Thursday, March 20, 2008

Finding Amalek

Once again, I have some good news and some bad news.

Both have to do with Amalek.

(A•ma•lek (n) - the group of people, originally an independent ethnic group, who are Biblically identified as an eternal nemesis of the Jews. Midrashically, characterized by virulent, suicidal anti-Semitism.)

There’s been a lot of speculation throughout the ages who is this Amalek...

We’re pretty sure Haman of old was an Amalekite. The Nazis were without a doubt Amalekites.

What about today?

It’s a serious question because we’re supposed to hope for and even strive for the downfall of Amalek.

Well, I mentioned that I have some good news and some bad news.

The good news is that, quite by accident, I’ve discovered Amalek.

The bad news is that he’s in New York.

(Well, I suppose that’s especially bad for New Yorkers, maybe not so bad for the rest of us.)

As you can see from the photo below, which I personally took recently in New York City, Amalek is still, true to form, brazenly displaying his defiance.

May his name be erased from under the sun.

Happy Purim!

PS – on a serious note, if you would like to participate in the very real mitzvah of giving generous tzedaka on Purim, below is a website (no affiliation) where I can vouch that 100% of the donations go directly to the poor. The costs of processing donations are absorbed by R. Yaacov Haber’s organization. It is preferable to spend more on gifts for the poor than other Purim expenses.

R. Haber writes, “All funds raised will be distributed on Purim day to hard working, honest people that I know personally. None of your charity money will go into overhead expenses. We absorb the cost of processing credit cards so whatever amount you give goes directly to help someone in need. Making your contribution in advance of Purim allows me to distribute the funds more efficiently. Please help me help these families. Please make your contribution now.“

To contribute online: click To email a contribution,

To call: (VOIP) 212 561 5131 or + 972 2 644 7308.

To shmooze with Rabbi Haber: Dial + 972 52 539 5216 (Israel is 6 hours ahead of the United States).

To shmooze with yours, truly, dial my mobile. I’m on EDT.

Happy Purim and Shabbat Shalom.

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