Thursday, February 19, 2004

After reading my latest post, a concerned reader, who apparently has greater insight into the whole YU phenomena, sent me this email with his take on YU students. Although this post may have veered off my main topic of conversation, I have, nonetheless, decided to post this email, out of love for all things that are truthful and accurate.


Finally. I was hoping you would address this.

I think you should address all three of the messed up YU types that can be found in that posting.

The poster is clearly one of those YU guys who grew up in those shuls stuck in the 1950s. They still think that YU is the ultimate goal that any Jew should aspire towards. Then they get to YU and realize that they are amaratzim (which is easier to realize today than it was, say, in their parents time when the yeshivos were some far off theoretical place and not a place that their classmates might have gone to)and that they aren't doing too hot in the academic world either. They are jealous of the confidence shown by those frumer than them, jealous of those less frum than them who can enjoy themselves sexually more that them and they feel like losers in the middle getting nothing on either end. They and their parents feel that the rabayim have sold out and they end up rallying around oddball but smart Rabbi/doctors who have no sechel but also live in the world of the 1950s. They pine for that days that the Rav was still alive but forget that when he was alive they found him too cold, too intimidating, or too uninteresting to actually have what to do with him.

Then there is Chakira himself who seems to be intent on being as mean and degrading as possible so that Protocols might, just might, allow him to join. He seems to have gotten so caught up in being a maskil and thinking that Yeshiva is this cloistered environment that stifles intellectual thought. He was just too immature to realize that if you want that sort of freedom you have to earn it with legitimacy in the eyes of your Rabayim and peers. At least he was smart enough to realize where he could go if he wasn’t going to be getting that legitimacy any time soon. Now he can spend his days being bitter and mean at anything frumer than him. Notice how his posts are allowing him to do all these “daring” things like curse, talk about hanging out with Stern girls and, gasp, masturbating. Wow, he is really smart. And he uses big words. I am sure the yeshivos are feeling terrible that they always lose 10-20 guys like that a year.

Finally, there are the poor souls who want out of YU but can’t make the move for some reason, so they have to deal with the derision of those around them. Granted a lot of it is self-induced and inevitable for one in their situation. But you got to cheer for them because they are fighting the valiant fight even if they are unsure exactly as to what they are fighting for. They will be all right in the end, and besides, it is great fun to watch them cause all this angst in the greatest institution of movie watching, Israeli flag waving, leather jacket on Motzei Shabbos wearing, bunch of behind the times Jews we know."

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