Isaac Kaplan

"Is it any wonder I've got too much time on my hands?"

Wednesday, June 30, 2004

A Satmar Stiroh

This thought came to mind when I was in the Monticello Wal-Mart this past Friday. Although the goyim rule the Catskills for 10 months of the year, we clearly outnumbered them in Wal-Mart on Friday. And the few goyim I saw were muttering to themselves about how the Jews were coming again. In fact, every year for the past few years, the local newspaper has had articles discussing how the locals don't like the Hasidim because they're unfriendly, messy, they double-park, etc. Like other desecrations of G-d's name, it bothers me greatly.

In fact, there was a story going around last year that this particular Wal-Mart has an extraordinarily higher number of returns than the other branches of the chain. Turns out, many Jews would buy items like air conditioners in the beginning of July, use them for two months, and then box them up and return them when the summer was over. Another horrible chillul Hashem.

And in the NYC newspapers, there have been reports of Satmar Hasidim in Williamsburg protesting the planned apartments in their neighborhood and the consequent skyrocketing in the real estate in that area. Williamsburg is becoming the next Village-esque trendy neighborhood, and the Hasidim want no part of these "invaders."

What I'm trying to figure out is, what do the Hasidim hold? If they believe in a libertarian shittoh that people can move to and live in area they want to and behave in any way they want to, in which case the goyim of the Catskills have no right to complain, then the Hasidim should keep their mouths shut! The changing of their enclave is just a part of capitalism, and the same way they can invade the Catskills and to hell with the consequences, the same holds true in Williamsburg.

But if you'll hold that people shouldn't move into a neighborhood and destroy and ruin the status quo (be it economically or whatever), so the Hasidim oughta clean up their act in the Catskills before they bother the people who want to build and live in their neighborhoods. The Hasidim can't eat their cake and have it too. So I say, let them clean up the mess in their backyard before they give others a hard time.


Blogger Steve Cohen said...

You already give them too much credit by even suggesting that they have a libertarian approach. I think one thing is clear, they believe that everything should be there way. They take "bishvili nivra haolam" very seriously. I don't know if what they do is based on a psychological approach, i.e. the fact that they feel society owes the Jews for what was done to them in the Holocaust or it's hashkafic and based on the fact that the rest of the world exists solely to support Jews and they need not be concerned about how they are treated. I believe, as you seem to, that neither reason is good enough to excuse what they are doing.

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