The Evil of “Unadulterated Freedom”: Roughly 40,000 Orthodox Jewish Men Gather In New York Stadium To Denounce The Internet

We previously saw how Orthodox Jews in New York prevailed upon the government to get rid of bike lanes in their neighborhoods to protect them from the sight of women on bikes. Now almost 40,000 men gathered in Citi Field to call for an end to the Internet as a danger to their faith. Women of course were not allowed to attend because that would also be an affront. They were allowed to watch . . . you guessed it . . . on the Internet.

The seven hour event cost $1.5 million and featured prominent Jewish leaders who railed against the Internet as corrupting the faithful by exposing them to outside ideas and influences. One participant is quoted as denouncing “unadulterated freedom” as a threat to religion.

One Rabbi warned that the “internet is a fire that burns a person’s body and soul.” Much like their counterparts in Iran, the religious leaders warned that having Internet access without approved filters and limiting software is immoral and violation of faith. Information going to them and their families must remain closely controlled and approved by their religious leaders.

Moreover, any family breaking these rules are to be “shunned” as corrupted.

The effort to keep roughly one million Orthodox Jews in self-imposed isolation is no easy task in a pluralistic and modern society. Yet, “unadulterated freedom” has been known to lead to . . . freedom.

Source: New York Daily News and Gizmodo

51 thoughts on “The Evil of “Unadulterated Freedom”: Roughly 40,000 Orthodox Jewish Men Gather In New York Stadium To Denounce The Internet

  1. I have a suggestion. They shold move to Iran where they will find conditions much more in line with their views. It is funny that all the religious fundamentalists think alike and would be quite happy in their own dictatorships. I am even more struck by the unholy alliance of the Catholic Church and the fundamentalist Protestants, who not too long ago hated each other, and still may. At least they have toned down their hatred of each other to team up to impose religious mandates on the rest of us. I wonder if this Jewish group will join that alliance of religious nuts.

  2. There is a big difference between freedom of religion and freedom from others’ religions or no religion. The first is a gracious blessing, a right accorded to all by all. The second a curse, serving inevitably as a curtailment of freedoms of all others’ freedoms by a few.

    In the latter, why not limit orthodox Jews to their own ghettos? That seems like a solution to the Jews’ problem.

    My, how fast tables can turn!

  3. Correction: “The second a curse, serving inevitably as a curtailment of all others’ freedoms by a few.”

    Need that third cup of coffee for clarity and longevity.

  4. >internet is a fire that burns a person’s body and soul.

    I don’t know about you but that sounds awesome.

  5. Insanity in individuals is something rare – but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule.” – Friedrich Nietzsche

  6. If they don’t like ‘unadulterated freedom’, which is why I presume their ancestors moved here in the first place, then they should move where no such thing exists: Iran, perhaps, or Saudi Arabia, or maybe they could move back to Russia, where so many of them came from.

    I’m sick and tired of religious fundamentalists of ALL faiths trying to tell everyone else in this country how to live- by their own narrow, un-American standards.

  7. The somewhat glib take on this seems to have missed a deeper point. The real problem seems to be that “”unadulterated freedom” has been known to lead to . . . freedom.” is often – and perhaps most often – not the case. Just the opposit. For example, people left Europe for religious freedom only to impose their religious beliefs on others; pre-nazi germany voted out democracy for a dictatorship; the Arab spring seems to be voting in more religious oppression; the U.S. seems hell bent on imposing more Religious lunacy.

    Apparently people need above all else something to believe in to make sense of what is basically unknowable, even if it means what they believe in is crazyier then simply accepting what we don’t know and making the best of it.

  8. The Rabbis are Right to Be Afraid

    I suspect most readers are, by now, chuckling to themselves—as, admittedly, I did myself. After all, the New York Times coverage of the event notes the sale of “kosher” smartphones that limit Internet use. This is funny stuff.

    But on second thought, aren’t the ultra-Orthodox right? This is an insular community that has built real and virtual walls to shield itself from secular influences. Aren’t they correct to worry that if their adherents surf the Internet, the community will suffer?

    Fear of reality.

  9. Ya gotta love the hats!
    if they don’t want their children to have the advantage of a wealth of information at their fingertips, that is their problem, not ours.

  10. I don’t understand. These patriarchs don’t have control of their own families? How do they know what’s on the internet? How do they know that others that they want to control access the internet? Or is the internet something they just found out about? I’ll bet they did some surfing themselves and burned their own body and soul or something. Maybe got to one of the porn sites and had unholy thoughts.

