Sarah Vs. The Rabbi, Guess Who Wins?

The interwebs have ‘sploded with this “open letter” to pottymouth princess Sarah Silverman by haredi rabbi Yaakov Rosenblatt in which he accuses her of not being Jewish enough to quote the Torah and calls getting married “the most basic desire of the feminine soul.”

He is a douche.

I might like to think of myself as edgy (Sister Sarah has boo-ya all tied up, hence her HEEB magazine cover posing with the proverbial hole-in-the-sheet) but I don’t enjoy calling rabbis nasty names. Respect for the position dies hard. HOWEVER, when a dude with six kids who slaughters cows for a living gets all judgey about how a woman chooses to live her life, the gloves are OFF. Seriously, he wrote this:

Nothing you say or stand for, Sarah, from your sickening sexual proposal to a Republican donor to your equally vulgar tweet to Mitt Romney, has the slightest thing to do with the most basic of tenets which Judaism has taught the world – that the monogamous relationship is the most meaningful one and that a happy marriage is the key to wholesomeness.

Really. That’s what Judaism has taught the world? Well, sheee-it. I’d better rework my Shalom School lesson for next week ’cause I was gonna focus on something totally stupid, like ethics.

The Jewish Press, the website that published this letter, sure must be enjoying their 15 minutes of Internet flushing fame for posting this narrow-minded, misogynistic, backasswards nonsense. Their response to the hullaballoo is defensive and equally divisive, again accusing those who are not rigidly observant as “not Jewish enough.”

Just not buying it. Yes, it’s highlighted the gap between the extreme Orthodox and “cultural” Jews, but I’m not sure it’s a different gap than the one that exists between all fundamentalists and the rest of us.

Interestingly enough, the Jewish Journal had the opportunity to publish this first yet chose to pass because, as editor Rob Eshman points out, while it was sure to incite lots of hits, it was just plain sucky writing:

You can’t write about things you have no knowledge of—in this case a young woman’s personal life and beliefs. And you can’t  spread damaging conjecture and perhaps lies about someone.  And just because you disagree with someone’s politics doesn’t mean you know their character, or have the right to demean it.

None of that is good journalism.  And I’m no rabbi, but it doesn’t strike me as Judaism, either.

Oh, and if you haven’t read the epic response posted by Sarah’s dad about who’s who on the list of influential Jews, it’s quite a read.


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