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Getting Stoned at a Bar Mitzvah

StoningWe had another Bar Mitzvah last Shabbat.  This one turned violent.  The kid and a few others got stoned.  No, I don’t mean high or wasted.  I mean pelted.  He just finished his aliyah and the crowd burst into Mazal Tovs.  Then the bags started to fly.  He quickly ducked down and banged his face on the wood Etz Chaim (the Torah Scroll handles).  That resulted in a nasty black eye. Before he could step down and get some ice, he was pelted some more.  He tripped down the bima steps and crashed to the ground.  The kids then trampled over him in their scouring attempt to grab candy.  Fortunately the bar mitzvah boy’s father came to save him.  He got hit by the candy bags  pretty hard too.  In his anger, he threw his siddur over the mechiza.  That really pissed people off.  The siddur came flying back, with some more bags of candy.  But hey, he was angry, do you blame him?

The kids scrambling on the floor got into a pretty nasty fight too.  Someone was scratched in the face, and a bunch of kids left crying loudly because they did not get enough bags to satisfy their greed.  I overheard one of the fathers scolding his kid, telling him he should have used more elbow, and he was disappointed to have a whimp of a kid.

We have a carpet nazi in the shul too — like most shuls that have been renovated in the past 10 years do.  Our carpet nazi raised the money for the renovations — and he get’s super pissed when anything happens in shul that ruins his hard work.  In addition to smushed chocolate and soft candy, he’s gonna have to clean up some blood too.    I’m surprised he hasn’t installed those shoe and boot brushes to help prevent people from tracking dirt into his pristine sanctuary.  Anyway, he has his work cut out for him this week.  The carpet is a mess.

Back to the pelting.  I always knew that the custom is quite ancient and is borrowed from the wedding ceremony (and auf ruf preceding it).  The idea is the “shower” the celebrants with sweet blessings (originally nuts, then rice, then candy).  So I commented to the guy next to me that today’s blessings were not so sweet — so many people got injured this time.   He looked at me strangely and said “we don’t throw candies to shower blessings!”  Huh?  I asked what’s the reason then?

He explained that the ruv told him that this custom is based on the tradition that on the day of a wedding, the groom celebrates a mini-Yom Kippur, where he atones for his sins.  Similarly on a Bar Mitzvah, the boy symbolically atones for the sins of his youth.  So we re-enact a public stoning to remind the celebrant that they probably really deserve the death penalty for sins they committed in the past, but we’ll stone them with candy instead.

WTF??  Have you ever heard this explanation?

In related news, Pashkez has announced they will be making a new throwing candy that has no chocolate, is soft, does not stain carpets, and best of all, it is shaped like a small rock.

Image Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/hugosimmelink/1467272645/

{ 62 comments… add one }
  • Bridge and Tunnel February 9, 2011, 12:40 PM

    LOVE ur blog but this was dumb.


    • Burnt Dreadlocks February 9, 2011, 1:37 PM

      LOL!!! @ one of my friends bar mitzvas he got hit in the eye, started crying, and attacked the kid that threw it! His father wanted to dig a hole in the ground and bury himself!

    • Telz Angel February 9, 2011, 2:04 PM

      LOVE ur comments but this was the best one yet.


  • Avi February 9, 2011, 12:49 PM

    A better version with a great bar mitzvah boy montage:


  • Eitan February 9, 2011, 1:04 PM

    We used to do this at my shul until a candy broke one of the windows behind the bima. Now we dump a bucket of ’em on the kid’s head.

  • Lord G February 9, 2011, 1:47 PM

    Fantastic as always Telz Angel…was that last bit true, about what the guy told you?

    • Telz Angel February 9, 2011, 2:03 PM

      Yes — the “symbolic stoning” as kaparah answer is exactly what a guy in shul told me (in the name of the ruv). And this inspired the rest of the post.

      • talking stam February 9, 2011, 2:08 PM

        I actually have heard that explanation. My guess is that people are turning Purim Torah into the real thing….

  • Yoreh K'chetz February 9, 2011, 2:13 PM

    I once saw a guy next to me get KO’ed by a bag of candies in 770. The women were about 20 feet up, one dropped a bag, landed right on his head. Hatzolo carried him away.

