Orthodox Judaism Opposes Human Rights

The words that we use matter.

When we speak using terms from Torah, our intention is clear. We believe that Torah is the source of our moral values. But once we start using English terms and ideas, we enter a dangerous philosophical minefield. We use words thinking that we’re expressing Torah ideas, but without realizing it, we are employing secular ideas as well.

One prime example is “human rights.” People use this term as if it’s some kind of innate, obvious Truth, yet they fail to explain why it is so. Where oh where do these “human rights” come from and why are “human rights violations” so very terrible? That’s a topic better avoided, especially in polite company.

Moreover, the definition of “human rights,” or just “rights,” changes virtually by the day. One day it’s in to call one thing a right. But then another supposed right comes and supersedes it. No one knows what new supposed right tomorrow will bring, which will turn over society even more.

But it’s almost foolproof. If you want something, anything, in our “rights”-obsessed culture, your best strategy is to call it a right. It doesn’t matter how ridiculous that particular claim of a right may sound, or may have sounded not so long ago. Once you call it a right, most people will feel intimidated. They will not want to be dismissed as insensitive and committing in any way the “sin” of … denying someone a right. And they know very well what the consequences of such disagreement will be. It will be labeled as “hate speech”. Because if you disagree with someone’s claim to be entitled to a certain right, you must, must hate him. You’re a bigoted, mean, selfish monster. You’re … “anti-human”.

But this is playing with our minds. What do people mean when they speak of these rights? When it comes down to it, “human rights” is just code for “morality without faith”. It’s the creed of the new atheist religion, one that they are now using the secular legal system to dogmatically enforce, and with ever-increasing militancy. Just as atheism is axiomatic, so is the concept that morality must be defined in secular terms.

And therefore not only should Orthodox Jews never identify with these values, we must reject them like the plague. Even if we are speaking to someone from a secular background for whom our value system is foreign, we must never use language that implies even a slight endorsement of secular values.

And the same goes for a host of other buzzwords that have become the catch-cries of the holier-than-thou secular moralists: love, peace, tolerance, equality, social justice, rule of law, abuse, racism, multiculturalism, and discrimination.

All these words and ideas, although seemingly noble and true, are meaningless and false. They do not express universal and innate ideas; rather, they express (at least, as used in modern times, in a secular framework) the new secular morality that is so utterly contrary to authentic, G-d-given morality that it is almost diametrically opposed to it. (This is not to say that they don’t each hold some kernel of truth; however, now that G-d has been censored out of the picture, these ideas have degenerated into falsehoods.)

Why are these ideas so empty? Because without Hashem investing humans with inherent value, we are just a bunch of highly developed animals. Do animals have moral compunctions? Should they be expected to think twice before taking the lives of other animals? Of course not; that would be absurd. In fact, if the secularist creation narrative of evolution is taken to its logical conclusion, the principle of “survival of the fittest” implies that on the contrary, killing those who are weaker enables prosperity and progress. (Of course, most atheists today will reject this philosophy, known as social Darwinism, but they will not be able to coherently explain why.)

Of course we should respect and honor all mankind. But not because some Enlightenment philosopher said so. He has no, well, “right” to dictate morality to us. Rather, human beings have value because G-d created mankind in His image (Bereshis 9:6) and therefore all mankind are “precious” (Avos 3:18). Of course murder and stealing are wrong. But they’re wrong because G-d forbade them, not because a “human rights ethics council” decided so.

We must declare proudly: Our morals come from Torah. We believe in the G-d-given sheva Mitzvos, the seven Noahide laws, as our basis for morality, not empty, secular “human rights”.

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Chanukah: Victory of Torah Truth

Please, please! Don’t convert light into darkness, and darkness into light. Chanukah is not about “religious freedom” at all. It’s about a very violent insurrection led by what people today would call “fundamentalist” “extremist” theists against the atheist tyranny of the dominant secular culture of the time.

We celebrate because the fact that we won miraculously, along with the other miracles, shows that our G-d is real and all other belief systems, most importantly the Greek culture of hedonism and humanism, are wrong and false.

(If the Maccabees had heard someone advocating the secular concept of “religious freedom”, they would have … not dealt with him kindly. If they would have heard someone going so far as to misrepresent the festival commemorating them as if it stood for this modern-day secular value, they would have been outraged and furious.)

