Friday, July 17, 2009

Entertainment in the Orthodox Jewish Community

In dealing with problems in the Jewish community, I like to "keep it real." When I am in Boro Park and I see advertising magazines with TV programs in them, I know that the secular media has made reached saturation levels. The internet has also made heavy inroads, bringing a lot of problems along with the benefits. I was in a Block Buster video rental place and you could have gotten a minyan together right then and there.

We have cable TV, internet and DVD players in our homes. These are inventions that can be used for good and can also be used to wreak a lot of havoc. I have some suggestions for making the best of the challenges that technology has given us.

1) There are a lot of internet filters out there. The technology exists to keep a log of what sites are visited. If someone wanted to, they could voluntarily have history mailed from their url to their learning partner, their rabbi or their mother in law. Someone could make a nice living providing what is in effect a chaperone service for the internet.

2) There are a lot of religious videos out there. The quality ranges from excellent to awful. But one common denominator is that they are all expensive. A family that is already paying for tuition for a large family can not afford to keep up with all the latest Jewish videos. There should be a chain of Jewish video rental stores. There should also be secular non Jewish videos that are deemed fitting for a Jewish home offered for rent. "Life is Beautiful" and "Lion King" might be appropriate to some but not others. Maybe we could get a video rental place off the ground by offering different "Hashgochos" on videos. It should certainly be possible to rent history videos . There would certainly be people who would rail against such a place. How sad it would be if those seeking kosher entertainment were driven to other venues.

3) There are places that rent videos on line. There could be a kosher version of Netflix or other online rental places that would offer the same fare as a kosher video rental store. Anyone who cares enough to patronise such an establishment deserves credit for keeping their home clean.

In the middle of the Three Weeks, it is a good idea to focus on avoiding community arguments. There are those who would never go to a video rental place, kosher or otherwise. Our community has a lot of levels of observance. We should in any case respect each other with our religious differences. Some are more involved in the affairs of the world. Others are more aloof. There is a place for all of us. Sphere: Related Content

1 comment:

chany28 said...

Nice and well pointed.