Friday, November 6, 2015

Rav Leib Landesman's psak against Tamar Epstein's heter to remarry without a Get

פסק דין בעניין קידושי טעות by Rav Leib Landesman


  1. New version: she knew he was 'ill' for four months, was intimate with him 'chayei ishut' for the four months, then found out there's no medication for it. Never claimed this in baltimore bet din, never claimed it in her 'notes', never claimed it in extensive, very contentious civil court case in which this would have been very relevant, the (civil) judge was very impressed by the husban, yet . . .he is 'mentally ill' . . .

  2. Kethuboth 77a:

    The following are compelled to divorce [their wives]: a man who is afflicted
    with boils, or has a polypus, or gathers [objectionable matter] or is a
    coppersmith or a tanner, whether they were [in such conditions or positions]
    before they married or whether they arose after they had married. and
    concerning all these R. Meir said: although the man made a condition with her
    [that she acquiesces in his defects] she may nevertheless plead, I thought I
    could endure him, but now I cannot endure him. The sages, however, said: she
    must endure [any such person] despite her wishes, the only exception being a
    man afflicted with boils, because she [by her intercourse] will enervate him.
    It once happened at Zidon that there died [Without leaving any issue] a tanner
    who had a brother [It is the duty of the surviving brother to contract the
    levirate marriage with the widow (v. Deut. XXV, 5ff)] who was also a tanner.
    The sages ruled: she may say, I was able to endure your brother but I cannot
    endure you.

    I read through the whole letter---beautiful, well
    reasoned, learned, scholarly, a pleasure, thank you, God bless you.

    My interpretation of Kethuboth 77a is that women
    critically want a man that they can have pleasant sex and get pregnant and have
    babies from. Otherwise, a proper bait
    din may compel the man to divorce her, but never to permit her to remarry without
    a get.

  3. Didn't yet have time to finish entire teshuva, but regarding the time delay of her moving out would like to make the following point. When a person buys anything, say a new car, he takes it home and drives it. On the 3rd day, it doesn't start right away. The person says, maybe weather was colder, and it needed more time, or was just some kind of glitch. Then a week later it again had a problem, and person begins to wonder. Finally after a few times, the person realizes it was defective and complains to dealer.

    With a marriage, a person doesn't really know spouse right away. Any unusual behavior might be misinterpreted as a one time thing or a bad reaction to something. Anybody can get upset if a major catastrophe occurs. A newlywed can't possibly know if the spouse is normal and well-adjusted, but was upset because she threw out his treasured, signed baseball from Babe Ruth, thinking it was an old toy, or whether he really has issues. Only over the course of time would it be clear that he really may be prone to impossible and irrational behavior. How can she know right away? It clearly takes time to see if there is a pattern, or a one-time explainable episode.

    And even when a person is certain that the behavior is due to a clear problem, it often takes time until they can make arrangements to find a new place to live that they can afford. People don't move out immediately when they have no place to go, even if they are certain they are getting divorced. Also, sometimes they are too embarrassed to move out, as the whole community will find out, so they stay and suffer, until they can muster up strength to pick up and leave.

    A marriage is not like buying a glass tray, which if it arrives broken, everybody can see, and send it back the first day. It takes time to know if there is a problem, and if it can be solved or not. Stating that if she didn't leave first day means savra vkibla is not correct.

  4. fedupwithcorruptrabbisNovember 6, 2015 at 4:01 PM

    A Letter from Landesman is worthless as he is known to have arranged kidnapping of men which constitutes Get Meusa and now he might be afraid to lose business to Kaminetsky/Greenblatt who perhaps charge less money for an anullment. He was exposed in one of Rabbi Gestetners letters on the Goldstein kidnapping case , To see this letter, send an email to: and put in the subject line 1024 and make sure nothing else is written on the body of the email. Again just on the subject line 1024 and you will retrieve this letter.

  5. Rabbi Landesman was almost mechavein to what I said about this. I mean, that he quotes Reb Moshe Feinstein that it is only possible to negate a marriage if there is absolutely no possibility to get a GET, and the husband would give a GET in this case if he had better custody rights. This is the key. No posek other than Reb Moshe permits a negation of a GET and Reb Moshe says that it is only possible if the husband won't give a GET. But in my blog I add to this. Rav Henkin says that nobody ever heard of these things and there is no mention of it anywhere. This is also obvious from Kesubose 72 and 73 and the Mishneh there, and the Shulchan Aruch EVEN 37,38,39 and 117. If so, Rabbi Greenblatt, a disciple of Reb Moshe, defied Reb Moshe, and in the process, is left without a single posek to rely on. THAT IS THE KEY!

  6. All nice lomdisha theories, but Rav Moshe rules l'halacha not as you suggest.

  7. Dear David, the two cases where Reb Moshe used mekach taus to be mafkia kiddushin (koach gavra or mishkav zachor) were immediately apparent issues that didn't require any time to determine the existence of the problem. A personality disorder is a different situation. (Note that I am not in any way endorsing the idea that Tamar's husband does have such a problem. He may be a wonderful, ehrlich fellow, as far as I'm concerned.) I am only discussing the lomdus of the case as presented. If in fact personality issues do qualify as mekach taus, then how long is a reasonable amount of time? (Note further that Reb Moshe's cases were objective, whereas a personality issue is subjective, and one could argue that it doesn't qualify as mekach taus because of tav lmetav tan du, as the teshuvah tries to argue. Nevertheless, I personally can't see how it is fair to force a woman to live with a person who has personality issues that are so repulsive to her that had she known, she would never have agreed. That is what RSK is arguing. If we accept that, then the issue of timing needs to be determined.)

    Note that even when buying a pair of shoes, there may be a 30-day return policy. Are you implying that a woman should be able to decide in one day whether she can live with possibly abnormal behavior for the rest of her life?

    And if in fact you do believe that, then at least all mesadrei kiddushin should explain the rules to all kallahs beforehand, that if they notice any problem with their husbands, they must move out the first day it happens, or be stuck for life. What will the result then be? At the first minor disagreement, a kallah will run back to her parents in fright, instead of making an effort to see if they can work it out. This is an untenable state of affairs that will ruin many perfectly good marriages.


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