Short & Sweet - Text Message Q&A #338

Blocking Road as a Form of Protest
Q: Is it permissible to block roads as a form of protest?
[There have been a lot of protests recently in Israel by a small group of Charedim called the Peleg Ha-Yerushalami, under the leadership of Ha-Rav Shmuel Auerbach (the son of Ha-Rav Shlomo Zalman), against the induction of Yeshiva students into Tzahal.  Their protests are blocking traffic all around Israel.] 
A: I have been asked this question many times during periods of expulsions from Yishuvim, like Gush Katif.  It is completely forbidden for 5 reasons, each of which is sufficient on its own:
1. Everything must always be done according to the law. 
2. The protesters are bothering people who did nothing wrong. 
3. Perhaps there is a doctor in one of the cars on the way to help someone, or a person on their way to the hospital.  The protester can get run over.  There is no permission to risk one's life, or the life of another, in order to protest. 
4. The police have to deal with the protesters instead of our enemies!  And the police deal gently with the protesters instead of spraying pepper spray or tear gas or similar things which could easily disperse them.  So even more police are required. And it is forbidden to cause a Jew to use force on a fellow Jew.
5. Nothing is accomplished in the State of Israel by force.  Decisions are made only by Jews talking one another.
In sum: Rabbenu Ha-Rav Tzvi Yehudah said that public struggle may only be undertaken without violence, without insults and without hatred (Le-Netivot Yisrael Vol. 1 in the article "Et Achai Anochi Mevakesh").

Loving Hashem and My Husband
Q: Who should I love more - Hashem or my husband?
A: Love of Hashem is also revealed through the love of your husband.

Hanging Bread on a Garbage Can
Q: Why do people hang left-over bread in a plastic bag on garbage cans instead of just throwing it out?
A: There is no good reason for doing so, since no one is going to take the bread from there to eat it.  It is forbidden to throw bread away in a disgraceful manner.  Therefore, one should try to buy bread in a reasonable quantity that will then not necessitate having to throw any away.  If there is no choice, then it should be disposed of in a respectful manner, i.e. by wrapping it in two plastic bags and placing it in the garbage.  See Piskei Teshuvot 171:3.  In the contrary, the Gemara in Pesachim (111:2) says that one should not hang bread, especially here, since it is in a disgraceful manner (See Kaf Ha-Chaim 180:14.  Maor Ha-Shabbat Volume 2, Penini Ha-Maor 30:4 in the name of Ha-Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach).

Q: Is swordfish Kosher?
A: It is a dispute.  The question arises since its scales fall off.  Although the Knesset Ha-Gedolah permits it, it is unclear whether he is discussing the same fish which we call "sword fish" today.  There are others who also permit it (Shut Shevet Me-Yehudah Volume 2 5:118.  Divrei Ha-Rav p. 192 in the name of Ha-Rav Soloveitchik), but the majority of Poskim forbid it (see Shut Tzitz Eliezer 9:40).

Second Marriage
Q: The Gemara in Sotah (2a) says that 40 days before a fetus is formed, a voice from Heaven announces the daughter of "this" person will marry "this" man (i.e. each person has a Beshert, a soul-mate).  If so, how does a widower get married a second time?
A: He marries a woman who is not his Beshert (and he is not hers), but with whom he can still build a household.  As it says: "G-d makes the solitary dwell in a house" (Tehillim 68:7.  Ramchal).

Tefillin After Accepting Early Shabbat
Q: If someone accepts Shabbat early and then realizes that he did not put on Tefillin on Friday, can he put them on before sundown begins?
A: Yes.  There are certain actions which our Sages allowed during twilight, and all the more so if he accepted Shabbat early, and all the more so for Tefillin.

Permanent Make-Up
Q: It is permissible for a woman to have permanent make-up?
A: It is permissible if it is to hide an aesthetic blemish, such as a scar, sparse hair or lack of eyebrows, since it is not actually permanent but rather only for a few years.  If, however, it is to add beauty, it is forbidden.  Taharat Ha-Bayit of Ha-Rav Ovadiah Yosef Volume 3 pp. 29-34.

Blessing over Birkat Ha-Mazon
Q: Why isn't there a blessing over Birkat Ha-Mazon, which is a Torah Mitzvah, "And you should eat, be satisfied and bless" (Devarim 8:10)?

A: We do not recite a blessing over a blessing (Ha-Gaon Rabbi Yaakov Mi-Lisa, author of Chavot Da'at, in his commentary on the Haggadah.  Likutei Shoshanim pp. 13-15).