Wednesday, January 27, 2016

do you know the words to our national anthem?

I’ve removed the identifying information from this e-mail :

“At the end every1 sang Hatikva together and the … girls just had to stand there because we sadly weren't educated on the words of Hatikva.”


Do you think these girls know the words to the Star Spangled Banner? I would think so. If I were really in a nitpicky bad mood I would comment on the fact that the majority of readers (in the US) who saw the words "national anthem" in the title of this post  in probably immediately thought of the words to the Star Spangled Banner and not HaTikvah, but instead of frying little fish let’s focus on the whale in front of us.

As I written before, how do our kids come out of yeshiva knowing more about the Civil War than they know about our homeland?

And please don’t tell me about Rav Kook
not liking HaTikvah either. Trust me, these girls don’t know the words to HaEmunah either. In an ideal world maybe you would choose different words, but we don’t live in an ideal world, and for better or worse, HaTikvah has de facto become the anthem of our State. How could you be a 21st century Jew and not know those words?

The people shown in the clip below did not have the privilege of hopping on a plane to spend a year (or more) studying dvar Hashem in freedom in our nation’s homeland. They, just liberated from Bergen Belsen, could only hope for such a future. And so (fast forward to 1:36) they sang of that hope -- they knew the words to HaTikvah. Too bad the generation of their grandchildren doesn’t.

2) The Ohr haChaim at the end of last week’s parsha asks why Moshe sent Yehoshua to do battle with Amalek instead of going himself. He answers that Yehoshua was the biggest masmid in the whole of Klal Yisrael – “lo yamish m’toch ha’ohel.” Davka those who are masmidim, those who have the deepest connection to Torah, must go out to physically fight when we have to face Amalek.

And in other news, another week, another group of chareidim arrested for protesting against the IDF.  (And since I already inserted the clip above, I don't know how you can look at those images and then read about Jews who think of themselves as shomrei mitzvos who call other Jews Nazis, but what do I know.)

3) I made the mistake of looking at a newspaper (shemiras eynayim for me means not looking at so-called frum newspapers) and saw a picture of Senator Chuck Schumer getting a standing ovation at some yeshiva dinner. Amazing. This is the man who took weeks to decide that he owes it to his constituents to vote against the Iran deal, but who also refused to speak out against it or lobby any of his colleagues to vote against it lest, G-d forbid, he be labelled a persona non grata by our anti-semitic President who leads his party. The deal passed and now, as admitted by John Kerry himself, we are funding terrorism.  At the same time, the Administration supports what is effectively a boycott of Israeli products from Yehudah and Shomron.

I give him credit -- the guy has in the past been a staunch supporter of causes we believe in.  But now, when it counted, when we are up against the worst Jew haters that have ever been in Washington, he has hardly shown himself deserving of a standing ovation.  

This is an avlah. There is nothing else to say about it. 

And if I keep writing about every avlah out there, I will be busy 24x6 and accomplish nothing, so maybe it’s time to stop.

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