“Religious freedom” is in effect moral relativism, which is morally corrupt, nonsensical, and the very antithesis of everything this festival stands for.

Chanukah is about miracles, which demonstrate the Truth of Hashem. The message of the festival is therefore that He is truly real, and therefore our lives should revolve exclusively around serving and worshiping Him, even if that means sacrifice. It follows that secularism is empty, false, detrimental, and evil, and must be vehemently opposed.

If one examines the various Jewish festivals and considers which is the most relevant to our day and age, I believe the conclusion is clear that it is Chanukah. The challenges and struggles of then are so strikingly similar to those of today that it should send chills running down one’s spine.

Thus, the message of Chanukah for our times is simple but supremely demanding. Secular humanism, along with all its sundry modern political manifestations—liberalism, feminism, etc.—represents the mortal enemy of the Jewish people, and ultimately, with the help of Hashem and with our personal and group sacrifice, we will prevail.

 

 

Thanksgiving

Giving thanks to Hashem for all His blessings and publicly recognizing our dependence on Him is great; in fact, it’s vital. Choosing a day to focus on that and establishing it as a national custom is nice (it sure beats choosing a day to go to the races or the football).

However, giving thanks in liberal parlance, which means refusing to mention Hashem, is heresy, and also nonsensical. It would also certainly be antithetical to the worthy intentions of those who established this holiday.

We Jews should support the former and condemn the latter.

Boteach’s Misguided Criticism of Mormons

Shmueli Boteach wrote an article here berating Mormons for ousting open homosexuals. He’s barking up the wrong tree.

The Mormons are rightly taking a moral stand that homosexual behavior is immoral and unacceptable. They see how in our confused and decadent times action must be taken, and so they’ve enacted firm rules in order to protect themselves.

Although the kids might suffer from their church’s edict, and that is indeed unfortunate, the fault is on the heads of the “parents” who feely choose to live that lifestyle, when they could choose to be chaste.

Also, there is a difference between a private and a public sin. When these folks sin openly, they set a detrimental example to the faith-based community, so the community is entitled to take measures to protect itself from these influences.

The Mormons’ measures are reasonable and understandable. Some such rules are necessary and worthy, and whether they could be a little more or a little strict is irrelevant.

In any case, of all people, Boteach shouldn’t be picking on them. Although many of their theological beliefs are heretical from a Torah standpoint, in terms of Torah-based morality, the Mormons are very righteous. Not only are they righteous in comparison with their secular counterparts, but on the whole, they are fighting bravely against the tide of secularism by following worthy standards of modesty, early marriage, and large families at far higher rates of success than most other Christian denominations.

Boteach should stick to criticising the real threat to western civilization: the radical liberal secularist agenda that promotes sexual sin as if it were a worthy deed.

Through the “it ain’t so terrible to be a practicing homosexual” sentiment of his article, Boteach is also directly supporting the radical, anti-religious homosexualist agenda, which has set its sights on destroying all religious values and replacing them with its heretical, hedonist ones. He should be standing up for timeless Torah-based, biblical values, not glossing over these sins and condemning those who take a stand against them in order to preserve their communities’ moral compass.

If we’re talking about adults’ actions having harmful effects on children, Boteach should instead speak out against the immoral law that says that homosexuals and lesbians can adopt children, and inculcate them with the false notion that one can have two dads but no mom or two moms but no dad, thus depriving the innocent, helpless child of a mother or father figure; along with this, he should call out those “parents” who take advantage of this immoral law and adopt children.

The Insanity of “Demilitarization” and True Jewish Leadership

Netanyahu’s constant talk of agreeing to a “demilitarized” state for the Arabs is complete nonsense on the face of it.

What does “demilitarization” mean, anyway? It supposedly means that the Arabs have a police force but not a military.

First, a hostile police force will (and in PLO-controlled areas, this has always been so) surely gladly harbor hostile military, i.e., terror forces, violating all treaties.

Second, a hostile police force is itself a hostile military. The difference is largely semantic. The same gun that can be used to maintain law and order in an Arab village can be turned against Jews in a terror attack. This has occurred countless times in terror attacks against Jews in the Holy Land. Instead of responding with harsh retaliation, cancelling all treaties, and retaking those villages from the PLO, the government looks the other way, continues to send money and guns to the PLO, and dismisses the attacks as isolated, unrelated incidents.

