Volume 53 Number 46
                    Produced: Mon Jan  1 11:50:03 EST 2007

Subjects Discussed In This Issue: 

Avodah Zarah?
         [Gilad J. Gevaryahu]
         [Orrin Tilevitz]
Doing Something about NK Chillul Hashem
         [Yossi Ginzberg]
"Impostors" in hasidic garb
         [Meir Shinnar]
Inspecting tefillin at airport security
         [David I. Cohen]
Kannoim Pogim Bo
         [Joel Rich]
List Priorities
         [Joshua Goldmeier]
Sea-Tac question of chillul Hashem
         [Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz]
Segregated Buses
Women, Men on Buses
         [Russell Jay Hendel]


From: <Gevaryahu@...> (Gilad J. Gevaryahu)
Date: Wed, 27 Dec 2006 09:39:55 EST
Subject: Avodah Zarah?

Ira L. Jacobson (MJv53n40) says:
> I can report that shuls that once had lions, when they redecorate,
> there are suddenly no more lions.  I have heard the claim that there
> is an issur involved, but more than that I do not know.

I have dealt with some aspects of animal decorations in synagogues, and
both stained glass and mosaic has animals imagery for about 2000 years.
Here is a paragraph from http://www.lmsonline.org/lmswindows/

The earliest recorded use of stained glass window in a synagogue occurs
in a responsum by Rabbi Elyakim ben Rabbi Yoseph from Mayence [1070s -
c.1148]. Concerned about the propriety of the stained glass windows with
drawings of lions and snakes that had been mounted in their synagogue,
members of the Cologne community sought the advice of Rabbi
Elyakim. When asked whether such animal drawings violated the Biblical
prohibition "Thou shall not make to yourself a graven image" (Ex. 20:4,
Deut. 5:8), he ruled against these images. It is conceivable, however,
that Rabbi Elyakim was unaware of the extensive use of animal and human
images in mosaic floors of synagogues in earlier centuries, especially
in Israel.  Rabbi Ephraim ben Itzhak (d. 1175) a contemporary of
R. Elyakim, disagreed with his decision (Urbach, Efraim Elimelech Ba`ale
ha-Tosafot: Toldotehem, Hiburehem, Shitatam. Jerusalem, Mosad Bi'alik,
1986, p.  206.). The halachic issue arose "after the fact," since the
windows with snakes and lions already decorated this synagogue, perhaps
for quite some time. Although the responsum did not specify that the
animal images on the windows were "colored," the parallel use of colored
stained glasses windows in churches in Germany at the time lead to the
conclusion that the windows in the synagogue were also colored.

Gilad J. Gevaryahu


From: Orrin Tilevitz <tilevitzo@...>
Date: Tue, 26 Dec 2006 08:08:23 -0800 (PST)
Subject: Bussing

Yisrael Medad accuses of me of a "Freudian slip" in titling my bus
postings "Bussing Women" because to "buss" means to kiss.  Actually, the
double-S plural is used, if less frequently than its single-S cousin, by
educated people to refer to transportation as well, (see, e.g., Belk
v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Bd. of Educ., 211 F.3d 853 (4th Cir. 2000));
the on-line Merriam-Webster dictionary gives the double-S plural as an
alternative spelling, and an old American Heritage dictionary calls that
spelling "informal".  But I assure you that the double entendre was my
little joke, not a slip, Freudian or otherwise.


From: Yossi Ginzberg <jgbiz120@...>
Date: Tue, 26 Dec 2006 20:52:06 -0500
Subject: Doing Something about NK Chillul Hashem

It may be an urban legend, but supposedly the community of gerer
chassidim has no agunah problem because they allegedly have a
"committee" that pays a visit to any husband contemplating such actions,
and when they leave the fellow usually has had a change of heart and a
broken leg.

I suspect that this method would be the absolute only way to convince
the NK loons to desist.  Normal methods are for normal people.

Not that I would suggest violence, of course, that's not the "Jewish"

Yossi Ginzberg


From: Meir Shinnar <chidekel@...>
Date: Wed, 27 Dec 2006 12:28:09 -0500
Subject: "Impostors" in hasidic garb

WRT to SBA, I posted
>>the NK are a natural outgrowth of the virulent antizionism of the more
>>mainstream ones - they can't duck responsibility for their children

He responded
>In that case, can the RZ camp, with which Dr Shinar associates, duck
>responsibility for THEIR children?  That movement has produced more than
>one murderer - including the person who assassinated an Israeli PM in
>cold blood, another who slaughtered dozens of Arabs and some who have
>killed lesser numbers innocent non-combatant Palestinians. (One who
>killed some 4 Arab workers, suicided just days ago.)

SBA should be aware tha the RZ camp did have a major discussion of
whether its rhetoric was responsible for these incidents.  Different
conclusions were reached - the nexus between the rhetoric and actions
was not as clear - but the discussion occured.

I don't see such a discussion in the Satmar comunity.  Furthermore,
while the NK crossed a red line with the Holocaust denial conference,
until now, the relationship between NK actions and Satmar actions was
extremely close - and the difference was one primarily of style - rather
than of substance - and frequently indistinguishable to the outside
observer (who is the important audience).  eg, NK participated in
rallies with pro Palestinian groups for the destruction of Israel.
Satmar would not participate in such joint rallies. However, they held
their own rallies protesting the existence of Israel...Somehow, I don't
see, and I don't think the wider outside world, sees, much of a
difference between the two....  

That isn't a question of theology - but actions.

Meir Shinnar


From: <bdcohen@...> (David I. Cohen)
Date: Wed, 27 Dec 2006 16:17:47 +0000 (GMT)
Subject: Inspecting tefillin at airport security

Art Sapper wrote, in v53n19,

> Asking that tefillin be searched by x-ray won't solve the problem.
> According to a news report, an April 2005 report by the Department of
> Homeland Security entitled, "Systems Engineering Study of Civil
> Aviation Security - Phase I," concluded that current airport x-ray
> machines don't detect explosives.  (That's why x-raying shoes is
> pretty pointless.)

Actually explosive detectors are being added ... at Albequerque NM one
stands inside a cylindrical type air machine (That's the best
description I could come up with) before one proceeds to the standard
metal detector.

Don't have personal knowledge of any other airports.

David I. Cohen


From: Joel Rich <JRich@...>
Date: Wed, 27 Dec 2006 09:19:02 -0500
Subject: Kannoim Pogim Bo

<SNIP> My own rov, an agudahnik first class, has publicly stated
>they (i.e. Naturei Kartaniks) are rotzchim di'orayso and a kanoi (like
>pinchas) has the right to beat them up when they are prepared to do 
>damage like they did the other day.  Who on this list disagrees?

Based on what little I know of halacha, you must live in a truly
outstanding community since the halachot of kannous as I understand them
require the kannoi to realize that if zimri had killed pinchas he would
have been entirely within his rights and not guilty of anything, in
addition HKB"H had to extend his covenant of peace to Pinchas (according
to some opinions) since killing, even as a kannoi, can have a negative
effect on the killer. In addition it requires that the kannoi have NO
other motivations (even secondary) for undertaking the act, and if he
asked a rav he would be told he can't do it......

Joel Rich


From: Joshua Goldmeier <Josh@...>
Date: Wed, 27 Dec 2006 08:43:09 -0600
Subject: Re: List Priorities

> Well, I for one. Does it occur to you or your Rov that the young man
> who beat the woman on the no. 2 bus was acting as a kanoi, probably
> with the encouragement of his Rov?

Yes, it did occur to me, and his kanois was wrong.  Even if it was a
mehadrin bus, which it wasn't, even if she was a troublemaker, which she
wasn't, the whole issue is a chumra of tznius, NOT halacha.  The neturei
karta are putting jewish lives in danger by legitimizing what the arabs
want to do to us, that is an issur Di'oraysa.  Quoting goyim about
freedom is irrelevant when it comes to halacha!  I defended the woman
who was beat up tirelessly on many blogs.  There is NO defense for the
NK - none at all!  If they hold Zionism is wrong - fine.  But to go on
international tv during a war, to go to Iran for a holocaust denial
conference, is sakanos nefashos for the rest of us jews and is assur
lgamri!  tznius is subjective at best!

