Tuesday, October 16, 2012

He's a Haredi?

Thanks to Google, I've acquainted myself with more of Yaakov Rosenblatt's work. (See previous post) Turns out, his writing is okay when he's not hassling celebrity women who talk about sex (Sara Silverman here; Deborah Feldman here)

I especially liked something he did called "I am Haredi" in which he a fair amount of  insight and self-awareness is displayed. For instance, he says he opposes universal kolel, believes hats and the rest of the uniform are overrated, and says he is embarrassed by the behavior of bad mannered Orthodox Jews.

However, the piece is not without its rough spots, and goes off the rails in the last paragraph
Indeed, I am haredi. I am haredi circa 1970, my father’s generation. Then, yeshiva students wrote, spoke and thought in English. They dressed in color. Frum men went to college to train for a means to make a living. People were pashut in their hashkafa and sincere in their avodah. They would enact chumras when advised but did not see stringency as a path to purity. They had a closer relationship to secular Jews because of their secular first cousins and to non-Jews because they lived in mixed neighborhoods. Their motivation was to build a frum infrastructure for the next generation where observance would be easier and Yiddishkeit would be the natural choice. They were not motivated to get their kids into “the best” school and their kids married off to “the best” shidduchim. 
They were American haredim. And I am an American haredi.
Bad news Rabbi. You're not Haredi. You're Modern Orthodox!

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