Volume 22 Number 63
                       Produced: Sun Dec 31  9:44:26 1995

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

AIDS & Nidah
         [Erwin Katz]
Bloodborne Pathogens, Poskei Niddah, and Mohalim
         [Steve White]
Chanukah Menorah Cleanup
         [Jack Reiner]
Charedi and Dati, United and Divided
         [Steve White]
Chareidi bashing? Hardly.
         [Andy Levy-Stevenson]
Four Hours Without Food
         [Carl Sherer]
Kol Isha (girl's choir)
         [Moshe Freedenberg]
Mohel and diseases
         [David Hollander]
Rabbi Pinchas Teitz, zt"l
         [Abraham Lebowitz]
Rav Teitz zt"l
         [Michael J Broyde]
Yosef's "Test" for his Brothers
         [Roger Kingsley]


From: <ERWIN_KATZ@...> (Erwin Katz)
Date: Thu, 28 Dec 95 14:42:00 CST
Subject: AIDS & Nidah

Eitan Fiorino mentions that most mohelim are careful now concerning
blood-related transmissions. I wonder, since I have several times
recently observed milot where metzitzoh bepeh was performed.


From: <StevenJ81@...> (Steve White)
Date: Thu, 28 Dec 1995 11:43:06 -0500
Subject: Re: Bloodborne Pathogens, Poskei Niddah, and Mohalim

>From Eitan Fiorino (#58):
>>(From Lisa Halpern [#40]:)
>>        I am a student at Yale School of Nursing seeking information
>> about the awareness level of niddah poskim and the need to use universal
>> precautions (and possibly to be vaccinated against hepatitis B).
>>        If I am able to determine that there truly is a risk to these
>> rebbeim of contracting a blood-borne disease (God-forbid), I am
>> considering designing and implementing a posek-education project.
>A related observation is that almost every mohel I have seen in the 
>recent past has used latex gloves, etc. and has observed precautions 
>against blood-borne diseases.  There's no reason to think that niddah 
>poskim would not be equally receptive to the idea, although getting in 
>touch with every rav who poskins niddah shailos would be quite a task 
>(perhaps best undertaken by the O-U, Natl Council of Young Israel, RCA, 
>Agudah, etc.)

I think this is an excellent idea, Ms. Halpern.  However, as has
recently been discussed, there's a lot of denial about this sort of
thing in the Orthodox community.  I think maybe using Hepatitis B (HBV)
rather than HIV as the main argument makes a lot of sense, for two
reasons: (1) it's a worse problem epidemiologically; and (2) I don't
think there's as much denial that HBV might have made its way into our

While mohalim do use gloves these days, and also take other precautions
(see below), I don't know whether mohalim routinely vaccinate themselves
against HBV these days.  Does anyone have any information about this?
If not, they ought to, and perhaps this, too, should be a part of your
education program, Ms. Halpern.

Finally, there's this question of metzitza (drawing out of blood) which
is a halachically necessary part of mila.  The traditional way to do
this is by mouth.  Lately, some mohalim use a small, glass tube to do
metzitza, so that they use the mouth to draw out the blood, but the
blood only goes part way up the tube, not into the mouth proper.
However, I have heard that not everyone accepts this halachically.  How
is this?  Isn't there a real pikuach nefesh problem with direct metzitza
these days?

Steve White


From: <jjr@...> (Jack Reiner)
Date: Thu, 28 Dec 1995 12:26:42 -0600
Subject: Chanukah Menorah Cleanup

In v22n51, <rotha@...> (Arthur Roth) writes:
>    Secondly, regarding candle menorahs, does anyone have any tips to
>share about particularly effective ways to remove the candle wax that
>inevitably drips all over the menorah during the course of the holiday?

I use a hair dryer, set on low speed and high heat, to soften the wax.
Paper towels will then wipe off the wax.  I insert a twisted paper into
the candle holders to get the wax out the them.

Kol Tuv,
Yoel Reiner


From: <StevenJ81@...> (Steve White)
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 1995 12:28:36 -0500
Subject: Charedi and Dati, United and Divided

I agree with much of what Esther Posen had to say on "charedi bashing"
in #61, and I am greatly appreciative of her restraint in her response.

I am definitely what you would call Modern, or dati, but I see no place
in this list whatsoever for "dati vs. charedi" squabbles.  I almost even
hate to use the terms, because IMHO there is much more that unites us
than separates us -- and what's more, I believe that there is much more
difference in observance, "being medakdek about mitzvot," and so forth,
within each of these two groups than between them.