Third, the Arabs themselves would be much better off under Jewish control than under PLO/Hamas thugs. Although in the long term, everyone would be better off if the Muslim Arabs in the Holy Land would simply immigrate en masse to a country like Qatar, whose leaders have sent so much money to sponsor the PLO and Hamas.

If Jews aren’t in charge of a given territory, terrorist militias will inevitably be there.

Rather, Netanyahu’s “demilitarized” language is an act of tremendous cowardice, in which he makes a fundamental concession to the long-discredited radical, left-wing notion of mass land surrender to the enemy as a form of “making peace”. Even after all the misery and bloodshed that previous deals have brought upon the Jewish people, Netanyahu agrees to the “Two State Solution”, to (even more and a lot more) “land for peace”, he just has an itsy bitsy condition.

But since it is impossible for the foolish condition of “demilitarization” to be fulfilled, you can be sure it will be forgotten once the land is surrendered, G-d forbid. We saw a similar response after the IDF redeployed from Gaza: Once military control of Gaza was first ceded, the IDF didn’t retake it when the treaties were inevitably broken and it was used as a base to attack Jews, as everyone knew it would.

Note also how towards the end of the most recent war in Gaza, Netanyahu declared that Gaza must be demilitarized as his condition to a “ceasefire”. Yet days later, there was a ceasefire without any pretense on the enemy side of agreeing to this condition.

Netanyahu is surely fully aware of all this, yet he continues preaching this madness. So in fact, Netanyahu is a traitor, plotting to cravenly surrender even more vast swaths of our G-d given land to our sworn enemy so they can attack us even more, G-d forbid.

And that’s fine, because it will be “demilitarized”.

Yeah, right.

But what does this mean for us? Hashem is sending a message to all Jews: Time and again, secular leaders and the secular values they embodied have led to disaster for the Jewish people—Begin, Shamir, Sharon, and for three terms now, Netanyahu. Don’t trust in apparently well-meaning but secular leaders. Deliverance will never come from them.

True courage and leadership against our enemies can only come from a leader of faith, one who rejects the zeitgeist and embraces only true Torah values, who fears Hashem and is proud to declare His Name, who reveres the holiness of the Land and supports the mitzva of settling the Land, and who is outstanding in his love of his fellow Jew.

The Insidious State-Mandated LGBT Push to Corrupt Children

A pro-immorality student alliance decorate a school bus with the modern symbol of sin

The Insidious State-Mandated LGBT Push to Corrupt Children 

Rabbi Yehoishophot Oliver

The radical LGBT activists have set their sights specifically on schools.

They are advocating for bills like this infamous New York bill, which in the noble name of “civility, citizenship and character education,” mandates state-sponsored secular indoctrination programs. Public schools must design curricula that inculcate in children from kindergarten (!!) the normalization and even desirability of same-sex sexual activity and their perverse “family” model:

Instruction in civility, citizenship and character education.
The regents shall ensure that the course of instruction in grades kindergarten through twelve includes a component on civility, citizenship and character education. Such component shall instruct students on the principles of honesty, tolerance, personal responsibility, respect for others, observance of laws and rules, courtesy, dignity and other traits which will enhance the quality of their experiences in, and contributions to, the community. The regents shall determine how to incorporate such component in existing curricula and the commissioner shall promulgate any regulations needed to carry out such determination  of the regents. FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS SECTION, “TOLERANCE,” “RESPECT FOR OTHERS” AND “DIGNITY” SHALL INCLUDE AWARENESS AND SENSITIVITY TO DISCRIMINATION OR HARASSMENT AND CIVILITY IN THE RELATIONS OF PEOPLE OF DIFFERENT RACES, WEIGHTS, NATIONAL ORIGINS, ETHNIC GROUPS, RELIGIONS, RELIGIOUS PRACTICES, MENTAL OR PHYSICAL ABILITIES, SEXUAL ORIENTATIONS, GENDERS, AND SEXES.

In recent years, with little public debate, many other laws like this are increasingly being passed in state legislatures all over the United States. While purporting to promote benign measures to prevent name-calling, in practice these laws promote a sinister secularist agenda. They give a free hand to LGBT activists to influence children with their radical, hedonistic, antireligious, and anti-family message.

As described in this chilling video, “What ‘gay marriage’ did to Massachusetts”, state-mandated pro-LGBT propaganda literature includes children’s books that deliberately present as normal same-sex “parents” and same-sex kissing. (See also “Lesbian teacher: How I convince kids to accept gay ‘marriage’, starting at 4 years old.”)

