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    Speak Your Vues


    Please note that the author of Speak Your Vues is in no way affiliated with
    the publisher of this paper. The author of this column is an independent
    third party contributor. The views and opinions expressed by this author
    may not reflect the views and opinions of the publishers. If one has any
    issues with any of the views, please write a letter to the Vues Master.


    Dear Vues Master:
    At Penn State University, there were four
    sophomores taking chemistry and all of them
    had an ‘A’ so far. These four friends were so
    confident that the weekend before finals, they
    decided to visit some friends and have a big
    party. They had a great time but, after all the
    hearty partying; they slept all day Sunday and
    didn’t make it back to Penn State until early
    Monday morning. Rather than taking the final
    then, they decided that after the final they
    would explain to their professor why they
    missed it. They said that they visited friends
    but on the way back they had a flat tire. As
    a result, they missed the final. The professor
    agreed they could make up the final the next
    day. The guys were excited and relieved. They
    studied that night for the
    exam. The next day the Professor placed them
    in separate rooms and gave them a test booklet. They quickly answered the first problem
    worth 5 points. Cool, they thought! Each one
    in separate rooms thought this was going to be
    easy … then they turned the page. On the second page was written… For 95 points: Which
    Vues Master’s Note: I guess the wheels were
    turned on them!
    Dear Vues Master:
    I just went this weekend to a yeshiva dinner
    which had over seven hundred people attending. There were maybe 10 people in total
    wearing masks. Why are people acting this
    way? Everywhere you go people are getting
    covid or the flu. Yeshivas & businesses are
    closing down because they don’t have enough
    staff. I don’t believe the yeshivas or the businesses should close, but not to wear masks?
    What’s pshat?
    Vues Master’s Note:Most scientists say that
    masks don’t help. They just help minimize the
    chances of getting Covid. It’s easier these days
    to get covid than it is to get the flu. People are
    tired of fear mongers and people are just not
    ready to be hoodwinked anymore. Look, the
    only way they got so many people vaccinated
    was via bribes or threatening to lose their
    jobs. That does not sound like something we
    believe in! It’s more like communism!
    Dear Vues Master:
    I don’t know if Israel should be open or
    closed. I don’t know if Israel should make
    America red and prohibit travel to America.
    I don’t know if Israel’s leaders have the right
    to deny entrance for Jews into their homeland,
    or if Israel’s leaders have a responsibility to
    Israel’s citizens to keep them safe – even from
    fellow Jews. If asked what Israel should do, I
    don’t know what I’d advise and I’m grateful I
    don’t have this burden on my shoulders. I do
    know one thing. I know my pain and struggle
    hearing my American friends who love Israel
    and can’t visit their homeland. I hear the hurt
    in their voice as they cancel tickets. I know so
    many parents and grandparents who want to
    see family, hug their babies – and can’t. I miss
    my friends and family who I can’t see, and
    now that Israel might forbid us from going to
    America, I can’t go and visit. The saying goes,
    absence makes the heart grow fonder, but it
    also makes the heart hurt. American Jews and
    lovers of Israel, I know it seems we don’t care
    about you, but please understand, even as our
    borders close, we love you, we miss you, and
    we hope we are able to see you very soon.
    Vues Master’s Note:By the time I finished
    your letter the policy of traveling in Israel has
    changed multiple times. It would seem that we
    are not finished with Variants etc. The politicians will milk this for as long as they can!
    Dear Vues Master:
    R’ Hirsch Gottlieb of Sighet said Haman was
    a fool for wanting to give כסף ככר אלפים עשרת
    to אחשורוש to destroy the Jews. He should
    have given the money to the Jews to divide
    amongst themselves and then they would
    have killed each other.
    Vues Master’s Note:You see how Hashem
    saves us!
    Dear Vues Master:
    *הלכה ולא למעשה
    The reason we don’t apply the Halachos of
    ברכי יוסף a on based is today מאבד עצמו לדעת

    and we assume it wasn’t done with
    דעת .We assume that those who commit suicide were mentally ill at the
    time they acted and can’t be blamed.
    However, we can’t ignore a whole Siman (chapter) in Shulchan Aruch regarding the Halachos of dealing with
    a person who takes his life. It must be
    that there is a time when we don’t assume the person to be mentally ill and
    the Halachos are applicable.
    Perhaps, when a Gadol & renowned
    Posek**says on an individual,
    “What made things very clear was the
    suicide note. This was not a depressed
    person writing a note. This was narcissism at its best, this was manipulative,
    this was a person preparing to commit
    a violent crime, murder, and the victims…all of us, [he intended that] we
    should all feel guilty for his death. I
    think to any level-headed human being who has any sensitivity to human
    beings and a bit of nuance–it’s obvious.”