I suspect there are a number of things Esther would like to see dati'im
do differently, as there are things I wish haredim would do differently.
But frankly, we can't afford not to stay united in our mutual dedication
to HaShem, Torah, and klal yisrael, and to bringing our non-observant
fellow Jews back.

Besides, haven't we had enough fun, in terms of mutual recrimination,
for a lifetime this fall?

Shabbat Shalom,
Steve White


From: Andy Levy-Stevenson <andyls@...>
Date: 29 Dec 1995 09:42:50 -0600
Subject: Chareidi bashing? Hardly.

Esther Posen writes:

> Do we all feel better now that we've thoroughly bashed the chareidim   
> again?  Would it be considered appropriate for me to submit a post that
> asserted that modern orthodox jews violate every rule in the book...
> (a more authoratative book I might add.)
> ...
> Chareidim make it a point to be medakdaik (careful) bmitzvot.

As a reminder, this is the continuation of a discussion about Kol Isha
and the girls' choir that was asked to refrain from even lip synching,
let alone singing, but instead to sit silently while a tape was played.
This at the request of an audience member.

I want to be clear here; I don't see this as bashing. No-one accused the
"chareidim" (not my term -- I have no idea of this person's lifestyle)
of "violating rules". I heartily defend the right of the person in that
audience to be as "medakdaik (careful) bmitzvot" as they wish -- after
all, they don't have a lock on the concept. Like most Orthodox Jews, I
strive for the same standard.

No, that's not my way of approaching the concept of Kol Isha (and from
the discussion on Mail-Jewish, I'm obviously not alone), but I'm sure
it's a valid one. My problem with the example cited is this person's
insistence on engineering a public performance to meet their standards.

Why even attend? Surely one wouldn't insist on changing other people's
behaviour in other ways? The general rule of thumb is to avoid
situations which you deem inappropriate.

We all can think of examples. If you keep cholov yisrael, then don't eat
Hershey bars. I don't like to daven in a shul where people talk
incessantly, so I don't. Some movies are appropriate for my kids to
watch, some are not; so I don't let them watch the latter. If you don't
want your children taught in Yiddish, send them to a school where they
use English. I could go on.

Similarly, if you don't think it's appropriate to listen to a girl's
choir, or even to give the impression that you might be listening --
don't. To flip it around; if your community's standards don't allow for
a girls' choir to perform, then don't have one. It's the charade of a
performance that I find silly -- why do it?

In response to Esther's point; if the only way to avoid the appearance
of "chareidi bashing" is to adopt every chumra, minhag, or even whim,
that someone holds by, then a "discussion" list seems a little moot as a
concept. Absolutism, from any direction, rather stifles debate.

 Andy Levy-Stevenson                     Email:       <andyls@...>
 Tea for Two Communications              Voice & Fax:   612-920-6217
 2901 Salem Avenue South                                            
 St. Louis Park, MN 55416                                           


From: <adina@...> (Carl Sherer)
Date: Wed, 27 Dec 95 20:20:37 IST
Subject: Four Hours Without Food

Mike Gerver writes:
> But is it so clear what the halacha is in this case? If his relative
> hired a kosher caterer primarily to allow him to eat there, and if he
> would notice that he wasn't eating and would be offended, or perhaps
> embarrassed that he hadn't met high enough standards of kashrut, maybe
> this would be a greater aveira [sin] than eating the food? Especially if
> you have no serious reason to doubt the reliability of the caterer, but
> just don't want to take chances? Maybe you even want, on some
> subconscious level, to offend the host, because you are annoyed that he
> expected you not to mind the other questionable points (tzniut, chuppah)
> as long as he used a kosher caterer, and you want to make him as
> uncomfortable as he made you? (I'm speaking from personal experience
> here, I hope your motives are purer than I'm afraid mine have sometimes
> been.)

There is actually a tshuva (answer) in the Iggros Moshe in 
Yoreh Deah 1:72.  The question was whether a caterer could permit
weddings to take place in his catering hall at which things which were 
improper might take place, or would it be forbidden because of helping
sinners.  Rav Moshe zt"l permitted it under certain circumstances.

-- Carl Sherer
	Adina and Carl Sherer
		You can reach us both at:


From: <free@...> (Moshe Freedenberg)
Date: Thu, 28 Dec 1995 18:21:57 +0200
Subject: Kol Isha (girl's choir)

>>A few weeks ago the Chashmonaim girl's choir was invited to perform (I
>>think this was the 'older' girls choir so they were over Bat Mitzvah).
>>For 'technical' reasons and to avoid questions of Kol Isha (woman
>>singing) their numbers were pre-recorded and they were instructed to
>>stand and silently lip-synch with the recording.
>>The evening of the performance, they were told that at the request of
>>someone who was present (I don't know who) that to avoid 'marit ayin'
>>(appearance) of singing, they would be required to sit on the stage
>>without any lip-synching while the tape was played.

