Dear Heshy: Moving out of New York is against halacha

Hey Hesh,

I read your piece on why frummies will never move out of New York with interest, but I have to disagree. It’s not that I love New York, it’s that I have an underlying feeling that moving out of the New York area is simply against halacha and this is probably the biggest reason people stay. Sure, the women may want to stay to be normal, but I can pretty much guaruntee you that the men are asking their Rav as to whether they should move out and their response is almost always “no”.

Now, you may say, if it were against halacha how can anyone ever leave New York. Well, the chabadnicks have a heter from the previous Rebbe, the yeshiva community is usually supporting some sort of kiruv brain drain thing in which they move a few couples out for a few years and then make locals frum and convince them to leave the city for New York or Israel. Others may be able to get heterim by being big donors or having some messed up kids at risk, but you don’t see too many normal people from Brooklyn going much further than Monsey or Far Rockaway.

You may not like New York for various reasons, but you do realize that spreading this loshon horah about New York is putting you in a serious breach of halacha. I read your site and enjoy it very much and rarely comment, but once in a while you push my buttons (which is probably your goal, though you’re too tame and fun loving to ever stoop to Shmarya’s level) It has been proven that those who move out of town tend to visit yeshivas less and eat less kosher pizza, they also tend to leave Jewish businesses without support and this is clearly a halachic breach. Less eating out equals less brachos and less brachos equals longer time for moshiach to come – you may say that those who eat out less will gain less weight and save money, but this seems to be antithetical to heimishe values which promote community over personal hygiene.

New York has all the services one could ever need, we have the most kosher pizza stores, minyan factories and bais yaakov’s. What will you do when your daughter turns 3 in San Francisco, where will you send her to school so she doesn’t turn into a lesbian? How will you prevent your sons from becoming gay, there are no gay people in the New York Jewish community so these issues are not issues at all. Think long and hard about these few facts before you cause others to stray because you, one person out of many, have found a good life away from New York Ir Hakodesh.

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