    • Burnt Dreadlocks February 9, 2011, 3:50 PM

      Ive seen u comment hundereds of times, but every time I see ur name i burst out laughing! love it!

      • Telz Angel February 9, 2011, 7:29 PM

        But do you get to Yoreh Pa’amayim el Hamatara?

    • A. Nuran February 9, 2011, 6:13 PM

      Rock candy, I hope

      • Burnt Dreadlocks February 9, 2011, 7:23 PM


        • A. Nuran February 9, 2011, 10:47 PM


  • yitz February 9, 2011, 4:58 PM

    i was somewhere where the choson put on a football helmet right after his aliya…..!!!

  • Bubba Metzia February 9, 2011, 8:58 PM

    This is why at my Bar Mitzvah we used soft jelly candies (kosher made with pectin) that don’t hurt if you get hit with them.

  • ISR February 9, 2011, 9:30 PM

    In a number of Shuls where I live the candy throwing becomes an opportunity to pelt other members of the community and the whole thing becomes quite a “free for all”!
    At my brother-in-law’s barmitzva one of the older members of the Shul got hit by mistake and left the Shul in anger – never to return! Fun times for all.

    • yitz February 10, 2011, 5:56 AM

      ha!!! i was once in Israel and their was a Rebbe there (i wont say which one) and me and my boys STONED him!!!!! it was hilarious!! not to mention in my shul, i ALWAYS stone the Rabbi!!!!

  • Catholic Mom February 10, 2011, 10:47 AM

    In Catholicism, when a kid is “confirmed” (renews their baptismal vows, but this time for themselves, rather than through a godparent) at around age 12 or 13 (the age is not significant) the kids kneel down, the bishop lays his hands on their heads and then he gently pats them on the check with his open hand. This is a symbolic “slap” which is a tradition going back at least 1,000 years symbolizing that the Christian must be prepared to suffer for his/her faith.

    Inevitably, every year as the class of kids is preparing for Confirmation, the rumor goes around that the bishop is going to smack them as part of the ceremony.

    • anonymous February 10, 2011, 11:58 AM

      Then the priest sodomises him and all is forgiven

      • Telz Angel February 11, 2011, 9:57 AM

        Personally I think it’s in bad taste to use a blog that generally makes fun of the oddities of religious Judaism and make light of serious crimes perpetrated by some Catholic priests. I would hope there are JesuitJokers, (not always Jesuit, not always Joking) blogs out there for this.

        Telz Cleveland is situated right next Borromeo Seminary in Wickliffe, OH — and we were always taught mutual respect. One day I’ll post the stories of how we’d play basketball, study bible, and look at porn together. It was a very bonding experience.

    • Yoreh K'chetz February 10, 2011, 12:15 PM

      Catholic mpm,

      As long as that’s all the priest does when the kid’s kneeling in front of him… šŸ˜‰

      • Catholic Mom February 10, 2011, 6:04 PM

        The only good thing to come out of the child abuse scandal in the Catholic Church is that before people used to have to know something about the religion to make a clever witty satirical comment (of which there are potentially many — just like there are clever witty satirical comments about Judaism) whereas now, whatever is being discussed the person just adds “and then the priest sodomizes somebody” and that’s the joke. Saves so much precious brain power that can be used elsewhere.

        • nava h. February 10, 2011, 7:30 PM

          touche, catholic mom, that was awesome. šŸ™‚

        • Yoreh K'chetz (aka Phil) February 10, 2011, 7:52 PM

          Catholic mom,

          I guess their actions have turned them into the butt of everyone’s jokes šŸ™‚

          • Catholic Mom February 11, 2011, 5:11 AM

            OK, that at least required the effort to come up with a pun. Weak, but at least minimal effort. B-/C+

            • Yoreh K'chetz February 11, 2011, 5:23 AM

              Catholic mom,

              That one was too easy. How about being defrocked for being defrocked?

              • Catholic Mom February 11, 2011, 6:03 AM

                See, the problem is that the topic itself is not actually all that funny.