  11. They really should create their own ‘kosher’ Internet with only sites they approve as appropriate on them. As noted above several time, they could probably get a pretty good deal of support from the Christian and Islamic branches of the insanity tree. Naturally each would have some separate enclave protected from parts of the others to avoid heresy and blaspheme but at least 80% of the content could be shared.

  12. Why can’t religions realize that if they want their followers to believe and follow the tenents of their faith, that they need simply to get their followers to live a more religious life despite the temptation of sin around them?

    If these people believe the internet is bad then they should be telling their follows the internet is bad and unhealthy for their religious souls.

    Its just like Catholics being peeved about birth control… If your people aren’t supposed to take it, convince them of the ‘sin’ of it…don’t go for legal recourse to MAKE them stop it.

    How has one come closer to God because his religion got something outlawed so he cannot partake? Has he become a more upright follower if he has not been given the choice/opportunity to overcome a vice/sin?

  13. Still struggling to figure out how what they want is different from what the adherents of Sharia Law want.

  14. And did we not recently hear from someone here how they handle sexual abuse of children?

    We need a universal term, to take from them their hiding behind a god. Let’s just call them insane-OrthodoxJew, insane-Protestant, insane-Catholic, insane-muslims, insane-Sikhs, insane-whatever-freak-religion, etc——for they all are. And that’s find, just as long as they keep off
    my rights.

    And thanks Dredd for the Nietzche.

  15. @JCtBT – “Its just like Catholics being peeved about birth control… If your people aren’t supposed to take it, convince them of the ‘sin’ of it…don’t go for legal recourse to MAKE them stop it.”

    =================================

    A lot of us just nod graciously and move on to a more reasonable discussion topic.

  16. Take the pay telephones off the street corners too. And message flags on ships at sea. And tee shirts with messages on them. And newspapers.

  17. Right on idealist7.
    Of course “it’s fine, as long as…..”
    These people are free to be unfree.
    Sometimes our perception of what freedom is makes us wanna preach it (making us fanatics of “freedom”)and so we feel bad that other groups don’t see it the way we see it.
    What’s wrong with this group of people coming together to express their fears, and to define their own freedom?
    I don’t see a problem.
    In fact I don’t think of myself as free. I think I’m ok…I dabble in this life, and try as much as I can not to judge others(yet I’m doing it now).
    But I never consider somebody who drives a prius and shops at wholefoods market any freer than anybody else.
    I also happen to think that there is a lot of ideological intolerance among the so-called moderates…even when they quote Plato.
    Cheers

  18. “The most basic feature of the thought reform environment, the psychological current upon which all else depends, is the control of human communication. Through this milieu control the totalist environment seeks to establish domain over not only the individual’s communication with the outside world (all that he sees and hears, reads and writes, experiences, and expresses), but also – in its penetration of his inner life – over what we may speak of as his communication with himself. It creates an atmosphere uncomfortably reminiscent of George Orwell’s 1984” — Robert J. Lifton, Thought Reform and the Psychology of Totalism: a study of “brainwashing” in China

    So here we have a kosher 1984, writ small, where Joseph Goebbel’s Number 2 principle of propaganda holds sway: namely, that “propaganda must be planned and executed by only one authority.”

  19. Lol at some of the speeches. Ever heard of “A day late and a dollar short”? You can’t kill the internet and it’s damn hard to regulate.

    An interesting dichotomy is that the O’dox have all banned TV from their homes. The internet is probably worse for your soul than American television , but they cannot ban it.

    My sources tell me that after years of attempting to ban the internet, a prominent American Rabbi changed his position and intends to regulate the internet in Orthodox Jewish homes. The result is this gathering or Asifa in Hebrew.

    Do you know you can listen to Caruso on Spotify? I love the internet!

  20. Who cares what they want? I’ll use the internet if I damn well feel like it. I’m not having superstitious old fools ordering me around. Or anyone else.

    I’ve heard that some of them say that a Jewish doctor’s saving a Gentile’s life on “Sabbath” is sinful.

    Oh well, let them rot in their ignorance.

  21. So how does erasing a bike lane prevent a woman from riding her bike? Cue Queen’s Bicycle, followed by Bohemian Rhapsody.

  22. junctionshamus. that saying has to be one of the dumbest I have ever seen. A slight knowledge of WWII would kill that once and for all. The US and UK were never friends with Stalin and the Soviet Union, a fact which all parties understood and acted on. They were allies which is a far different thing. The US withheld lots of things from the Soviets, and even our “friends” the Brits. The US was not too friendly to any of our allies, and a whole lot less friendly to the Soviets. Whch caused many problems in prosecuting the war and its aftermath.

