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בס"ד

Is One Permitted to Punch a

White Supremacist in the Face? 

Source Sheet by Rabbi Josh Bolton
14 likes · Like
  1. Note: This is an incomplete/emerging source sheet based on the above question. Sources have been suggested based on the same query posted on my FB wall on 1/22/17. I have tried to attribute texts to those who suggested them originally, and have included any notes derive from the comments. Please see the comments section there. JB

  2. Comment, Rabbi Joshua Ladon:


    Joshua Ladon ... I was thinking about the different ways one could approach this topic. Is punching a white nationalist Nazi like:


    • Ben Sorer u'Moreh?
    • Hahovel bahavero?
    • Is it like Terrorism?
    • Is it a defensive war?
  3. "Kansas City Rabbi Clocks Neo-Nazi In Airport"

    By Daniel Sieradski, JewSchool.com, 4/19/05 

     

    Rabbi David Fine, the rabbi of an Orthodox congregation in Oberland Park, Kansas — who is not exactly known for being a “tough” man — found himself in an altercation with a neo-Nazi earlier today at the Kansas City International airport. After a brief shouting match, the rav tossed a cup of coffee in the f*cker’s face and gave him a decent tolchok before an all-out brawl ensued. Mad props from the Jewschool crew to the esteemed rav for having the bayztim to take a stand. It’s never okay to the throw the first punch…unless yer schoolin’ a Nazi scumf*ck. Amen.

  4. Source: Rabbi Charlie Buckholtz

  5. (א) בֶּן זוֹמָא אוֹמֵר...אֵיזֶהוּ גִבּוֹר, הַכּוֹבֵשׁ אֶת יִצְרוֹ, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (משלי טז) טוֹב אֶרֶךְ אַפַּיִם מִגִּבּוֹר וּמשֵׁל בְּרוּחוֹ מִלֹּכֵד עִיר.

    (1) Ben Zoma says:...Who is the mighty one? He who overpowers his inclination, as it says, "slowness to anger is better than a mighty person and the ruler of his spirit than the conqueror of a city." (Proverbs 16:32).

  6. Source: Rabbi Jason Bonder.

     

    Joshua Bolton Jason, Is this the basis of the "No" answer to the question? In your opinion?
     
    Jason Bonder Yes....I think this text represents the stance of "What I WANT to do is sock this guy in the face. But what I'm GOING to do is respond nonviolently, protest, and elect officials that see to it that scumbags like him never become a legitimate threat."

  7. (יח) כִּֽי־יִהְיֶ֣ה לְאִ֗ישׁ בֵּ֚ן סוֹרֵ֣ר וּמוֹרֶ֔ה אֵינֶ֣נּוּ שֹׁמֵ֔עַ בְּק֥וֹל אָבִ֖יו וּבְק֣וֹל אִמּ֑וֹ וְיסְּר֣וּ אֹת֔וֹ וְלֹ֥א יִשְׁמַ֖ע אֲלֵיהֶֽם׃ (יט) וְתָ֥פְשׂוּ ב֖וֹ אָבִ֣יו וְאִמּ֑וֹ וְהוֹצִ֧יאוּ אֹת֛וֹ אֶל־זִקְנֵ֥י עִיר֖וֹ וְאֶל־שַׁ֥עַר מְקֹמֽוֹ׃ (כ) וְאָמְר֞וּ אֶל־זִקְנֵ֣י עִיר֗וֹ בְּנֵ֤נוּ זֶה֙ סוֹרֵ֣ר וּמֹרֶ֔ה אֵינֶ֥נּוּ שֹׁמֵ֖עַ בְּקֹלֵ֑נוּ זוֹלֵ֖ל וְסֹבֵֽא׃ (כא) וּ֠רְגָמֻהוּ כָּל־אַנְשֵׁ֨י עִיר֤וֹ בָֽאֲבָנִים֙ וָמֵ֔ת וּבִֽעַרְתָּ֥ הָרָ֖ע מִקִּרְבֶּ֑ךָ וְכָל־יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל יִשְׁמְע֥וּ וְיִרָֽאוּ׃ (ס)

