Avodah Mailing List

Volume 04 : Number 464

Friday, March 24 2000

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Subjects Discussed In This Issue:
Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 00:45:39 -0500
From: sambo@charm.net
Re: Diyyuk Redux

Gershon Dubin and Gil Student wrote:

> >>This happens all the time in my local minyan factory.   I think that what I
> saw there this Taanis Esther was a bit much,  though,  when someone came in for
> mincha and proceeded to put on talis and tefilin.  I
> thought that was wrong,  especially in light of the fairly common hakpada of
> separating the tefilin wearers from the nonwearers on chol hamoed.>>
> I was at that minyan and assumed that he missed Shacharis (presumably for a
> halachically valid reason).

Some of us (myself included) wear T&T at Minhah every fast day. Even in
Ashkenazi minyanim. You should see the Bet Midrash at Ner Israel at
Minhah on a ta'anit. They've had a dramatic increase in Sefardi
population. If R' Weinberg zt"l allowed it (actually he encouraged a
seperate minyan, but for some reason there isn't one for Minhah on
weekdays), maybe you could be tolerant?

Also, I've a few friends who wear T&T every day for Minhah, but that's
another discussion altogether.


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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 01:00:33 EST
From: UncBarryum@aol.com
Re: Avodah V4 #463

In a message dated 3/23/00 11:19:53 PM Central Standard Time, 
owner-avodah@aishdas.org writes:

<< From: richard_wolpoe@ibi.com
 Subject: Perceptions of Jewish Power
 1)Does a persecuted people on the run that presents itself as having the 
 withal to offer bribes indicate they they poosses power or lack power?
 2) Who spoke of chessed?  I referred to fear of Jewish retribution.
 3) What prevented the Japanese from taking the money and STILL putting Jews 
 4) What made the Japanes have "chsessed" (your words not mine) to Jews and 
 still torture Aemrican GI pow's?  Did they fail to see how the Americans 
 5) How did the Japanese view the American decision to focus the war upon 
 instead of focusing on avenging Peral Harbor first
 6) How was it the Japanes could be bribed and not the nazis?  Were Japanese 
 less anal than Germans?
1. It depends on whose perspective you're speaking. I hardly think that the 
Japanese were afraid of a "handful" of refugees with a contract out on them 
by Germany. Lack of power as far as the Japanese were concerned, survival on 
the part of the Jews.
2. The Japanese didn't fear retribution by a small group of fearful Jews, 
not, figuratively, or, literally. They didn't drive up in their Lincolns 
wearing tuxedos.
3... American troops were an invading force threatening their lives, and, 
country, Jews weren't any threat, at all.
4. See 2 & 3. Murdering innocent civilians was a German / European thing, 
apparently NOT Japanese. Defending their country ....well, that's something 
5. Good question, but, who cares?
6. The nazis were bribed on occasion, actually many occasions, but, the 
Japanese, perhaps by Yad Hashem, weren't interested in murdering a few 
refugees to make hitler happy.  Did Germany threaten Japan when Japan 
wouldn't comply? How about hitler's early idea of hardware, and, parts for 
Jews, via Joe Kennedy, and, Chaimberlin. No bites? Wonder why? Save 100,000 
Jews for 100, 000 ball bearings?
This subject is getting us nowhere fast, it's oyzgeshpilt., and, I mean OY!
Barry Schwarz

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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 01:31:58 -0500
From: sambo@charm.net
Re: Avodah V4 #463

Daniel Schiffman wrote:

> (Maharashdam is Rabbi Shmuel de Modina of Turkey, 1600's).

Thank you very much.

> Rav Moshe Feinstein also held that the Chasidim were wrong when they
> changed their Nusach.  This was also the opinion of the Chatam Sofer
> (Orach Chaim 1:16). 

But his rebbe, R' Natan Adler held otherwise. See Yabia Omer, V6, siman
11, #5.

> To the Chatam Sofer,  nusach ashkenaz has mystical
> meanings as well. He claims that the Ari was Sefardi (???) and therefore
> revealed the secrets of their nusach;  if there had been a person of the
> Ari's stature in Ashkenaz, that person would have revealed the secrets
> that are inherent in the words of Nusach Ashkenaz.

