Volume 15 Number 2
                       Produced: Wed Aug 24 23:01:33 1994

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Do airlines microwave their meals?
         [Jules Reichel]
Jews and Drugs
         ["Joe Abeles"]
Judaism and Racism
         [Joseph Steinberg]
         [Binyomin Segal]
Moshiach & Techias HaMeysim
         [YY Kazen]
Racism in Orthodoxy
         [Robert Klapper]


From: <JPREICHEL@...> (Jules Reichel)
Date: Wed, 24 Aug 1994 19:33:01 -0400
Subject: Do airlines microwave their meals?

I think that the speculation that airlines heat with microwaves is in error.
The food is precooked and inserted into a rack with many slots. The slots are
hot. It's like a super-duper heating tray. I can hardly imagine the attendants
having to open and close hundreds of microwave oven doors, can you? Some 
airline could have one small microwave oven for some special needs. If anyone
understands the halacha please post. 


From: "Joe Abeles" <joe_abeles@...>
Date: Wed, 24 Aug 1994 11:35:56 -0400
Subject: Jews and Drugs

I wanted to comment regarding Michael Lipkin's YU observations of drug
use -- something which I believe goes way beyond eating a bag of potato
chips not bearing a hechsher.

First of all, it is difficult for me to find anything more revolting
than the image which he conjured up for mail.jewish of a young
NCSY-mekarev'ed individual, proud of resisting drug use before college,
succumbing to a weakness of indulgence in drug use at YU.  No, it is not
unique to YU.  And if one thinks that the 70's were less drug-oriented
on college campuses than were the 60's, I surely had no such inkling.
Many at MIT during '72 to '76 were regular marijuana users and I am
under no illusions regarding either exaggeration or minimization of its
effects.  And, because of its illegality, marijuana users were
participants in the "drug culture" which entailed yet additional
sociological mind-numbing beyond that induced by the THC itself.

My feeling about drug users has been that they are more or less in a
category similar to most Germans -- though it may sound provocative
quoted out of context -- first, in the sense that there is no way I can
approve of such individuals although it is my prerogative get along with
them when and if it suits my best interests.  I doubt either type would
recognize my revulsion but it is there.

Next, while I would not claim a strong analogy between Nazis and drug
users, both are destroyers of human potential and human lives.  It is
critical here to recognize one reason Nazis were so violently hostile to
Jews, namely that Germans could not control Jews (as they did control
other Germans, at least those who remained in Germany following a
substantial exodus of polically-left-wing Germans to America in the mid-
to late-19th century) to fit into the right-wingers' image of a
militaristic German-culture-dominated society which Jews would forever
reject for ourselves.  Jewish presence in Germany prevented Germans from
enforcing a discipline of cultural uniformity because those Germans who
rejected such authority could have pointed to Jews as exceptions to the
rule and claimed exemption themselves, destroying the effectiveness of
the Nazi hierarchy.

Today drugs similarly control people and prevent them from thinking
clearly for themselves.  Under their influence, drugs destroy personal
strength and responsibility which Hashem and Judaism, as perhaps its
main contribution to the secular world, strongly confers upon the
individual.  Particularly in the aftermath of 6,000,000 murdered by
those who wanted to control that same human potential, I see a deep and
powerful antithetical confrontation between any drug use whatsoever and

Particularly as a BT myself, I cannot express the full extent of my
revulsion when hearing about the involvement of committed, observing
Jews (whom I otherwise would deeply respect) with drugs.  It is possible
for me to understand how an otherwise-orthodox individual would want to
be free of some of the restrictions which halacha imposes.  It is not
possible for me to understand, however, how such a person could be so
blind as to align himself or herself with a "drug-culture" that
represents so overtly the destruction of Jewish culture and, hence,
Jews.  How could a person raised in a frum family so critically miss the
point?  Facing the fact that some whom I emulated have done so
constitutes a challenge to my personal emunah.

--Joe Abeles


From: Joseph Steinberg <steinber@...>
Date: Wed, 24 Aug 1994 09:40:37 -0400
Subject: Judaism and Racism

I am not condoning racism in any way, but quoting verses that are meant
to chastise the Jewish people for internal fighting -- i.e., Jew against
against Jew -- to prove that the Tanach is against racism is simply

In fact, it would be easier to prove from the Tanach that racism is
proper than improper -- see

1) Birkat Noach (which tradition has as being the 'ultimate prophecy of
the entire world's history) clearly defines that certain races will be
slaves and others will be masters, artisans, etc.