    Then it would be in order to apply the
    Halachos of לדעת עצמו מאבד even if
    the only עבירה he was ever עובר was
    1) The אדם חכמת writes there is no
    greater עבירה than committing suicide.
    It is considered like killing a whole
    2) The סופר חתם writes he is עובר on
    דמים שפיכת one of the עבירות‘ ג In addition for every Yid even Reshaim
    מכפרת מיתה except for him.
    3) The השלחן ערוך writes If we know
    for sure that he wasn’t mentally
    ill even ע“ר would admit that we may
    curse and shame him. (הרע לשון(
    * I am a Pashute Bal Haboos not a
    Rav (Can’t Pasken) **Harav Hagaon
    R. Yitzchok Berkowitz Shlita
    Vues Master’s Note: Sounds like a
    killer issue.
    Dear Vues Master:
    Benny’s dog died and he went to see
    his rabbi. “Rabbi, I wonder whether
    you could find the time to say a special
    blessing at my dog’s grave?” The rabbi replied: “I’m afraid it isn’t possible,
    Benny. The rules don’t really make
    any allowance for animals.” Benny
    said, “But I’m really upset, rabbi.”
    “Well, perhaps you should go to see
    the Reform rabbi down the road,”
    said the rabbi. As Benny walked away
    dejectedly, he turned to the rabbi and
    said, “What a shame. I was willing
    to donate $1,000 for such a service.”
    At which point the rabbi shouted,
    “Come back, come back.” Benny
    turned around and said, “I thought
    you couldn’t help me.” “Ah,” said the
    rabbi, “but you didn’t tell me your dog
    was Orthodox.”
    Vues Master’s Note: Maybe he can
    make the dog a Kohen too?
    Dear Vues Master:
    The החושן קצות בעל was once approached by a critic who had all sorts
    of arguments and questions concerning his ספר .The critic asked if he could
    respond to his questions. “אשיב אני
    לכבודו ואכתוב “,he said. But when several months passed without any response, the critic complained that he
    didn’t receive the promised response.
    :said בעל קצות החושן The
    “You misunderstood me. All I meant
    is that when you write a ספר like mine,
    I’ll return the favor and will write a
    קונטרס cataloguing all your errors.”
    Vues Master’s Note: It is amazing
    how our Rabbis were so sharp!?
    Dear Vues Master:
    Cell phones on Hoshana Raba
    The מר“א quotes from the *לבוש
    “ואין רגילין לעשות מלאכה של חול עד אחר
    יציאה מבה“כ”
    (We are not used to doing a weekday
    מלאכה on רבה הושענה ,until after we
    leave Shul.)
    The אברהם מגן adds, “also not to carry
    money (מוקצה (in the pocket.
    There are Shuls who collect “Esrog
    Money** on רבה הושענה but it is not
    right to do so”.
    The מגדים פרי argues on the א“מג and
    writes that it was intentionally done
    so to collect the money on רבה הושענה
    when there is a large crowd in Shul.
    The חי איש בן writes, that money for
    צדקה overrides the Minhag of not carrying money on רבה הושענה.
    It would seem that carrying מוקצה
    other than money (eg: cell phone etc.)
    in Shul on רבה הושענה might be אסור
    to do so.
    * This Chumra only applies while in
    Shul (Levush)
    **They used to buy one Esrog for the
    whole Shul. The first opportune time
    to collect money for it was on Chol
    Hamoed but some communities didn’t
    have a Minyan on Chol Hamoed except for on H.Rabah.
    Vues Master’s Note: I’ll keep it in
    mind next year! I think it is a good
    idea to have our cell phones on flight
    mode during davening.
    Dear Vues Master:
    In two separate editions, you had the
    picture of Rabbi Dovid Shek ( Sept 1-
    page 51 and Sept 9- page 58).
    Rav Sheck is an extraordinary individual. Rav Sheck was personally asked
    to open Yeshiva Mishkan Hatalmud
    by Rav Chaim Kamiel Zatzal (Rebbe
    of Rav Nosson Tzvi Finkel zatzal
    former Rosh Yeshiva of Mir Yerushalyim) to address the specifics needs
    of boys in Ofakim, one of the poorest
    areas in Eretz Yisroel.
    The Yeshiva works with High School
    age boys, from among the poorest chareidi families in Eretz Yisroel. Some
    of these families are so poor that they
    go to the nursery schools at the end of
    each school day to collect the leftovers
    from the government sponsored lunch
    programs to feed their families.