  • Yoreh K'chetz February 11, 2011, 6:34 AM

    Catholic mom,

    I guess that’s subjective. The irony of these holier than thou priests that incited hatred and murder of Jews for 1000 years for being the devil ,antichrist, or evil bloodsuckers that cooked our matza in christian children’s blood. All while having their little choir boys making them sing.

    What those priests did isn’t funny in itself, but bashing them for it is cool, at least in my point of view.

    • Catholic Mom February 11, 2011, 10:53 AM

      You have no flippin idea what you’re talking about. For one thing, you’re conflating all “priests” together as if they even belonged to the same religious group — just like conflating all Jews together. Jews in northern Europe — England, Holland, and elsewhere, actually had a very good life — prospering in somebody else’s country while experiencing a relatively high degree of tolerance. I personally am Irish. I’d love you to give a single example of priests inciting hatred against Jews in Ireland. One of the mayors of Dublin was Jewish. One of the Prime Ministers of England when England was the greatest power on earth was Jewish. Oh yeah, some priest in the middle of nowheregrad Poland was inciting the peasants against the Jews. That proves that the “priests” were behind a vast anti-semitic European conspiracy. The people who DID launch a vast anti-semitic conspiracy in German (Nazis) and Russia (Stanlinists) were, respectively, virulently anti-Catholic and virulently anti-Orthodox.

      Secondly, the child abuse debacle had nothing to do with “holier than thou” priests. Basically what happened was that after Vatican II the Church began to admit a lot of gay men to the priesthood. Given that the status of the priesthood (as with all clergy) has dropped significantly in the last 50 years and given that the sexual revolution laid the foundation for the idea that anybody who voluntarily lived without sex was nuts, it was getting increasingly difficult to get good candidates for the priesthood. On the other hand, a lot of men who had psychological problems and who were very mixed up about their sexuality (or didn’t want to admit to themselves that they were gay) took the attitude that “well, since I’m not attracted to women anyway, I might as well be a priest.” Hence the seminaries started getting (and admitting) really screwed up men. It’s called a “child” abuse scandal but overwhelmingly this was the case of adult males seducing/coercing/raping adolescent/teenage boys when they were in a position where everybody completely trusted them. “Spend three hours alone at Father Bob’s house with nobody else there so he can help you with your homework? Sure you can — what a great guy that Father Bob is.” This kind of abuse by this kind of man in these kinds of positions has been going on since the beginning of time. The great sin of the Church was that they were too stupid to realize this was going to happen and they were too cowardly to do anything once they found out. What it has to do with the persecution of the Jews, however, is this — nothing at all.

      • Yoreh K'chetz February 11, 2011, 11:20 AM

        Catholic mom,

        I think you’re the one with “no flippin idea” of what you’re talking about. Before making idiotic statements like “Jews in England lived peaceful lives”, read up on the York massacre or on England’s expulsion of the Jews a few hundred years ago. Granted, Jews in Eastern Europe and Spain had it a lot worse, but that doesn’t mean the your Anglo Saxon priests are saints.

        As I’ve previously mentioned, the church and it’s leaders were directly responsible for the murder, torture, rapes and looting of MILLIONS of Jews over the past thousand years. From the crusades, to pogroms to blood libels to the inquisition to the holocaust, thousand upon thousands of stories of how priests of one church or another were behind the scenes instigating the masses.

        It comes as absolutely no surprise to me that of disciples of those goons enjoy having their way with little boys.

        If the Vatican can appoint an ex-nazi guard as pope, that doesn’t say much about their standards either. I know he claims to have only carried an unloaded gun, I believe him about as much as I believe Bill Clinton saying he didn’t inhale.

        Yes, there were a few priests that were good to us, and a few European nations that tolerated us at times. But overall, the christian religion and it’s followers have been responsible for more atrocities against us than all other religion and ethnic groups combined.

        In light of this, I’ll be the first to bash pervert priests and spit at a church, simply for what they represent to me. That doesn’t stop me from having christian friends, but don’t expect me to have an ounce of respect for churches or priests, whether they are catholic, protestant, orthodox,or any other denomination.

