Volume 13 Number 94
                       Produced: Wed Jul  6 12:08:36 1994

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

The Chasidishe/Litvishe Community in the US
         [Hayim Hendeles]
The Chassidishe/ Yeshiva Community in the U.S. and Chillul Hashem
         [David Lee Makowsky]
Tuition Assistance at Yeshivos
         [Stephen Phillips]
UK Chief Rabbi's Review on Women
         [Rafael Salasnik]
What a Waste!
         [Jerrold Landau]


From: Hayim Hendeles <hayim@...>
Date: Tue, 5 Jul 94 10:15:47 -0700
Subject: Re: The Chasidishe/Litvishe Community in the US

	Subject: The Chassidishe/ Yeshivishe Community in the U.S. and
	Chillul Hashem

	... Last year the Department of Education announced that about 20
	mostly chassidishe educational institutions were being
	investigated for ...

	A few weeks ago, there was a front page article in the Wall
	Street Journal indicating that  ...  investigated for fraud.
	Finally today (6/24) the New York Times indicated that  ...
	who is a Rabbi is being investigated for ...

	I would like to submit a controversial thesis. Right-wing
	Yeshivos are a sociological failure....

Funny. We live in a democratic country, which is arguably the greatest
country in the world. Our government has always been plagued with
scandal. Currently, numerous government officials, from state-senators
all the way up the ladder to the President of the USA are under
investigation for corruption. One would expect, by the same logic as
above, the above poster to claim the USA to be a sociological failure,
and for its government to be overthrown. Yet, he has not done so.
Perhaps we ought to wonder why.

But anyway, this is no time for idle speculation. Back to the subject at

However noble the intentions of this poster may have been, it reflects a
callous attitude towards *all of* Orthodox Jewry, as well as a clear
anti-Right-wing bias. One does not hurl vicious accusations against a
major segment of Kllal Yisroel without signficant cause, and thorough
research. (Not to mention a careful review of Shmiras Halashon!)

First of all, the above poster bases his violent allegations on several
articles in the gossip-peddling-hype-ridden- media. Has he done any
personal investigation to determine the actual facts, and the other side
of the story --- independent of what the media alleges? Is he aware that
some of the individuals mentioned in the infamous Journal article (at
least one that I spoke to) is now considering legal action against the
paper? (Fortunately, the media does not cover its own faults with the
same hype. Otherwise, one might conclude it to be a sociological failure
as well, and outlaw it.)

What the truth is, I do not know. But one must be a fool to believe that
it must be true because the media said so. And to condemn an entire
segment of Orthodox Jewry solely because of the media, shows a callous
attitude towards our Jewish Brethren.

More important, even assuming the charges to have some merit, any
unbiased individual needs to ask several questions before reaching any
conclusions. To claim apriori, that *all* right wing Yeshivos are
failures, on the basis of a few articles is ludicrous, and reflects a
clear bias against Right wing Jewry.  For the logic employed here is
reminiscent of that used in all anti-Semitic literature - i.e.  all Jews
are guilty on the basis of the actions of the few.

Before condemning all Right wing Yeshivos, one must know how many there
are, and what percentage of them are engaged in any sort of illicit
activity. For that matter, one must also know how many Yeshivos there
are, right-middle-left-whatever, that engage in illegal behavior.
Perhaps, the above poster might wish to close down all Yeshivos as well,
on the basis of illicit activities conducted in the non-right wing
Yeshivos, as well. (Anyone remember the major scandal in the NY area a
number of years ago, caused by a well-known non-Right-wing institution?
This was front page news for several weeks, if I recall correctly!)

I submit to you, that the vast majority of the personel in all Yeshivas
are all sincere, honest, and devout Jews, overworked and underpaid,
working day and night, in order to keep their Yeshivos afloat.

Until the poster is willing to submit a thorough statistical analysis of
any ethical differences between any of the so-called
"left-right-middle-whatever" Yeshivos, any wholesale condemnation of the
Right-wing reflects nothing more than an inherent anti-bias, and is
gratutious slander.

