Re: In keeping with today's theme

1

Ugh. This is so typical of the approach to Judaism taken by people like Dershowitz. Note that he phrased the whole thing in specifically Jewish terms rather than saying that universities shouldn't ask any professors to teach on the holidays of their religions.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:22 PM
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He's a lovely, lovely man in every way.


Posted by: I don't pay | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:24 PM
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In keeping with today's theme

What does this post have to do with anal sex? I'm not seeing it.


Posted by: Clownaesthesiologist | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:25 PM
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Yeah, there's a bit of "Jews are special" and a bit of "come on, you Jew, be a team player" in the response.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:26 PM
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3: Well, what do you think Dershowitz was doing on all those Saturdays?


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:26 PM
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Instead of "unfogged:mobile" we need "unfogged: clownae" where all the jokes and references are annotated.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:28 PM
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I refused to teach [Saturday classes], despite the fact that I was not generally going to the synagogue on Saturday.

And I'm sure his students who were at synagogue on Saturdays and didn't see him there totally respected his principled stand-taking. *eyeroll*


Posted by: Magpie | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:28 PM
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4: Exactly.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:28 PM
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It is an odd question, though. This may just be NY-centric, but I can't see scheduling much of anything important on Rosh Hashana unless there was some severe, severe scheduling pressure (like, no slack at all in the number of class meetings for the term.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:30 PM
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My university canceled all classes on Jewish holidays. Oh how I miss having off random Wednesdays.


Posted by: Becks | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:32 PM
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This may just be NY-centric, but I can't see scheduling much of anything important on Rosh Hashana unless there was some severe, severe scheduling pressure (like, no slack at all in the number of class meetings for the term.)

That is indeed NY-centric. Most places, all kinds of stuff gets scheduled on RH.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:32 PM
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Except at Becks's alma mater, apparently.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:35 PM
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Weirdly, LB, one of my institutions has class on Rosh Hashana. It's annoying.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:36 PM
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Huh. I had an internship in high school where I mentioned blithely that I wouldn't be in next Wednesday or whatever because it was Yom Kippur, and they said fine, and were then kind of tense later in the semester when I mentioned that I wasn't Jewish. I hadn't thought of that as inconsistent -- it was a school-related internship, and I had a twelve-year habit of thinking of the High Holy Days as school holidays.

In retrospect, I was wrong, but at that age I thought of Yom Kippur as a generic holiday, like getting Christmas off regardless of your religion.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:37 PM
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Of course, I teach at the Prussian Blue Academy, so go figure.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:37 PM
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It's annoying.

Wait, Frank Merriwell is Jewish?


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:41 PM
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Attendence is a crucial factor in admission to selective high schools in Chicago, and every year the parents of kids who've taken the High Holy Days have to call and make double sure an absence hasn't been recorded.

It's common to have to specially cancel classes; my wife has had to do it at just about every institution where she's taught, and this is in a very big city.


Posted by: I don't pay | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:44 PM
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I mean it's annoying in that I have to make a decision rather than leave it to the administration, and if students miss for religious observance I feel obligated to make sure it's easy for them to get notes, etc. Not a huge issue but still.

Honestly, I was hoping for more hating on Dershowitz...


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:44 PM
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14: Wow, that's amazing. Actually, it would be great if that could happen more widely; I'm all for public holidays.


Posted by: Po-Mo Polymath | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:48 PM
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Then again, my alma mater was 30% Jewish and had a Jewish Studies department so it's not quite typical.

Then again, I'm probably not allowed to contribute to this topic any more given that I recently (accidentally! I swear!) scheduled some mandatory late night weekend work for Hanukkah. Nobody spoke up! I asked six weeks in advance! (That's the problem with lunar instead of date-based holidays -- my Jewish employees didn't even realize the significance of the dates we'd picked until it was too late to back out of them.)


Posted by: Becks | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:48 PM
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14: that rules. You should have shot for Ramadan.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:48 PM
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God I hate Dershowitz!

And not just because he's Jewish either.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:51 PM
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21: Nah, it doesn't get you out of working, you just wouldn't be allowed to take lunch for a month. I guess it would give you an excuse to be moody and unproductive for a while though.


