Thursday, September 18, 2014

A Lashon Hara Video That Completely Misses The Point.

A YouTube video was recently released dealing with the dangers of telling Lashon HaRah on the internet.  However, the video completely misses the point and fails to identify the real problem.

First of all, here's the video:


The narrator blames all this on Lashon HaRah (evil speech) and, in truth, that's a part of the problem here.  However, it's a very small of the problem.  The real problem (which the video does not address) is the community itself.

It seems to be made up of people who are
– busybodies (whose business is it what the Rebbe or anyone else in the community buys at the butcher>)
- judgmental (because you eat chicken the Rebbe isn’t entitled to ever eat anything better?)
- selfish (heaven forbid that someone else actually have something that they, themselves don’t have)
– unable to be dan l’kaf z’chus
– superficial in their understanding of what makes someone moral (the Rebbe isn’t a good role model because he bought a rack of lamb?)
– idle (really? In half an hour all these people have nothing better to do than bash someone online?)
– gossip mongers (well, it is a part of the problem, but clearly not the most important part. If the people in the community didn’t have the above traits, this last bit wouldn’t matter as much).
Lashon Harah is not the real problem here. The real problem is the attitude of the people in this community.
The Wolf
- See more at: http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/news/ywn-videos/259254/watch-a-rebbes-life-is-destroyed-in-minutes.html#comment-633995
It seems to be made up of people who are
– busybodies (whose business is it what the Rebbe or anyone else in the community buys at the butcher>)
- judgmental (because you eat chicken the Rebbe isn’t entitled to ever eat anything better?)
- selfish (heaven forbid that someone else actually have something that they, themselves don’t have)
– unable to be dan l’kaf z’chus
– superficial in their understanding of what makes someone moral (the Rebbe isn’t a good role model because he bought a rack of lamb?)
– idle (really? In half an hour all these people have nothing better to do than bash someone online?)
– gossip mongers (well, it is a part of the problem, but clearly not the most important part. If the people in the community didn’t have the above traits, this last bit wouldn’t matter as much).
Lashon Harah is not the real problem here. The real problem is the attitude of the people in this community.
The Wolf
- See more at: http://www.theyeshivaworld.com/news/ywn-videos/259254/watch-a-rebbes-life-is-destroyed-in-minutes.html#comment-633995
It seems to be made up of people who are

– busybodies who should just mind their own business (why is it their concern what the Rebbe or anyone else in the community buys at the butcher?)

- judgmental (because you eat chicken the Rebbe isn’t entitled to ever eat anything better?  You're happy you didn't end up married to him because he bought a rack of lamb?)

- selfish and envious (heaven forbid that someone else actually have something that they, themselves don’t have.)

– unable to be dan l’kaf z’chus (judge favorably -- he could have gotten the money as a gift or from some private tutoring or any number of other legitimate ways.)

– superficial in their understanding of what makes someone moral (the Rebbe isn’t a good role model because he bought a rack of lamb or because he might have splurged once in a while?)

– idle (really? In half an hour all these people have nothing better to do than bash someone online?)

– gossip mongers (well, it is a part of the problem, but clearly not the most important part. If the people in the community didn’t have the above traits, this last bit wouldn’t matter as much).

Lashon Harah is not the real problem here. The real problem is the attitude of the people in this community.  I'm tempted to think that if the Rebbe gets kicked out of this community, it just might be the best thing that ever happened to him.

The Wolf

6 comments:

G*3 said...

It's also technically not lashon hara.

Mac MacTíre said...

G*3, the community is spreading word about what Rabbi R. did with the clear intention to shed a negative light him. Even if the content of the statement itself isn't derogatory per se, the context in which it has been delivered qualifies it as Lashon Hara. (Feel free to correct me if I'm mistaken; it's been awhile since I've last studied the works of the חָפֵץ חַיִּים .)

Mike S. said...

I think you are mistaken. Being judgmental is a big part of the sin of lashon hara.

Michael said...

You are judging a community based on a video? That's a little superficial, don't you think?

Hieronymous Pseudonymous said...

I've put your comment up on YouTube, with an attribution to you.
I assumed you wouldn't mind.
(There were only 8 other comments, despite over 25k views. That's what happens when it's all frum people watching a video embedded on frum sites...)

DF said...

So when can you be judgmental? This video relies on the dues ex machina that somebody had made a mistake, and really the lamb was being bought for someone else. But sometimes you know that's not the case. Or, to take it out of this one narrow and unrealistic example, sometimes what appears on the surface to be something, is actually that something. And sometimes those "something's" are not too nice. Should they just be ignored? So to return to this example, if we know rebbeim are buying fancy cars and living way above what one would expect from someone in chinuch - and, in fact, we know this is the case - should we be intimidated from speaking up because of cries of "loshon hora?" What if the Rebbe was beating his students?

Let's be honest. Everyone agrees pure gossip, in its rawest form, is bad. But that's no what's portrayed here. "Loshon hora" never stopped anyone when he felt it was for a good purpose. It's always "kovod hatorah", "litoeles", "tzorchei rabbim", etc.