Buy Local

If Jews don’t support each other, who will?

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Comments (16)

(10) Canuck, February 10, 2013 3:30 PM

This exhortation should also apply to hiring practices.

In the Canadian city where i live, the local JBE (Jewish Board of Education) trustees seem to make it a point to hire non-Jewish teachers just to show how liberal they are. Some of these gentile teachers are of questionable competence, or mediocre at best. Meanwhile, some excellent, superbly qualified Jewish candidates for the teaching jobs get rejected routinely by the JBE. I am curious as to what Aish readers think of this situation.

(9) Robert, February 8, 2013 2:50 PM

Just understand why . . .

The exhortation to support our own co-religionists -- especially in difficult economic times and especially in circumstances where their establishments are at a disadvantage or are not generally patronized by others -- is well-taken. But if you missed the phrases "ideally" and "it is better to" at the start of the video you could come away with the impression that Halacha unequivocally demands that you pay up to 1/6 more. Please be aware that there is a range of legitimate views of what the Halacha requires or does not require (versus a "recommendation," which should, of course, not be lightly ignored). Moreover, Halacha contains the principle vis-a-vis charity that "the needy in your community have precedence," and there is quite a bit of work that one must do to determine how to define "needy" and "in your community" and "precedence" (it's not "all or nothing"). These are areas where I would recommend that one do some individual homework and then consult a rabbi with which you have a good relationship to get some guidance.

(8) Anonymous, February 7, 2013 6:31 PM

Not always so simple

Your article is titled "Buy Local," not "Buy Jewish." In our town we have one of the few last-standing, truly independent but well-stocked bookstores in North America--the owners are not Jewish, but it is very important for our town's morale not to be taken over by big-box bookstores and I like to support this store. The big-box store in town is owned by Jews, who will do fine with or without Jewish customers, contrary to your claim that no one will support Jewish owners if we don't. The conclusion in this case seems exactly the opposite of your proposition to me--the small store needs our support the most, regardless of the religion of the owners.

(7) Anonymous, February 6, 2013 3:36 PM

great video

Thank you, Lori, you're great! My parents were very liberal, had Jewish as well as non-Jewish friends, weren't religious,( except fasted on Yom Kippur, went to shul on Rosh Hashana and ate matza on Pesach) and yet they always tried to shop Jewish. And for all the reasons that you wrote. Because we were a very Jewish family-oriented family And even though they weren't religious they were JEWISH and that's the way a Jew acts. "Kol Yisrael areivem zeh b'zeh". We Jews are all responsible for one another".

(6) Anonymous, February 6, 2013 4:06 AM


When I first saw this video I was very uncomfortable since not all companies are clearly Jewish and just like the gentile community not all Jews are mensch s. when I go to a dollar store I don't know who owns the place .my tax accountant was Jewish and charged us more when my husband refused to say prayers in Hebrew after he did our income tax.we never went back and we didn't ake it a point to hire a Jewish accountant again. My point is , it's not always the money but if the person deserves your patronage with or without being Jewish .

(5) JBDestiny, February 5, 2013 5:59 PM

Lot of negative emotion in the comments!

I have to wonder if posters here watched the entire video, or if they are allowing their own biases to get in the way of Lori's message. She repeatedly said that you should support non-Jewish causes and business. All she is saying is that, while EVERYONE will shop in the supermarket, only Jews will shop by the kosher butcher. Even if you will be paying up to 1/6th more for your chicken, meat and other goods, you shouldn't let that get in the way of supporting your fellow Jew, especially because if his business fails, he will turn to the Jewish community for financial support in the form of tzedakah/handouts. (OK, that last part may be my own commentary, but it's based on the halacha and reality.) Is Lori wrong? Think - when was the last time you shopped in a Russian or Chinese or Spanish market? Their customers are 100% their ethnic base (or as close to it as makes no difference). Nothing exclusive or offensive about it. As with a for-profit business, contribute to your local hospital, shelter, etc. But don't use that as an excuse not to give to the Jewish causes, because non-Jewish donors *will not* make up the funds. As someone whose career has centered around non-profits, I will tell you that Lori is right: donors to Jewish causes are overwhelmingly Jewish, just as donors to Catholic causes are predominantly Catholic. What's so outrageous about it?