        • Catholic Mom February 12, 2011, 4:11 PM

          We’ve been down this road before. Anybody who refers to Pope Benedict as a “ex-Nazi guard” (he guarded a BMW factory when he was 16 but ran away) has already pretty much discredited everything else they have to say.

          As far as the York massacre, referred to on the internet (the font of all human knowledge) as “the greatest anti-semitic atrocity in English history” approximately 150 people died. Is that 150 too many? Of course. But you’re going to need thousands and thousands of these to come up with your imaginary “millions.” Further, as a person of Irish descent, let me point out that, throughout history, the English regularly killed masses of Irishmen everytime they turned around. Hell, they just did it in 1972.

          Anti-semitism in England was not even remotely a result of priests making accusations of “Christ killing” etc. It had a very specific basis which, if you read any history at all (and we already know you don’t) you will know relates to the issue of “usary” (lending money at interest). Historically, Christians were forbidden to charge interest on loans. This was based on the idea that if someone in need asks you for money, it’s your Christian duty to lend it to him and it would wrong to try to profit from his need by charging interest. Of course, borrowing is often done from more than “need” — a baron wants to build a new castle but doesn’t have the cash, a king wants to raise money for an army to send against his enemies but is short of scratch, and, of course, once the age of exploration began and capitalism started to develop, “borrowing” was actually “raising capital.” However, nobody, Christian or not, is going to lend money to somebody else to get rich unless they share in some of the return. Therefore, the only people willing to make significant loans were the only people who were allowed to charge interest — namely, the Jews. Which many did, and became very rich doing so. But becoming rich through lending money is an enterprise which is notoriously likely to provoke resentment. And being a rich “foreigner” in general is very likely to make you a lightning rod for the anger of the peasantry. And this is exactly what happened in England — aided and abetted, of course, by the ruling classes who had the perfect scapegoat at the ready — “you’re not starving and living like animals because of an oppressive social structure. It’s all the fault of those usurious Jews. Just look how rich they are and how poor you are.” This had absolutely zip to do with “anti-semitic incitement” by priests.

          But don’t feel you have to learn anything. The most important thing when you’ve been taught a simple principle as a child (“the Jews killed Christ” “Christian priests were responsible for the deaths of millions of Jews”) is not to read anything that might possible contradict what you already know. I mean, if the Jews DIDN’T kill Christ and/or priests WEREN’T responsible for the deaths of millions of Jews, we’d all have to start reexamining our most basic worldviews, and you know what a huge pain in the ass that is.

          • Yoreh K'chetz (aka Phil) February 12, 2011, 7:03 PM

            Catholic mom,

            Fact stands that christians were responsible for the death of more Jews than all other religious groups combined, and the church with it’s leaders were behind much of it. Maybe the English or Swedish were more tolerant than the Spanish or Germans. Modern day Americans are even more tolerant. Doesn’t change my view of the church one bit.

            As for the English “saints”, read up on how Jews were treated by the English in Palestine and in the aftermath of the holocaust when they were were trying to get into Palestine. The majority were rabid antisemites.

            Getting back to the dudes defrocked for breaking they “celibacy” by h0m0s*xual rape of little boys, they are fair game, just as are rabbis that do similar things.

            As much as the church hates it, more of these allegations arise every day, from all over. Maybe they should rethink their celibacy laws before they lose all their credibility… Then again, maybe they shouldn’t, I’ll throw a party when they collapse.

            • Catholic Mom February 12, 2011, 7:27 PM

              Whoa whoa whoa!! Who the heck called the English “saints”?? I was raised to despise the English and all of Irish history as taught by the Irish is basically “the story of how the English screwed us.” In Irish, the equivalent of the “N” word is “sassenach” which means “saxon” — it’s the lowest thing you can call anybody. Of COURSE the English screwed the Jews in Palestine. The English screwed everybody they came within 1,000 miles of. Check out what they did in India, in South Africa, and everywhere else. The empire on which “the sun never set and the blood never dried.”

              But YOU said that the Jews were persecuted all over Europe (England included) with “millions” being killed as a result of religious “incitement” by priests against the Jews which is just totally a crock of horse manure.

