Monday, June 27, 2011

What can we do about 'Half Shabbos'? Some ideas.

Harry has a shiva-sitting post about Half-Shabbos, or what the Jewish Week says is the street name for the practice of keeping "all the Shabbat regulations except for texting." According to the Jewish Week, up to half of all Modern Orthodox Jewish teens text on Shabbos.  Harry thinks this is terrible. He's half-right. Later today I intend to explain why, but first I want to share an epic comment left on that post by "A Little Sanity". He thinks the Half Shabbos problem can be solved quite easily:
I am surprised that no one here has described the obvious solutions to this problem. While they are "p'shita", I thus feel compelled to state them:

1. Bigger Black Hats.

2. More faux Jewish Rap Music with Hebrew Lyrics.

3. Importation of more women from the Caribbean to raise our children.

4.More emphasis in our yeshiva system on the difference between "isur cheftzah" and an "isur gavra", especially as it pertains to tax evasion.

5. More emphasis on teaching our benighted children important midrashic concepts, such as Moshe Rabbeinu's great height, or the age of Rivke when she met Eliezer at the well.

7. A ban on the study of such tiflus as "Mesillas Yesharim", "Chovos Halivavos" and "Neviim Acharonim".

8. Learning from a sefer must be made mandatory during all tefillos (with the possible exception of maariv, when it can be a "r'shus").

9. Better bug checkers for the strawberries that are imperiling our kids' neshamos.
He's on the right track, of course, but there is still so much more more we can do. For instance:

(1) Higher mechizot, in more places. Currently, we have them at shul, weddings, funerals, kiddushim, bar mitzvahs, shiurim, and on some buses. I propose establishing 8 feet as the minimum height, and installing them on busy streets, and in grocery stores. It can only help. Why take chances?

(2) Thicker stockings. In places like New Square and Meah Shearin the legware is nearly a quarter inch thick, and from what I know from listening to Aish Hatorah rabbis, and @yeshivaguy tweets, no child from those communities texts on shabbos. Seems pretty simple.

(3)  Cholent on Wednesday night. The Cholent-on-Thursday night movement has been a rousing success, but there is no reason to sit on our laurels. The extra night of cholent is something the Jewish soul calls out for. The more damage it does to your body, the better it is for your invisible, immaterial soul, or as our slogan might say "The fatter the belly, the holier the soul."

No comments: