Monday, July 16, 2012

On Vigilantism & AMI's embarrassing Editorial

Vos Iz Neias by Rabbi Yair Hoffman   With due respect, I would like to take issue with Rabbi Yitzchok Frankfurter’s recent editorial (Ami Magazine p. 8 July 11, 2012) regarding religious vigilantism, Jewish history, and bloggers.  Rabbi Frankfurter has distinguished himself as a highly intelligent thinker on the Jewish scene, with a sensitivity to the Torah’s values on some very important issues that have arisen in our community. 

Nonetheless, it is my feeling that he has taken an incorrect position in this editorial on the issue of recent acts of religiously motivated vigilantism that have been highlighted in the media, primarily in Israel, but even here in New York

Rabbi Frankfurter writes, “contrary to what some bloggers might think, religious vigilantism over Jewish history was not an altogether negative phenomenon.”

It must be clearly understood that “vigilantism” was never a protective shield.  It has always undermined the notion of law and order and is antithetical to one of the principal notions of the seven Noachide laws – the establishment of a legal system.  Indeed, even the killing of Zimri by Pinchas, as Rabbi Frankfurter paradoxically points out, was not an act of vigilantism – the Halacha itself clearly dictates that Kanaim Pogim Bo is part of the Torah’s system of jurisprudence.


  1. Recipients and PublicityJuly 17, 2012 at 6:12 AM

    Just who is "Rabbi Yitzchok Frankfurter"?

  2. Encouraging vigilantism is encouraging hooliganism.

  3. "who is this Rabbi Ytzchok Frankfurter"

    According to some commentators on Vosizneias, he is the owner (or one of the owners) of Ami magazine (and therefore gets to write what he wants)


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