  23. “I’ve heard that some of them say that a Jewish doctor’s saving a Gentile’s life on “Sabbath” is sinful.”

    Really? I know Orthodox Jewish doctors that work on the Sabbath. The best doctor in my local ER is a skullcap wearing Orthodox Jew. What you are quoting is jewish legal theory, or the Talmud which poses the theoretical question of whether it is permissible for a jewish doctor to save a “Worshiper of the forces of nature” or a Pagan. The answer to the question is yes, a jewish doctor may save a pagan. SO if you are a Pagan breathe a sigh of relief. Noteworthy is that the Talmud discusses theoretically whether a jewish doctor may save a fellow jew’s arm or leg on the Sabbath.

  24. hahah,
    I like the peeing dilemma junctionshamus. But I gotta ask: do you read the paper while peeing(like the Germans), or do you pee on the papers?
    as far as the phone booths, I admit I’m guilty as well…

  25. @ARE – And it took you almost two days to come up with that response? I didnt make it up; what crawled up your ass and died? Has nothing to do with US and Brits, and Sov’s, oh my… Try a little understanding of Native American cultures.

    And as to the your comment being the source of my “stupid” response, let’s just say yours was as banal and trite as “America, love it or leave it!” was in the 60s. Or were you even around then?

  26. I know the solution to this. Let them become Amish. No electricity, no net. They wouldn’t even have to change their wardrobe much. Although the Amish can get a little wild with the color blue sometimes.

  27. Well, first the Islamofascists, then the Westboro Baptist Church, and now these idiots! This is proof, if anybody needed it, that religious fundamentalism always turns into tyranny. It’s high time that some enlightened judge told bigots like these that, yes, they have a right to be offended by any-damn-thing they want to, but nobody else is obliged to be offended with them — so they can just go ahead and be offended. In America, nobody is obliged to live by the dictates of anybody else’s religion.

    –Leslie < Fish

  28. It would be prudent for this group to create their own firewall service within their community and remember that policing each and every household is a violation of these citizens right to access the press freely. That is why the internet is what it is–full of everything and full of nothing. It’s not so much that these guys can’t trust the congregants–it’s more about being unable to trust themselves and their own levels of temptation. And, as one of those who studied the Bible as Literature, I can unequivocally opine that the Bible, particularly the Old Testament, is nothing that I want a young child to read because the stories are all about violence, oppression, adultery, sodomy, incest, and everything that children don’t need to read. What is presented is as provocative as the daytime soap opera. Guys, if you removed your yarmukels, you would get a hint of the world instead of attempting to shield yourselves from it. And, at least one of you makes your living purveying something to the rest of the world that would cast you as a sinner if you partook yourself, and that makes you just as guilty because you promote it. You can’t hid inside the temple bowing to the Lord when you do not behave as you preach.

  29. I heard the stuff about the evils of electronic communication ages ago in a meeting of Mormon women in New Jersey (they meet separately from the men on Sundays after a common service); I heard this same stuff from other groups of extremely religious people, zealots and fanatics. The point is simply that once you have free access to what others are saying, you might hear something you’re not supposed to hear — and then — trouble in Paradise. For instance, there is a website called failed-messiah.com that daily lambasts the ultra Orthodox communities that protect their own no matter what they do: Firebomb a guy in his own home for not praying where you want him to pray, sure, and count on the community for protection; molest the children who go to the school and keep the Brooklyn DA from intervenine, no prob, count on the community for protection; try to utterly destroy a mother for trying to protect her child from abuse, neglect and starvation, go right ahead, the community will not only protect you but jump on the bandwagon.

    But if you go on-line, somebody might put up a post. They might say Amy Neustein is a heroic woman who deserves honor; they might say teachers in a religious school are doing what Catholic priests are doing and they might say Hynes is keeping all this under wraps.

    The Internet is dangerous for the very reason that you can read whatever somebody puts up, and you can judge for yourself. Perhaps some Patriarchs do not want that to happen…

  30. If these backwards men don’t like the Internet…. let them not use it, especially on Saturday, and sit home and twirl their sideburns and STFU!!!!!

  31. Hey, old ‘fundamentalist’ ancient thinking Jews…. I’m Jewish, although I got smart more than 40 years ago and threw off the 3,000 year old thinking that still rules your lives….. and I have the Answer to your problem, the problem of ‘Unadulterated Freedom’ that you seem to be suffering under. Go, possibly out in the desert, in Death Valley, perhaps, and build your own Concentration camps. Starve yourselves, beat yourselves, get down on your knees and pray to your ‘never answering’ Ghod……. And then, you will be truly happy! And I will smile for you……. And for ‘heaven sakes’ leave your EVIL computers home….. or better yet, sell them before you go and only take your prayer books with you. We wouldn’t want you to have the opportunity for any ‘outside’ influences to sully your experience with Jahovah…….You people disgust me! You are one of the major reasons for me to become an ATHEIST!!!!!

