Tuesday, February 27, 2007


Just a few weeks short of 2366 years ago, Mordechai the Jew sealed a royal decree addressed to all Jews in the Persian Empire: they are to arm and defend themselves against their attackers, who in turn are required by a previous decree to annihilate and exterminate all of them. A miracle happened, and the Persian Jews did not start questioning and ridiculing the decree as insane and extremist. The bloggers of the time did not start making fun of rabbis, claiming that the evil Mordechai was manipulating the senile king in order to maximize the profits of his cousin Ezra HaSofer – CEO of Schmitd Ben Wessonstein, Persia’s largest rifle manufacturer. It seems that at that time, even the leitsanei hador understood that Buschashverosh gave Hamadinejad a free hand to eradicate them for good. Seemingly, the bleeding hearts didn’t claim that Mordechai was a warmonger trying to cash in on a drunkard’s boastings.

The Yidden at the time diligently went to the blacksmiths and gunsmiths to pick up arms and shields, and were getting ready to kill or be killed. No, they did not transgress the prohibition of “ מרידה באומות– rebellion against the nations”. They heeded Mordechai’s orders after fasting, repenting and davening for quite a while. And another miracle happened – they defeated all of their enemies, so much so that not one Jew had fallen.

2298 years later, a different empire banned Jews from all positions in firearm manufacturing and trading professions, and later barred Jews from bearing or owning any firearms. These were two laws in a long series of anti-Jewish racial laws. We all know what followed, and the memories of the gas chambers, incinerators and torture death camps became forever engraved in the Jewish memory. They are painful and depressing memories, but we must face them. Not only for the memory of the deceased and the commemoration of History’s biggest genocide, but first and foremost to draw the right lessons for our future. Unfortunately, now as then, all too many Jews feel so safe and secure amid the world’s turbulent incertitude – masked only by our addiction to unprecedented wealth and well-being – that they completely forget that the story of Purim is still a valid lesson, a fate’s warning, rather than just the commemoration of distant events.

The Constitution of the United States of America grants us all the right to keep and bear arms. Although in the states hosting the largest Jewish communities, the “bearing” part of this right is more theoretical than practical, so far even the most rabid left-wing extremists can only dream of stripping the citizens from owning rifles. All too many in our communities are simply oblivious to both the importance of the matter as well as to the accessibility of firearms. A used AR type rifle in great condition can be obtained for under $700, including paperwork. Handguns have more bureaucracy wrought around them, but are not inaccessible.

What people need to understand is that the Founding Fathers embedded in the Constitution the right to bear arms and to organize militias because of governments and rogue elements in any human society are unpredictable and cannot be trusted. Firearms handling and safety can be fairly easily and quickly learned by most anyone, from young children to elderly people, and require no specific physical strength or abilities. Furthermore, regular yet not excessively frequent training can instill a strong sense of responsibility, integrity and discipline in most users. In fact, shooting sports might be easily incorporated in frum summer camps or programs dealing with problematic youth (obviously not for kids who are already experimenting with drugs or alcohol – I’d say for not yet “at risk”) for little or no cost. The national 4-H youth program has an impressive shooting department within it. Of course, introducing a firearm in a large family’s home needs extra caution, but is in no way impossible.

If nothing else, the fact that our rabbis do not mandate guns should make you buy one! So this year on Ta’anis Esther take a few moments to think about what was the original cause of this fast day, and whether a little extra caution and preparedness is worth the investment.

Oh, just one more thing – on Purim don’t forget to lock up the gun before you get loaded!

PS –

If it seems to anyone that this post in any way insinuates support for Zionism and its state, or to reject the principles of bitochon – it is not the case. However, just as even the biggest Satmar buys a car to get to work rather than relying on G-d to supply him with a free flying carpet (sha’atnez free) or split the Ramapo river for him, and the greatest masmid in Lakewood applies for food stamps, Medicaid and HUD sec. 8 to support his selfless toils to grow in Torah, Yira’s Shomayim and honesty, so too we might be better off being prepared for the slight possibility of G-d not miraculously rescuing us from our dear Arab and Liberal friends.


For those on the far-far-left wing of ultra-open super-modern Orthodoxy: wouldn’t it worth it to be prepared for just in case, that maybe, perhaps, efsher, ken zayn, ulai, the crazy evil fanatics like Rush Limbaugh, Rav Yisroel Belsky or myself would decide to assault you?

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Abominog (מחאה נמרצת)

מחאה נמרצת
נבלה נעשתה בישראל

I call on any and all Rabbis, influential leaders, batei-din etc. to vehemently condemn and protest the abomination committed last week in Teaneck, NJ. (Two “Orthodox Jews” formed a sodomite civil union)

This action must be decried and condemned even more harshly than those of the buffoons who visited the Hitler of the Middle-East (Ahmadinejad) and the Conservative “rabbis” ignoble decision to permit sodomite behavior.