    These children would have very little
    chance of being accepted into yeshivos gedolos or even remaining frum
    without the work of Mishkan Hatalmud.
    The Yeshiva is built on the principle
    that whatever is needed to help these
    bochrim succeed will be done, including providing each entering bochur a
    kollel avreich to learn with one seder
    a day and supplying each boy with
    one set of shabbos clothing per year,
    something that their parents cannot
    provide because of the poverty level
    in Ofakim. The Yeshiva also runs a
    short summer camp for the boys during bein hazmanimn so that they will
    continue to grow in a torahdik atmosphere during the summer.
    The Yeshiva services both Ashkenazim and Sephardim.
    The Yeshiva has had tremendous success. I believe in its approximately
    20 years of existence every one of its
    graduating boys has gone on to learn
    in Yeshiva gedolah.
    Only 20% of the yeshivas budget
    comes from the government, and the
    parents have the ability to pay minimal tuition at best, so the rest of the
    money has to be raised.
    Rav Sheck struggles to raise his
    budget shortfall because he has no
    American alumni, Americans generally are not familiar with Ofakim and
    he only speaks Hebrew. Rav Shek
    himself does not take a salary for his
    work because there are insufficient
    funds to pay him. I believe that he has
    never taken a salary from the yeshiva
    in the almost 20 years of running the
    Rav Shteinman called the yeshiva a
    meis mitzvah because of its lack of
    donors and gave Rav Sheck $1000 a
    month. Rav Ben Chaim of Yeshivas
    Tifrach and son-in-law of Rav Shmuel Brundy zatzal has stated that he is
    jealous of the zchus one has for assisting Rav Sheck.
    Checks can be made out to Ahvas Tzedaka V’Chesed and sent to 1836 East
    15 Street, Brooklyn New York 11229
    Thank you, Tizku LeMitzvot,
    Vues Master’s Note: Hey! Add it to
    the list of campaigns we get bombarded with!
    Dear Vues Master:
    On the weekend before its fall finals,
    Yeshiva University, located in New
    York City, sent out a school-wide
    email informing its students that they
    would be mandated to receive a booster shot for the COVID-19 vaccine in
    order to return for the spring semester.
    YU still plans to enforce mask-wearing and testing weekly for everyone,
    even the boosted.
    Prior to the fall semester, students
    who were unvaccinated were told that
    getting a COVID-19 vaccine would
    allow them to take off the mask, to
    not be forced to test weekly, and most
    importantly, students would not be
    forced to take a COVID-19 booster
    shot. With the spread of the Delta variant, YU reversed its promises to leave
    the vaccinated alone and resumed testing and masking for everyone.
    As the Omicron variant surges, YU
    has now mandated a booster shot, and
    now a petition is demanding that YU
    pull back its requirement.
    “As the Omicron variant surges,” the
    petition reads, “YU has inexplicably
    mandated a booster shot, even as this
    variant is the most evasive of our vaccines yet (we all know friends and
    family who got Omicron despite their
    vaccines or even boosters). With this
    decision, YU has essentially rendered
    its twice-dosed students and faculty
    members as ‘unvaccinated.’”
    The petition continues, “While we respect the students who have decided
    to get a booster shot of their own volition, there is a plethora of YU students
    who do not want the booster shot
    forcefully injected into their bodies.
    We recognize that if we comply yet
    again, the administration will never
    stop with the mandates. It is time to
    say enough is enough.”
    Vues Master’s Note: Schools like YU
    get a lot of funding so they stand to
    lose it if they don’t comply. I believe
    it’s pathetic!
    Dear Vues Master:
    In a letter sent Tuesday, December 14,
    Senator Simcha Felder joined with
    members of the NYS Legislature to
    express their support for a federal cap
    on insulin co-pays, which was included in the Build Back Better Act passed
    by Congress (sections 27001, 30604,
    137308 and 139401 of HR 5376).
    With the bill now coming before the
    U.S. Senate, fifty-five NYS Senators and Assemblymembers urged
    U.S. Senators Charles Schumer and
    Kirsten Gillibrand to support passage
    of the national $35 cap on insulin copays for commercial insurance plans,
    ERISA plans and Medicare Part D.
    “It is simply unacceptable to have
    people in the U.S. rationing a life-saving medication that has been around
    for 100 years,” said Senator Felder.
