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Lamrot Hakol (Despite Everything)

Musings and kvetchings and Torah thoughts from an unconventional Orthodox Jew.

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"I blog, therefore I am". Clearly not true, or I wouldn't exist except every now and then.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

The Real Tragedy

Read this blog entry. Weep for what the frum community has become.

I'm choking right now. I want to throw something. I want to break something. I want to hurt someone.

I can't even finish reading through the garbage responses to this person's blog post, and worse, his own comments.

Here's a guy who loves nothing more than to bash the Torah world. Yes, some of his issues with the way things are done in frum society are valid, even if his vituperative spewing is not. But it turns out he's just fine with maltreating frum Jews simply because they're gay.

The hypocrisy is just so rank. I am so appalled that I can barely express it.

This rabbi left the Torah world. One of his students wrote him and said he could deal with the gayness, but the leaving frumkeit just baffled him. What this kid didn't understand is that it takes a lot to stay in the frum community and put up with the shunning and the whispers and the ostracism. Do I wish he could have managed it? Yes. We need people to see that there are true frum Jews who are gay, and who insist on being frum even in the face of the kind of hatred that's so clear in the comments section of this blog entry.

But I don't blame him. Not at all. There's a limit to what people can do, and everyone has his own limit. I left frumkeit twice since I realized that I was gay. I came back both times. I never once, during either of those times, stopped being convinced that the Torah is true and that going off the derekh was wrong. But I couldn't. I just couldn't take it.

And if I didn't have the support of my wonderful partner and the responsibility for raising our daughter to be a good Jew, I don't know that I'd be taking it right now. So how about that? Being in a homosekshul relationship is actually keeping me frum.

I have watched as friends of mine have given up after years of putting up with the inhumanity in the frum community towards gay people. It kills me. I watch these victims of the soul-murdering homophobes in the frum community being treated in a way that Jewish law simply does not permit. And I listen to the self-righteous screeches of the "God Hates Fags" imitators as they try to justify their hatred and lynch mentality with a verse that 95% of them have never learned through in their lives. And I want to throttle them.

Be proud, you 'phobes. There goes another one. Smile, people, because Rabbi Alan Stadtmauer has shown that there's no such thing as a frum gay Jew. Smile, because you have one more example to use, and cheer, because it'll keep you from having to see that yedeichem shafchu et ha-dam ha-zeh.

I have to keep reminding myself that Judaism is about serving Hashem, and not about serving a community of blind and cruel imbeciles.

Those of you in the frum community who are not among the 'phobes, I salute you for your courage, and I just wish that you weren't such a damned small minority.


Blogger Pulling on Superman's Cape said...

Right on Lisa! It is true that the frum community is far more homophobic than the halacha (Torah Law) is. The frum community is committing a great chillul haShem by ostricizing peole like Rabbi Stadtmauer.

10:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for your kind words in a sea of nastiness. Alan is a colleague of mine - YU, smicha, the small world of chinuch.
He is a good, rigorously ethical man, and perhaps too uncompromising to live with the cognitive dissonance that so many heterosexual Orthodox singles have settled into. I hope and pray that Alan finds his way back to our world. Despite his not feeling bound by halacha now, I suspect that deep down (maybe not even that far down) he does believe in the system.
I feel that God doesn't see us as hypocrites, just imperfect human beings, whom He created, striving. It's what I tell my students, and it's what keeps me going.
Ketiva v'chatima tova.

10:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rabbi Stadtmauer is a person of substance. Wisdom will lead him in the right direction.

12:41 AM  
Blogger ron said...

I don't think you are completely accurate about UOJ. While he is definitely off-the-wall, he fullfills the role of the town lunatic. There are quite a number of issues he's brought up in previous postings, that had a kernel of truth in them.

Again, I am not disputing that he is insane. I am disputing that he is malicious. He is far more upset about abuses that occur within the Jewish community, i.e. Bruce Lanner (a topic that literally makes me feel physically sick), than he is about a fear of some nebulous homosexual assault on the Jewish community.

That said, if someone is regularly commiting a major transgression according to Jewish law, I don't understand how such a person should be teaching Jewish law of all things. I know that will hurt and offend you, but this is how I see it.

I have sympathy for a human being who finds himself in an impossible situation. I am glad I am not him. On the other hand, I have my own issues, and if he knew what they were, he'd probably say he's glad he's not me.


5:24 AM  
Blogger ron said...

Lisa, I take back what I just said.

UOJ is a piece of shit.

He'll get what's coming to him, don't worry.


7:17 AM  

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