Thursday, December 17, 2009

Responding to an Ivanka Trump comment...

The following comment was posted on a Nov. post:
Anonymous said...
You should all be ashamed of yourselves. No matter what she wears, eats or whom she marries it is unimaginably difficult for ANYONE to defy the traditions with which they were raised (even if the extent of those traditions was an annual trip to the mall to sit on Santa's lap) for themselves LET ALONE for the person they love. Who are any of you to judge her commitment? Has any of you had the guts to stand up to your family, to the public, or your critics to do something so life-altering? You're all gross.

My response:
Michaltastik said...
Honey, I'm a convert myself. Another thing I don't think you understand is the Jewish religion doesn't support people converting for marriage but continuing in their old ways. As long as she doesn't dress Orthodox, she didn't change. How did she change?

Have we had the guts to stand up to our family to make a life-altering change. Well, my family's dead but, I had plenty of co-workers who had something to say about it. I'll bet they didn't make anti-semitic comments to Ivanka at the office.


  1. The Curmudgeonly Israeli Giyoret says:

    DITTO Just because we have successfully negotiated a major life-altering change means we are exactly appropriate to question others in the same position. Yes, indeedy. And if you don't want the content, don't buy the package. Nobody held a gun to Ivanka's head and forced her to convert.

    Besides, sitting on Santa's lap always seemed kinda twisted to me. Pivotal spiritual event.

  2. The Curmudgeonly Israeli Giyoret adds:

    In clarification, let me say that I don't "check tzitzit" on others in general, or rather, I try not to; it does me no good.

    But I do think that those of us who have "been there" have a right to our opinion, especially when the Ivankas seem to be treading on values and choices that we hold dear. It cost us something, and we have every right to be appalled by those who appear to skip out without paying.

  3. I'm not convinced an argument based solely on how she dresses is very compelling. Simply put, standards of sniut have varied (and continue to vary) a lot in different historical Jewish communities. If one had reason to think she was say breaking Shabbat or eating treif it would be a much more clear cut situation.

  4. So every time someone doesn't have bad experiences or has a fairly easy geirus, whether they are as frum as you deem fit or not, you are going to express your discontent? Granted, gerim who seem to not take frumkeit seriously do make all gerim look bad to some extent, but gerim who seem frum while speaking loshon horo or participating in avak loshon horo make them look worse.

  5. "Simply put, standards of sniut have varied (and continue to vary) a lot in different historical Jewish communities"

    Have you SEEN how she dresses? No community permits their girls to dress like THAT.

    " or eating treif"

    She speaks of going to traif restaurants and has been seen in them.

    She's a very public figure and when she treats her conversion so lightly, then people in the community unfortunately lump us in that group, it's bad. People think gerim aren't serious and it doesn't help to have gerim out there who aren't. It's even worse when it's a public figure like this.

  6. BeeZee,

    I think that you have missed the point which is being epxressed. The issue at hand is alot of people have the one opinion about female Gerim based on many stereotypes and assumptions.

    The point which is being made is that when you have a public figure whom has decided to convert (Orthodox) but does not dress Tznius or keep Kosher but is publicly seen eating in non kosher restaurants, what are people to think then?

    This is where the negative stereotypes begin. We are not hear to speak Lashon Hora about this individual. When these situations occur it does make people wonder about the sincerity of the individual who was converted and the motive behind the conversion itself.

    If you by any chance know of people or happen to have met someone who has converted. You will see the enthusiasm and dedication these individuals show in living their lives as Observant Jews.

  7. I do understand this quite well. In my previous comment, I admitted to the fact that "fake" gerim, and gerim who act less-than-frum make dedicated gerim look bad. However, I think that the best course of action, and what really separates someone who is serious from someone who isn't serious is the way in which the person acts. If you act seriously, and consistently show yourself to be dedicated to a life of shmiras Torah mitzvos, people can't have any legitimate complaint about you. Calling out questions about someone else, though, is not the way to do this.

  8. I can not speak for the motives of some individuals and there reasons for converting.

    And it not fair for those who have their sincerity and reasoning for converting in the first place to be questioned time and time again.

    Of course no one wants to be at the tale end of gossip. But unfortunately this happens far too often.

  9. I'm not sure who continues to question these "sincere" gerim. I have never personally seen any frum, clearly honest post-geirus ger questioned about their sincerity. I am also not really sure why it matters, as one has their community and family and inner-circle, and no one else really has to know about their status.

  10. I'm sick and tired of hearing how Ivanka's "conversion" was such a sacrifice for her. Nothing could be farther from truth. The Rabbis made it very quick and easy for Ivanka. The "conversion" was only done for marriage. Rabbi Lookstein knew it but didn't care because of the influence and money the Kushner family has. Ivanka being a Trump was obviously a bonus.

    Ivanka's family was totally supportive because of Jared's very wealthy family. Considering the way Ivanka dresses and eats her "conversion" would have been revoked by now if she was an ordinary poor Jane Smith. It looks very shady.

  11. One should never defy traditions they were raised with for someone they love. I say this as a woman who gave up the first love of her life and what I can only imagine would have been a much more comfortable life because I refused to convert to Judaism FOR him. One should only take on any religion because one is called to do it NOT for someone else.

    Second of all, who are YOU to judge her commitment Mr./Ms. original poster of this comment. You know no more or less about her than any of the rest of us. It is ridiculous of you to defend what you know nothing of, unless you are Ivanka or HaShem because only one or the other would really know the answer as to her commitment.

    Having said all this, I can tell you that in my experience it has not been difficult to defy the traditions I was raised with, and I say this as someone who was raised in a very prominent family within that tradition. I am not having any trouble not going to church on Christmas Eve, or ever for that matter. Maybe it would be difficult for you to defy traditions but you shouldn't generalize for the rest of us.

    I think Ivanka's conversion appears shady, as does the whole way Madonna goes on about Judaism. I think saying this is neither Lashon Hara nor making a value judgement because it appears as if this is an insincere conversion, if Ivanka wants people to respect her conversion she should behave differently.

  12. Rebecca-
    It seems odd to me that, while you originally assert that one should not attempt to judge or understand someone's commitment, you later say that Ivanka's geirus seems "shady", comparing it to other celebrity interest in Jewish "topics", such as kaballah. I was unaware that the severity of speaking loshon hora, or (even worse) aiding others to speak it through avek loshon hora, was removed when you found them to be insincere. Isn't this judgement of insincerity the type of label that this issur is trying to protect against, whether it is a legitimate conclusion or not?

    All similar commentators-
    While it might be true that conversion for marriage is generally not accepted, there are psakim (by Rav Moshe Feinstein zt"l and others) that one is permitted, and even encouraged, to convert a non-Jewish person who is married/looking to become married to someone who is becoming a baal teshuva. Furthermore, I do not think that anyone has sufficiently responded to my misunderstanding of how speaking loshon hora is alright when it serves your own desires, makes you look better, or achieves whatever other goal you have. Loshon hora applies to anyone, including people with whom you disagree, except in instances of impending physical harm that cannot be prevented otherwise, NOT except when the person is a public figure.

  13. Jared's gonna become religious? When?

  14. Perhaps when people who claim to be religious refrain from speaking loshon hora about his wife, and others.