              Sure the English were (are) screaming racists and anti-semites. But the Jews aren’t even close to the top of the list of the people they consider themselves racially superior to. I remember as a kid reading the great children’s classic “The Once and Future King” and coming to the part where T. H. White has Merlin discoursing on why the entire Celtic “race” is made up of losers and whiners with an eternal inferiority complex and chip on their shoulders.

              • Yoreh K'chetz February 13, 2011, 7:33 AM

                Catholic mom,

                Millions of Jews WERE killed by christians in Europe, no sense in trying to deny it unless you live in Tehran.

                Most were killed in countries with large Jewish populations, namely, Germany, Spain, Russia and Poland. Almost every pogrom and blood libel was started by a priest, and there were thousands of them. The inquisition was headed by the church as well.

                Just because they didn’t teach this to you in school, doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. I personally know survivors who lost family members as a direct result of incitement by the local priest. Pogroms in Eastern Europe happened almost on a WEEKLY basis, mainly in regions under the former Soviet union.

                If the Irish church doesn’t have much of a history of killing Jews, it’s because Ireland didn’t have much of a Jewish community compared to the Eastern European countries I mentioned.

                Before shitting all over and denying Jewish history, find out the facts from the people that it happened to. You may soon realize that your priests have been spoon feeding you loads of horse manure.

                • Catholic Mom February 13, 2011, 7:54 AM

                  Please give me one single historical reference for the statement that “MILLIONS of Jews were killed all over Europe.” This is nothing to do with “holocaust denial.” It’s the opposite — there is NO historical evidence to support what you say. Not one single book. You just made it up.

                  Sure pograms occured in Poland. But YOU said that significant pograms were 1) occuring all over Europe 2) directly incited by priests 3) and resulted in the deaths of millions. Cite one single independent scholar (like somebody who teaches at a major university) who says that.

                  As far as the inquisition — the greatest scholar on the inquisition in the world (who is an Israeli who teaches at Hebrew University) says that 5,000 Jews may have been killed in the inquisition. Terrible?? Of course. But not within 100 miles of your statement that 1) millions were killed and 2) this was happening on a regular basis throughout Europe. The inquisition was not aimed primarily at Jews and a lot more non-Jews were killed by the inquisition than Jews.

                  And if I may just throw out a thought — if modern Israeli were suddenly transported back in time 1,000 years and there was no modern democracy etc. how much would you like to bet that some of the charedi groups in Israel would stage an inquistion that would be an even match for the Spanish one?? A lot of those guys would love to clean up on the heretics. They’d do it right now if they weren’t restrained by the law.

                  • Yoreh K'chetz February 13, 2011, 8:53 AM

                    Catholic mom,

                    I don’t base my facts on some hippie university teacher may have said, I base them on handed stories handed down from generation to generation. Most pogroms went unreported and weren’t and didn’t make the morning headlines on CNN.

                    Pogroms occurred over a period of 500-600 years, starting in Mainze around 1100, and culminating in the holocaust. Typically, a local priest you incite a crowd during a sermon, they would then go on a rampage looting, pillaging, raping and murdering in the Jewish districts, under the auspices of local squires. They would go from village to village, usually over a few days. Jews were constantly on the run, hoping to find safety, only to have the next priest take example and do the same. I know many people whose great-grandparents lived through them.

                    To say that only 5000 were killed during the inquisition is ridiculous, it ommits the fact that close to 1 million Jews were expulsed from Spain, where they had lived for at least 400 years. Thousands that didn’t want to lose everything (mainly the very rich ones) stayed behind and underwent forced conversion, thinking they would be safe. The church still had their greedy eyes on them, and typically arrested and tortured them until they “confessed”, at which point their estates all became property of the church and they were burned in public.

                    The 6 million Jews (including 2 million children) that were murdered during the holocaust were the ones that we have stats on, as the germans kept accurate records. In countries invaded by Germany, the local priests were the first to blame their misfortunes on the Jews, often using it as an excuse to go on their own rampages.

                    My own grandparents, relatives and other survivors I know, saw this happen with their own eyes, so I’ll take their word for it over that of some holocaust denying jackass professor.

