Saturday, March 29, 2014

Re: More on Drafting Yeshiva Boys by Rabbi Doron Beckerman

sigh the same old charadie apologetics rehashed in Q&A form. These answers are so unconvincing to any one familiar with the situation that i don't even feel a critical comment is necessary.
i will just point out that he only asks the questions that have nice pat answers but the really relevant questions for example, in a democracy were all are equal before the law, how can it be fair or just to insist on the majority of a population that doesn't share your value system, bearing an extra burden that is only justifiable as a result of your religious belief?

Thursday, March 27, 2014

re: A New Dialogue in Eretz Yisroel – The Transformative Model. By Binyomin Wolf

This is a puzzling aspect of Cross Currents that applies to a lot of what fills there pages, for Rabbi Wolfs suggestion to help it must be read, considered and adopted by the policy makers for the charidie world i think rabbi wolf himself realizes this whole proposition may be read by a YU Rosh Yeshivah or two, but the "real" gedolim that are dealing with this issue do not even read English and it is doubtful if they are capable of even grasping let alone implementing strategic diplomacy on such a complex level

That aside, the basic problem which seems to me to underlie this essay is it assumes there is a two sided conflict my experience as an avrech in yerushalim is that we have some askenim that try to whip up a frenzied siege mentality amongst the masses while the other side is just trying to fairly govern our fragile Jewish state, they do not see themselves or there core identity as at war or attacking the charadim, that is merely how the yated et-al try to project them. Therefor rabbi wolfs suggestions to try to deceive our "attackers" by putting on an air of cooperating with there efforts, while knowing that we can not and will not concede an inch will not accomplish anything on the practically as acceptance of any compromise offered to us is impossible.  What he writes in his penultimate paragraph is the only possible result of his strategy, now that is a worthy goal by itself but do not hold your breath for much else.

in way of explanation, disclaimers & discloser

Cross Currents writers, Avi Shafran, Emanuel Feldman, Eytan Kobre, Harvey Belovski, Jonathan Rosenblum, Sarah Shapiro, Shira Schmidt, Toby Katz, Yaakov Menken, Yitzchok Adlerstein feel that they are gedolim by proxy and therefore immune to all the harsh criticisms that mere mortals must endure when putting there thoughts in to the marketplace of ideas.
The recent Jonathon Rosenblum article and ensuing censoring of comments followed by a tremendous backlash was the straw that forced something to be done about the sorry state of affairs vis-a-vis the oppression of ideas at Cross Currents. unfortunately the comment policy of Cross Currents has caused Cross Currents to lose legitimacy in the eyes of many who would otherwise read and consider the generally well articulated and occasionally well founded arguments of the Cross Currents posters. also by not letting ALL the voices and POVs on a topic to be heard they are loosing a lot of the possibility for improved practices and understandings to emerge and take root in our community also by not allowing there ideas to be freely critically reviewed it becomes hard for those not as informed of the facts or philosophically inclined to really believe they are reading a honest counting of the issues being discussed and not some slick propaganda. with this in mind i am opening a blog were i will post a short haeroh on every Cross Currents post and open up the comments thread  in which a free unmoderated discussion of the entire article can take place(i will try my best to post it promptly). Here you will not have to fear that your well thought out insight that you took the time to formulate and type may not see the light of day because it has been arbitrarily decided that it does not tow the party line or is overly critical of the author or may harm the honor of some greatly venerated charadie. Also you do not have to worry that your comment on a CrossCurrents article here will not be read by the articles author if you comment here i can guarantee that the authors will be following this blog and very likely will use a pseudo name to defend there dogmatic doctrines.
I will try to foster as transparently as possible the conditions under which a free and open discussion can flourish because only in such an atmosphere can any truly meaningful ideas be formed. I am not looking for or encouraging Cross Currents bashing however if a commenter feels that some is in order i humbly request that he keep it as short and moderate as he humanly can while still getting the job done (same goes for charadie "gedolim" bashing)

Dovbear (one of the Gedolim of the Jblogosphere) makes a very strong case (more) for the merits of anonymity in an open discussion, particularly in a community were the real life consequences of saying your opinion of the truth can be quite harsh. On this site we understand there may be many reason's that you do not feel bold enough to use your real name and although you may be displaying a weakness of character we believe that even imperfect or intimidated people may have important and valid insights to contribute to a conversation so by all means if you would rather comment anonymously you are still encouraged to share. that being said i would strongly suggest that you consistently use the same pen name to comment so that others can get to know your alter ego and have some context and continuity in ongoing discussions.
as the success of this endeavor is going to depend on getting the word out as will obviously not be publishing or promoting this site i am asking any one with a platform for letting people know were to direct there comments regarding a Cross Currents article should please shout this site out thank you, the management