    “To effect broad change and help seniors on Medicare who are living with
    diabetes we need federal partners, so
    I am grateful to Senator Gustavo Rivera for coordinating this effort. With
    costs rising through the roof, now is
    the time to ensure that insulin is easily
    Advocacy groups report that diabetics
    can spend as much as $1,200 a month
    on insulin supplies, and despite life
    threatening results, nearly a quarter of
    Type 1 diabetics in the U.S. ration
    their insulin to save money. Spurred
    by the rising cost of insulin, NYS
    lawmakers have previously taken
    action with legislation capping copayments for insulin at $100 and

    ensuring diabetic New Yorkers
    have access to emergency insulin.
    A bill to further cap the co-pay at
    $30 (S-1413) is currently before the
    state. However, only federal law can
    cover this broad range of insurance
    Vues Master’s Note:Guess what?
    If vaccines would not be mandated
    they would cost a lot less. No one
    would want them.
    Dear Vues Master:
    I would like to notify the community of an alarming bill that was
    just passed on November 30 by the
    U.S. House of Representatives. It
    is called H.R. 550. The bill would
    expand state and local health department vaccine-tracking systems
    to monitor the vaccination status of
    all American citizens. States would
    provide this information to the federal government. The bill also creates a mechanism for federal, state
    and local governments to enforce
    vaccine passports or no-fly lists and
    appropriates $400 million dollars to
    expand vaccine tracking. The author
    of the bill, Rep. Ann Kuster of New
    Hampshire, has said that the bill
    will help the government “remind”
    patients when they are ”due” for a
    “recommended” vaccine or booster
    and “identify areas with low compliance.”
    I recall former Governor Cuomo’s
    identification of our community as
    being in “low compliance” and do
    not wish to see a repeat of that. Additionally, if Rep. Kuster is really
    speaking about “recommendations”
    and not mandates for vaccines or
    boosters, I don’t think we need to
    have the government use federal databases to “remind”
    us of a need for them.
    The bill is now under consideration
    by the U.S. Senate where, if
    passed, it could be implemented in
    under 12 months.
    This bill will significantly expand
    the government’s ability to be “Big
    Brother” and monitor us, take away
    our medical freedoms and rights to
    privacy, making it that much easier
    to create and enforce medical mandates that we may not agree with.
    I believe that it is very important
    that everyone contact both of your
    U.S. Senators to tell them that you
    oppose bill H.R. 550.
    Vues Master’s Note:It would be
    more appropriate not to vote Democrat anymore!
    Dear Vues Master:
    At the conclusion of Purim, a man
    met his friend and told him “I was
    just יוצא the mitzva of מתנות
    לאביונים in the most מהדרין way. The
    poor man had ממש nothing to eat.”
    “Who is he?” his friend asked, “I’ll
    give him as well.” “What?” the first
    man responded, “and ruin it for me
    for next year?”
    Vues Master’s Note:May we all be
    on the giving end not the receiving
    Dear Vues Master:
    I saw a letter last week misquoting
    an avnay nezer. it claimed that he
    held the shalosh shvuos are not lihalacha he does not say that. i was
    also amazed that you said that most
    gedolim hold it is not halacha limaisa i am not aware of such poskim
    perhaps you can enlighten me.
    Vues Master’s Note: I guess you can
    learn the poskim. We usually don’t
    pasken based on Agadta.
    Dear Vues Master:
    t has often been said that if only
    the State of Israel had existed in
    the 1940s, its air force could have
    bombed Auschwitz, interrupting the
    gassing of countless innocents.
    Well, now it does exist. And it turns
    out that it has been using its air force
    to interrupt a contemporary regime’s
    gassing of countless
    The Washington Post has just revealed that two Israeli bombing
    raids inside Syria in 2020 and 2021,
    which previously had been shrouded in mystery, were in fact part of a
    covert campaign to stop “a nascent
    attempt by Syria to restart its production of deadly nerve agents.”
    Syrian dictator Bashar Assad has
    used sarin nerve gas to slaughter
    thousands of civilians whom he regarded as his enemies since the
    outbreak of the country’s civil war
    in 2011. One attack alone left 1,400
    dead in a Damascus suburb. Assad
    promised the Obama administration
    in 2012 that he would stop using
    chemical weapons and destroy his
    arsenal. But he secretly held on to
    part of his stockpile, and has carried
    out “more than 200 attacks” with
    deadly nerve agents in recent years,
    the Post reports.
    The Israelis are well aware that Syria’s original purpose in developing
    the poison gas was to use it against
    the Jewish state—to continue, in a
    sense, the gassing of the Jews that
    began in German-occupied Poland
    eighty years ago this month.
    Rather than wait for such an attack
    and then belatedly respond, the
    Israelis decided to preempt the attempted genocide—and in so doing,
    potentially interrupt the Assad regime’s ongoing use of those weapons against Syrian citizens.
