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    Speak Your Vues



    Dear Vues Master:

    Hamas shooting rockets at Jerusalem is not because: (1) Prime Minister Netanyahu’s policies. (2) President Biden reinstated aid to Palestinian NGO’s (3) President Biden restarted talks with the Palestinians It is because Hamas is a terrorist organization that tries to annihilative Jews and end their state. Yet, it’s impossible to ignore the fact that under Prime Minister Netanyahu’s reign Hamas has continued to control Gaza and been able to fire over 20,000 rockets at Israel. It’s also impossible to ignore that during President Trump’s time in office, Hamas never tried stunts like this and never brazenly took credit if rockets were fired. My theory is Hamas got used to American Presidents calling on Israel to show restraint and knew they could count on America’s call for restraint as cover. Now that President Biden has called for restraint, Hamas feels emboldened to attack. Supporting Israel at this time means not calling for it to be restrained, but rather to announce clearly Israel has a right to defend itself.


    Vues Master’s Note: We will now recognize what a great President Donald Trump was. It is a shame that all the dead people who voted for Biden won’t see it!



    Dear Vues Master:

    We need to learn lessons from the terrible tragedy that happened last week. We recently read in the Torah how Nadav and Avihu, sons of Aharon Hakohen, lost their lives after bringing a strange fire which G-d did not command. The fires of Meron and bonfires of Lag Baomer are a new thing, not brought in Torah, Talmud, or Shulchan Aruch. Do not bring before Hashem a strange fire, which He did not command! The Torah also warns us not to ascend the mountain, lest people fall and die (Shemos 19:21). Not everyone can ascend the mountain. Going to Meron and lighting bonfires was and is opposed by many great gedolim and rabbonim over the years. It is not just a question of bittul Torah, as you implied in your last issue. There are numerous other questionable aspects of the pilgrimage there, as the great Chasam Sofer wrote around two hundred years ago already. It was not just Rav Elyashiv that never went there in his long life of over a century. Chacham Ovadia Yosef never went there on Lag Ba’Omer. Gerrer Rebbes (largest Hasidic group in Israel) don’t go there on Lag Ba’Omer. Belzer Rebbe doesn’t go there on Lag Ba’Omer. Vizhnitzer Rebbe doesn’t go there on Lag Ba’omer. Many other examples can be shared. Our great leaders are not fools. If they stay away, you should think about why they are not going. Follow the gedolim, not hype and sensationalistic advertising.


    Vues Master’s Note: True. But there are other Gedolim that go there. I guess everyone should follow his or her sect.


    Dear Vues Master:

    One of my concerns in writing a strong critique of the catastrophe in Meron was lending to the ever growing disrespect shown to Torah scholars and gedolim. We live in a time where everyone has a right to their own opinion and there is a general reluctance to follow another person’s opinion just because of their position and scholarship. The drive to independence is especially true of religious authority which has become a free for all of “I do what feels good” not what someone tells me to do. I was – and still am concerned – that my words would lend to this movement of disdain for Torah scholars. Let me set the record straight. Torah observance, study and knowledge is not an area that everyone’s opinion is equally authoritative. A Torah scholar is an expert and knows Torah better than a layman or laywoman. Their opinions carry more weight than my opinion and if you’re reading this, probably your opinion. This doesn’t mean they are “holy men” (That isn’t a Jewish concept) or a prophet with special powers. They aren’t a king that their word is final and must be adhered to no matter what other factors are at play. It doesn’t mean they’re above criticism. Respecting scholars means not discounting their words because you disagree with them, not speaking disrespectfully about them and not assuming the worst of them. Let’s be careful that our desire to better our community doesn’t come at the expense of treating scholars with disrespect.


    Vues Master’s Note: We always come up with reasons after the tragedy. I believe that a true gadol guides us in a way that the tragedy never befalls on us. If the tragedy never happens then you never know what was averted. Hence we don’t know who our true gedolim are. Listen and take heed from your Gedolim because you never know what tragedy you can avert!



    Dear Vues Master:

    Two old friends having lunch in a kosher deli. One says: -I have to tell you something I’ve never told anyone… I’m not Jewish. – Whadayah mean you’re not jewish; I’ve known you twenty years, you’re Jewish. – No, I’m not; I’ve been pretending I’m Jewish all along. – Look, you’re one of the most religious Jews I’ve ever known. You read the Torah in shul without mistakes. You lead the prayers like a pro Kantor. You quote ‘halacha like a Rabbi, You’re the best ‘chevrutah partner I’ve ever studied with, and you’re not Jewish? So, maybe you mean you’re a convert? – No, you know the conversion process is very complicated. I loved the Jewish religion so much, I just wanted to live it and I have, but I’m still a goy. -Wait a minute, you’re also shomer shabbat. You know a goy’s not supposed to keep Shabbat perfectly. -Yes I know, that’s why I always break one rule every Shabbat… I carry my keys in my pocket. – But we have an eruv around the whole town, we’re allowed to carry on shabbos. -Yes I know, but I don’t hold by eruv.