Posted by: Po-Mo Polymath | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:51 PM
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I'm sure this depends on where you're from. If you look at Appendix Table 1 here, you'll see that the Jewish population within the U.S. is not what you'd call evenly distributed.

I'm sure that merely noting this is enough for Dershowitz to call me a self-hating half-Jew.


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:52 PM
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25

I am skeptical of whether Dershowitz deserves to be referred to as The Dersh


Posted by: NotATurtle | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:53 PM
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25: The Doish is technically correct.


Posted by: NCProsecutor | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:54 PM
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25: I believe "The Dershbag" is the preferred term.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:55 PM
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Will nobody speak for Douchewitz?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:55 PM
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At the university I taught at (where there was a large although non-majority Jewish population), students were allowed three unexplained absences. They were supposed to budget those for their religious holidays or whatever, and if they got sick later, they could get a fraking doctor's note. That policy took a lot of pressure off teachers.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:56 PM
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Yeah, noticing Jewish holidays without yourself being Jewish is a totally east-cost thing. I'm always surprised when people do that.

And in my case, it *is* because I hate Jews.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:57 PM
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29 - Only three? I would have been so screwed.


Posted by: Becks | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:58 PM
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32

My elementary school had de facto school holidays on the high holy days, because otherwise the school would have been pretty much empty. It ruled.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:58 PM
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At my university we are not permitted to compel attendance, period. That takes off the pressure, all right.


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 12:58 PM
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34

27 and 28 complement each other nicely.

The table linked in 24 is funny. Reminds me of a chart I once saw illustrating the distribution of African-Americans in this country showing (IIRC) that my high school had a higher black population than did the entire state of Wyoming.


Posted by: Matt F | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:00 PM
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Honestly, I was hoping for more hating on Dershowitz...

Eh, fuck that asshole.


Posted by: DaveL | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:00 PM
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I haven't read the thread, but I feel compelled to say "Fuck that useless self-indulgent douchebag Dershowitz.."


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:04 PM
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I was hanging out at JM's university once with a friend who refused to sign in to a building because it was Saturday. The non-Jewish security guard obviously found this to be a run-of-the-mill thing, which impressed on me how Jewish that university is.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:04 PM
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After looking up the actual census data, it turns out that there are around 3,000 black people in Wyoming, rather more than the population in my high school. Still, not many.


Posted by: Matt F | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:05 PM
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39

Why isn't that university inside an eruv?


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:05 PM
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40

Both refuting articles in Psychology Today and hating on Dershowitz seem like feeding trolls to me.


Posted by: I don't pay | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:05 PM
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41

Slol's pdf reminds me that my computer has some quirk about pdf's: some of them open but display all-blank pages, though the preview thumbnails look normal. Because I am struck by a sudden desire to learn about the distribution of African-Americans, this makes me very sad.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:06 PM
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42

And on another note, when I was working at a Jewish book-and-gift-store, we were open on Yom Kippur. We had to work in the dark and without A/C, and we weren't supposed to eat or laugh. "Yom Kippur sucks," I said to my manager. "Yeah, that's the point," she replied.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:08 PM
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43

a friend who refused to sign in to a building because it was Saturday

Technically you could sign with an X.


Posted by: Matt F | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:09 PM
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44

What's an eruv, slol?


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:10 PM
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Eruv is easily remembered as "evening of." The night before, as Jewish days begin at Sundown. "And there was an evening and a morning..."


Posted by: I don't pay | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:12 PM
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46

For a long time, I thought Yom Kippur was the celebration of Israel kicking Egypt and Syria's butts.


Posted by: will | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:12 PM
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42 is hilarious. "Oh, don't mind me, I'll just sit here in the dark, going blind."


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:13 PM
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43: oddly, she later joined the Nation of Islam.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:15 PM
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What an eruv is in this context. Plus an interesting case. I haven't read, and don't endorse, the Becket Fund's view of the case. They were the first hit.


Posted by: washerdreyer | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:16 PM
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14 is indeed amazing. Of the ten or so Jewish people I knew in high school or earlier, I think two of them didn't show up at school on the High Holy Days. The idea that the entire school would have off sounds like ultra-PC insanity even now, although clearly it's appropriate sometimes.