                    And as for the Jewish religion being “racist”, I’ll be the first to admit that were were commanded to expulse or wipe out all the nations and other religions in our land. That doesn’t make me have any higher view of the church or it’s priests. After being attacked on all fronts, had Israel expulsed all arabs when they were on the run, we’d have a lot less problems in Israel today.

                    • Catholic Mom February 13, 2011, 10:13 AM

                      “I don’t base my facts on some hippie university teacher may have said, I base them on handed stories handed down from generation to generation. ”

                      Well, there you have it then.

                    • Yoreh K'chetz February 13, 2011, 10:22 AM

                      Catholic mom,

                      You can keep your head in the sand as long as you wish, it doesn’t surprise me one bit. Good for you if it makes you feel better.

                      I, on the other hand, know the people that lived through it, no matter how much your leaders and professors try to cover up history.

                      Just think that if “only” 1000 Jews were murdered over the entire continent of Europe every year over 1000 years, the tally is already up to 1 million. When you add those that were beaten, robbed, expulsed and left to die of their wounds or starvation, the numbers amount to many more, not to mention periods were many more than 1000 were killed thought the 50 or so countries they lived in.

                    • Yankel February 13, 2011, 2:09 PM

                      Catholic Mom,

                      Until here, although I disagreed with your overall opinion and some of your premises, you at least argued like a mentch. You said things which at least made some sense.

                      By ignoring what happened and the facts of history which have been handed down to us, based on nothing other than the absence of the killers own accounts of the atrocities, you’ve stooped pretty low.

                      If not due to the disgraceful argument itself, then because of the lives of those who were unfortunate enough to have to live through it, just to have you one day deny it ever happened.

                  • anonymous February 13, 2011, 12:00 PM

                    Catholic Mom, admittedly, I’m not a scholar. But there are more documented massacres than you are citing, such as the Crusades (which swept across Europe). And while there may not have been more than several thousand Jews actually put to death by the Inquisition, of the probably thousands that fled Spain, many died/were killed while fleeing, which is a direct result of the expulsion.
                    And like Phil says, there were many, many undocumented pogroms, from the Middle Ages (remember, Jews were accused of spreading the Black Plague) to fairly recent times ( my grandfather told me about a pogrom he lived through in Russia, as a child–, where he and his family hid in their attic for several days, arming themselves with knives from their Pesach silverware in case the mob would break into their house. He also told my father many times about the fact that in Russia the Jews knew to stay home on Xmas, as any Jews outside on that day were liable to be attacked by Christians. )

                    • Catholic Mom February 13, 2011, 4:51 PM

                      Nobody is saying Jews weren’t ever persecuted in Eastern and Western Europe. Lots of people were persecuted in Eastern and Western Europe. Gypsies were persecuted in Eastern and Western Europe. A minimum of 1 million Irish starved to death between 1845 and 1852 while England, who had annexed the country in 1831, pretty much sat by and watched (and continued to demand what food WAS produced in the form of land rent) because they considered it the most expedient way to clear the Catholics out of Ireland. Two million Irish (1/4 of the entire population) emmigrated during the famine, of whom thousands died in “coffin ships.” Two hundred years earlier the Irish were “expelled” from THEIR OWN COUNTRY when Cromwell invaded Ireland and cleared the Irish out of Northern Ireland in an attempt to pacify it (and re-populate it with Protestants). The Scottish “crofters” were cleared from the land in almost exactly the same way. Lot of people died in the process.

                      So, a lot of sh*& happened to a lot of people in Europe over the last 2,000 years and a lot of people got “expelled” from various places when the ruling powers didn’t want them there, and a lot of people suffered horribly and died as a result.

                      Did Jews face especially more suffering than any other ethnic/religious group in Europe? Did “millions” of Jews die as a result? Was this all the fault of the “priests” who continually incited the peasantry to violence against the Jews?

                      And the answer is:

                      no evidence that this is so,

                      absolutely not, and

                      generally no, except in some Eastern European countries during some specific periods

                    • anonymous February 13, 2011, 5:08 PM

                      Plus, where do you think the term “blood libel” comes from? It only ever referred to Jews–and always had to do with religion based pogroms.

