Thursday, January 17, 2008

Fighting Kannoim

The Jewish community as a whole often swings one way or the other, or even both ways at the same time. One of the reasons for this is the simple fact of life that there are often more than one way of viewing the same issue: From chumras to ways of acting to how we interact with the world around us, etc. There are legitimate points on both sides of the issue that are equally arguable, however one may feel that 'their' way is more valid.

Then there are times where things go too far. Extremism is often (always?) wrong, and while even if one would argue that people can choose whatever extremes they want for themselves, this no longer holds true when they start trying to force others to follow those same extremes. One of the prime examples of this today within the Jewish community is the current fighting going on among the communities of Ramat Beit Shemesh, where kannoim have acted violently on a number of occasions, including beatings, arson, death threats, and more.

When things go too far, there needs to be a reaction to turn things around. To that effect, read this very good post at DovBear which has suggestions and information for how to help, including details of who - including rabbonim - are not only turning a blind eye, but in some cases aiding those who cause this destruction. (For an interesting addendum, see this post by mevaserettziion detailing a phone call to one of the rabbonim about the issue.)

Thank you in advance for your help.

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