    JV Vues Master’s Note: That is quite funny. But sad!



    Dear Vues Master:

    Why did Yaakov masaken arvit? He had 12 sons who needed to be put to bed each night. This way he could say “Sorry, I have to rush to shul to daven בירעמ.”


    Vues Master’s Note: Just wait when he had to take them all to Shul on Shabbos and try to keep them quiet without fighting!



    Dear Vues Master:

    Jewish Musician Ari Goldwag posted online last week…….Should music be easy to stream, though artists make almost nothing, or should artists be paid for their work by listeners? What do you think?


    Vues Master’s Note: Depends how good the artist is.



    Dear Vues Master:

    I heard he is running for City Council. Do you think he stands a chance? Why split the Jewish vote we need to put a candidate that everyone can get behind him or her.


    Vues Master’s Note: Sometimes if there is no one else stepping up we need to unite behind our candidate!



    Dear Vues Master: Just to show how unreliable polls can be. A new Gallup poll found that 50% Americans think their taxes are too high even though 55% described them as fair. Pray tell, how 55 plus 50 equals 100?


    Vues Master’s Note: It really depends if both polls are done on the same day. As we know people change thir minds more often than their underwear!



    Dear Vues Master:

    A recent news story is very troubling. New Jersey university offers up to $1,000 off tuition and housing fees for vaccinated students. Full-time students will receive $500 off their tuition bill and those who reside on campus will get another $500 deducted from their housing bill. How long will it be before the government offers that money and mosdos start forcing people to inject themselves with these poisonous and dangerous and untested “vaccines”.


    Vues Master’s Note: Then we will need a vaccine for the long term side effect of this vaccine. It is amazing how we are just OK with no long term testing.



    Dear Vues Master:

    A Jew in Israel entered an army base, even though a sign on the gate said הרוסא םירזל הסינכה. When the guard spotted him, he asked “What are you doing here? Didn’t you see the sign on the gate?” “Yes, I saw it,” he replied. “But I’m not a רז; I’m a ןהכ.”


    Vues Master’s Note: TA nice lamdan but I am sure the Officer did not accept his ridiculous response!



    Dear Vues Master:

    I heard this story that was said by Rabbi Yechiel Spero. After Klal Yisroel has just endured such a klap on Lag Baomer, as we approach the yom tov of Shavuos, and get ready for Kabbolas Hatorah, I thought it very applicable the following story…. It was Leil Rosh Hashana circa צ”רת . An aura of gloom, despair, and sadness, enveloped the mispallelim of the Chevron Yeshiva. Less than a month and a half earlier, they had suffered and endured a most horrific attack from the Arabs, in what has become known as the Chevron Massacre. Now, roughly forty days later, with many no longer alive, and the rest for the most part, bruised and afflicted survivors, grieving in body and soul, they were in no shape to usher in the beginning of the New Year in the proper state of mind. As the time for maariv approached, the venerable Mashgiach, Rav Leib Chasman zt”l walked over to one of the bochurim in the yeshiva, Betzalel Shikovitsky , and motioned to him to go up the the amud. Betzalel protested, he was only a bachur, why should he be chosen. The Mashgiach held his ground, and firmly, without elaboration, let him know, that he is to be the chazzan. Having no choice, Betzalel headed to the amud, donned the talis, and started borchu with the nigun for Yomim Noraim. He continued to the first bracha of maariv aravim, and then the tzibbur started saying ahavas oilam. They finished, and waited for the chazzan to end off the bracha. They waited… and then they started hearing muffled sobbing coming from the direction of the amud. Suddenly from amongst the sobs, they heard the chazzan being menagen the words םימלועל…. ונממ…. ריסת …לא… ךתבהאו. And then again he sang them…. slowly, being menagen the words, with intensified crying.. …..םימלועל …..ונממ…. ריסת….. לא ..ךתבהאו and then again. The dam burst open, and with eyes streaming tears, the bnei hayashiva emotionally joined in to the tune….םימלועל…. ונממ….. ריסת…. לא ….ךתבהאו. And again with hearts on fire, they repeated those precious words… over and over again..םימלועל…. ונממ….. ריסת…. לא ….ךתבהאו we love you Borei Olam, we know that everything You do is for the best, we are matzdik on ourselves the din. And we daven and hope, over and over again…..Your love for us should be for all eternity, never leaving us…..again and again….םימלועל…. ונממ….. ריסת…. לא ….ךתבהאו They sang those words over and over again, sprouting hope and desire, readying themselves to forge on, arming and assuring their hearts with the knowledge….. .םימלועל ונממ ריסת לא ….ךתבהאו After davening, Rav Leib approached Betzalel, telling him softly, “טניימעג ךיא באה סאד טא”. It is said by those that were there, the Chevron Yeshiva that we have today….was rebuilt… on that maariv of leil Rosh Hashana.


    Vues Master’s Note: What an inspirational letter. Please keep them coming!



