fully agree with. This thing “is going way way way too far”. How do Rabbi Blau and Rabbi Tauber and Rabbi Soloveitchik justify it? 

בא וראה כמה קשה המחלוקת שהרי ב"ד של מטה אין עונשין אלא עד שיביא שתי שערות וב"ד של מעלה עד כ' שנה וכאן אבדו אף יונקי שדים

Rabbi Yosef Blau, LOY”T, is somewhere around 80 years old. הרב בלוי שפקח הוא, מה ראה לשטות זה? And likewise for Rabbi Tauber and Rabbi Soloveitchik.

Where will you be when the earth splits open?

Please stop this madness. It will only get worse. I cannot see how it will end well for anybody at all. Not for the Sappers, not for the Leifers, not for yourselves and not for me.

Just do it. Please.

It’s all by your hand.

Update to Previous Post - Earlier this week I received a phone call from the leasing company of the car I damaged. The woman said that their shammai (appraiser) conceded that they were not authorized to use an original part and they will accept my offer for NIS 765. I settled it on the phone with 3 credit card payments. 


Daniel Westbrook said...

I had not planned to get involved with this issue, as I wasn't following from the beginning and I agree with a lot that you have written. However, as the implication of this post is that distinguished talmidei chachamim have encouraged a capital crime (mesirah), I believe this is not accurate, and those who have argued so far have not answered the points raised in the blog, I felt it necessary to speak up. Excuse me for being lengthy.

Firstly the points that I agree with: 1) Mrs. Leifer is not a rodef and presents no current threat to anyone. 2) She deserves a fair trial, and is innocent until proven guilty. 2) She also has a right to have her claims heard in court in Israel before extradition is considered. 3) Extradition should not be taken lightly, and should not be done unless it is absolutely necessary.

Now here's where I disagree:

1) Readers probably wondered why mesirah (handing someone over to non-Jewish authorities) should be such a severe crime. Correct me if I am wrong, but the 'why' question does not seem to have been raised in the blog.
The Rosh (Bava Kama 10:27) explains that a moser is a rodef, as once someone falls into the hands of the non-Jews they will have no mercy on him, and eventually kill him. It therefore follows that even if we are dealing with a criminal, it is strictly forbidden to hand him over to non-Jews.
Now you may think that nothing has changed, and the Australian courts are similar to the non-Jews in the times of the gemara. I believe that this is not the case, and therefore mesirah is no longer a capital crime. It is still strictly forbidden to hand someone over to those who will damage him for no reason, but if we are dealing with a criminal who will only get what he deserves, and our own courts are not capable of enforcing this, it is ok to use the non-Jewish ones.

2) The prohibition of 'lo sasgir' refers to returning a Jewish slave back to his master in chutz la'aretz. It does not apply to anyone who will not be enslaved. Nevertheless, forcing a Jew out of Eretz Yisrael is not something to be taken lightly (even leaving voluntarily is allowed only for a good reason).

3) Non-jewish governments, like Jewish ones, do have the right to impose fair punishments beyond those mentioned in the Torah. Even when someone poses no current danger, if he or she gets away with crimes committed in the past this encourages a situation of 'a man swallowing up his fellow.' Therefore, someone guilty of crimes reasonably proscribed by the law of the land, even if they do not involve direct Torah transgressions, may legitimately be imprisoned by the relevant authorities. One who aids this process is not a moser.

4) I don't know a lot about extradition, but my assumption is that the idea behind it is that a court based in the country where a crime took place is better equipped to rule on it. If a terrorist murdered people in Tel-Aviv (or committed a less severe crime) and fled to Australia, I imagine the Israeli government would (justifiably) not be so happy about letting the Australian courts dealing with it. We cannot expect this to happen if we do not act similarly. Thus there may be grounds for extradition in some cases, dependent on whatever we have agreed to in the treaty (I do not know what this is).

My conclusion is that it was appropriate for the Israeli authorities to arrest Mrs. Liefer. Her case must be heard here, and all the above factors should be taken into account when deciding what should be done.
Even one who disagrees with some or all of what I have written should be capable of understanding that those Rabbis who agree with me are not necessarily 'thinking like goyim.'

Yechezkel Hirshman said...

I fully agree with your "confession" in your opening line that you were not following from the beginning, and I do not have the time or energy to go over things that I have already written in previous posts.

I dealt with most of your concerns in number 1 in this post:

As for 2, I originally brought it up in:

3 and 4 do not relate to my blogs because I am not discussing what governments can or cannot do, only what Torah observant Jewish citizens can or cannot do.

Daniel Westbrook said...

Thank you for having the 'time and energy' to direct me to the places where you 'dealt with my concerns.' You are right that I hadn't seen the first post you linked to now, although now that I have seen it I fail to see how it addresses even one of my concerns. Obviously I must be lacking in intelligence, please forgive me.

With regards to lo sasgir, as it happens I did already see the 'thinking like a jew' post. I was just pointing out the fundamental flaw in your argument there, as the issur only applies to someone who will return to enslavement (in case that wasn't clear enough, forcing either an eved c'naani or a Jew to leave Eretz Yisrael does not fall under this prohibition if on his return he will not be enslaved again).

You might think that 3 and 4 do not relate to your blogs, but this is wrong. What Torah observant Jewish citizens can or cannot do is dependent on what governments can or cannot do, especially when it comes to mesira. Mesira is only relevant when the authorities that the nimsar is given to will impose punishments that they have no right to do.