I think this kind of mix-up should never have happened, because no men
should have ever come to a concert where girls were singing in the first
place.  As a matter of fact, fathers never come to Bais Yaakov
(Yerushalayim) events where even their first grade daughters are
singing.  I think that the reason these kinds of problems as described
above happen is that people are not machmir enough about kol isha.  If
there are girls singing, especially girls older than bat mitzvah age, it
is better not to rely on the kula (leniency) that one can hear girls
singing in a group or that one can hear them on a tape, but not live.
Where it is just not mikabel (accepted) for men to go where there will
be girls singing of any age, whether taped or live, there are far less
misunderstandings.  It is a pity that the girls had to go through such
an experience, as I am sure that they would have really enjoyed being
able to sing live without being forced to feel self-conscious or

**  Moshe and Rena Freedenberg **
**  <free@...>          **
**  Kiryat Yearim, Israel      **


From: <David_Hollander@...> (David Hollander)
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 95 12:00:12 EST
Subject: Mohel and diseases

The mohel I used did m'tziza b'peh (squeezing/sucking the blood by 
mouth) directly with no straws etc. He told me saliva has some natural 
antibodies or other protective elements in it.  I don't recall 


From: <aileb@...> (Abraham Lebowitz)
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 1995 16:15:03 +0200
Subject: Rabbi Pinchas Teitz, zt"l

     I would like to call attention to the passing of a gadol ha-dor,
Rabbi Pinchas Teitz, zt"l of Elizabeth New Jersey. A number of his
relatives, including myself, are active mj'ers. Rabbi Teitz, who came to
Elizabeth around 1935 following the death of his illustrious
father-in-law, (The Uncle) Harav Hagaon Elazar Mayer Preil, zt"l.

Rabbi Teitz showed that day schools could be established in smaller
cities in America by doing that in Elizabeth when the only ones were in
the big communities of New York and Baltimore (founded by Rabbi Avraham
Nachman Schwartz zt"l, my wife's grandfather and his Rebbitzin the
former Golda Miriam Preil z"l. But he did much more than that. His 22
trips to the (former) Soviet Union and his accomplishments on behalf of
Soviet Jewry are legendary. He had a daf hashuvua program on the radio
with more than 20,000 listeners, making him one of the greatest
marbitzei Torah of all time (to quote his son, Rabbi Elazar Mayer
Teitz's hesped in Jerusalem last night).  Not mentioned in any of the
hespedim here in Israel was his founding of Ma'alin Bakodesh, which was
responsible for bring many Jews to kevurah in Eretz Yisrael.

     Chaval al d'avdin velo mishtakchin.  May he be a melitz yosher for
all Yisrael.

                                   Abe & Shulamith (Waxman) Lebowitz

Abe & Shelley Lebowitz			<aileb@...>


From: Michael J Broyde <relmb@...>
Date: Fri, 29 Dec 1995 11:43:35 -0500 (EST)
Subject: Rav Teitz zt"l

I read with great sadness today about the death of Rav Teitz of 
Elizebeth, NJ.  I met Rabbi Teitz a few times a number of years ago, and 
have read many divrai torah by him or items said over in his name.  Yet 
another giant in torah from Europe has returned to his Maker.
	Rabbi Teitz was, as the Rav said in his hesped of Rav Chaim Ozer, 
unique in our generation in that the mantel of both torah and political 
leadership rested in him and he excercised both of these gifts with 
skill, care and dedication.  His community, and his family,  is a tribute to 
him and his life. 
	May the Almighty comfort his family and the rest of the Jewish 
people on the loss.
  Rabbi Michael Broyde


From: Roger Kingsley <rogerk@...>
Date: Thu, 28 Dec 95 17:51:53 +0200 (IST)
Subject: RE: Yosef's "Test" for his Brothers

Arthur Roth asks (in MJ v22#56) whether Yosef's brothers could not 
have substituted a fake for Binyomin.
>>  But in order for the brothers to find him believable, wouldn't
>>  his actions have needed to seem logical in the context of the 
>>  role that he was playing for them? 

Maybe the Midrash gives an answer in the famous story about the
"divining cup".  Anyone who could tell by second sight the ages of the
brothers could also be supposed to know that they were brothers.

Roger Kingsley


End of Volume 22 Issue 63