2) 'Lo yavo mamzer b'khal Hashem -- racism , perhaps, against the
children of some broken families -- ' gam dor asiri lo yavo b'khal

3) 'Lo yavo Amoni B'khal Hashem' 'Lo Yavo Moavi' Bkhal HAshem' racism
against Moabites and Amonites

4) But Moabite women can marry into the Jewish people -- racism against

5) The distinction between the son of a Kohen who gains all sorts of
rights and the son of an Israelite who doesn't.

6) Lo yasur Shevet MiYehuda -- only a decendant of David who reigns may
sit in the Bet Hamikdash -- a king from any other tribe may not -- in
fact he cannot legally reign...

etc., etc., etc.

There are countless other examples.


I am not condoning racism as it is defined today -- what I am asking is
that people not quote psukim totally out of context, and totally
misinterpret them. Look up the psukim quoted in the past few
mail.jewish's -- you will see what they are talking about...

In addition remember that (as can be seen all over Tanach), Judaism --
well at least true Orthodox Judaism -- does believe in differentiation
between different groups of people just by their birthrights.

A Mamzer Talmid Chacham is greater than a Kohen Gadol Am HaAretz -- but
he is still a mamzer -- and so are his children, etc.

This does not condone the practice of saying that because so and so is
from so-and-so group he is a crook or whatever -- but it does say that
one should not be oblivious to the fact that there are different groups
of people in this world -- and they are different. Different does not
mean superior or inferior -- it means different.

   _\ \ \  / __`\  /',__\  /'__`\/\ '__`\\ \  _ `\    Joseph Steinberg
  /\ \_\ \/\ \L\ \/\__, `\/\  __/\ \ \L\ \\ \ \ \ \   The Courant Institute
  \ \____/\ \____/\/\____/\ \____\\ \ ,__/ \ \_\ \_\  <steinber@...>
   \/___/  \/___/  \/___/  \/____/ \ \ \/   \/_/\/_/  +1-201-833-9674


From: <bsegal@...> (Binyomin Segal)
Date: Wed, 24 Aug 1994 02:40:17 -0400
Subject: Microwaves


>Many people have responded to my question about the rules of kashrut for
>microwave ovens. However, no one has yet addressed the crux of my question.
>I want to know the REASONING behind these laws of kashrut.

>Let me explain:...
>However, for the case of an oven, and even more so in the case of a microwave,
>I do not understand the reasoning at all. Are we worried about non-kosher
>particles "floating in the air" inside the oven (or microwave), and then
>being transferred to the food? Are we worried about (perhaps) ma'arit eyin
>(i.e., that one might think we are cooking non-kosher food since we are
>using a non-kosher oven)? Please explain.

In Halacha there is a discussion of "reicha" (lit. smell - probably
steam).  There is quite a bit of discussion about when it applies
exactly, but common practice seems to assume that reicha exists both in
ovens and microwaves.

Basically the steam produced from cooking carrys particles of the
food. If that steam touches the oven's walls, then the walls absorb
those particles.  Those particles can under the right circumstances be
absorbed (through steam transfer) into the next dish. Also, the oven may
absorb both milk & meat particles making it not kosher.

For a numberr of reasons we pasken that "Reicha milsa hi" (We are
concerned with reicha) is a l'chatchila halacha. This means to say that
it is forbidden to cook where reicha will cause meat & milk to mix
HOWEVER if one _inadvertently_ cooked where reicha was the only problem,
the food is permitted.

The halacha is made slightly more complicated if there is ANY real food
particles on the wall/floor of the oven. Since the reicha is
transferring only once (and immeadiatly from food a - the stain - to
food b) it is more strict. Also, with real food there is then the
possibility that the pot would touch the particles, which _might_ be a
problem even b'dieved.

