12/17/2009

EJF answers question: Why did the Rambam include the laws of giyur within the laws of forbidden relations?

A few readers have asked if I would address the issue of Leib Tropper's (I think we can dispense with the honorifics, no?) resignation from the EJF amid serious scandal. In truth, I don't have anything to add. I'm not one of the scandal blogs, and there is not much to analyze here. Dude's apparently a lowlife. Nuff said.
There are a few related points:
1) As a critic of EJF since pretty much its inception, and as one of the first to note the danger that the EJF posed to the Modern Orthodox rabbinate in America, I think this is a happy day. I'm not happy about the scandal itself since, as Gil writes, one should not rejoice at his enemy's downfall (and one may speculate that he is referring to this issue). I am happy that an organization that has been a thorn in the side of many has been crippled, if not killed. I have no doubt that people like R. Nachum Eisenstein will go on screaming about the evil Modern Orthodox rabbis, but he will slide right back to the margin that he occupied before the EJF gave him a bully pulpit.
2) There is very little doubt in my mind that Guma Aguilar is behind the scandal breaking. He and Tropper have been feuding openly (and suing each other) for the past year plus, and Aguiar is big on recording conversations; this is not the first conversation pertaining to Laib Tropper that he has recorded.
3) As a friend pointed out, and to answer the question posed in the title of this post, it is now clear that the Rambam's placement of the laws of giyur was done be-ru'ach ha-kodesh.
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