    (18) If a man has a wayward and defiant son, who does not heed his father or mother and does not obey them even after they discipline him, (19) his father and mother shall take hold of him and bring him out to the elders of his town at the public place of his community. (20) They shall say to the elders of his town, “This son of ours is disloyal and defiant; he does not heed us. He is a glutton and a drunkard.” (21) Thereupon the men of his town shall stone him to death. Thus you will sweep out evil from your midst: all Israel will hear and be afraid.
  8. (ה) בן סורר ומורה נדון על שם סופו. ימות זכאי. ואל ימות חייב. שמיתתן של רשעים. הנאה להן. והנאה לעולם. ולצדיקים רע להן. ורע לעולם.

    (5) The wayward and rebellious son is judged on the basis of his end. He should die innocent and not liable, because the death of the wicked is beneficial to them and beneficial to the world; but for the righteous, it is bad for them and bad for the world.

  9. Ben Sorer u'Moreh sources: Rabbi Zac Kamenetz, Alex Weissman,

  10. (א) אִם־בַּמַּחְתֶּ֛רֶת יִמָּצֵ֥א הַגַּנָּ֖ב וְהֻכָּ֣ה וָמֵ֑ת אֵ֥ין ל֖וֹ דָּמִֽים׃
    (1) If the thief is seized while tunneling, and he is beaten to death, there is no bloodguilt in his case.
  11. ת"ר (שמות כב, א) אין לו דמים אם זרחה השמש עליו וכי השמש עליו בלבד זרחה אלא אם ברור לך הדבר כשמש שאין לו שלום עמך הרגהו ואם לאו אל תהרגהו תניא אידך אם זרחה השמש עליו דמים לו וכי השמש עליו בלבד זרחה אלא אם ברור לך כשמש שיש לו שלום עמך אל תהרגהו ואם לאו הרגהו קשיא סתמא אסתמא לא קשיא

    ...if it is as clear to you as the sun that he is not at peace with you, then kill him. But if it is not, do not kill him. Another version is taught:...if it is as clear to you as the sun that he is at peace with you, do not kill him, and if not, kill him... 

  12. (א) החובל בחברו חייב עליו משום חמשה דברים. בנזק. בצער. ברפוי. בשבת. ובבשת...

     

    בשת? הכל לפי המבייש והמתבייש.

    (1) One who injures his fellow is liable to him in five categories: damages, pain, healthcare, unemployment, and shame...

     

    Shame? It all depends on the one who shames and the one who is shamed.

  13. Source: Yael Kalman.

     

    Joshua Bolton Thanks, Yael -- How are you applying this here? Are you applying it technically, or kinda philosophically? Like, "it all depends upon the the one doing the shaming and the one being shamed, so in this case where you have a white supremacist being shamed, we can kinda infer that the one doing the shaming is certainly not liable, or perhaps is less liable than had s/he shamed, say, an ordinary person in the same way" -- is that what you're doing?
     
    Yael Kalman Yes- that is what I am doing
     
    Joshua Bolton Awesome.
     
  14. (יא) וַיְהִ֣י ׀ בַּיָּמִ֣ים הָהֵ֗ם וַיִּגְדַּ֤ל מֹשֶׁה֙ וַיֵּצֵ֣א אֶל־אֶחָ֔יו וַיַּ֖רְא בְּסִבְלֹתָ֑ם וַיַּרְא֙ אִ֣ישׁ מִצְרִ֔י מַכֶּ֥ה אִישׁ־עִבְרִ֖י מֵאֶחָֽיו׃ (יב) וַיִּ֤פֶן כֹּה֙ וָכֹ֔ה וַיַּ֖רְא כִּ֣י אֵ֣ין אִ֑ישׁ וַיַּךְ֙ אֶת־הַמִּצְרִ֔י וַֽיִּטְמְנֵ֖הוּ בַּחֽוֹל׃

    (11) Some time after that, when Moses had grown up, he went out to his kinsfolk and witnessed their labors. He saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his kinsmen. (12) He turned this way and that and, seeing no one about, he struck down the Egyptian and hid him in the sand.