There are a few other issues wcich can mix in here like "ben yomo" (has
the oven been used within 24 hours) which makes the issue more

Basically (and again CYLCOR) it is my understanding that for both an
oven & a microwave:

1.You CAN use them for both meat & milk provided
a.it is clean of ALL food particles
b. one type (meat or milk) is ALWAYS covered
c.best if you can wait 24 hours between meat & milk

2 You can use a non-kosher oven/microwave provided:
a. you double wrap the kosher food
(some require 3 wrappings)



From: YY Kazen <yyk@...>
Date: Wed, 24 Aug 1994 01:06:54 -0400
Subject: Re: Moshiach & Techias HaMeysim

>From: David Steinberg <dave@...>

I'd like to point out to David Steinberg:

First he points out that certain items are not to be taught to just
anyone, and brings a few examples.

He then points to an incident of a 7 year old who proclaims his belief
in Techiyas Hameisim :

> I saw news broadcasts in which 7 year olds espoused the
> belief that the Rebbe Ztz'l will be resurrected.  I do not believe that
> 7 year olds should be exposed to non-mainstream concepts of this sort.

I wonder out loud at what age does a child begin to "recite" the 13
Ikarim in his daily tefilos? And are those 13 Ikarim mainstream and
understood by the adults? Since when can a child not state his simple
faith in Hashem's ability to perform miracles just because a TV camera
is there?

David then says:
> I was quite careful, in my post, to be respectful of the Rebbe.  Its not
> my place to 'Mish zich in Rebbe Zachin'

Yet he finds it speculative if:

> Was the Rebbe Ztz'l even
> aware of the frenzy of the Heichanu LaMelech HaMoshiach campaign?

David, the Rebbe was very much aware of every move that his Chasidim
did and do. He himself said: "I did whatever possible to bring Moshiach
now it is up to each and everyone of you to do your part."

These words were said long before his stroke.

I think the issue here is what the Rebbe said once at a Farbrengen

For those who have a problem with the frenzy of demand for Moshiach they 
should see the Radak on the last Pasuk in Shumel II and the Chida on the
Bracha Es Tzemach David Avdecha in the Amida.

     Yosef Yitzchok Kazen             |            E-Mail to:
     Director of Activities           |      <yyk@...>
            Gopher: gopher lubavitch.chabad.org
            Mosaic or WWW:http://kesser.gte.com:7700/chabad/chabad.html


From: <rklapper@...> (Robert Klapper)
Date: Wed, 24 Aug 1994 16:03:31 -0400
Subject: Re: Racism in Orthodoxy

 In both private and public postings listmembers have confirmed my
impression that racism is a serious problem in our community.  I hope
this will spur efforts to eliminate it.  I'd like to thank Ira Rosen for
his story, and i think if his actions were widely imitated we'd be well
 Along similar lines, friends of mine have asked their children to tell
them immediately if their rebbeim or counselors use such language etc.,
which I think has the dual impact of sensitizing the children and
identifying and discouraging negative influences.
 I think we should regard this as more serious than other language
issues, as it not only defiles the speaker but denigrates others.
 That said, I'm afraid the sources cited don't really meet my needs,
which are for an argument capable of convincing a Jewishly well-educated
 a)Malachi 2:10, ironicaly enough, is interpreted by everyone on the
page in the mikraot gedolot as an attack on intermarriage, with the "one
father" being Jacob
 b) The prohibition against nicknames is a subset of the prohibition
against onaat devarim (causing pain through language), which according
to Bava Metzia 59a (and indeed the plain language of Vayikra 25:17)
applies only to Jews, and perhaps not even all jews.  See Sefer
haChinnukh, which defines the commandment as "not to pain Jews via
speech".  I'd be happy to hear of conflicting opinions, amd my research
hasn't been thorough.
 c) While man is precious since created in the image of G-d, this does
not prevent a whole series of things being permissible when not leading
to chillul Hashem.  Furthermore, of course, the kuzari kind of takes the
moral bite out of that line.
 d) Beriyot in Talmudic discourse i believe generally refers to the
Jewish polity.  See also c).
 e) Chillul hashem, imitation dei, the prohibition against vulgar
language, etc., serve only to convince people who concede that what they
are doing is morally wrong that it is also forbidden - if someone
believes there is nothing wrong with a word, he won't consider it
defiling speech.
	Again, it's not that these sources aren't appropriate, just that
they preach to the converted.  i'm looking to proselytize.


End of Volume 15 Issue 2