There may be problems, this I do not deny. But one should realize that
legitimate Yeshivas have always difficulty with funding, ever since
their inception. I find it difficult to believe that European Jewry for
the past 175 years (since the founding of the 1st Yeshiva) was any
wealthier than American Jewry. And yet, despite extreme econcomic
hardships, Yeshivas have survived.  Moreover, as I once heard in the
name of one of the Gedolim of the past generation, these financial
difficulties may be part of the Divine Plan --- but that's another post.

In the meanwhile, let us help try and solve the problems, rather then
condemn other segments of Orthodox Jewry - even if we do not happen to
agree with all of their ideology. I close with a plea for Unity - for
all Orthodox Jewry has is each other. United we can accomplish much;
divided we will accomplish nothing.

Hayim Hendeles


From: <dlm@...> (David Lee Makowsky)
Date: Fri, 1 Jul 1994 16:57:59 -0400
Subject: Re: The Chassidishe/ Yeshiva Community in the U.S. and Chillul Hashem

	Arnold Lustiger's piece on the Chillul Hashem brought about by
failing right wing yeshivas reminded me of something that has aggrevated
me to the point where I can hardly stand to even think about it any

	A couple of years ago I read somewhere that donations to Zedaka
were going down.  One reason for this was the increased bite out of the
family budget being taken by increased tuition and fees for both schools
and camps.

	Logically it can be assumed that the reason schools are charging
more is because their costs are up.  I don't have the figures in front
of me, but I would bet that even if it were not for such things as
providing a free education to Soviet emmigres the costs would still be
going higher.

	I believe that the one reason for this increase in costs has to
do with an increase on the number of schools.  Each school must have a
certain fixed overhead, so an additional number of schools means
additional overhead to be funded.  That, plus the fact that each new
school draws students away from existing schools, means that there are
fewer students at each school to amoratize (sp?) the costs over.

	Now, if a community needs more schools because the exisitng
schools cannot handle the demand then I am all for building more
schools.  However, some schools get built simply because one "sect" does
not trust/like/respect/etc. another sect, so they just build themselves
another school.

	This is leades to the increased costs that forces each family to
come up with more and more money.  I consider that nothing less then
gneiva (theft), pure and simple.  Not just from the families but also
from Tzedaka and all those whom are served by Tzedaka.  Also, I am sure
that some families who might have been able to pay their own way are now
forced to accept Tzedaka just to educate their children.

	I don't know about the rest of you, but this makes me _VERY_



From: Stephen Phillips <stephenp@...>
Date: Wed, 6 Jul 1994 09:04:56 -0400
Subject: Re: Tuition Assistance at Yeshivos

> From: Gershon Schlussel <76220.3107@...>

I think that the old adage "Charity begins at home" should apply here,
but that's merely a personal opinion.

OTOH, as far as calculating one's Ma'aser Kesofim [the 10th of one's
income that one should give to charity] is concerned, there is a
Teshuvah of Reb Moshe Feinstein z'tzl on whether or not the fees one
pays for one's daughter's education at a Jewish school may be treated as
part of one Ma'aser.  Reb Moshe says that as teaching Torah to one's son
is an obligation and one cannot use Ma'aser money for an obligation, the
money used for one's son's education may not be treated as part of one's
Ma'aser money. Since, however, teaching Torah to one's daughter is not
an obligation, then Ma'aser money may be used for her Jewish education.
BUT, concludes Reb Moshe, as nowadays the influences that pervade our
non-Jewish environment (and especially in schools) run contrary to the
Torah, it has now become an obligation to send one's daughter to a
Jewish school, and since it is an obligation therefore one may not use
Ma'aser money for this.

The above is from memory only; it has been some time since I read the
Teshuvah and I stand to be corrected if I have not recalled accurately
the Teshuvah.

