Colors: Green Color

 Last Wednesday, following the invasion of the United States Capitol by Trump supporters, I posted on a rabbinic chat in which I participate that it looks like the Never-Trumpers have been vindicated. One of the rabbis on the chat, a longtime Never-Trumper, posted in response that he is impressed with my honesty in my admission. I then wrote that it would be nice to hear an admission from Never-Trumpers that he was the best (American) president Israel ever had. Of course, that was not forthcoming and never will be.

 Over time, the articles that I’ve written for this paper have interested some, inspired others, and upset a few.

During the summer, I wrote an article titled “Cancel Culture Comes to Orthodoxy.” In that article, I contend that in the Modern Orthodox world of chinuch, the emotional attachment to Yiddishkeit is missing. The joy of learning Torah, the teachings of Religious Zionism, and the need to attend minyan are being forsaken as the generations move on.

…and Kiddush Hashem

 

 My father hk”m* was blessed with having incredible daughters, sons-in-law, sons, and daughters-in-law who made sure he was accompanied and cared for around the clock. In the past four years, there was probably not a total of three hours when there was not somebody in the house from the family to care for him.

 We have a tendency in our world to dismiss many nice American customs because they are “goyish,” not of Jewish origins. If you ask me, that is often a display of a lack of confidence with our own religion. If you read the accounts of many of our greats who grew up in America, you will find that most of them had no trouble being fully acclimated Americans, including baseball and apple pie, while at the same time developing and loving their Yiddishkeit. The recent book Just Love Them, written by Yisroel Besser and published by ArtScroll, makes that abundantly clear in describing the life of the legendary m’chaneich (Torah educator), Rav Dovid Trenk zt”l. There was just something healthy about living a life of accepting and not constantly rejecting – in other words, normal.

 At my father’s l’vayah held in the Young Israel of Kew Gardens Hills on Sunday, 27 Kislev, December 13, I related that my father did not eulogize his father, my grandfather R’ Shabsie Schonfeld zt”l. My father felt that as a son, he was not adequate to the task of offering an assessment of his father’s life. If it was true of my father vis-à-vis his father, how much more so is that true of me vis-à-vis my father.