But we know from R' Hayyim Vital that the Ari was an Ashkenazi. We're
told so repeatedly.

>  However, since we no longer
> know, the Ari created a new nusach by amalgamating several existing
> nuschaot.  The Ari specifically intended that this new nusach be adopted
> by anyone who did not know his shevet.  Nusach Haari is the Shaar
> Hakollel--it encompasses all 12 shearim.

Interesting, but it doesn't fit with what I learned about Nusah Ari. I
was told that the nusah Ari that we have today (used by Habad) is not
the nusah that the Ari used. That was compiled, as far as I understand,
by one of the former Lubavicher Rebbes.

The Ari, from what I understsnd, used straight nusah sefaradi.

> Rav Chaim Tzanzer concedes that Nusach Ashnenaz has kabbalistic
> meanings, and of course Rashi, Baalei Hatosafot and their talmidim
> understood these meanings.  He contends that the Besht adopted Nusach
> Ari because he saw that he and many of his contemporaries had a "shoresh
> neshama" that was not from shaar Nusach Askkenaz.

See above referenced Yabia Omer.


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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 05:03:25 -0500 (EST)
From: Claude Schochet <claude@math.wayne.edu>
nusach hatefilla

A small addition to Daniel Schiffman's eriudite posting. I believe that 
Chabad takes this one step further -
 holding that there is a hierarchy of nusachim-

    Sfard, edot mizrach

and that one is allowed to switch upwards but not downwards. This is used 
as a rationalle for teaching ba'alei t'shuva that they should daven Ari 
(unless the people in question know for certain what their family nusach 
is - and sometimes even then) since Ari is the "best" choice.

Claude Schochet				claude@math.wayne.edu	
Mathematics Department			313-577-3177	office phone		
Wayne State University		    	313-577-7596	department fax
Detroit, MI 48202

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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 13:53:24 +0200
From: "Carl and Adina Sherer" <sherer@actcom.co.il>
The Holocaust, the Pope and the Responses of World Jewry

> Date: Thu, 23 Mar 2000 19:50:33 -0500
> From: richard_wolpoe@ibi.com
> Subject: Re[2]: The Holocaust,the Pope, and the responses of World Je

> Question: How many Jews took it seriously yet still expected a revach v'hatzala 
> as in Purim, and therefore were upnprepared to see the gezeriah actually carried
> out in fact?

IIRC Rav Elchonon Wasserman HY"D was in the States raising 
money around the time the war broke out and he was offered 
asylum and a place to stay (by YU?). He turned it down saying 
that he had to go back and teach his flock how to die al kiddush 
Hashem. But he apparently had no illusions as to what the fate of 
European Jewry would be.

-- Carl

Please daven and learn for a Refuah Shleima for our son,
Baruch Yosef ben Adina Batya among the sick of Israel.  
Thank you very much.

Carl and Adina Sherer

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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 13:53:22 +0200
From: "Carl and Adina Sherer" <sherer@actcom.co.il>

> Date: Thu, 23 Mar 2000 19:09:16 +0000
> From: sadya n targum <targum1@juno.com>
> Subject: re:takanos
> Another point: we are not discussing doing away with caterers,
> photographers, musicians, florists, etc. *completely*.  All that is
> considered is some kind of limitation on the amount of conspicuous
> consumption that should be permitted at a simcha.  It may be of interest
> to note (as I saw in a Yiddish sfer on Parshiyos Hashovua titled Fun
> Unzer Alte Yiddishe Oytzer) that in Prague, where the Jewish community
> had the right to impose a kahal tax, the degree of spending on a simcha
> was tied to the amount of kahal tax paid. Perhaps that should be the
> criterion: the amount one may spend on a wedding should be in proportion
> to the baal simcha's annual tzedaka contribution.

I believe the previous Gerrer Rebbe had such a takana in his 
community. There was a limit on the number of people you could 
invite, and you had to donate an amount to tzedaka that was equal 
to the amount (or part of the amount anyway) that you spent on the 
wedding. I'm not sure whether the current Gerrer Rebbe has 
maintained that takana.

