Dinim 101 – The accomplice

It’s been going around, a simple statement that has been circulating in certain circles. As it includes a value I hold dearly, I want to share it too.

I believe if a person votes for a political figure, that figure embracing policies that go against God’s commandments (for non-Jews, those would be the seven laws), that person becomes an accomplice.

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11 Comments

  1. Hrvatski Noahid

    I voted yesterday. I think not voting makes things worse. I do not have volume 2 of the Divine Code. But Gentiles may well have an obligation to vote for the best candidate.

    • You seem to have only focused on one word, “voting,” rather than deal with the whole post. I won’t go into the immorality of electoral voting, I’ll only deal my post. If the political party or candidate has policies against the seven, whether it’s the legal protection for idolators, laws that make abortion legal, or protects homosexuals and homosexuality, or makes their unions into “marriages” (these are examples, not an exhaustive list to be rebutted point by point), if the political party goes against the seven or parts of it, then the voter is the accomplice. It’s not the simple act of voting when it comes to the seven, but your support of a system that continues to abrogate the seven or part of them.

      So, no, Gentiles don’t have an obligation to vote for the best candidate at all. Gentiles don’t have any obligation to vote whatsoever. But Gentiles do have an obligation to set up justice systems that uphold the seven. Voting for something that opposes the seven, even if it’s the lesser of two evils, the “best” candidate of the choices, it’s still a vote for evil, making the voter an accomplice

    • You think not voting makes things worse? You are not trained to think; you are trained to follow orders. You are not trained to understand the role of state propaganda. You think non-Jews have an obligation to vote? Exactly where in the Noahide Code does it say that?
      As far as the Divine Code is concerned, this will not help you in the least. The ruling of Dina D’Malkuta Dina prohibits Jews from interfering in the governments and laws of a non-Jewish state. Since you are only trained to follow orders, you will follow the rabbi’s advice and simply play the game instead of trying to fix it. You are part of the problem. Be a part of the solution.

  2. Elisheva Barre

    You have a good point, Hesedyahu. If the Bnei Noah laws included an obligation to vote, it would be part of the responsibility to see to it that justice is done. But the underlying question is: How do we operate the change from a democratic society to a Torah abiding one?

    As things stand today, voters are not required to vote on issues (such as abortions and same-sex marriages), but for a person. This, it seems to me, rules out the claim that the voter would be accomplice to such practices if they are not the main and central platform the candidate stands for. If this candidate is a good person, if his overall stands are positive and if he is capable of fighting for them, eliminating corruption and uplifting the people, I think he does deserve a vote – taking into account that within the democratic system, shaking the consensus requires to choose priorities. Once such a candidate has gained power and the people’s trust, he will be able to steer the boat towards clean waters…

    Meir Kahane was asked: “Who guarantees us that once you get us rid of the Arabs, you will not oblige us to observe Shabbat?” He answered: “If you do not like what you will get when I am PM, you will be able to vote me out after four years!”

    • I hope you don’t mind me disagreeing with you on certain parts.

      Rambam partly described the law of dinim as setting up judges to uphold the seven laws. It would go against such a sentiment to give support to a person or party that goes against the details of the seven. To give my support to someone supporting gay marriage, the protection of idolators and those who curse God, or someone who supports abortion throughout any portion of pregnancy, amongst other things, is to undermine by own stance in support of the seven.

      Changing from the corrupt system into a Torah one cannot come top down, voting for more liars and immoral, godless people, voting for evil in the form of “the lesser evil.” If people vote for an individual as if he is somehow separate from his own agenda or that of his party is highly irresponsible. And such people would still be “aiding and abetting” in the person’s anti-Torah legislation.

      Justice includes the upholding of the seven. If a candidate or party has policies against these bedrock moral laws, if these laws are really the basics, the laws that are the difference between deserving life and deserving death, then, for me, it can’t be the case of “if he’s a good person.” If that goodness includes policies that abrogate and contradict the seven, then my support of such a person neither good for my own integrity nor for the people on a whole.

      Although a vote is both worthless and makes no difference in the manufacture illusion of choosing one’s slavemaster, it is still about being true to one’s own stance. To say I’m committed to the seven whilst supported their continued abrogation is self-defeating and treacherous.

  3. Hrvatski Noahid

    I see that I am not as anti-government as you guys seem to be. But I doubt this makes me an accomplice and part of the problem. I do not pretend to know the actual Torah Law of Dinim. I suggested it is possible that Gentiles have an obligation to vote for the best candidate. Without volume 2 this whole discussion is theoretical and subjective.

    • Bro, the issue is not about whether one is anti-government or not. It’s a matter of morality and consistency. You and I can disagree, you know it’s never been anything personal; you’ve always shown me friendship.