  15. Source: Ira Blum

  16. (א) וַיֵּ֥שֶׁב יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל בַּשִּׁטִּ֑ים וַיָּ֣חֶל הָעָ֔ם לִזְנ֖וֹת אֶל־בְּנ֥וֹת מוֹאָֽב׃ (ב) וַתִּקְרֶ֣אןָ לָעָ֔ם לְזִבְחֵ֖י אֱלֹהֵיהֶ֑ן וַיֹּ֣אכַל הָעָ֔ם וַיִּֽשְׁתַּחֲוּ֖וּ לֵֽאלֹהֵיהֶֽן׃ (ג) וַיִּצָּ֥מֶד יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל לְבַ֣עַל פְּע֑וֹר וַיִּֽחַר־אַ֥ף יְהוָ֖ה בְּיִשְׂרָאֵֽל׃ (ד) וַיֹּ֨אמֶר יְהוָ֜ה אֶל־מֹשֶׁ֗ה קַ֚ח אֶת־כָּל־רָאשֵׁ֣י הָעָ֔ם וְהוֹקַ֥ע אוֹתָ֛ם לַיהוָ֖ה נֶ֣גֶד הַשָּׁ֑מֶשׁ וְיָשֹׁ֛ב חֲר֥וֹן אַף־יְהוָ֖ה מִיִּשְׂרָאֵֽל׃ (ה) וַיֹּ֣אמֶר מֹשֶׁ֔ה אֶל־שֹׁפְטֵ֖י יִשְׂרָאֵ֑ל הִרְגוּ֙ אִ֣ישׁ אֲנָשָׁ֔יו הַנִּצְמָדִ֖ים לְבַ֥עַל פְּעֽוֹר׃ (ו) וְהִנֵּ֡ה אִישׁ֩ מִבְּנֵ֨י יִשְׂרָאֵ֜ל בָּ֗א וַיַּקְרֵ֤ב אֶל־אֶחָיו֙ אֶת־הַמִּדְיָנִ֔ית לְעֵינֵ֣י מֹשֶׁ֔ה וּלְעֵינֵ֖י כָּל־עֲדַ֣ת בְּנֵי־יִשְׂרָאֵ֑ל וְהֵ֣מָּה בֹכִ֔ים פֶּ֖תַח אֹ֥הֶל מוֹעֵֽד׃ (ז) וַיַּ֗רְא פִּֽינְחָס֙ בֶּן־אֶלְעָזָ֔ר בֶּֽן־אַהֲרֹ֖ן הַכֹּהֵ֑ן וַיָּ֙קָם֙ מִתּ֣וֹךְ הָֽעֵדָ֔ה וַיִּקַּ֥ח רֹ֖מַח בְּיָדֽוֹ׃ (ח) וַ֠יָּבֹא אַחַ֨ר אִֽישׁ־יִשְׂרָאֵ֜ל אֶל־הַקֻּבָּ֗ה וַיִּדְקֹר֙ אֶת־שְׁנֵיהֶ֔ם אֵ֚ת אִ֣ישׁ יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל וְאֶת־הָאִשָּׁ֖ה אֶל־קֳבָתָ֑הּ וַתֵּֽעָצַר֙ הַמַּגֵּפָ֔ה מֵעַ֖ל בְּנֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵֽל׃ (ט) וַיִּהְי֕וּ הַמֵּתִ֖ים בַּמַּגֵּפָ֑ה אַרְבָּעָ֥ה וְעֶשְׂרִ֖ים אָֽלֶף׃ (פ) (י) וַיְדַבֵּ֥ר יְהוָ֖ה אֶל־מֹשֶׁ֥ה לֵּאמֹֽר׃ (יא) פִּֽינְחָ֨ס בֶּן־אֶלְעָזָ֜ר בֶּן־אַהֲרֹ֣ן הַכֹּהֵ֗ן הֵשִׁ֤יב אֶת־חֲמָתִי֙ מֵעַ֣ל בְּנֵֽי־יִשְׂרָאֵ֔ל בְּקַנְא֥וֹ אֶת־קִנְאָתִ֖י בְּתוֹכָ֑ם וְלֹא־כִלִּ֥יתִי אֶת־בְּנֵֽי־יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל בְּקִנְאָתִֽי׃ (יב) לָכֵ֖ן אֱמֹ֑ר הִנְנִ֨י נֹתֵ֥ן ל֛וֹ אֶת־בְּרִיתִ֖י שָׁלֽוֹם׃ (יג) וְהָ֤יְתָה לּוֹ֙ וּלְזַרְע֣וֹ אַחֲרָ֔יו בְּרִ֖ית כְּהֻנַּ֣ת עוֹלָ֑ם תַּ֗חַת אֲשֶׁ֤ר קִנֵּא֙ לֵֽאלֹהָ֔יו וַיְכַפֵּ֖ר עַל־בְּנֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵֽל׃ (יד) וְשֵׁם֩ אִ֨ישׁ יִשְׂרָאֵ֜ל הַמֻּכֶּ֗ה אֲשֶׁ֤ר הֻכָּה֙ אֶת־הַמִּדְיָנִ֔ית זִמְרִ֖י בֶּן־סָל֑וּא נְשִׂ֥יא בֵֽית־אָ֖ב לַשִּׁמְעֹנִֽי׃ (טו) וְשֵׁ֨ם הָֽאִשָּׁ֧ה הַמֻּכָּ֛ה הַמִּדְיָנִ֖ית כָּזְבִּ֣י בַת־צ֑וּר רֹ֣אשׁ אֻמּ֥וֹת בֵּֽית־אָ֛ב בְּמִדְיָ֖ן הֽוּא׃ (פ) (טז) וַיְדַבֵּ֥ר יְהוָ֖ה אֶל־מֹשֶׁ֥ה לֵּאמֹֽר׃ (יז) צָר֖וֹר אֶת־הַמִּדְיָנִ֑ים וְהִכִּיתֶ֖ם אוֹתָֽם׃ (יח) כִּ֣י צֹרְרִ֥ים הֵם֙ לָכֶ֔ם בְּנִכְלֵיהֶ֛ם אֲשֶׁר־נִכְּל֥וּ לָכֶ֖ם עַל־דְּבַר־פְּע֑וֹר וְעַל־דְּבַ֞ר כָּזְבִּ֨י בַת־נְשִׂ֤יא מִדְיָן֙ אֲחֹתָ֔ם הַמֻּכָּ֥ה בְיוֹם־הַמַּגֵּפָ֖ה עַל־דְּבַר־פְּעֽוֹר׃