                    • Yoreh K'chetz (aka Phil) February 13, 2011, 5:24 PM

                      Catholic mom,

                      There you go again, off in your imaginary world. Jews were barely tolerated in many European countries, often not being allowed to own property or practice certain professions. And those were the “good times”. Their reality was more often a lot worse.

                      The hatred they faced was very often instigated by priests, who happened to take advantage of the ignorance of uneducated peasants that gobbled everything they were told.

                      If you’re trying to convince blog readers that Jews didn’t “have it so bad” in Europe, you’re better off on Storm Front or some other white supremacist blog, not on a blog frequented by frum Jews that know better.

                      I’m done debating this silly argument with you, like I said you can keep your head in the sand as long as you wish, I shouldn’t expect any better from a follower of the church.

                      Your denial of what happened is typical of those trying to cover up the ugly truth about your religious leaders, and frankly, it’s quite insulting to the memory of those that died.

                    • anonymous February 13, 2011, 5:30 PM

                      Also, forgot to mention: at some point in history, Jews have been expelled from every country/continent, other than America and Australia. (This includes Arab countries, btw, and covers western Europe as well–including England.) No other group of people have been continuously expelled from so many places based solely on religion.

                    • Yoreh K'chetz (aka Phil) February 13, 2011, 6:03 PM


                      I once read something about Jews being expelled from a central American Country, can’t remember if it was Nicaragua or Panama.

                      And though Jews haven’t officially been expelled from Venezuela (yet), many have left and many more will leave as long as Chavez is in power. They realize good and well that things can change drastically from one day to the next.

                      And though the US and Canada have been very Jew friendly over the past 30-40 years, many districts wouldn’t allow Jews to buy property until the 60s.

    • A. Nuran February 11, 2011, 2:07 PM

      Something about glass houses and stones. Our past is none too rosy. Our religion is based on genocide, racism, arrogance and contempt for the rest of the world.

      • rationalist frummie February 11, 2011, 4:30 PM

        Can you provide any examples to back up the outlandish statements you are making

        • A. Nuran February 11, 2011, 5:01 PM

          Sure. Try treading Tanach or Rashi some time. Then take a look at Tanya and Maimonedes. I’m sorry my Jewish education doesn’t go much further than that, but it’s there even in the basics.

          • rationalist frummie February 11, 2011, 5:18 PM

            I meant actual examples, not just throwing out names of books you know that Judaism reveres. Quote me a pasuk from the Torah or a rashi that encourages racism or genocide. It is true that the Rambam did not think highly of black people but he was not advocating for genocide. get your facts straight

          • rationalist frummie February 11, 2011, 5:19 PM

            and the Tanya is a work by a Chabad rebbe, not something everyone agrees with.

            • Yoreh K'chetz February 13, 2011, 10:37 AM

              Rationalist frumie,

              The Torah is full of verses that command us to utterly destroy the Canaanites and other nations living in Israel at the time of the conquest. Read Devarim (Deuteronomy), and see how many times genocide is called for, of the top of my head I’d guess between 50-100 times.

              Yehoshua led the conquest into the land after the death of Moses. Under his leadership, we annihilated 31 kings, and the majority of the areas people. Whenever later leaders took pity on the inhabitants, Jews eventually intermingled with them which led to most of their problems (read shoftim, Shmuel, Melachim, etc).

              Rambam rules throughout Mishneh Torah about not trusting non Jews. According to him, they are always suspect or murder, rape, robbery and various assorted crimes. He lived through being expulsed from Spain by fanatic muslims (almohades). After fleeing to Israel, he was again forced to leave because of the crusades. One can hardly blame him for his views. Just ask any Aushwitz survivors how they feel about germans.

              • rationalist frummie February 13, 2011, 11:26 AM

                Once the Jews came into Eretz Yisrael and captured the land, they did not keep fighting for world conquest. Most powers of the time were intent on capturing as much land as they could. The Jews were satisfied with just having Israel and not being greedy for more land. That is a key difference.

                • Yoreh K'chetz February 13, 2011, 11:45 AM

                  Rationalist Frummie,

                  I don’t disagree. In fact, the only nations we were commanded to annihilate were the ones in Israel’s biblical borders, I think Amalek was the only exception, and that’s because they attacked us first.

