Personal Invitation to an Orthodox Community Bloc Party

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12 Responses

  1. Mr. Cohen says:

    I believe that prominent Rabbis have urged Orthodox Jews to vote,
    but I do not remember any specific names or sources to prove it.

    Maybe someone reading this message can provide the missing names and sources.

  2. Reb Yid says:

    And a special note to those affected in the Rockaways, Long Beach, etc…

    One candidate wants to drastically reduce FEMA and government involvement in disaster relief. Keep that in mind over the coming days, weeks, months and years as you rebuild your communities.

  3. Raymond says:

    I definitely agree that as many traditional, Orthodox Jews should vote as possible, although I would question voting on the basis of which political party would give us more money for our Jewish schools. Every so-called gift has its price, after all. Do we really want the government to dictate what we teach in our schools or whom we can hire as teachers, when the government is beholden to special interests groups whose values are often antagonistic to Jewish values? Better that we vote for which candidates/political party will leave us Jews alone to live our lives in our local Jewish communities as we see fit.

    But to address the question of us traditional Jews voting in general, I have come across too many religious Jews who not only do not vote, but are not even registered to vote. They claim that it makes no difference who they vote for, since everything is in G-d’s Hands anyway. Yet I do not see them having that attitude when it comes to anything else in their lives, such as making a living, going to the doctor, educating their children…they always make an effort when it comes to those things. We are supposed to be partners in G-d’s creation, not His passive recipients.

  4. Yaakov Menken says:

    I second the opinion that New York voters, especially, should look at the candidates and their stance on FEMA.

    With seven years to learn from Katrina, and over a week of warning that a storm of unprecedented size would hit the tri-state area, FEMA was once again miserably unprepared.

    It purchased $1 billion in dehydrated food in 2011, but that food is nowhere to be found. New Yorkers are diving into dumpsters. There is no food, there is no water, there is no gas, and there are no excuses. Only now is FEMA soliciting for food and water to be delivered.

    So yes, one of the candidates thinks this is an excellent record. The other believes that the states, with their own National Guard units and local disaster planning, can do a much better job preparing, acquiring and distributing critical supplies, than a nationalized government bureaucracy with a consistent record of incompetence.

  5. Reb Yid says:

    To Yaakov Menken:

    Are you honestly comparing the approach of federal government officials and FEMA in New Orleans with how they have been in New York and New Jersey?

    That is revisionist history at its worst. The size and scope of Sandy (the actual storm, and certainly the population affected, is vastly greater. State officials, including the Republican governor of New Jersey, have been effusive in their praise of the federal government and of its chief executive. Katrina was a far different story, and you know it.

    Does more need to be done? Absolutely. Starting with the utility companies, which have been absolutely abysmal in their response. One candidate would want less regulation, while another–if re-elected–will no doubt be pushing for more oversight and accountability of these corporate behemoths.

    The states are completely ill-equipped to do this on their own…there are times when a strong federal government is needed (not just over the next few days or weeks, but in the coming months and years for the rebuilding) and to pretend that we can continue to send in our clothes and donations and all will be fixed is a serious mistake. It is a welcome supplement, to be sure, but hardly sufficient.

  6. Tal Benschar says:

    Sorry for stating the obvious, but the problem with voting as a bloc is that you have to vote as a bloc — meaning everyone agrees to vote together. The Orthodox community is nowhere near that – from what I can tell it will split its vote at the next election, at least at the presidential level. That is not necessarily a bad thing — but a bloc vote it isn’t.

    (If such a “bloc” were organized, who would determine whom the bloc would vote for? By chassidim , that is the rebbe and his askanim. Anyone in such a position among the Orthodox community at large?)

  7. Bob Miller says:

    There is already too much “community pressure” on other issues where Jews actually have more than one halachically acceptable option, but some machers want it their way only. Do we need one more thing to be pushed around for?

  8. Yaakov Menken says:

    Just because both options are halachically acceptable doesn’t mean both make equal sense.

    For Reb Yid, Rudy Giuliani’s critique of FEMA in NY: “The response since the time the president got all this praise and credit and press op has been abysmal. I think that FEMA is as much a failure now as it was at the time of Katrina. I do not understand why there is not enough water in NY… the minute he got his pat on his back, we have the same situation we had in Benghazi. He loses focus.”

  9. Bob Miller says:

    “Just because both options are halachically acceptable doesn’t mean both make equal sense.”

    Offer info and let Jews make personal decisions based on their personal sense.

  10. Reb Yid says:

    Is Giuliani the current mayor?

    Last I checked, it was Mike Bloomberg, who used the storm as an opportunity to endorse Obama for President. The primary reason? His understanding of the dangers of climate change, and the commitment to use the power of government to address its impact.

  11. Daniel Rubin says:

    I’m pretty certain Shloime was hoping the comment section wouldn’t turn into a partisan discussion. The message is to vote, because that’s how politicians know that we are a community to be reckoned with.

  12. Bob Miller says:

    If the Mayor really believed in his climate change idea before Sandy, why did he do nothing back then to protect or move vulnerable shoreline communities? He had many years as Mayor to attempt this.

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