  32. Zarathstra you’d like it for jews to burn in concentration camps hmmm…If you hate your fellow jews so much, move to Germany or even better, France. They beat jews with alarming frequency. Self-hate much? You’re an Atheist? Who cares, so is half the country. I am also not religious for a while, but at least I don’t hate on people just because they are different.

  33. Dear Commoner, I’m proud of my Jewish ancestry…. I don’t wish to see jews burn in the Camps….. But it’s time to enter into modern times and not keep repressing ourselves. We are not living 3,000 years in the past. I don’t hate my fellow Jews, I hate the backwards thinking that tries to restrict any attempts at modernizing because the Rabbies fear a loss of power. By giving in to their rulers, the Rabbies, these 40,000 men relinquish their claims to Manhood, without any protest, just as the European Jews did when the Nazis told them to get on the trains….. It would have been better to try to stand up and fight & die, rather than just agree be sent to the slaughter houses like sheep. To Acquiesce to the Rabbies is equal to giving in to the Nazis…. I have no respect for men whom refuse to think for themselves….It’s an old story…. Religion is more about power and control than it is about any Deity.

  34. I am happy that you are not really a hater, but I do take exception to your statement that the jews “gave up their manhood” while being murdered by the Germans. That’s like saying black people were culpable for being lynched by the Klan or responsible for their own slavery. Jews, at least the ones I know, are peaceful middle class folk. They are not very warlike. The same could be said for virtually any middle class in the country, except in the south where guns are prolific. Also, Hitler took away the jews guns in 1938. Quote from Bernard Harcourt, a UChicago Law Professor pgs. 24-25. He seems to take issue with people comparing gun control laws with Nazi gun control. However he does as a kind of post-script admit that the Nazis did indeed disarm the jews prior to slaughtering them.

    http://www.law.uchicago.edu/files/files/harcourt_fordham.pdf

    Finally, with regard to disarming the Jews, there is no dispute that the
    Nazis did disarm the Jews aggressively—of all firearms, as well as “truncheons or stabbing weapons.”
    The Minister of the Interior, Frick, passed
    Regulations Against Jew’s Possession of Weapons on November 11, 1938,
    which effectively deprived all Jews of the right to possess firearms or other
    weapons. It was a regulation prohibiting Jews from having any dangerous
    weapon—not just guns. Under the regulations, Jews “are prohibited from
    acquiring, possessing, and carrying firearms and ammunition, as well as
    truncheons or stabbing weapons. Those now possessing weapons and
    ammunition are at once to turn them over to the local police authority.”
    95
    Moreover, prior to that, the German police and Nazis used the 1938 firearms
    law as an excuse to disarm Jews. In Breslau, for instance, the city police chief
    decreed the seizure of all firearms from Jews on the ground that “the Jewish
    population ‘cannot be regarded as trustworthy’”—the language from the 1928
    and 1938 firearms laws.
    96

  35. A little update…. these neolithic Jewish men are now wearing ”Coke Bottle” thick eyeglasses to prevent them from having to sin, by seeing scantily clad young women walking around the streets of New York, in 100 degree weather, while these ‘moronic’, in my opinion, ancient worshiping, Jews are still walking the same streets in their all black Garb, Black hats, and long woolen coats, at the same time…. Now I ask you…. Is there any need for me to explain why I threw off my Own religion, Judaism, soon after the age of 16, for the one true calling, the only correct way of thinking, that religion’s only use is for mind control, and that it is very destructive to humans Beings. .ATHEISM, The thinking person’s way… I think I’ll go have LOBSTER for dinner tonight…. with a side of Bacon…. ;-O

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  37. The only reason these 40,000 want the internet done away with is because they’re afraid of any outside influences and truths…. I wonder how many of them had their Mini-ipads hidden in the pockets of their long coats……. Whoops…….

  38. You know, sometimes on Friday night, I will watch JLTV to see them talk about Kabbalah…… It always amazes me how similar the teachings are to what the christian evangelists preach to their sheep….. Again, religion is all about controlling the mind, in any of the iterations it comes in…

  39. What is the main job of any preacher, every week, irrespective of the religion he represents? It’s to come up with a more fancy way than the week before for justifying or rationalizing, belief in the unbelieveable……

  40. If thine eyes offend you, PLUCK THEM OUT…. If the INTERNET OFFENDS YOU, KILL YOURSELVES………..

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