-- Carl

Please daven and learn for a Refuah Shleima for our son,
Baruch Yosef ben Adina Batya among the sick of Israel.  
Thank you very much.

Carl and Adina Sherer

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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 07:08:31 -0500
From: Yosef Blau <yblau@idt.net>
Golus mentality

The phrase golus mentality was introduced by secular zionists
criticizing the response of european Jewry to the holocaust.  It has no
halachic significance.  Chilul Hashem, darkei shalom and eivoh are
halachic concepts and they should be the focus of any discussion about
the pope's visit to Israel and the broader issue of how to deal with the
non-Jewish world.
Yosef Blau

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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 06:12:41 -0600
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: nusach hatefilla

On Fri, Mar 24, 2000 at 05:03:25AM -0500, Claude Schochet wrote:
: A small addition to Daniel Schiffman's eriudite posting. I believe that 
: Chabad takes this one step further -
:  holding that there is a hierarchy of nusachim-

Nit: nusachos.

We find one consistancy in all these hierarchies -- each places the nusach
of the community from which came on top.

:     Ari
:     Sfard, edot mizrach
:     Ashkenaz

So the "Sfard" of other Chassidim is given equal merit to the Nusachot of
Edot haMizrach (EhM)? You would think that they would place other attempts
to reconstruct the Ari's nusach at a higher level than that of EhM, as they
capture many of the same kavvanos as Chabad's nusach Ari.

Personally, I'm incapable of deep kabbalistic kavanos (so far?). I would
therefore think the nusach that fits the best al pi nigleh, providing launching
points for kavanos I am capable of thinking up, would be of the most value
to someone such as myself.


Micha Berger (973) 916-0287          MMG"H for 23-Mar-00: Chamishi, Tzav
micha@aishdas.org                                         A"H 
http://www.aishdas.org                                    Rosh-Hashanah 13b
For a mitzvah is a lamp, and the Torah its light.         

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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 14:46:03 +0200
From: D & E-H Bannett <dbnet@barak-online.net>
Re: Bur

>the issue is not only the P/B they are pronunced Boir not Bur, 
>however the Mishne in Pirkei Avos is pronounced Bur.

Reb YitzchokZ, Did you take into account that the bor is much deeber than the bur?  

Was it a typo? Didn't you mean to write Birkei Avos

And with this final comment, I suggest  we burbosely end the P/B supject.

Re: your boir that becomes bur in Pirkei Avos.  While I can prove from the ba'alei 
mesorah that they did not have your diphthongal pronunciation of the choilem, I 
request that you be consistently ne'emon to your mesoires.  If boir rather than bor, 
then Ovois not Avos.

With brocho toivo to you and all,

Duvid Refooel 
(In my non-ground maror posting I already disclosed my Galitzianer heritage.)

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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 14:46:05 +0200
From: D & E-H Bannett <dbnet@barak-online.net>
Re: Kaddish question

A while ago, during the tzeireh-patach kaddish thread, I asked, and received no 
answer, to my question on the Ateret Yerushalayim siddur, a very exact and 
rabbinically approved one that gives sources for all Ashkenaz nusach modifications. It 
brings Ma'aseh Rav (M"R) as the source for Kir'utei and for omitting vayithalal but 
gives the Mishna Brurah (M'B) as the source for Yitgadel with a tzeireh although that 
too appears in Ma'aseh Rav.

For those who may have considered the question:
On a recent visit to Jerusalem, I met R' Moshe Gershinsky who I know is makpid to 
daven with that siddur and asked him.
His immediate answer was that Kirutei and the vayithalal omission were not accepted 
despite their being b'shem haGR"A.  Only after it appeared in the Mishna Brurah, was 
Yitgadel accepted (at least by Litvishe yeshivaleit). The source of its acceptance is, 
therefore, the M"B and not the M"R.

The answer to that question raises another question.  Which came first, the M"B's 
tzeireh or the Arukh HaShulhan"s tzeireh?  Both appeared somewhere about 1900. 