Posted by: Cryptic Ned | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:17 PM
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Does anyone remember around the time when the conflict between Hasidim and blacks in Crown Heights was getting a lot of media attention, a story about attempts to build an eruv there and how these attempts were feeding into the conflict?


Posted by: Clownaesthesiologist | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:18 PM
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44: The link isn't 100% clear if you don't know already, I don't think. Sabbath restrictions on doing work include carrying anything outdoors, which makes getting around inconvenient. An eruv is a symbolic enclosure of an Orthodox Jewish neighborhood, making it 'indoors' so you can do things like carry your keys without pinning them to your clothes on the sabbath.

(Correct me if I'm wrong -- my knowledge of Judaism is outsidery.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:19 PM
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53

Ethnicity entitles you to holidays? What principle does Dershowitz think he's standing up for? Hypocrisy? Laziness? Racial profiling?


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:19 PM
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54

Huh. It would be pretty easy to construct an eruv, then, around that university, and I sort of wonder whether it hasn't already been done.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:20 PM
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The eruv politics in The Yiddish Policeman's Union are really fascinating. There's also some big fights going down now in Venice Beach between religious jews who want to enjoy the beach on the sabbath and environmentalists worried about birds.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:21 PM
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Although the seriously Orthodox Jewish students have a couple of yeshiva schools up the street they more often tend to be affiliated with.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:21 PM
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50: Really? Most of the pretty secular Jews I knew growing up went to temple on the High Holy Days -- people who'd never go to weekly services did. I figured that High Holy Day services were for anyone who wasn't really really really aggressively secularized. (Other holidays no one took off, but Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur were school holidays because a big chunk of the students and teachers wouldn't have come in.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:22 PM
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58

42: The store was open, but the lights were off?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:23 PM
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59

My experience broadly matches LBs.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:24 PM
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58.---Yeah. I think the cash register stayed open, too. We didn't get many (any?) customers that day, so I don't know why we bothered.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:25 PM
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Really? Most of the pretty secular Jews I knew growing up went to temple on the High Holy Days -- people who'd never go to weekly services did. I figured that High Holy Day services were for anyone who wasn't really really really aggressively secularized. (Other holidays no one took off, but Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur were school holidays because a big chunk of the students and teachers wouldn't have come in.

I guess I never noticed. Nobody ever said "Jeff and Laura aren't here today because it's Yom Kippur". They were just absent.


Posted by: Cryptic Ned | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:27 PM
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My neighborhood has several of these. The most striking is one that includes the bridge over the Edens Expressway at Touhy, in Skokie. There's a gap in existing horizontal wires right at the cloverleaf, which is remedied by a wire deliberately strung between two poles, and buried at the ends, that serves no other purpose.


Posted by: I don't pay | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:28 PM
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55: Hm. The anti-eruv people quoted in the article sound like anti-semitic blockheads, but I can't help but roll my eyes at the idea that bypassing a religious requirement that you believe sincerely enough to go to all the trouble of stringing fishing line along the length of a damn beach to get out of, by stringing fishing line along the length of a damn beach, has got to come under some kind of "come on, already" heading.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:30 PM
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lb, this makes it even funnier that you married a guy who worked in the NYC financial district and suggested to his boss that they should "jew down" some prices, without realizing that this was maybe offensive.

and b, i think the preferred phrasing is "i hate *the* jews" rather than "i hate jews". that way you get across the point that you're not just hating a few people who happen to be, but instead you're hating qua.


Posted by: kid bitzer | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:33 PM
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He grew up in the woods, enough that he had a trap line and made money selling pelts as a teenager. (Amazingly, this was in New Jersey, a state with hidden depths.) He's feeling much better now.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:34 PM
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Yes, there's something odd about "this public beach is, for religious purposes, indoors & private." With this fishing line I do sanctify.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:34 PM
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64.2: Thanks, I'll keep that in mind in the future.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:37 PM
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68

so they called it "selling pelts", did they?

was this down in the pine barrens, or up towards the de water gap? (i'm thinking it wasn't rahway).


