If a tinok shenishba publicly reviles the Torah, Yiddishkeit and Orthodox Jews, should we respond to him? And if so, how?
If a person who knows nothing about Yiddishkeit reviles observant Jews what should we do about it?
It depends. If it’s in public where other people are listening, you certainly must say something. Speak up. If necessary, you can make dirt out of him. If it’s necessary, because you have to defend the honor of the Jews. You can revile him if necessary.
Of course if it’s possible to avoid that, if it’s done in private, then don’t do that and you try to win him over with gentleness.
You can never tell. Sometimes a person is a big rasha with a big mouth and sometimes he changes to the opposite.
But whatever you hear in public, something said against Yiddishkeit, speak up.
Sometimes it’s necessary to write letters. You’ll find letters always in the New York Times against the Torah. People should speak up and write letters and answer that it’s not so. Again and again these letters are written by reshaim and the Orthodox don’t answer. There are so many Orthodox who are capable, who are college graduates, who have literary talent, and they don’t answer.
Of course the New York Times is not going to print what they don’t like and many times your letter won’t be printed. But sometimes just to show they have fairness — they don’t have fairness but sometimes once in a blue moon they’ll print a letter in reply. And you should do it.
TAPE # 339 (November 20, 1980)