Thursday, September 06, 2007

How we know Gil Student is full of it

A few clues:

(1) For the last three years Gil has carefuly excluded most bloggers from his sidebar. I was never listed. Neither was GH, OrthoMom, RenReb, Shmarya, JewSchool, Jewlicious, and a host of other relevant, popular bloggers. Behind the scenes, Gil's always been friendly to me. Once, a long time ago, I asked him why I'm banned from his blogroll. I don't remember his exact words, but I believe he said something sanctimonoius about being unwilling to endorse the sort of freewheeling, occasionally-over-the-line discussion I do here. He may have mentioned pritzus and kfira, too. All well and good, and kol hakovod, only now Gil has climbed into bed with (a) a pornographer, (b) at least one hidden-in-plain-site kofer and (c) Ben Atlas.

[Update: SoccerDad has reminded me (in the comments) that a few years back Gil included this blog on his list of "Blogs a Rabbi Must Follow." Though it wasn't clear he necessarily meant it as a compliment, I viewed it generously and continue to view it generously and at the time I expressed sincere appreciation. However, the point remains that Gil has always kept me (and most other blogs) at arm's length and the reason he always gave was that our behavior and style couldn't be endorsed. So how does he justify joining up with Rishimu?]

(2) He is laboriously trying to convince his readers (and possibly his own good self) that an ordinary group blog/agregator is the cutting-edge-future of the Internet. Yet, we know he doesn't really believe this, because he's also said "If I don't close [Hirhurim] no one will go to Reshimu." Why would the next, best thing's success hinge on the disappearance of the competition?

(3) He has seems to have bought into the claim that Rishimo will be a place where all types of Jews will be able to talk to each other. This is asburd on the face. How can Jews talk to each other if they are going to be subjected to the chilling effect of registration and moderation?

Anyway, the place where contemporary Jews talk to each other already exists. The place is called DovBear. Here you'll find kofrim and maamin interacting, and not just on the comments but on the site itself. The commenting community includes a Conservative Apikorus, a witch, several avrechim from Lakewood, Ed, Yona Lazar, prim Jewish mothers, apikorsim, skeptics, Jews by choice, FFBs, and much, much more. The whole cholent of contemporary Judaism is here, welcomed, unmoderated and free to say their piece.

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