Posted by: kid bitzer | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:37 PM
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B, let's fight: you think the anti- eruv people sound like blockheads? I would be pissed if someone did that to my beach.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:37 PM
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63: well, a lot of the rules for behavior on the sabbath do seem kind of silly to me, too, but then so do most religious proscriptions.

65: have you ever read "The Pine Barrens" by John McPhee? Lots of woods in Jersey.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:40 PM
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To be fair, the reason they want the eruv isn't so they can go hang out on the beach, it's so they can more easily get to the synagogue, which is located right next to the beach. However, the whole concept (and I say this from an admittedly ignorant perspective) seems vaguely ridiculous. It's literally a gigantic, physical loophole.


Posted by: Matt F | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:41 PM
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69: Well, I don't see why it would be a big deal, beach-wise. Surely the point of fishing wire is that it's invisible, and okay, fine, there will be poles, which kinda sucks, but dude, it's not like Venice Beach is exactly pristine.

I can get on board with at least being concerned about the environmental implications, definitely. Am not a fan of plastic fucking fishing wire in the oceans. But surely you can't deny that this isn't about "allowing public property to be used for religious purposes"--if anything, it's the opposite--and the dumbass who's all, what if we attach it to a cross or a crescent, huh? is obviously just an anti-semitic asshole.

Like me! But at least I'm more subtle about it.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:41 PM
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I have to admit I'd get a bit cranky if a group wanted to string fishing wire all up through a public beach in order to make it conform to a religious definition of "private."


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:41 PM
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53: It seems stupid to me too, but this is a pretty common argument that Jews make to other Jews.

I write this as a Bad Jew.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:41 PM
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75

Sabbath restrictions on doing work include not having your computers take orders at B&H during the Sabbath and during holidays. I don't remember when they changed the policy but one used to be able to order stuff even tho' no one did anything at all with the order until Monday.

The elevator banks at Cedars-Sinai in L.A. always have one "local" stopping at every floor up and down on the Sabbath too.

And I think there's some institute in Israel dedicated to tech solutions that satisfy the most restrictive rules.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:42 PM
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63, 66, 71: You know, a lot of Jewish law issues are all about the technical compliance, even if by means that seem a little absurd. I don't think this comes off as cheating or a loophole at all from the inside -- technical compliance with the law really is full compliance.

I'm going to stop speaking for teh Jews now, given that I'm not one.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:43 PM
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71.1: There's religious proscriptions, like "don't work" or "cover your head," which, okay, and then there's fetishization. I mean, okay, bow to the altar if you want to, but *fishing line*? So you can walk outside? On the beach? Obey your religious dictates or don't, I don't care, but if God wanted Orthodox Jews to walk outside on the beach on Saturday, he wouldn't have told them to stay inside.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:44 PM
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68: NE corner of the state -- just over the state line from Port Jervis NY.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:45 PM
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gigantic, physical loophole.

yeah, question is, are you expressing deep contempt for yhwh because he's such a rube that he can be conned by these hokey literalistic exceptions, or are you expressing deep respect by going to greater and greater lengths to jump through obviously arbitrary hoops?

i mean, it always looks to me like "how dumb do you think god is?"

but it might be more like "our is not to reason why; we demonstrate our piety by punctilious attention to minutiae."

but i'm out of the gig altogether, myself.


Posted by: kid bitzer | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:46 PM
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It's literally a gigantic, physical loophole.

The eruv, like the sabbath elevator (stops at every floor so you don't have to do "work" by pushing the button) is indeed exactly that. Look, a covenant is awfully like a contract, and a contract inspires the search for loopholes.

My hero Feynman wrote about this kind of thing in "Is Electricity Fire?"


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:48 PM
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so it is the delaware. port jervis, remember it well. used to pull our canoes out of the water around there, getting too built up. but that was forty years ago.


Posted by: kid bitzer | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:48 PM
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I can't quite understand the impatience of 53 or 74, though. I'd be pissed if I didn't get Xmas off, and it's not because I want to go to Mass.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:49 PM
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Look, a covenant is awfully like a contract, and a contract inspires the search for loopholes.