    Dear Vues Master:

    In response to my letter titled “Languages” (JV, April 28 – May 4), your Note simply stated “Sounds like Greek to me”, which is a common way of stating something is difficult to comprehend. Perhaps, but Greek, like English, Hebrew, Arabic, and Russian, is alphabetical in nature, and so unlike Chinese, has uniquely ordered sound-based letters within it. Relatedly, many people who do not know a word of Greek still are quite familiar with the Greek alphabet. Why? Because such is a large part of the language of Mathematics and Statistics. The first two lowercase letters of the Greek alphabet, alpha and beta (whence comes the English word alphabet), in Statistics represent the probabilities of a Type I and Type II error, which, in simple terms, could be described as a “false alarm” and a “miss” respectively. The third letter, gamma, as an uppercase letter, represents the “Gamma Function” and as lowercase an unusual constant known as “Euler’s Constant”. The fourth letter, delta, as an uppercase letter is familiar to both beginning and advanced students to mean “difference” while its lowercase form is familiar to the more-advanced calculus student to mean “partial derivative”. The lowercase 16th letter of the Greek alphabet, pi, is of course used to represent the ratio of the circumference of a circle to the length of its diameter while uppercase pi is used to represent a product. The lowercase eighth letter, theta, is usually used to represent the degree measure of an angle.[BTW, Pi Mu Epsilon is the national mathematics honor society, with a chapter at Yeshiva University.] In statistical science, the lowercase 12th, 18th, and 17th letters, mu, sigma, and rho, respectively, represent the mean, standard deviation, and correlation parameters of a population (which are estimated by the corresponding statistics), and the 22nd letter, chi, is the letter used with a statistical distribution called the chi-square distribution, beloved by beginning Stat students everywhere. [BTW, Mu Sigma Rho is the national statistics honor society.] Also, to make this like alpha-to-omega coverage of the not-so-uncommon Greek alphabet, let’s add its last letter, omega, which is used in Physics for the unit of electric resistance, the olm. So, Vues Master, perhaps Greek sounds are not so uncommon after all, especially since, as far as I know, if a math-or-stat-related book/paper is written in English or Hebrew or Arabic or Russian or Spanish or in just about any other language, those aforementioned Greek letters stay Greek letters! And for one more non-English alphabetical letter also retaining its appearance and name everywhere in mathematics, there is aleph, which, besides being the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet, represents the special numbers aleph-null and aleph-one, which leads to something called the continuum hypothesis, which has never been proved or disproved, and so maybe someone reading this will be willing to give it a try…;^)


    Vues Master’s Note: I will stick to my Greek salad! Your letter had me spinning around the circumference of a circle!



    Dear Vues Master:

    A father brought his son before ףירח לזייא יבר and asked that he test him so he can give him הכימס. After speaking with the son for a short while, the בר saw how unlearned he was and told the father “Your son is like a ךאלמ. He doesn’t need הכימס from me.” When the father and son left, those who had been present asked the בר in amazement, “How could you compare the son to a ךאלמ? He’s a complete ץראה םע.” The בר explained: “Yes, he is. But as ונימכח said in ןישודיק, the הרות wasn’t given to תרשה יכאלמ.”


    Vues Master’s Note: Should have served the guy some Angel food pie!



    Dear Vues Master:

    The Poskim say, If you didn’t daven Shachris, you may not go to sleep in the morning unless it is more than a half an hour before Alos Hashachar. Eliyashsuv zt”l said Those who go to sleep before Alos Hashachar not having davened, should make sure to do so, at least a half an hour before Alos Hashachar, otherwise it would have been better had he not stayed up for the night altogether. Staying up the night of Shavuos is a only a minhag Not going to sleep before Alos is a Halacha.


    Vues Master’s Note: I am yawning at that time and I can’t even keep track of time! Hope everyone has a nice Shavuos!



    Dear Vues Master:

    Shortly after the war a man saw a sign that Reb Moishe was speaking in a shul on the Lower East Side Of New York. The purpose of the speech was to give chizuk to Holocaust survivors who recently immigrated to New York. Reb Moishe asked: Why is the Parsha of Eiruchin right after the Toichocho? What does Eiruchin have to do with the Toichocho. Reb Moishe Zatzal Answered: “Oib Mir Vill Shatzen Op A Yid Darf Min zen vu er halt noch er geit durch a toichecho” If you want to see the greatness of yid- see how he is after he went through a Toichocho.


    Vues Master’s Note: Go get a Bracha from a survivor. One can not estimate the value of a Bracha of a survivor!!



    Dear Vues Master:

    After the story with the missonary who infiltrated two communities in Jerusalem, we need to ask look inward and ask ourselves should we be a little suspect of outsiders coming into our community?


    Vues Master’s Note: As long as we can pass the test and not have anyone influenced than why not we may even be successful the other way of getting missionaries to become frum!! I am just kidding it is not our style we don’t look for geirim but it is a compliment to our ≠community that we are able to pass the test!