The Haredi World Wide Web, continued…

"...our gain is your olam habbah so bid now and make this your Sha'ah Achas!"

In Part Three (aka “the Future”) of End Of The Jews, I write about how the Haredi community, despite the many, vituperative protestations otherwise, is fired and wired.

On May 20, CitiField will be filled with ultra-Orthodox Jews angry about the interweb.  (Apparently, the klakyisroel twitter account opened to promote the event [as reported by the Forward here] cannot be found… hmm…)

That the event is being advertised online and that tickets may be purchased via email (oh wait, the tickets are sold out – but worry not, the overflow crowds can watch on simulcast from the 20,000-seat Arthur Ashe Stadium nearby) did not strike anyone as ironic… but what did strike some as definitely ironic was the following item on eBay – scalped tickets for the Asifa!! 

Kippah-tip to Dan Seiradski for the link …

BeHadrei Haredim JACKED!

According to this rather vague report from JTA, and an equally vague yet back-story rich piece in HaAretz, the owner and three executives of BeHadrei Haredim were arrested yesterday (Sunday) on charges of extortion.  It seems that, in exchange for cash from leading Haredi figures, the accused promised to manipulate their website by deleting negative comments from the talkbacks or promoting complimentary puff pieces.   (I guess if the money was not forthcoming, suddenly, negative comments would swarm like locust or rain down like hail from the skies and one’s reputation would be slain quicker than the first-born of Egypt.)  A gag order prevents the release of any more information or pun-ishing Pessah similes.

More importantly, this alleged act of extortion, like the earlier hacker attack, demonstrates that, despite all the rhetoric, there is pervasive internet use in the Haredi community.  “They” have joined “us” in the 21st century and, as the gagged pieces semi-report, “they” have joined for good …and for ill.

the law of inverse tokhekhah…

I would like to propose a new law whereby one can predict the efficacy of tokhekhah (rebuke or admonishment) based on the volume of tokhekhah delivered.

Tokhekhah refers to the biblical commandment from Leviticus 19:17 – “Do not hate your brother in your heart. Rebuke your neighbor frankly so you will not share in his guilt.”   In other words, one is supposed to admonish a peer if she is doing something wrong.

But as Rabbi Tarfon said (in BT Arakhin 16b): “I wonder whether anyone in this generation could accept reproof, for if one told another, ‘Remove the pick from between your teeth,’ the other would answer, ‘Remove the beam from between your eyes!'”

Forgive me, Father, for I have sinned. I have secretly relished the dressing down of the Haredi community by North American Orthodox rabbis...

Rabbi Eleazar ben Azariah sadly concluded: “I wonder whether anyone in this generation knows how to reprove.”

And yet, in each generation, we strive to achieve this lofty goal because there are, sadly, many who are thoroughly reprovable.  But, in each generation, the reprovable, more often than not, prove unmovable.

Hence my law, simply stated:

The more admonishment piles up on an individual or a group, the easier it is to ignore.

So, as the tokhekhah-filled blogposts from North American rabbis pile up (there are so many, one can hardly keep track of all the links being passed around), one wonders if gleefully linking to them indulges in another sin, the one of schadenfreude.

I must admit that I, too, have indulged.

So what is to be done now that the Torah from Zion has well been brought, and the word of God has been dispatched to Jerusalem and its exurban environs?

I suppose all there is to do now is wait.

And call the police when necessary.

Now here’s a tokhekhah you can sink your teeth into…

Compliments of Rabbi Shaul Robinson at Lincoln Square Synagogue:

Let the greatest Rabbis in the Jewish world go to Bet Shemesh. Let each walk a little second grader to school. Let their rebbetzins hold a girl’s hand and say, “Come my dear, don’t be afraid, I will walk you to school.” Let them, our Gedolim, our Torah giants, look in the face of the Chasidim yelling “Nazi” at little girls and Jewish policemen and tell them to be silent.

Show your love for klal yisarel! (The people of Israel)

That’s condemnation – not a press release – but tochacha, rebuke.

But that’s not all we need.

For the rest of the Tenth of Tevet edition of yet-another-North-American-can-of-whoop-ass-opened-up-on-the-haredi-extremists-in-Beit-Shemesh, click here.

UPDATE: *two* haredi children and a hitler uniform

It seems that not one but two haredi children filed police reports, maintaining that they were subject to abuse by seculars.

Also, two haredi Beit Shemesh residents were arrested for allegedly producing and distributing the flyer below:

The story of the “Nazi pashkvevil” was broken by Yaki Adamker and Eli Schleshinger of BeHadrei Haredim, the haredi website targetted by hackers back in mid-December.  (Incidentally, the piece refers to the two men arrested as “extremists”!  Has the haredi mainstream turned against the “extremists” in Beit Shemesh?  Perhaps…)

Under the screaming headline “Freshly Imported from Berlin”, the face of Jerusalem police chief “Adolf” Niso Shaham was photoshopped onto Hitler’s body… and photoshopped rather poorly.  In fact, it would be an insult to photoshoppers of various skill-sets to say that what was done here was “photoshopping” at all.  It looks more like the two “extremists” used some scissors and Elmer’s glue to affix Shaham’s face over Hitler’s and photocopied the “masterpiece” on a Xerox 914.  At least, Shaham’s face is sort of facing the right way…

As someone who is (a) Jewish and (b) a casual user of Photoshop CS4 (I probably should upgrade to CS5, but I do not have a spare $4,570 laying around), I am profoundly offended by this poster. Feh!

When will this outrage cease?

…And when will these extremists acquire some computer skills?