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Friday, January 08, 2016

What I Expect from a Frum News Website

I expect frum news websites to:
  • Follow Halacha when reporting the news
  • Be discerning as to which news items to report
  • Not be involved in character assassination ככל הגוים אשר סביבותי
  • Not join forces with the agenda of enemies of Torah
  • Not be swayed by evil segments of social media to attack rabbanim
  • Not take years-old material as a "Gotcha!" article
  • Not be PC (politically correct), but be TC (Torah correct)
  • Attack those who attack Torah - not those who bring people closer to it
  • Refrain from giving Mussar to tzadikkim publicly
  • Not pile on someone who has been rebuked and apologized
  • Accept apologies when given and ignore those who don't
  • Not hound tzadikkim with article after article with derogatory news against them
  • Know the rules of לשון הרע and follow them
  • Know that not reporting something derogatory is better than doing so
  • Not choose pageviews over propriety
  • Not lie by saying they have no agenda when they clearly do

Unfortunately, I have been sorely disappointed this week from the "frum" news websites.  I clearly must either revise my expectations or else consider these sites beyond the pale.  I choose the latter.

I therefore BL"N will not be linking to some of these "frum" websites any longer as part of my Interesting Recent Links posts - barring any public apology forthcoming - lest someone be led to believe that these sites are actually frum.

(See also herehere, here, and here.)

12 Comments:

At Fri Jan 08, 11:26:00 AM 2016, Blogger Ronnie Rendel said...

Frum websites, and even these blogs for that matter are technically bitul Torah at best. With that said, there is good that comes out of everything.

 
At Fri Jan 08, 11:52:00 AM 2016, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Funny, I decided to do the same thing as a result of this episode. I'm not even R' Mizrachi's biggest fans - I just like to listen to him once in a while.

 
At Fri Jan 08, 12:15:00 PM 2016, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree pure lashon hara

 
At Fri Jan 08, 01:14:00 PM 2016, Blogger bigben said...

It is noble to defend the kedoshim from slander and calumny. Everything else is secondary at this moment. Although you may have some valid points about the frum websites, please don't overlook this tragedy. KKK is quoting a Rabbi for Holocaust denial.

 
At Fri Jan 08, 01:50:00 PM 2016, Blogger yaak said...

bigben,


It is noble to defend the kedoshim from slander and calumny.

I agree. However, it is ignoble to do it the way that it was done. We're talking about a great Mezakeh Harabim here in Rabbi Mizrachi. To take a video that was a number of years old and use it in a "Gotcha!" style to shame such a Tzadik is something I would expect from some of the less-reputable blogs and Facebook users out there. A real frum news site would go over to him and explain to him how he is wrong - not shame him with article after article to assassinate his character - even after he apologized. How low have we stooped!

Everything else is secondary at this moment.

Really?!?! So it is OK to be over issur after issur to defend the Kedoshim?!?! Especially after he apologized?!?! I vehemently disagree. The real issue here is the explicit Lashon Hara against a great rabbi in Kelal Yisrael.

please don't overlook this tragedy

Tragedy?!?! How has this turned into a tragedy - other than the way Rabbi Mizrachi has been treated?

KKK is quoting a Rabbi for Holocaust denial.

So what? Do I really care if KKK misquotes another Jew? Like they need an excuse to hate us. Anyone who thinks that Rabbi Mizrachi supports or even supported Holocaust denial needs to get their head examined. The difference between the two is night and day to any discerning person.

 
At Fri Jan 08, 10:02:00 PM 2016, Blogger 10rainbow said...

blessed shabbat and thanks yy. what you wrote is like a breath
of fresh air. a true light to all nations. i would also like to add that even non jews
or non observant jews should not be maligned either. all my orthodox
rabbis have taught that
all human beings are made in G-d's image. From Adam came all mankind.
but the the instructions
and laws differ greatly and for the non j world its less stringent.


"Malachi said (2:10): “Have we not all one father? Has not one God created us? Why do we deal treacherously every man against his brother…? Human dignity is based on the belief that we were all created in the image of God. Prejudice, racism, sexism are totally inconsistent with Torah ideals. The classic argument between Rabbi Akiva and Ben Azzai (Jerusalem Talmud, Nedarim 9:4) as to which is the fundamental principal that summarizes the entire Torah. Rabbi Akiva believed that it was the verse (Leviticus 19:18) “You shall love your fellow as yourself.” Ben Azzai disagreed and felt that it was the verse (Genesis 5:1) “This is the book of the generations of Adam. On the day that God created man, He made him in the likeness of God.” From the principle of loving your fellow human being as yourself, one can deduce “that which is hateful to you, do not do to others.” A lofty ideal but problematic if one does not much care about his own dignity. One who accepts the view that all of humankind was made in the likeness of God must respect all people, regardless of how s/he feels about her/himself (Pnei Moshe, see also Torah Temimah on Genesis 5:1). Amsel (1994) quotes the Midrash (Genesis Rabbah 24:7) that maintains when you insult another person you have insulted his Creator, i.e., God, because man was created in the image of God."