                  Israel was given the right to go out on conquest for additional territory, but the rules of those conquests were less severe .

                  Either way, we are commanded not to have any pity on our enemies, and do to them what they would do to us if given the chance. That’s where modern day Israel’s leaders are wrong in saying “were better than them” or “were not barbarians”, etc. Arabs see any form of giving in as a sign of weakness, and can only be dealt with using an iron fist.

                  Despite of what TV’s so called experts may think, you can’t have American style democracy in those countries. They have always been governed by the strongest group with the most weapons, and that’s not about to change despite what Hillary or Hussein Obama may claim.

          • s(b.) February 12, 2011, 7:26 PM

            A. Nuran, king Polyanna. šŸ™‚
            The living Judaism I practice isn’t based on that. I won’t deny that the part about destroying Amalek is pretty darn … destructive. But every story has a lesson, even if it’s not to be taken literally, right? I get annoyed by people making statements like “if we don’t … , then Hitler wins.” You know what? Hitler’s dead. There is no fighting a dead guy. Judaism existed for thousands of years before Hitler was a gleam in his father’s eye. WWII was just awful — so many of my relatives died — but that’s not on what I’ll base my Judaism.

    • Mahla February 11, 2011, 4:33 PM

      I do not feel it’s fair to blame people for what their ancestors did though.

      Now, what these priests themselves did, that’s a different story. Supposed men of God should not abuse anyone! But there’s no valid reason to bring people’s forefathers’ forefathers’ forefathers into it.

      • Yoreh K'chetz (aka Phil) February 12, 2011, 3:53 PM


        I wasn’t blaming people for what their ancestors did. I’m blaming the church, and institution that was responsible for most of the torment Jews suffered over the last 1000-1500 years.

        The priests were behind most of it, so I have no love them. Therefore, I enjoy bashing them. It’s that simple.

        The church today is no better than they were 50 or 500 years ago. Given the opportunity, I don’t doubt for 1 second that they would repeat the past. They continue to make saints out of sickos, the ex nazi pope is just another proof.

        The only good thing in the picture is that these perverted lowlifes aren’t allowed to marry or have kids, at least their genes end up 6 feet under where they belong.

      • Yankel February 13, 2011, 1:53 PM


        If these are the students of such people, studying and living by the works, writings, and philosophy of these people, and if the entire religion has been an almost direct chain of these people, why are they not fair game?

  • peretz February 11, 2011, 7:52 AM

    Chasidim have the oddest minhag. The boy has a devar torah prepared,and as soon as he starts,his classmates all start singing and drown him out. I suppose ,being as good at public speaking as most of us,he`s grateful. but it just seems silly.

    In another way,it shows how minhagim get started and held onto. Soon,if you actually let the boy speak,you`ll be called an apikores.

  • ish_elokim February 11, 2011, 10:57 AM

    there is no mekor to throw anything at a bar mitzvah. the minhag is only by a chosson the shabbos before he gets married (as for forgiveness for his sins-sort of like s’kilah) also there is a old minhag to throw nuts(egos/im) which are the numerical value of chait (if it is off by one its not a problem-that’s the rule by gematrias) , either after an aliah, or after (laiyning-depends on the shul) the haftorah.
    this “new” fad of thrownig pekalach/candies at a bar mitzvah is all made up (probably) by some hot chanie mother who thought it was a “cute” idea, or by a friend of the boy who hates his guts and wants him to get hurt

    another reason for a chosson is because he is starting a new life (with his wife)-and so we “stone” him with nuts to get rid of his sins and start a new life

    sorry if I’m being repetitive

  • san February 16, 2011, 5:43 AM

    shut up. people aren’t you guys supposed to love one another. anyway it’s not that big of a deal wheter or not whose opinion is right. everyone’s entitled to an opinion its a free country. no offense but all you people are stupid. fighting over something so dumb and inconsiderate. people are just being igonorant . so shut the fuck up. this isn’t a debate club its a blog for your information. so if you want to form a debate club get your own damn blog and say what you want to say.

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