    On March 5, 2020, according to the
    Post, Israeli bombers struck a compound in the Syrian city of Homs, “a
    hub for Syria’s chemical-weapons
    The Homs facility was preparing
    batches of the chemical tricalcium
    phosphate for Syria’s top military
    laboratory, known as the Scientific
    Studies and Research Center, which
    oversees production of the regime’s
    chemical weapons. Then, in June of
    this year, the Israelis bombed additional chemical weapons sites near
    the towns of Nasiriyah and Masyaf.
    Some critics have opposed the idea
    of Western military action against
    Syrian chemical weapons sites, on
    the grounds that bystanders might
    be harmed. “People already living in
    fear of losing their lives in unlawful
    attacks must not be further punished
    for the alleged
    violations of the Syrian government,” Amnesty International USA
    has declared. And to this day, an
    occasional pundit will argue that
    bombing Auschwitz in 1944 would
    have been a bad idea because some
    of the prisoners might have been
    The critics were wrong then, and
    they’re wrong now.
    It’s troubling that Amnesty International seems less concerned about
    the actual daily murder of Syrian
    civilians than the theoretical risk
    to a small number of bystanders in
    the course of eliminating the murder weapons. No war can be fought
    without the risk of some civilian casualties. Indeed, the Israeli attack on
    the Homs facility left seven guards
    dead. But how can one compare
    that to the thousands of Syrians who
    have died agonizing deaths because
    of the gas produced in that laboratory—or the many Israelis who would
    be Assad’s next victims?
    It is likewise nothing less than
    scandalous to argue that the possible danger of air raids harming a
    relatively small number of prisoners should have prevented the Allies
    from interrupting the certain gassing
    of 12,000 Jews in Auschwitz every
    In any event, the question of civilian casualties had nothing to do
    with the actual discussions in 1944
    about whether to bomb Auschwitz.
    Most of the bombing requests by
    Jewish groups were for strikes on
    the railways and bridges leading to
    the death camp, not the camp itself.
    Such attacks on the transportation
    routes—over which hundreds of
    thousands of Jews were taken to
    their deaths—would have involved
    very minimal risk to civilians.
    That’s why the excuses the Roosevelt administration made for not
    carrying out such bombings had
    nothing to do with the danger of
    civilian casualties. U.S. officials
    claimed that American planes were
    too far from the camp. In reality,
    U.S. bombers regularly struck
    German oil factories just a few
    miles from the gas chambers of
    Today, the term “bombing Auschwitz” has become a metaphorical
    catchphrase for the moral test that
    the Allies failed during World War
    II—and then failed all over again
    during several other genocides that
    blighted the post-Holocaust world
    ever since. “Bombing Auschwitz”
    is now a moral obligation for every
    generation, because every generation finds itself confronted by perpetrators of atrocities. The idea of
    using military force against mass
    murderers is no mere history lesson; it is a military strategy for a
    better world. On a few occasions,
    the United States and its allies have
    recognized this principle—as in the
    bombing that ended atrocities in the
    Balkans, pre-empted massacres in
    Libya, and rescued thousands of Yazidi civilians in Iraq. Israel’s bombing of Syrian chemical weapons
    that noble path. The names Homs,
    Nasiriyah and Masyaf are not well
    known in the West. Neither was
    Auschwitz—or Chelmno, in German-occupied Poland, where the
    gassing of Jews began in December
    1941. Perhaps the next generationwill remember the names of those
    S yrian towns as the places wheregenocide was stopped in its tracks.
    Vues Master’s Note: IIt is very easy
    being a Monday morning quarterback!
    Dear Vues Master:
    In Response to a remark by the
    Vues Master regarding the letter by
    RMS claiming his letter put you to
    sleep,therefore perhaps embarrassing
    RMS.The response from the Vues
    Master was “at least The Vuemaster
    didn’t lie.” I ask you, is this nowadays
    the correct Halacha? As long as one
    is telling the truth, is it OK to embarrass someone?If my memory serves
    me correctly there is a story of a great
    man Who rather than embarrass someone put his head in the furnace. Will
    honesty be the best policy in cases like
    this? Thank you
    Devora Leitner
    Vues Master’s Note: It is only embarrassing if you know the person who
    is being embarrassed and the one
    embarrassing. The only person who
    is busy trying to get their name in the
    paper is yourself so I guess you
    can not be embarrassed. Unless you
    say since you don’t know who I am it
    is not embarrassing. One thing is for
    sure no names have been dropped in
    the telling of the truth!