Stephen Phillips


From: <Rafi@...> (Rafael Salasnik)
Date: Sun, 3 Jul 1994 16:41:51 -0400
Subject: UK Chief Rabbi's Review on Women

British    Jewish  |__/  Network  -  UK branch of Shamash

- Creating awareness of the internet in the community
- Helping organisations & individuals to participate in the Jewish internet
- Creating/maintaining a quality communal electronic information database


UK Review of Women in the Community

In 1992 the newly appointed UK Chief Rabbi, Jonathan Sacks, launched a
review on women in the community, headed by Rosalind Preston, Vice
President of the Board of Deputies (the representative body of

The review was conducted within the parameters of halachah and the
recommendations were formulated without being too specific. The survey
covered 5 areas: education, religious & synagogal affairs, family,
social issues, Jewish divorce laws.

The report has now been published, based on a survey of 1,350 women
(estimated total UK Jewish population 300,000) and gained much press
coverage in the general British press.

Amongst the main recommendations made were:

- equal opportunities for girls in Jewish education

- mechitzot (seperations - usually curtains - between the men and
  women's areas in synagogues) should permit women to see & hear the
  service in comfort

- women should receive support & encouragement to use mikvot (ritual
  purity baths) & that the attendants be trained to deal tactfully &
  sensitively especially with those unsure of procedures

- the need for women suffering bereavement to have modes of expressing
  their grief

- provide help for women affected by abuse & educate the community about
  this problem

- promotion of a nationwide independent, self-financing data-based
  introduction agency for all Jewish singles

- counselling services be made available to individuals & families
  affected by intermarriage

- all religious & communal bodies actively welcome singles including
  widows & divorcees, by creating an atmosphere of inclusivism

- identify & address the needs of the elderly

Potentially the most far-reaching concerned the issue of unresolved gittin
(Jewish divorce) with two powerful recommendations being made:

- Chief Rabbi should issue guidelines on what is judged to be acceptable
  pressure to grant a get & that recalcitrant husbands should forfeit
  privileges within the community

- Chief Rabbi & Dayanim of London Beth Din respectfully urged to convene
  a gathering of worldwide halachic authorities to decide how to
  implement all possibilities within halachah which can prevent the
  occurrence of the status of agunot (women unable to remarry under


From: <LANDAU@...> (Jerrold Landau)
Date: Tue, 5 Jul 94 09:19:13 EDT
Subject: What a Waste!

Jeff Korbman asks about the source of the mitzvah of Baal Tashchit (not
to waste food).  the source is Devarim 20, 19-20 (sedra Shoftim), where
there is a commandment that, in a time of war, it is forbidden to cut
down a fruit tree.  The language of the chumash is (lo Tashchit et
eitzah -- don't destroy the trees).  The Torah Temima on that passuk
brings down a few gemaras.  The gemara in Baba Kama 91b says "Rabbi
Eleazar says, I have heard that if one tears his garments over the dead
excessively, he has transgressed Baal Tashchit".  From this gemara, it
is clear that the concept of Baal Tashchit extends beyond times of war,
and beyond fruit trees.  If you check section 57 (on that passuk) of the
Torah Temima, the Torah Temima expounds as to how the commandment
applies to any item that is of use to man.  This is derived from the
words in the passuk "for a man is as if he is the fruit of a tree",
which is a strange language, but implies that man is sustained by the
fruit of a tree.  From these superfluous words, it is derived that
anything that is sustaining to man comes under the category of Baal

Whether Baal Tashchit applies to minute items such as tiny ketchup
packets may be open to debate.  I don't think that anyone would say
that, for example, you must be careful to scrape out the last drops of
jam or apple sauce from an empty jar.  Similarly, I don't think that one
needs to be concerned with small amounts of food left on one's plate.
However, one should always be alert to excessive waste.  Certainly, it
would be appropriate to only take as mutch ketchup as needed.  If one
had no control over this, perhaps it would not be a problem to through
out the small packets, due to their insignificance.  Of course, an area
of major concern with regards to Baal Tashchit is with simchas, but that
is another story ...

Jerrold Landau   Toronto, Ont.


End of Volume 13 Issue 94