      The halakhah about the seven laws are not dependent on Rabbi Moshe Weiner or the Divine Code. That’s a statement of fact. Even though you may regard him as your rabbi, factually speaking, the seven laws were laid down long before the existence of the Divine Code or its compilers. Rambam, Ramban and other rabbis have already spoken about the already existing law. It’s not merely subjective until the second volume of the Divine Code comes out. That’s giving way too much authority to Moshe Weiner as if his word somehow makes firm the statements of the Talmud, its sages, and the rishonim. There are rabbis that will disagree with him, even as he recorded in the first volume where rabbi zalman … or was it Goldberg … disagrees with his conclusion. Other rabbis disagree with him. So his word is not objective truth.

      The Talmud, Rambam and Ramban and other have stated certain points about dinim. They shouldn’t be cast aside as “subjective.”

      So, let’s deal with reality. A person claims that the seven laws are divine commandments. He claims that they are the most basic morals for Gentiles and he claims he is committed to the one who gave those laws. Remember, most BASIC of human standard. He firmly states his allegiance to each law.

      That same guy then sees candidates vying for power. These candidates, each in their own way, ignore and reject parts of what is supposed to be the most basic human standard. He either neglects to study these anti-Torah policies or knows of them yet chooses to set that aside. He says to himself, I will use my time and effort and give my vocal support to that which ensures that the basic standard will be broken and transgressed. He either makes sure, with his act, that either his candidate will win or that the system continues with his blessing/support that ensures the transgressing of the decrees of the one he claims to love. He wasn’t forced. He wasn’t coerced. He volitionally chooses to support the transgressing and transgression.

      Now it may be hard for you to see. But I have to wonder about the consistency and integrity of such a person. I have to look at Rambam’s depiction of dinim, setting up systems that uphold the seven, and compare it with an act that defies that sentiment. I have to look at Ramban’s depiction of a legal system approximating to the Torah system and compare it with an act and ensures that anti-Torah policies are protected or multiplied. I have to look at the commentary of the Talmud which states the prohibitive side of dinim is an injunction against injustice and compare that with a volitional act that supports the continuance of injustice. That’s not about subjective opinion. It’s about consistency to what a person claims to stand for.

      And that’s just one issue against voting that shows complicity. There are other discrepancies I see when I think of doing such an act myself. But it’ll take too long for me to go through them.

      So it’s not about being anti-government. It’s about promoting one thing and supporting the opposite.

    • Since you do not seem to understand why a government that violates the Torah is wrong, I would say that you are an accomplice. The problem you have is that you have not been trained to think critically; you rely on the rabbis, and simply parrot their words. If Weiner keeps to the pattern of the first book, he will simply have an expansion of the Mishna Torah, and will only focus on establishing courts, ignoring the broad scope of dinim and its role in our legal and political systems.

      • Hrvatski Noahid

        You do not impress me, Alan. Both Chief Rabbis of Israel reviewed and approved Rav Weiner’s Divine Code. Nothing you say can change this fact.

        May you be inscribed and sealed for a good year. I offer my friendship. I do not have the time to be your foe.

  4. Hrvatski Noahid

    You are right. I should have clarified that given my own learning style it is I who cannot give Torah sources without volume 2.

    I respect your position. But one could argue that not backing the best candidate leads to the election of the worst candidate. This is a real life outcome of the aforesaid position. Having the power to lessen evil and choosing not to do so is not consistent with morality at all.

    I love that we can agree to disagree. Peace.

    • As usual, I offer you a virtual handshake as we both go of and do our thing in the “real” world.

      Speaking of the issue you brought up, that if I don’t vote for one guy someone worse will take the place, I think a bit of critical thinking can quell that argument.

      I’m all for personal responsibility as opposed to effects or the ends a lot of the time. When it comes to voting and politics, since our seven laws focus on individual acts, I focus on the act of the individual. I’ll tell you why.

      If you think in terms of “if I don’t vote …,” reality stops you right there. This is not a small local system where an individual vote matters. It’s not like we’re dealing with 5, 10, or 100 people. The voting system is such where the individual vote counts for practically nothing objectively. Your individual vote won’t determine who goes into office. If the system counts almost 50-50 in votes apart from one vote, it can be just seen as a glitch rather than the power of the individual. The more people take part, the less the voice of the individual is worth.

      So if you don’t vote, it won’t matter.

      But when it comes to your own integrity, your own obedience to the seven laws and the desire for their implementation, then voting for evil in the form of “the lesser” is counterproductive and a betrayal of what should be your own values. If there is supposed to be a commitment to God’s fundamental law, such an act says that something is more important.

      So objectively, when it comes to who goes into office, your vote is numerically and practically worthless. When it comes to your own values, voting is a betrayal, if not a transgression.

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