Not long after, sex education classes (which already contained much obscene material at increasingly younger ages) were “updated” to teach children all about the graphic details of same-sex sexual activity in order to encourage children and teenagers to “try it out” as a normal part of sexual maturation. (See “Starting In Kindergarten Children Will Be Taught Heterosexual, Homosexual, Bisexual, And Transgender Lifestyles”.)

Moreover, administrations are not obligated to notify parents of these changes, nor are parents able to opt their children out (see on the Canadian front: “Quebec begins mandatory sex ed teaching 5-year-olds about masturbation, genitalia, and homosexuality).

Some parents who objected were fired from their jobs or even thrown in jail and ordered to be “re-educated” with “diversity training.”

Moreover, with their every victory, they are emboldened to demand even more outrageous changes to the culture via the public school system. They know that the more extreme and hypersexualised the indoctrination, the more they alienate the children from traditional faith-based values of chastity, nuclear family, permanence, and exclusivity and twist society through its most vulnerable members to degenerate into their pagan, hedonistic model of promiscuity and broken, perverse family structures.

Let’s fight back.

No, Desires are not Actions

One of the many wrongs committed by secularist leftist ideology is the deceptive distortion of language to sow confusion and promote their radical agenda. One very current example of this is evident in the usage of the words “gay” and “homosexual”.

In almost every discussion on the topic, one finds oneself forced to define these words in order to prevent misunderstanding.

To whom do these terms refer:

  • to one afflicted with same-sex attraction who chooses not to act on his desires, or
  • to one who chooses to engage regularly in homosexual sexual acts—a practicing homosexual?

Although the radicals appreciate very well the logical distinction between a desire and an act, they seek to cover it up in order to insidiously promote their hedonistic neo-pagan ideology—that one with aberrant desires has no choice but to act on them. Sexual desires must be satisfied. Celibacy is simply impossible, so all people with same-sex attraction are sexually active. And if they’re not currently active, then they should be and they will be. (This terminology also ignores the fact that a very large percentage of those who identify as homosexual also feel attraction to the opposite sex.) Desires and actions are inextricable and identical.

This equation is fallacious, for the two are logically and practically distinct:

Although it may indeed be very difficult (and this writer has nothing but sympathy for one who faces such a struggle), a person with homosexual tendencies is fully capable of being celibate; moreover, in many cases (but apparently not all), he or she is also able to engage in sexual activity with a member of the opposite sex. Conversely, even an individual with no homosexual tendencies is technically able to engage in homosexual sex.

(It is striking that when it comes to the other way around—developing homosexual desires in heterosexuals—homosexuals are quite eager to encourage heterosexuals to “try it and see,” especially in the “sex-education” and “tolerance” curricula that they are campaigning be adopted in public schools to underage children. Likewise, many radical feminist thinkers advocated that all women choose to become lesbians in order to rebel against the “patriarchy.”)

Whether these choices come easily or with great difficulty is beside the point; they are possible in theory, and in most cases in practice.

This egregious abuse of language also leads to the ubiquitous accusation of hatred leveled against bible believers. Any criticism of same-sex sexual activity, whether based on natural law, health risks, or theological grounds, results in one being branded a hateful bigot “homophobe.” Why? Because homosexuals were “born that way.”

But this is an absurd straw man argument that misrepresents what believers are actually saying. First, whether they are indeed “born that way” is still unknown. However, even if it were proven true that homosexuals were born with the innate latent desire for homosexual sex, they were certainly not born performing the act of homosexual sex. Believers condemn the act, not the desire itself, or the person afflicted with the desire.

Homosexual desires, inasmuch as they come involuntarily, are not forbidden or condemned. Rather, the act of homosexual sex is forbidden—regardless whether homosexual desires are innate or learned, and regardless whether one commits the act out of a desire to satisfy a same-sex attraction or one does so without such a desire.

Thus, condemning a specific behavior that certain people engage in out of their own free will in no way implies animus to those people for harboring those desires. Rather, it stems from a theological, intellectual, and ethical condemnation of those sexual behaviors.

In summary, G-d granted us free choice. This means that we are not compelled to act on our sexual desires. We are free to suppress them when their expression would be harmful and sinful, as is the case with a desire for homosexual behavior (along with a range of other forbidden sexual behaviors).