Or perhaps that isn't the question. The title ;page of the siddur states that it is based 
on Avodat Yisrael (Baer), Roedelheim (RV"H), Siddur Ha GR"A (R' N'H' HaLevi edition), 
with shinuyei nusach and piskei halakha of the GR"A, M"B, and others. Perhaps Arukh 
HaShulhan is not included among "others".



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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 08:52:41 -0500
From: richard_wolpoe@ibi.com
Re: Purim Torah

Question: did the Prisha and the Sma (Sefer M'iras Einayim) ever discuss this 
with each other? :->

_Wally Cleaver

______________________________ Reply Separator _________________________________
Subject: Purim Torah 
Author:  <avodah@aishdas.org> at tcpgate
Date:    3/20/2000 8:52 PM

This came from Les Fried, who got it from Len Dryer. I think Len 
actually wrote it. Freilichen Purim to those for whom it is Purim 
already. And a special Happy Birthday to CZ who is 19 tonight :-) 

-- Carl (a baseball fan in Yerushalayim Ir HaKodesh, but can't stand 
Rickey and his hammies :-) 

In the spirti of the Seasons- Purim and Baseball I thought you might enjoy 
this bit of Purim Torah.

 Taking both of these factors into account, it would seem that we have a 
situation potentially similar to that produced from the views of the Perisha and
Sma, namely that the base has clearly been stolen qua the original owners, and 
thus the runner may be credited with a steal in the box score. 
Best wishes for a "freileche" Purim from all the residents of Freedonia 
Lenny D

Please daven and learn for a Refuah Shleima for our son, 
Baruch Yosef ben Adina Batya among the sick of Israel. 
Thank you very much.


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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 07:12:21 PST
From: "aviva fee" <aviva613@hotmail.com>
RE: wedding takanos [should a Rav say no t extrav. wedding?]


In reference to the topic of wedding takanos, what is your take on this:

No real names, but we all know at least 10 or more examples of it:

Mr. Schwartz is an erliche yid.  He is a CPA who has worked as a civil 
service employee for the last 20 years.  He makes about $70,000 a year and 
is now marrying off his third child.

The pressures to make a fancy wedding are great (this is his third) and Mr. 
Schwartz has taken on a second mortgage and gone to a gemach or two.

Mr. Schwartz speaks to his Rav (ho also will be the mesader kidushin) about 
his financial situation (he certainly canít afford to spend a yearís salary 
in one evening).  The Rav understands his predicament but offers to answer.

My question is:  Is it ethically correct for the Rav to be mesader kidushin 
given this person canít afford it.  If there would be mixed dancing, 
non-kosher food, etc. (or if it was on the glatt yacht :)  this Rav would 
never be mesader kidushin.  But in this case, given that this man is making 
a wedding that he canít afford, should the mesader kidushin go ahead and 
officiate, or put his foot down and say no.

Good shabbos!


Get Your Private, Free Email at http://www.hotmail.com

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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 07:18:50 -0800
From: "Newman,Saul Z" <Saul.Z.Newman@kp.org>
state of shiduchim

please see an excellent article in the baltimore jewish times on  'playing
with matches'  on the current   state of shidduchim 

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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 11:05:25 -0500
From: "Ari Z. Zivotofsky" <azz@lsr.nei.nih.gov>
rabbah shechting Rav Zeira - Chasam sofer

Yesterday Shlomo B. Abeles posted a reference to a Chasam Sofer with
Purim torah from his rebbe the Hafla'oh. He mistakenly said it was on
Chullin 17b; it is actually on 8a.


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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 13:34:24 -0600
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Golus Mentality

On Thu, Mar 23, 2000 at 10:53:17AM +0200, Akiva Atwood wrote:
: I would define Golus Mentality as a non-Jewish Weltanshaung (World-view).

As pointed out by others, it is a valid notion, but not what the term means
to other people. Humpty Dumpty may have been happy taking mastery over his
words, but he still left Alice confused.

: It is a fact (though not Politically Correct) that different peoples/nations
: perceive the world in *different* ways, and have different values.

