Observations regarding Yaakov Teitel and Poor Aristotle

[from Ha-Rav's Blog]

A difficult matter has arisen regarding Yaakov Teitel and it causes us double pain: 1. For all of the horrible accusations of murder and attempted murder – horrific in itself. 2. For all of the prejudice it is bringing in its wake. This is terrible since throughout our exile, when one Jew did something bad, the Anti-Semites blamed all of the Jews. But what could we do? – The non-Jews are not our brothers. We did not have great expectations. But now our brothers are doing the same thing.

What does this have to do with Aristotle? Approximately 2,200 years ago, Aristotle tried to teach us about logical deduction. An example of proper logical deduction: Moshe is a person. People have legs. Conclusion: Moshe has legs. But sometimes people make improper deductions: Moshe is bald. Moshe is a person. Conclusion: All people are bald. This is incorrect. But people make such deductions. Yigal Amir murdered the Prime Minister, z"l. Yigal Amir is a Religious-Zionist. Conclusion: Religious-Zionists are murderers of the Prime Minister. There can obviously be further incorrect logical deductions regarding Herzeliya from where Yigal Amir came or regarding Bar Ilan University where he studied, etc.

In our case, there are those who make the incorrect deduction: Yaakov Teitel stands accused of being a murderer. Yaakov Teitel lives in the settlement of Shevut Rachel. Conclusion: The residents of Shevut Rachel are murderers. Or even broader: He is a settler, so all settlers are murderers. Or even broader still: He is a Religious-Zionist, so all Religious-Zionists are murderers. Aristotle has tried for 2,200 years to convince us of the faulty nature of such deductions. Poor Aristotle.

It is one thing when we are concluding that all people are bald, but here such deductions destroy the most important thing we have: Love and brotherhood, peace and friendship. When we are united, we can overcome any challenge from within or from without. When we look for blemishes among others, we only hurt ourselves.

We are forgetting that the residents of Shevut Rachel, the Settlers and Religious-Zionists are good people, as are Jews who are not residents of Shevut Rachel, who are not Settlers and who are not Religious-Zionists. We are obligated to increase love and brotherhood, peace and friendship among the Nation of Israel.