    (1) While Israel was staying at Shittim, the people profaned themselves by whoring with the Moabite women, (2) who invited the people to the sacrifices for their god. The people partook of them and worshiped that god. (3) Thus Israel attached itself to Baal-peor, and the LORD was incensed with Israel. (4) The LORD said to Moses, “Take all the ringleaders and have them publicly impaled before the LORD, so that the LORD’s wrath may turn away from Israel.” (5) So Moses said to Israel’s officials, “Each of you slay those of his men who attached themselves to Baal-peor.” (6) Just then one of the Israelites came and brought a Midianite woman over to his companions, in the sight of Moses and of the whole Israelite community who were weeping at the entrance of the Tent of Meeting. (7) When Phinehas, son of Eleazar son of Aaron the priest, saw this, he left the assembly and, taking a spear in his hand, (8) he followed the Israelite into the chamber and stabbed both of them, the Israelite and the woman, through the belly. Then the plague against the Israelites was checked. (9) Those who died of the plague numbered twenty-four thousand. (10) The LORD spoke to Moses, saying, (11) “Phinehas, son of Eleazar son of Aaron the priest, has turned back My wrath from the Israelites by displaying among them his passion for Me, so that I did not wipe out the Israelite people in My passion. (12) Say, therefore, ‘I grant him My pact of friendship. (13) It shall be for him and his descendants after him a pact of priesthood for all time, because he took impassioned action for his God, thus making expiation for the Israelites.’” (14) The name of the Israelite who was killed, the one who was killed with the Midianite woman, was Zimri son of Salu, chieftain of a Simeonite ancestral house. (15) The name of the Midianite woman who was killed was Cozbi daughter of Zur; he was the tribal head of an ancestral house in Midian. (16) The LORD spoke to Moses, saying, (17) “Assail the Midianites and defeat them— (18) for they assailed you by the trickery they practiced against you—because of the affair of Peor and because of the affair of their kinswoman Cozbi, daughter of the Midianite chieftain, who was killed at the time of the plague on account of Peor.”