I think the US is finally catching on to the idea. Politicians now speak
of a "glorious mosaic" of immigrant peoples and cultures, not "the great
melting pot".

: (As an example -- Tuma/Tahara. During the period of the Shoftim/Bayis Rishon
: *every* Jew was able to perceive it....

And tzora'as. People actually broke out physically due to cheit.

: However, once Am Yisrael settled the land, foreign ways of thinking
: (concepts) started their "attack" on the Jewish worldview....

Which shows why you can't call this a "*galus* mentality". It's niskatnu
hadoros. Moshe Koppel has an interesting take on this idea in his book

A native English speaker has a sense of correct and poor grammar, and knows
when and how to take poetic language. An immigrant learns formalized rules
and obeys them more procedurally.

The ideal, RMK writes, is to be natives to the halachic culture. This was
the state of dor hamidbar. When Moshe was niftar, much of that weltanshaung
was lost, halachos now needed formalization where none was needed before.
This formalization is called "yasdum". We find it the term used in Temurah
15b (thanks to WebShas) after Moshe's petirah, and also used numerous times
WRT Anshei K'nesses haGdolah.

: (The meaning of "Kedusha", for example, is not "Holiness").

Well, it's not like "holiness" has a rigorous meaning.

To me, kedushah means "committed for a given purpose". The usual meaning is
"... for the Ultimate Purpose" (lichvodi barasiv). In chumash the Purpose is
often stated outright, as in "kadoshim atem Lashem E-lokeichem". And we also
have kiddushin, where the purpose isn't directly the Ultimate One.

: A Pure Jewish Mentality would *only* think in terms of Choshen Mishpat for
: litigation -- Golus Mentality would think about courts and secular law, at
: least as an option.

What I was saying earlier is that a Pure Jewish Mentality, which I would
consider identical to the concept of someone with perfect Da'as Torah,
would not be thinking about the rules of halachah, he'd have an intuitive
sense of mutar and assur, or of who has ba'alus.

I think only Moshe Rabbeinu qualified for this absolute level.


Micha Berger (973) 916-0287          MMG"H for 23-Mar-00: Chamishi, Tzav
micha@aishdas.org                                         A"H 
http://www.aishdas.org                                    Rosh-Hashanah 13b
For a mitzvah is a lamp, and the Torah its light.         

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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 13:36:17 -0600
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Kom Rabba v'Shochtei l'Reb Zeira

On Fri, Mar 24, 2000 at 12:06:18AM +1100, SBA wrote:
:> Rabba and Rabbi Zeira made a Purim feast ...They got drunk..... Rabba....
:> slaughtered Rabbi Zeira....

: I remember some years ago seeing a beautiful pshat from the
: Lubavitcher Rebbe zt''l on this puzzling Gemoro.

And that p'shat was ...?


Micha Berger (973) 916-0287          MMG"H for 23-Mar-00: Chamishi, Tzav
micha@aishdas.org                                         A"H 
http://www.aishdas.org                                    Rosh-Hashanah 13b
For a mitzvah is a lamp, and the Torah its light.         

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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 13:43:37 -0600
From: Micha Berger <micha@aishdas.org>
Re: Diyyuk Redux

On Thu, Mar 23, 2000 at 03:50:30PM -0500, Sammy Ominsky commented about people
who use their own nusach for kaddish even when it's not that of the shul:
:                                        two of the three shuls where
: someone said something to me, the reason they gave was that it was
: "confusing". I wondered to whom, but kept my toungue.

How about to the other people saying kaddish. I don't know Sephardi
custom on this, but most non-Yekkish Ashkenazi shuls have all the aveilim
and people with yahrtzeit saying kaddish hopefully in unison. Hearing
someone else say slightly different words can confuse.


Micha Berger (973) 916-0287          MMG"H for 23-Mar-00: Chamishi, Tzav
micha@aishdas.org                                         A"H 
http://www.aishdas.org                                    Rosh-Hashanah 13b
For a mitzvah is a lamp, and the Torah its light.         