Not just that, but look, if God wanted to make it airtight, he could do it, right? So clearly the eruv, shabbas goy, "selling" your farm to a gentile every seventh year, etc, are totally legit.


Posted by: ben w-lfs-n | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 1:57 PM
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84

The search for loopholes.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 2:00 PM
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83: Do Jews not believe in historicism? B/c I'm thinking eruv as, like, a line enclosing the dusty path to the synagogue, and finding the idea of building high-tech elevators that stop at every floor, or stringing fishing wire around a beach, to stretch credulity just a wee bit in terms of biblically-ordained intentionality.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 2:07 PM
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It certainly can get involved and technical:

From here developed in conjunction with the Zomet Institute

"How does the Shabbat work?
When the Amigo is put into the Shabbat mode, it connects to a separate circuit board--the Shabbat module. The Shabbat module's timing circuit takes about 15-20 seconds to start the Amigo moving slowly on its own. There is no throttle lever activation required by the driver. This is considered an "indirect action".

Once the Amigo is moving in Shabbat mode, the driver may pull the lever to go forward faster because the motor relay circuit has already been activated by the Shabbat module. This is not considered a "direct action." To go in reverse, the driver must push a directional button. This causes the Shabbat to go through its timing cycle, again, before it automatically changes the motor relay for reverse driving."


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 2:09 PM
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The paradox of Orthodox Judaism is that first they interpret the law in as broad and restrictive a way as possible -- this is referred to as "building a fence around the torah" -- by doing this you are supposed to be insuring that you don't even come close to actually breaking the law. But then once they have this very broad restrictive rule, they go to great lengths to come up with loopholes.


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 2:12 PM
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86: Uh huh. You'd think that rather than international conspirators, the Jews would be international laughingstocks.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 2:13 PM
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88: We're really, really, really clever. As you and the Mullahs will discover.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 2:29 PM
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90

At least we haven't mistaken grapes for virgins.


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 2:33 PM
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87: The way it was explained to me was, the idea is to make ordinary life on the Sabbath difficult and different enough so one pays serious attention to it being the Sabbath.

And yet, it's also sometimes necessary to live in the world then too, so there are exemptions and work-arounds, like the "local" elevator and "indirectly" controlled Amigo and such.

I'd think the way around the eruv problem would involve some heavy rabbinical thinking about the pervasiveness of cell-phone signals or weather radar pulses from airports.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 2:44 PM
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92

My mother broke the Sabbath for baseball.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 2:47 PM
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93

90: There's a grape virgin now? I'm so behind on my crazy Catholicism.

Also, if you Jews are so clever, why haven't you just realized that you can construct a world-wide eruv by simply rigging up some fishing line in a little square and pointing out that the world is round, so it encloses everything *except* the little delineated square?


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 2:51 PM
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94

A public/private Moebius strip that would allow the Jews to take over the world!!!!!111!1!!!!!


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:00 PM
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95

so it encloses everything *except* the little delineated square

God hates a wiseguy.


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:02 PM
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96

But he's cool with fishing-line enclosed beaches. Obviously God is an idiot, and anyone who bothers with his stupid rules needs an intervention.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:05 PM
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93: Who said we were clever? We wandered around the desert for 40 years and wound up in the one place in the Middle East without any oil...


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:05 PM
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98

No, no, no. The theological subtlety involved in distinguishing between 'technical compliance with the law' and 'being a wiseguy' promotes closeness to God.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:06 PM
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97, see 98.


Posted by: bitchphd | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:06 PM
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91: Yeah, I've been to a few classes at the synagogue too. But I have one question for you, Mr. Rabbi -- if God is so powerful why couldn't He inseminate a woman?


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:09 PM
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But then once they have this very broad restrictive rule, they go to great lengths to come up with loopholes.

I do admire the woman who covers her hair completely with a wig that looks exactly like her real hair.


Posted by: Cryptic Ned | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:18 PM
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91: God is omniscient and all-powerful. To expect anyone to interpret is therefore folly. Just stay away from goat cooked in the milk of its mother and you'll be okay. Or at least your lipid numbers will be somewhat better.


Posted by: Biohazard | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:22 PM
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But what about cotton/linen blends?