  17. Source: Zari Sussman

  18. (ד) צרור את המדיינים - למה? כי צוררים הם לכם, מיכן אמרו חכמים: בא להרגך השכם להרגו.

    "Assail the Midianites" -- Why? Because they assailed you. And upon this basis the Sages said, "One who comes to kill you, rise up and kill him."

  19. Source: Rabbi Avram Mlotek

  20. (יז) זָכ֕וֹר אֵ֛ת אֲשֶׁר־עָשָׂ֥ה לְךָ֖ עֲמָלֵ֑ק בַּדֶּ֖רֶךְ בְּצֵאתְכֶ֥ם מִמִּצְרָֽיִם׃ (יח) אֲשֶׁ֨ר קָֽרְךָ֜ בַּדֶּ֗רֶךְ וַיְזַנֵּ֤ב בְּךָ֙ כָּל־הַנֶּחֱשָׁלִ֣ים אַֽחַרֶ֔יךָ וְאַתָּ֖ה עָיֵ֣ף וְיָגֵ֑עַ וְלֹ֥א יָרֵ֖א אֱלֹהִֽים׃ (יט) וְהָיָ֡ה בְּהָנִ֣יחַ יְהוָ֣ה אֱלֹהֶ֣יךָ ׀ לְ֠ךָ מִכָּל־אֹ֨יְבֶ֜יךָ מִסָּבִ֗יב בָּאָ֙רֶץ֙ אֲשֶׁ֣ר יְהוָֽה־אֱ֠לֹהֶיךָ נֹתֵ֨ן לְךָ֤ נַחֲלָה֙ לְרִשְׁתָּ֔הּ תִּמְחֶה֙ אֶת־זֵ֣כֶר עֲמָלֵ֔ק מִתַּ֖חַת הַשָּׁמָ֑יִם לֹ֖א תִּשְׁכָּֽח׃ (פ)

    (17) Remember what Amalek did to you on your journey, after you left Egypt— (18) how, undeterred by fear of God, he surprised you on the march, when you were famished and weary, and cut down all the stragglers in your rear. (19) Therefore, when the LORD your God grants you safety from all your enemies around you, in the land that the LORD your God is giving you as a hereditary portion, you shall blot out the memory of Amalek from under heaven. Do not forget!

  21. "...Rabbi Chaim Soleveitchik of Brisk...was said to have declared that the commandment to destroy Amalek extends to all who embrace the ideology of Amalek and seek to annihilate the Jewish nation. Rabbi Bleich also notes that Rabbi Judah Loew of Prague remarked that all enemies of Israel throughout the generations of dispersion are in fact genealogical descendants of Amalek....Therefore, by viewing the commandment to destroy Amalek as one that requires the Jewish people to engage in warfare against all who seek to annihilate Israel, and because biblically commanded wars are obligatory, Israel would have Halachic sanction to engage in a war against Amalek or those who hold the same views as the people of Amalek."

    ("Does Ariel Sharon Consult His Rabbi? How Israeli Responses To Terrorism Are Justified Under Jewish Law" David Rosen, 2003)

  22. Source: Rabbi Joshua Ladon

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