Navonim - The Ramblings of Garnel Ironheart

Navonim - The Ramblings of Garnel Ironheart

Thursday, 10 September 2009

PR We Don't Need

As revealed by The Bray of Fundie, everyone's favourite new focus of attention, one Rabbi Raphael Bearmant, has turned out to be a fraud. Yes, the newest "Chareidi blog", one too busy spitting vitriol to make much sense, is apparently the work of a lonely but talented teenager somewhere with a wee bit too much time on his hands.
In retrospect (and I stress that hindsight is 20/20), there are some obvious clues that "Rabbi Bearmant" isn't who he claims to be.
For one, anyone as "frum" as he says he is wouldn't have a blog in the first place. Folks like that tend to avoid the internet like the plague.
Secondly, the display on his blog of "real rabbis" is a bit more sophisticated that some knuckle dragging reactionary would be likely to have up.
Third, his absolute dismissal in the most derogatory terms of two of the greatest rabbonim of the twentieth centuries, Rav Kook, zt"l, and the Rav, zt"l, are just a bit over the top. So the Satmar called Rav Kook a rasha? Funny to hear that since the Imre Emes, zt"l, and Rav Yosef Chayim Sonnenfeld, zt"l, were quite close with him, much to the consternation of the kannoim of the day. As for the Rav, wel it goes beyond bizarre to think negatively of a man who walked in circles that most gedolim today only dream of being part of.
In the end, it was a spoof although I'm not clear if it was meant to be a spoof or if this kid was actually trying to make Chareidim look bad all along.
We can all once more move along with our lives. Nothing to see here.


Off the Derech said...

Garnel Ironheart said...

1) Once again, you forgot to link my blog. How many times do I have to remind you?

2) I don't care if you know the brand of underwear he wears. It's clearly not meant to be taken seriously.

3) I'm hurt. I thought I was your favourite blog ever.

Rabbi Ben Hecht said...

The problem is that behind every spoof or satire there is some truth and that makes this blog, even if a joke, something that cannot be easily ignored...for two reasons.

One is the reason expressed in the guest post by Baruch. The fact is that many did take this blog to be real; that means that many believe that it is possible for a charedi individual to exist that expresses these type of views. What does that say about the charedi? There is that old maxim that it is not enough that justice be done but justice must be seen to be done. Perceptions matter and if people can think that this blog could be real that reflects badly on the image that the charedi are portraying even if a charedi would not have presented such a blog.

The second concern would be the very joke itself. Even in the realm of humour lines have to be drawn and even if the author of this blog has respect for Rav Kuk and the Rav, this presentation still was inherently disrespectful. It is a concern to me that the blog author, even in presenting this as a joke, lacks in kavod haTorah.

Rabbi Ben Hecht