Rav Avigdor Miller on Sympathy For Goyim

If a tragedy happens to a goy, is it a good midah to feel bad for him?

There are two madreigos of sympathy. Suppose, chalilah, something happened to your brother, a small thing, would you sympathize with him more than you would sympathize with a stranger? Yes! Every Jew is your brother. With your brother you have to sympathize more. Now for a stranger, also. Even a cat, when a cat gets run over, tzar ba’lei chayim, it’s a pity, since it’s a living thing. But it’s not the same as a brother. It’s much different than a brother.

When you see an ambulance passing by or you hear a siren, don’t ignore it. You should say, “If it’s a Jew, chas ve’shalom, he should have a refuah she’laima.” You never thought about that, did you? So someone asked me a question: “What about if it’s a goy?” I told him, “If a goy is standing there, would a goy say that?” Imagine if I’m an Italian, would I say, “If it’s an Italian, he should have a refuah she’laima“? They don’t say that. So why should we bother about them? We’re not going to bother about them. If there’s an Italian in an ambulance, and there’s another Italian standing there, would the Italian say he should have a refuah she’laima? Ah nechtiga tug. So why should I? But still, it is a pity. I was once standing in a street and a car was parked. The car got loose. The car was on the sidewalk and started rolling down the sidewalk and a black boy was just in front of it. I shouted to the black boy, “MOVE AWAY!” I saved his life. I’m not sorry. Tzar ba’lei chayim. I should see a black boy get run over?! I don’t love him so much. He’s not my brother. But still, it’s a pity. I wouldn’t be mechalel shabbos for him. You can’t be mechalel shabbos for a goy. For a Jew you are mechalel shabbos. “A’chicha”! Your brother is different. But certainly you should have pity on people. Certainly – “Ve’rachamav al kol ma’asuv.” You have pity on everybody.

TAPE E-217