Please forward to whomever is willing to read:
Tonight I came back from an Aseifa (gathering) put together by the Prospect Park Yeshiva in response to the detrimental effects that todays internet, cell phones, ipods, video games etc. have on our children. There is no reason for me to doubt the veracity of the the claims that today's technology has extremely destructive consequences on many of our children. Everyone apparently is at risk. The easy accessibility to such negative influences to violence, pornography, unhealthy relationships at early ages has united the Rabbanim to alert the public and to convince parents to curb the use of these devices in order to protect our children from a young age.
Yet as an astute teenager remarked to me, many good kids that would have been cautious in the use of these devices in the first place will be the first ones that will listen to this ban while those that have a problem and should listen and stop messaging or access to the internet will be angry and disregard. Those that should have come to this Aseifa didn't come and those that didn't really have any issues will be the most willing to adhere to the recommendations.
Let me suggest that banning messaging and internet is not a solution.
Because my guess is that many kids like their parents have been using the cell phones and the internet for positive things as well. When we limit the use of the cell phone including text messaging we do stop the negative but we also inhibit the positive. It's like some cancer treatments. We possibly destroy both the unhealthy and the healthy tissues. In the worse case scenario we inhibit the healthy tissue but the unhealthy tissue continues to thrive.
If the kids who primarily use these devices for positive purposes like organizing chesed activities or texting Tehillim notices, stop as they have been told, and those that use it for negative purposes continue and disregard the ruling of the Rabbanim, we have succeeded in stopping much positive but have not succeeded in stopping the negative.
This is not our goal.
You ask "How much positive is happening as a result of exposure to the Internet or text messaging?"
I can give you my own personal experience. Just today, I read posts of how Jews in Judea and Samaria, Sderot are under constant danger of attack from the enemy. But thse that do not go on the internet have no clue. Therefore Rabbanim have not issued any proclamation about "Vehaya Machanecha Kadosh" literally. When Jews in Eretz Yisroel are attacked then it is a Milchemet Mitzva to fight our enemy even on Shabbat. When we go to war then the army must be a "Holy Camp". This is the literal explanation of "Vehaya Machanecha Kadosh".
The kids by enlarge in our Yeshivoth are self absorbed and have not been made aware of the terrible threat Am Yisroel and the entire world is facing. Europe is blatantly antisemitic. Today for example I got an email of pictures in Europe with Nazi propoganda, dated May 2009. I read Arutz7 about attacks in Judea and Samaria which stabbed kids from Bat Ayin and about other attacks because of lack of civilian defense by the IDF. Some of these attacks were miraculously Bchasdei Hashem prevented. Some were not. I read of Obama's civilian defense force bill which sounded very scary to me because it talked about unifying millions of kids into a volunteer force where it would be forbidden to engage in religious activity or protest etc and such service would be required for student loans. Then I read in Aruz7 about the eminent deal with the Catholic Church to take over Har Zion which will bring in tremendous numbers of Catholics to Har Habayit and other sites in EY which they consider as their Holy sites. Instead of us claiming Har Zion and Har Habayit as belonging under Jewish Sovereignty we suffice our claim to the Har Zion and Har Habayit by merely performing lip service in our Tefila, prayers to bring back the Avoda of the Beit Hamikdash amd we allow the likes of Danny Ayalon to make deals with the Pope. All these emails make me want to cry bitterly for our Holy Temple and our lost opportunities to keep the Mitzvoth and bring peace and blessings to all of mankind.
Do the Rabbanim get these emails that keeps me up till late hours in the night? If they practice what they preach they have no access to these emails except to conduct business.
Yes, I too have trouble waking up on time in the morning and I am bleary eyed the next day. Just like your students who are busy texting till wee hours in the night on stupidities.
If these same kids only knew what was facing them in the future chas vechalila, it would be a wake up call to them to grim realities and they would recognize together with their parents what they should be spending their time doing. They themselves will make the right choices of life and not on fantasy action emptiness and nonsense.
But if they have no clue because their teachers have no clue how are they to blame? The spiritual leaders are off the internet and have willingly or due to mere ignorance seem to have turned a blind eye to what is happening in Eretz Yisroel. They foolishly believe that what I can't see can't hurt me.
Have we as a Nation chas vechalila disregarded our Covenant with Hashem? Our alliances and silence show a willingness to give away parts of our birthright and ignores the suffering of our fellow Jew in Judea, Samaria and what was formerly Gush Katif. As a result, the Mitzva of "Vehaya Machanecha Kadosh" takes a prominence but in a distorted way.
These same educators and parents will be forced to become familiar with the internet and text messaging and all the Shmutz out there anyway in an attempt to effectively monitor their kids activities. They won't even be successful at monitoring much of the time because it will be almost impossible to effectively monitor due to the widespread and easy access of this very disturbing material.
So if we truly wish to fight these negative influences, we must use the tools of the internet and the cell phone and of modern technology to raise awareness and help our fellow Jew in Eretz Yisroel in positive ways and to make choices that bring life and not death.
Our grievous mistake is to not adequately use the tools at hand to serve Hashem and spread Torah. We need to proclaim to the entire world that Am Yisroel belongs in Eretz Yisroel exclusively. Only we Am Yisroel have the responsibility and the obligations to keep the Mitvoth in Eretz Yisroel. Let us proclaim that Eretz Yisroel is our precious gift from Hashem. Our mission as a Mamlechet Kohanim VeGoy Kadosh, a Kingly Nation of Priests and a Holy Nation, is to bring forth Torah and Kedusha, holiness of the Land. The message Ki M iZion Tetzeh Torah Udvar Hashem MeYerushalyim will permeate the world. From Zion will come forth Torah and the word of Hashem from Jerusalem. This in turn will bring peace and prosperity and holiness to mankind. The Shmutz of the internet will naturally dissipate.
Here are some of the emails I received just tonight: If I look at all these emails would it enter my mind to even access the shmutz that is out there or to waste my time with stupidities and trivialities? My mind is on overload with this material.
: ערוץ מצויין ביוטיוב בקשר להסברה הישראלית, נא להשתמש ולהפיץ. תודה רבה