(4) Sarah Malka R., February 5, 2013 5:28 PM

Thank you, Alan S.

Thank you Alan S. for so beautifully expressing wjhat I thought but could not articulate. And thank you Rebbetzin Lori for going public on such a possibly volitile subject. I have always believed we do NEED/ MUST support our own community first....and of course choosing intelligently and sensitively.

(3) Anonymous, February 5, 2013 3:36 PM

does this apply to non-jews only supporting non-jjewish establishments?

JBDestiny, February 5, 2013 6:09 PM

Lori never said "only"

In fact, she said the exact opposite many times. However, since you bring it up, how much have you shopped in a Russian or Chinese or store? Their customers are ethnic, and that makes sense. And reality is that Catholic causes are supported by Catholics; Muslim causes are supported by Muslims; and Jewish causes are supported by Jews. Again, the donor base is so close to 100% ethnic in most cases, that taking from "your group" to give elsewhere means "your group" fails. This also makes sense.

(2) Avie, February 3, 2013 12:48 PM

I'm not certain that a message such as this should be posted publicly on the Internet even though it is a open Halacha.

Joseph A. Apicella, February 4, 2013 1:35 AM

I have to agree with critics of the article

As a gentile I have to agree. I choose the best store-which I believe was implied. I never advertised in the Christian Yellow pages..

Anonymous, February 5, 2013 6:41 PM

Why not?

Lori's message to Jews is not unique to Jews by any measure. (see my comments elsewhere on this thread) Yes, this video will bother some people, Jewish or not. The western world has become hyper-sensitive, itching to find offense in the non-offensive. And unfortunately, that can lead to an attitude of "Yes, true, but let's not spread that too far." IMO, it's much better to explain our values, especially in such an open society, than to be left tongue-tied because we're not certain whether we're breaching some imagined security! Agree or disagree with Lori, but please don't hide!

Alan S., February 5, 2013 7:59 PM

Excellent reply. Every word forms a coherent, smart and sensible response, one long overdue in comments posted on forums such as Aish.

(1) Anonymous, February 3, 2013 8:02 AM

First, be realistic, It would still down to the price... Second, what if the greedy ones increase so much to take advantage of their own people...third, not all of them give Tzedakah... that also means you are feeding some of them to be rich and then the money would be spent unwisely by their spoilt children... it all depends, you still have to be flexible and not blindly buy just because it's Jewish... Whether it's right or wrong, I just don't like how you put it...

Alan S., February 3, 2013 11:19 AM

Oy! What a response. First, while it may ultimately come down to the price, the Rebbitzen is making a valid point that we should expect to pay a bit more to support your family member. Second, while recognizing this is not an ideal world, let's not be paranoid and base our buying on the assumption that we will deal with 'greedy ones'. Obviously price gouging would not be tolerated, and if you feel a Jewish store owner or businessman is taking advantage -- and not just marking up his price by a sixth, than surely buy elsewhere. Third, where did I miss the Rebbitzen speak about 'spoilt children' and 'money spent unwisely'? Why did you enter it into the conversation? This is clearly fallacious reasonsing and an illogical conclusion only in your mind. Anonymous' only valid point is that a person has to be flexible and not blindly buy because it's Jewish. Okay, this is fine. But, while you might not like how the Rebbitzen 'put it', there truly is no sweet, harmonious way to make her point. If anything, in this age of the boycott against buying Israeli products, the Jewish people have to stick together. If we don't, to paraphrase, than we will fall apart. I am not suggesting 'blindly' buying or 'supporting'. I have long been a proponent of 'voting with your feet', i.e., take your business elsewhere if you are dissatisfied. But supporting your family? If I can't rely on you, than you won't be able to rely on me.

Rina, February 4, 2013 4:20 PM

Bravo Alan

Bravo! I couldn't have said it better!


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