I was in Berkeley for shabbos and the scholar in residence was this Rabbi who tries to spread the “Jews should save the environment” gospel, which I’m a bit iffy on. I wondered what the point of having a Jewish environmentalist speak to a shul full of Jewish environmentalists was, the modern orthodox shul in Berkeley uses compostable forks made of corn for God sake and they have 4 different garbage cans – so I doubt his speach made any impact whatsoever on the shul.
He spoke about the Jewish responsibility to the environment, which I agree with, but many orthodox Jews don’t or they just don’t care and I was wondering about that. After I slept through half the speech I started thinking about frummies and the environment and how it makes no sense that they wouldn’t be more active in trying to save it.What that entails is up for a big debate, my theory is that buying local would make a huge difference, but who am I?
Then again, frummies tend to be right wing and somehow, somewhere along the line the right wingers decided to be against environmental movements and the lefties decided to be pro, so naturally many frum folks think that “believing” in global warming or trying to recycle are left wing agenda items and they refuse to be associated with the evil baby killing, drug using, gun banning, communist lefties.
I heard a pretty frum friend of mine say that “it’s all fun and games until Lakewood is under 20 feet of water, then they will wake up and realize that it shouldn’t just be treated as another political issue.” I don’t know about the science behind it, but I every orthodox person right or left who works in the science fields has told me that Global Warming exists and is a problem (at least for those living in the south)
So do Jews have any sort of responsibility to the environment? Should we try to be a light unto the nations when it comes to the environment? Or we do we just brush it off as another left wing immoral agenda?