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Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2000 14:16:46 -0800 (PST)
From: Harry Maryles <hmaryles@yahoo.com>
Tuitions and the Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous

From Shlomo B Abeles

I am on the tuition fees sub-committee of a school and
the past 2 years we have developed a 4-page
or parents who request  lower (which we call
"deferred") fees.

Amongst questions asked are details of vacations taken
both locally
and overseas by family members in the past 3 years,
details of car 
costs of children studying overseas etc. Also costs of
extracurricular activities/lessons eg sports, music,
art etc.

We also ask details of any windfall income (in the
past 3 years)
including inheritances etc.

They are also asked about their Tzedoko and Maaser
habits (and
what percentage they give/are prepared to give - to
our school).

Although some (surprisingly few)  have claimed that
the questions are 
they were mostly formulated after hearing complaints
from full-fee 
"How come so and so can't pay fees but they can afford
a new
car/overseas trips/$10,000 pa for seminary fees etc?"

Admittedly in a small Kehilla - where we generally
the situation of most people - it is easier to ensure
compliance -
but we have also found that some parents,
rather than complete the form - suddenly agree to pay
full tuition!

BTW we also request an undertaking that if and when
their financial
situation improves - all deferred fees will be repaid
IOW we are not "mevahter" on any monies - and expect
eventually - even after children ahve left the school

(Lest you get the wrong impression, we are not a group
of hard hearted 
Close to 50% of students are still on between 50-90%
But we hope that we have cleaned up most of the types
that JH complains 

I have been on the Scholarship and Tuition Comittee of
one of the major day schools here and I sympathize
with Shlomo. Over the years we have tried various
formulae to try and insure fairness and equity in the
way scholarships are distributed.   Often, some
parents pay a far larger share of their income than
others. Sometimes fairly and sometimes not. For
example it is possible for someone with over a six
figure income to be on a substantial scholarship if
his living expenses are higher.  If one's home
mortgage is $2000 per month it is a legitimate
deduction and gets the same "value" as the one whose
mortgage is $700 per month. The $700 mortgagee has
more money available for tuition even if his income is
less than the mortgagee with the $2000 per month
mortgage.  This is fair.  (Of course there are many
other variables that come into play when determining
scholarships but... not for now.)

What is unfair in my view, is a policy that no one
should have to pay more than a certain percentage of
his disposable income.  Of course disposable means
different things to different people so the guidelines
are somewhat arbitrary, set in a manner which allows
for what one would call minimal standards of "Torah
Lifestyle" living.  

To me this means that after determining Torah
Lifestyle requirements for living, all income left
over should be available for tuition. Someone making a
substantial amount of money should, even if his living
expenses are higher, be paying full tuition, even with
4 or 5 children in the system.  

But he doesn't.  If the tuition amount exceeds the
percentage guidlines he is given a scholarship.  It
therefore often happens that a high income parent
living the "lifestyle of the rich and famous" recieves
a scholarship because $50,000 in Tuition and fees
(building fund, etc.) (for 5 kids) is more than 20% of
his $200,000 per year income. But, a parent who makes
$50,000 per year (pre-tax) and can barely scrape by is
"Tuitioned to death".  To such a parent, in order to
fulfil his tuition requirements, he has to sacrifice. 
He has to lower his standard of living.  He will often
drive a ten year old car and never take a vacation so
that he can meet his tuition bill.  There is something
obscene in bleeding every drop of blood out of a
sincere parent who, because of his commitment to
Jewish education for his children must sacrifice some
of the niceties of life in order to pay tuition. 
This... while a Lexus (Leased) driving Bal Habos
making in excess of $200,000 per year gets a
schlorship almost automatically. While it must be said
that Jewish education is underfunded and schools need
every drop if tuituion money it can get to meet it's
rather demanding budgets, it just doesn't seem fair
for some parents to have to sweat every penny of
tuition while others just coast and are further
subsidized in their lifestyle by tuition scholarships.
 This is more common than you would think.

I would rather see a dollar amount cut off than a
percentage cutoff.  Disposable income after expenses
should determine money available for tuition, not
percentages.  This way all will be equalized as to
minimum lifestyle and the $200.000 per year income
parent will be forced to sweat a little too.

I'll get off my soapbox now.


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