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:24 PM
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104

Also, there's a difference between Judaism and Christianity around how technical compliance is perceived. In Christianity, what counts is "in your heart, do you believe?" and going through the motions without believing is frowned upon. In Judaism, going through the motions without believing is considered a great start, and hey, maybe it will lead to actual believing, but maybe not. (The easy example is tithing. Just tithe, who cares if you believe God wants you to or not? Going through the motion is what counts.)


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:26 PM
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105

You know, there was an interesting Gil Thorp story line involving a star football player who kept the Sabbath. Solution: play aggressive before the sun goes down.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:27 PM
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104: I was just reading some notes on the Quran that say, more or less, that Jews got the doctrine right but lost the spirit, while Christians had the right spirit but got the doctrine wrong.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:28 PM
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104: Aren't the Jesuits pretty famous for technical readings?

there was an interesting Gil Thorp story line

Somehow, I doubt it.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:29 PM
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In Christianity, what counts is "in your heart, do you believe?"

We're not going to have to go back to that time Labs posted an excerpt from Augustine of Hippo, are we?


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:31 PM
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109

Which Google can't find for me....


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:35 PM
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109: Summarize. As I now know that you're witty and urbane, I know I can trust your reading.


Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:40 PM
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Labs posted an excerpt from (I believe) Augustine of Hippo, on the general topic of predestination. The point is, believing in your heart doesn't matter if you're that kind of Christian, i.e., a Protestant.


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:43 PM
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Yes, I know Augustine wasn't a Protestant. But the Protestants inherited much of his soteriology, as I have my religious history.


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:45 PM
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113

All this talk of God makes me think some folks aren't really grasping the concept here.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:49 PM
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114

Which concept? That Alan Dershowitz isn't a very nice person?


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:50 PM
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114: No, that's a given. I just mean that thinking of Jewish law in terms of "what God wants and why" isn't really the best approach. And I was mostly responding to earlier comments along the lines of 96.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:55 PM
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"The problem with this approach is that in public health, as in a democracy, there is nothing worse than ignoring science, or marginalizing the voice of science for reasons driven by changing political winds."

Nothing worse in a democracy? Ignoring science in a democracy is worse than mass executions of your political opponents in a democracy Or does science somehow tell you not to have mass executions of your political opponents?


Posted by: washerdreyer | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:57 PM
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No, for that you need Jesus.


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 3:59 PM
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116: Science tells you that it's wasteful to simply execute people in a democracy when you could harvest their bioelectric fields to power your vast machine society.

Duh.


Posted by: Epoch | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 4:04 PM
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109: Looking for this?


Posted by: eb | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 4:44 PM
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Why yes, well done. Dern, I do like me some theologizing.


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 5:19 PM
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14: you are such a New Yorker! I love it.

I remember reacting with shock & horror when my best friend in elementary school moved to rural Pa. & I found out they had "Buck Day" and "Doe Day" off instead of Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanna.

Sandy Koufax supposedly stayed in his hotel room rather than going to services on the Yom Kippur when he refused to pitch Game 1 of the World Series. But I don't think that a Jewish law prof. cancelling class is going to have quite the same symbolic value, somehow.


Posted by: Katherine | Link to this comment | 07-10-07 5:35 PM
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"but it might be more like "our is not to reason why; we demonstrate our piety by punctilious attention to minutiae.""

That's how I understand it, but it's also one of the reasons I wouldn't be a worshipper even I believed in God. Yahweh/Allah is basically a dick.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 07-11-07 6:28 AM
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"When I started teaching at Hahvahhhhd I demanded Saturdays off for my religious obligations. The fact that I never actually went to synagogue endeared me to my colleagues, who were happy to pick up the slack."


Posted by: Cala | Link to this comment | 07-11-07 7:42 AM
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I strongly believe that principle is more important than convenience. You will be respected for standing up for a principle, without regard to how you spend the day.

So does that mean he should insert needles under his students' nails, as long as he doesn't do it on the sabbath?


Posted by: Alex | Link to this comment | 07-11-07 9:39 AM
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125

Only if he gets a warrant first.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 07-11-07 9:40 AM
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