Shaya Goldmeier


From: Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz <sabba.hillel@...>
Date: Wed, 27 Dec 2006 05:52:11 -0800 (PST)
Subject: Re: Sea-Tac question of chillul Hashem

From: Leah Perl <leahperl@...>

>> The lawyer/airport were having discussions about the lawsuit
>> possibility earlier, but the whole story broke (and the lawsuit threat
>> became public) precipitated by the Tree removal.  Since my point was
>> about the chillul hashem of it all, I put the lawsuit "item" there in
>> my list.
>Why is it a chillul Hashem to say that you will take legal action if
>your civil rights as a citizen are denied?  I don't see this as anything
>but acceptable.  I don't think we believe that Jews should just "lie
>down and take it".  You might disagree with the rabbi's interpretation
>of separation of church and state, but I hope that you agree that if,
>according to his definition, his legal rights were violated, that he can
>and should sue to protect those.  We are not here by toleration.

I should point out that in a number of stories, the Rabbi and his
lawyer are quoted as saying that they never threatened to sue.  The
lawyer sent a letter pointing out that many decisions had been made
which backed the legality of the Menorah and that the tree itself would
be more defensible with a Menorah there as well.  It appears that the
airport authorities panicked upon getting a letter from a lawyer and
then tried to blame the rabbi when the uproar started.

Hillel (Sabba) Markowitz | Said the fox to the fish, "Join me ashore"
<Sabba.Hillel@...> | The fish are the Jews, Torah is our water


From: SBA <sba@...>
Date: Wed, 27 Dec 2006 01:26:53 +1100
Subject: Re: Segregated Buses

From: Abbi Adest
> Though Egged is a private company, the state allows the company to
> hold the transport monopoly in many cities as long as they serve the
> public (i.e . majority) ...  If the charedim want to start their own
> private transport company to serve their modesty needs, they are
> certainly welcome to do so and make as many rules as they like.

From: Janice Gelb
> If the charedi community wants separate seating on buses, they should
> fund a private set of buses for their community.

AFAIK, they did established one or more such private bus lines (Beth
Shemesh-Jm?) and Egged was very unhappy about it and did whatever it
could to stop it. (I can't recall how it all ended.)  Maybe someone from
BS remembers this. It happened about 2-3 years ago.

There is obviously money in such buslines (they are very successful in
NY) but Egged wants to hang on to its monopoly at any price thus
agreeing to establish the Mehadrin lines. Egged is definitely NOT doing
out out of tzidkus or their great regard for the preferences of the
charedi community.

Sadly, in the yes of some, unlike the blacks, the charedim can NEVER be



From: Russell Jay Hendel <rjhendel@...>
Date: Wed, 27 Dec 2006 01:24:50 GMT
Subject: Women, Men on Buses

Leah in v53n39 responds to my suggestion that it would be better for
Charedi men to place scarves over women then spit and kick them. Leah

>>Are you joking?  The only appropriate use of such scarfs would be over
>>the eyes of these men.  ... It would be a form of physical assault to
>>"place the scarfs over the exposed parts of any woman provoking them"
>>let alone "veil the faces"....

No I was not joking. Leah seems to be saying "Look you replaced one
childish behavior with another, what have you accomplished?"

I would respond by focusing on Leah's comment "It would a form of
physical assult to place scarfs...". That was my whole point. I am
trying to differentiate "childishness" (which I cant stop) with
criminality. If people keep on kicking and spitting someone will get
hurt I know in one of the synagogues I attend a person (in fact a former
shule president) got a black and blue eye from candy throwing during an
offroof. My whole point is that kicking, spitting, and throwing **are**
assaults while placing scarfs over people is childish but not an

However to the tone implicit in Leah's posting that the behavior is
still childish, to that implicit comment I have no problem with agreeing
with her. However I would consider it an accomplishment to prevent the
assaults. And I **would** like the Gedolim, (after they have corrected
all agunoth problems) to protest such behavior.

I hope this clarifies my position.

Russell Jay Hendel; http://www.Rashiyomi.com/


End of Volume 53 Issue 46