Letter: Leave no room for mistakes

As Jews, we know that it is our responsibility to live to a higher standard. People often scrutinize our actions, expect more of us, and judge us by a different set of rules. Any vague action on our part will be misconstrued by our critics, and perceived misdeeds will be combed on hate-filled blogs and social media pages. When there’s two ways to see something, many will tell the story in the most unflattering manner possible. This has unfortunately become a sad reality nowadays, and we must learn to act deliberately, in a manner that is above ambiguity.

Throughout history, Jews have been the champions of morality, with many of the universally-accepted ethical codes finding their roots in the Torah. The Torah prohibits tzar baalei chaim – causing pain to animals. Jews have been wary of animal suffering even during eras when animal cruelty was normalized for sport and leisure.

We, as Jews, don’t need bloggers’ oversight to prevent us from being cruel to animal while shlugging kaparos – we have a Torah for that. We shun animal cruelty, and we do all that is in our power to prevent it. Should someone be guilty of it, we condemn him, regardless of his religion. The focus of this letter is not to warn anyone against animal cruelty – that would be superfluous. The focus of this letter is to raise awareness of something much subtler – we must be careful to not act in a way that gives even the slightest impression of callousness toward animals. Spectators will be standing by, armed with cameras, attempting to capture a shot that will give viewers a perception of animal suffering. It is our job to leave no room for confusion.

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4 COMMENTS

  1. Very well said!
    Activists think that they own the rights to care about animals and anything that they think is cruelty is mean. The Torah knows what makes animals suffer. For example, the anatomy of a kosher animal is such that shechita cuts the nerves and it has a painless death. Yes, all blood may look horrible but the chicken in their refrigerators also once had a head attached – they just weren’t privy to witness the slaughter, so they think that kapporos is especially cruel.

  2. Well written.

    I would like to comment on the last sentence though.

    Our job is to treat everyone, every animal and everything with the proper respect according to the Torah’s guidance. I may be wrong, but I believe it is not our job to “leave no room for confusion” for people who are confused not because we left room for confusion but because they find our every day way of life confusing.

    Also, there is nothing we can do to change the views of people that hate us and are looking for opportunity to smear our way of life and our practices. The Torah did not and does not cause any “confusion” or leave room for confusion. These “activists” have been confused long before they met a Jewish person or saw a chicken being twirled around a Jewish person’s head.

    Simply put, they do not have any questions and they are not looking for answers.

    Yes, they will be watching and yes, we need to follow the Torah’s way, but we don’t need to “unconfuse” anyone that chooses to confuse themselves.

  3. The activists don’t have any confusion they are just evil like most leftists they hate religious people. PETA shelters kill more animals then any other shelters as they kill most animals given to them.

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