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Sunday, August 05, 2007

Harvard's unorthodox liar

Even though this article has nothing to do with the Matzav, I am linking it because the high school involved was my high school (the class involved is 10+ years behind mine; I believe 14).

This fall the distinguished law professor Noah Feldman will be encsconsed on the banks of the Charles in Cambridge, Massachusetts, but he shares an unflattering personal attribute with New Republic Baghdad Diarist Scott Thomas Beauchamp. Professor Feldman led off his July 22 Times Magazine article "Orthodox paradox" with the following anecdote:

I went to my 10th high-school reunion, in the backyard of the one classmate whose parents had a pool. Lots of my classmates were there. Almost all were married, and many already had kids. This was not as unusual as it might seem, since I went to a yeshiva day school, and nearly everyone remained Orthodox. I brought my girlfriend. At the end, we all crowded into a big group photo, shot by the school photographer, who had taken our pictures from first grade through graduation. When the alumni newsletter came around a few months later, I happened to notice the photo. I looked, then looked again. My girlfriend and I were nowhere to be found.

I didn't want to seem paranoid, especially in front of my girlfriend, to whom I was by that time engaged. So I called my oldest school friend, who appeared in the photo, and asked for her explanation. ''You're kidding, right?'' she said. My fiancée was Korean-American. Her presence implied the prospect of something that from the standpoint of Orthodox Jewish law could not be recognized: marriage to someone who was not Jewish. That hint was reason enough to keep us out.

In short, according to Professor Feldman's clear implication, the yeshiva day school cropped Professor Feldman and his girlfriend out of the reunion photo because she is non-Jewish. Now we learn, courtesy of this Jewish Week article following up on Professor Feldman's Times account:
Noah Feldman, who ignited a firestorm of criticism last week with his pointed attack on Modern Orthodoxy in The New York Times Magazine, admitted this week that he learned before publication of his article that he in fact was not intentionally cropped out of his reunion photograph.

In the article, “Orthodox Paradox,” Feldman, a Harvard Law School professor, asserts that he was erased from a newsletter’s photograph by his former yeshiva, the Maimonides School in Brookline, Mass., because he was standing alongside his non-Jewish girlfriend. The reunion anecdote led off the story in a dramatic way and the image of Feldman and his wife allegedly being stricken from the photo appeared central to his feelings of being left out.

The photographer, Lenny Eisenberg, told The Jewish Week Monday that he had difficulty capturing as many as 60 reunion participants within a single frame. Eisenberg ended up taking several shots from one side, then the other, and several people on the far side — not just Feldman and his fiancée — happened to be out of the picture when it finally appeared in the newsletter.
The Jewish Week article elaborates on Professor Feldman's knowledge of the problem with his anecdote as of the time that his article was published.
Read the whole thing.


At 5:28 PM, Blogger Daniel said...

Now we know that he is not only disingenuous , but also a kochleffing liar.
I'll be honest, I also find asian women attractive, but a brilliant graduate of 12 years of day school should not only know the rules but to publiclly flaunt them ala zimri is a disgrace.
The only reason his intermarriage is a big story is because its a man bites dog scenario. His and our demographic do it the least.
Most of my non observant side of the family has married out and I have come to terms with it. We are only losing the non-frummie population while the hareidi is growing exponentially and the MO's are slowly growng.
For my Chabad friends all Jews lost is tragic. But do I care anymore if the Adam Shapiros marry out? I say good riddance. Let the Jews that stab us in the back all intermarry and vanish. Maybe they won't be able to write to the NYT and say "Even thogh I am Jewish , I am outraged by the latest act


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