An official Cherem must be pronounced, especially by the rabbis of Teaneck, NJ, and everything must be done so that no Orthodox shul may tolerate them in its midst. And any shul that should give them shelter be pronounced non-orthodox and excluded from all orthodox organizations, and shul officials lose their positions in those organizations.

May the curse of the house of Eli befall on all who remain silent on this abomination.
"...למה לי רב זבחיכם"

For those feeble-minded, misguided, brainwashed or whose souls are otherwise too polluted to understand why these events are worse than cover-up of child molestation or paying honor to a terrorist, here’s a short outline:

· Rabbis and the Rabbinical establishment being silent on the two despicable sodomites masquerading as orthodox Jews and having their pictures spread all over the printed and cyber medias, not only give the impression of condoning or not caring about such behavior – but agreeing that it is accordance with the heilige Torah. (Despite any previous protest aginst the Conservative ‘psak’ or such behavior)

· The clowns who visit Ahmadinejad claim that they appease him and try to prevent him from harming Jews; child-molesters and their alleged protectors deny the evil they do. But the sodomite maggots openly promote their abominable deviances, ‘בריש גלי’, as “Orthodox Jews".

· The Torah and its laws are eternal, irrevocable, and unalterable. Distortion and defilement of the Torah and its laws doesn’t necessarily happen through reinterpretation or repelling of those laws: when the Law is blatantly transgressed and ridiculed while the Judges passively look on, it is equally a sullying of G-d’s honor. In other words, it’s as if a grocery sells obvious chazer with a hechsher, and the Rabbis who know it take no action.

It has come to my attention that a despicable, cowardly blogger promoting this tragic event and jubilating over it calls a certain respectable Rav a “friend of the blog”. I very strongly advise that Rav to distance himself from this depraved individual, lest all his work and ideas are dismissed.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007


A recent survey shows that there are actually more Jews living in the States than we actually thought. Great news indeed! Unfortunately, the survey includes “people who think of themselves as Jews, ethnically”, and children of one Jewish parent. So according to this study, assimilation isn’t as big a deal as some of us may think. Well, until a few more generations, when the descendents won’t remember their grandparents’ Jewish origins.

Stopping assimilation and intermarriage overnight is probably unlikely, but many would like to slow the tide as much as possible. However, if this is done for the sake of sentimental nostalgia, and loosely defines Jews on ethno-folkloristic basis, it doesn’t lead any further than the aforementioned survey. The preservation of a nation must have at least a meaningful coherence and maintain its integrity. Which of course necessitates a definition tighter than “grandma used to bake kugel”.

Assimilation today is a rather slow process, each generation distancing itself from its origins until it merges with the surrounding nations. The first step in stopping the tide is obviously maintaining the Orthodox population, as well as reaching out to secular Jews who aren’t yet assimilated. Meddling with intermarried couples results in faulty and false giyurs that only increase the problem.

The argument that a more ‘open’ approach would result in maintaining a broader spectrum of people identified with Judaism, even if only on a folkloric basis, averred to be mistaken: according to a recent Mishpacha article, the intermarriage rate among Reform and Conservatives is triple that of unaffiliated secular Jews! Sadly, the ‘drop out’ (from Orthodoxy) rate is highest within Modern Orthodoxy. (Based on educators and laymen’s estimates, in absence of ‘scientific’ data.)

The Zionist dream of a non-Jewish Jewish state, wherein the nation would be defined by not being Jewish and be proud Israelis, averred being a fata morgana too. Ethiopian and Russian immigrants of dubious origins were imported to the country by hundreds of thousands for the sake of breaking down the society’s still strongly traditional makeup.
Our good friends who indulge in compulsive haredi and ortho-bashing don’t achieve much more than offering an excuse to drop out or for secular people to stay the way they are.

The main focus then should be on preventing dropping out as much as possible, to help stabilize the dropouts, and sensible kiruv. By ‘sensible’ I mean coming to the sad realization that certain sectors better be left alone: completely assimilated and intermarried people should be in our prayers, but the energy and resources for de-facto kiruv would benefit from being geared towards more likely targets. As has been recently suggested, collaboration between different orthodox factions may yield positive results – and in my opinion all the more so with ‘off the derech’ and ‘at risk’ kids. Instead of insisting on keeping them in our party enclaves, rather bring them closer to Judaism, period.

Perhaps a more unified and harmonious Judaism would be more appealing to those on the outside, without having to break down the protective walls of separation.

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Sweet Child O'Mine

This Shabbos (and motzai Shabbos) we celebrated our family’s newest addition’s birthday.

This shall provide you with a living, scientific proof that acquired traits are very much hereditary. Nix evolution.

Computer addict; like father, like daughter.

The sweet tooth for booze starts at an early age. What will it be tonite – Budvár, Smíchov, Pilsen, Löwenbrau?

Some more images to come. Yup, I'm still using analog.