""the Meiri (Babylonian Talmud, Berachot 19b) proclaims that the attribute of kvod habriot is very precious and there is no virtue more beloved than it. Human dignity is important to all of humankind. The General Assembly of the United Nations adopted “The Universal Declaration of Human Rights” on December 10, 1948. Article 1 of the Declaration states: “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.” René Samuel Cassin, one of the major architects of this declaration, was a French Jew and he won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1968. He did not hide the fact that the idea of human dignity and rights came from the Scriptures (see his essay “From the Ten Commandments to the Rights of Man”)."



 
At Sat Jan 09, 10:24:00 AM 2016, Blogger Neshama said...

Kol HaKavod.

 
At Sat Jan 09, 04:00:00 PM 2016, Blogger Devash said...

Yasher koach.

 
At Sat Jan 09, 10:40:00 PM 2016, Anonymous Anonymous said...

We should start a campaign against these "Frum" to stop people from entering these destructive websites. I know it might be hard for some user to not check the what's going on in the Frum world and Israel, but we must accept it as a sacrifice to not let Loshon hara enable being watched by "We the Viewers" that support these websites due to the amount of "views" these websites sell. There are other ways we can get our news from. Like Rabbi Mizrachi said "all of them report the same news".

Let's call this campaign:
Boycott The L"H
Or BLH

If it doesn't follow the 16 rules yak pointed out, Boycott it, remove it from bookmarks, don't view(support it). Maybe they will release an apology and change their ways. The more pressure we place by not viewing, the faster the will repent.

It's not about making the Internet more kosher which is impossible to do. It's about teaching a few yidden a lesson that they will appreciate one day.

 
At Sun Jan 10, 09:26:00 PM 2016, Blogger bigben said...

Are you also going to dismiss the Novominsker Rebbe's and Rabbi Wein's protests?
The loshon Hora which needs to be addressed is the motzi shem ra on the 6 million kedoshim, for which an adequate apology has not been given.
I am distressed at the way this has been shrugged off by certain "bloggers".
This was not a mathematical error, but an attack on the kedoshim. Perhaps a hundred of my relatives ( grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins and other were killed by the nazis yemach shemom, and they were all Jewish; none were intermarried. The REAL ISSUE IS TO PROTEST THE LOSHON HORA DIRECTED AT THE KEDOSHIM, AND THOSE WHO SPEAK UP TO THEM, NOT TO THE OUTRAGOUS SLANDER WHO HIDES BEHIND A FALSE CHARGE OF LOSHON HORA.

 
At Sun Jan 10, 11:31:00 PM 2016, Blogger yaak said...

bigben,

Are you also going to dismiss the Novominsker Rebbe's and Rabbi Wein's protests?

Of course not, and they have a right to disagree. And everyone has a right to argue on - and should argue on - Rav Mizrachi's original statement. But if you notice, their disagreements only objected to the statement - not Rav Mizrachi himself. Rav Mizrachi retracted the statement and apologized for it, so there should no longer be an issue here. The fact that the Novominsker Shlit"a was only protesting the statement was verified by Rav Mizrachi on the Zev Brenner show.

The loshon Hora which needs to be addressed is the motzi shem ra on the 6 million kedoshim, for which an adequate apology has not been given.

False. An adequate apology has been given. What else do you want him to do? A person made a mistake. Rabbis make mistakes all the time. Not all admit to them. He did. He should be commended for his actions - not condemned. He more than apologized for it.

I am distressed at the way this has been shrugged off by certain "bloggers".

I am distressed at your distress. The statement was not shrugged off - it was privately dismissed across the board. No blogger I know agreed with the original statement. But any attempt to villify Rabbi Mizrachi for this is pure Rish'ut. And another thing: Why is "bloggers" in scare quotes?

This was not a mathematical error, but an attack on the kedoshim. Perhaps a hundred of my relatives ( grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins and other were killed by the nazis yemach shemom, and they were all Jewish; none were intermarried.

False again. This was purely a mathematical error. Why are you not being dan lechaf Zechut here? It was a guzma that was based on a mathematical error. He explained that he didn't realize that there was no assilimilation in Poland and Russia. It was said not ח"ו to be Motzi La'az on the Kedoshim, but to address a larger issue of assimilation - a silent holocaust that is destroying more people than the Holocaust 70 years ago.

The REAL ISSUE IS TO PROTEST THE LOSHON HORA DIRECTED AT THE KEDOSHIM, AND THOSE WHO SPEAK UP TO THEM, NOT TO THE OUTRAGOUS SLANDER WHO HIDES BEHIND A FALSE CHARGE OF LOSHON HORA.

False a third time. There was no slander to speak up for - especially after the apology. "FALSE CHARGE OF LOSHON HORA"?!?! Really?!?! Villifying a tzaddik is not Lashon Hara in your book?!?!

No! The real issue here is the news sites who claim to be frum that wish to assassinate the character of a man who has given his heart and soul to bringing people closer to Yiddishkeit and people hiding behind the claim of "What about the kedoshim?" Believe me, the Kedoshim, who know the Emet in Shamayim, were already מוחלים. It's about time everyone else was too.

 
At Mon Jan 11, 11:49:00 AM 2016, Blogger yaak said...

B"H, Rabbi Mizrachi went Lifnim mishurat hadin and made a personal apology to Dr. Katz here, which was accepted.

 

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