Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews

The current inability of liberal Orthodox Rabbis to protect frum gays

Clearly explained for every intelligent human, the Torah and Talmud condemn homosexuality for heterosexual men only.

Some rare Orthodox rabbis have had the courage and integrity to stand up against the modern mistaken generalizations by their present-day ignorant colleagues regarding gay men. The vast majority of halachic deciders misunderstood gays patently, and it’s really clear for all to see that this emperor also has no clothes on. Yet, there are several reasons why the dissident voices of reason have had little effect so far.

1. The rabbis who are well-informed about homosexuals whisper their disagreement with present rabbinic thought. They are justly afraid to be branded as rabbis for gays, to have eclipsed or nullified anything and any person they ever stood for and taught, if not outright be ostracize and defrocked. But they could make a big difference, as I wrote here.

2. They may base themselves on tolerance. Gays are sinners but guiltless or to be treated with compassion. This is better than bullying gays, and great for people who like to tolerate and be tolerated (which is not so great as one tolerates a nuisance, something negative), but no solution at all for the most frum Orthodox-Jewish gays. How is a very religious homosexual man supposed to feel supported when liberals say that he’s OK the way he is? Homosexual religious Jews are often the most Orthodox of their family, community and neighborhood. Liberal Orthodox rabbis cannot help them. (But maybe they could open the eyes of the leaders of the generation.)

3. Several liberal Orthodox-Jewish rabbis have secured themselves a niche, with honor, prestige and livelihood for traveling the world, preaching tolerance for queers. They have published books, established websites and powerful connections the world over and monopolized the Jewish Internet and print press discussion. They don’t want to be bothered by the truth that present rabbinic positions on gays are mistaken and indefensible. Because they believe that rabbis will not change their minds, even when they are wrong (what an insult!), they decide strategically and practically to ignore the truth and only plead for tolerance – and fight anyone who questions this. They have developed from being part of a solution to being a part of the problem.

Meanwhile, every day millions suffer vicious anti-GLBTQIs’ Oppression based on this misinterpretation of the Hebrew Bible. Countless Orthodox-Jewish gays contemplate (and try) suicide every day. And the regular realistic Orthodox congregants march more and more ahead of their self-disgracing religious “leaders.”

About the Author
The author is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (DES - Diethylstilbestrol), born in 1953 to two Dutch Holocaust survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork, and holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam). He taught Re-evaluation Co-counseling, became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a vegan for 8 years now. * His most influential teachers (chronologically) are: his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach and lehavdiel bein chayim lechayim: Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo and Rav Zev Leff. * Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years he wrote hasbara for the Dutch public. His fields of attention now are varied: Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science, Politics (Israel, the US and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight Truth), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, GLBTQAI, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), Ecology and Veganism. Many people can't understand or like him because he has such a wide vision that he never fits any specialist's box. But that exactly what others love about him. Many of his posts relate to affairs from the news or the Torah Portion of the Week or are new insights that suddenly befell him. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, reassure the doubters but make the self-assured doubt more. He strives to bring a fresh perspective rather than bore you with the obvious. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds must be disputed. In short, his main political positions are: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, democracy, anti the fake peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, Science, Free Will, anti blaming-the-victim and for down-to-earth optimism. Read his blog how he attempts to bridge any discrepancies. He admits sometimes exaggerating to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quit a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. November 13, 2018, he published his 500st blog post with the ToI. * He likes doing age-appropriate and age-inappropriate things and looks forward to getting to know his timeless mature out-of-the-box soul mate. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me.
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