There's a hidden wire stretched above Manhattan

Ever since someone pointed it out to me early in my NYC years, this literal loophole stands in my mind as one of the world’s most impressive material monuments to the stupidity of fundamentalist religion.


This gives another new meaning to the word “loophole” and makes about as much sense:


Yeah I’ve been in and around NY almost my whole life and I have many Jewish friends – some observant, some not. I’m good enough friends with one guy in particular that I can ask any question and as long as it comes from genuine interest, he’ll answer. But I never asked him why something like this is seen as anything other than a loophole – as getting away with something.

Similar issue is how you can’t carry a key … but you can wear a tie clip. And if the tie ciip happens to be a key, well then sure you can carry a key. The idea and purpose of observing the Sabbath has value … I get the overall idea (I think I do, but I’m not Jewish) but I just don’t see the point all these bypasses.


OK, now you’ve publicized it, it’s going to be a target for Alt-Right: “If we clip this wire every Thursday afternoon, they’ll all be breaking their sacred law!!!”


Maybe it’s to prevent Causal Domain Shear during the Sabbath?

Without it, they might step outside afterwards to find themselves in some crazy world.


Quite to the contrary, the idea is that God expressed himself perfectly. The more subtle points of religious laws are there because he meant them to be there and we are not just allowed but encouraged to discover them.


Was Hell’s Kitchen not enclosed because it’s a public space, or because it’s named “Hell’s Kitchen”?


I relate to the idea of it being charming, but on the flip side of that coin i do find it to be needlessly restrictive. It also brings up questions to mind about wealth, that these neighborhoods can afford to have this workaround vs those jews that live elsewhere and may not have the means or influence with the city to do this.

Also 100k a year that goes to funding a loophole vs doing humanitarian work. Hmmmm


There’s one around Miami Beach. It’s especially annoying because it’s only 10 feet of the ground and requires a ton of plastic white poles holding it up in areas where otherwise would just be grass/trees/beach.


Yes, faux-morality is also a problem and a sign of mental illness. If you care about bleeping curse words on television, or minced oaths, or any form of replacing what you think you’re not doing when you’re doing it and that makes it okay… I mean honestly what are you proving?

The belief that showing your neighbor how good you are matters more than actually being good is an endemic problem of religion and superstition in general.

When we’d rather have people give off the illusion they’re playing within the rules of a religion rather than actually doing the things the religion says to do, that just conveys the idea that it’s okay to find loopholes, shortcuts and reasons to disobey rather than hold true to the beliefs.


So… Breitbart?

Not related to @Aquaman5K’s comment:

I don’t understand the negativity about something so harmless. Humanity does all kinds of pointless stupid shit that we look fondly on as “tradition.” It may not be intensely practical, but neither is watching four hours of Netflix. Why I hear some people (including Atheists) put up trees in their houses in December, and exchange gifts! How wacky!

I guess if Jews do it, it’s weird?


I’m not certain that this is the case by Eruv. But, in many cases Jewish law works like this: The core law is minor in scope, it’s extended to protect accidental violation, the extensions can be waived for pragmatic reasons, but a symbolic remnant is left over to ensure that the waiver (and original restriction) are not forgotten.

An analogy: An alcoholic has a rule that he can’t drink. To make sure he doesn’t lapse he adds a rule that he can’t walk on the same street as a bar. Then he gets a job on the same street as the bar, so he has to walk on that street. He decides that whenever he gets to that street, he’ll first take one step backwards to remind himself that he really shouldn’t be walking down that street, but he has a waiver in this case.

It’s possible that eruv, at least in part, is the symbolic reminder that other “extension” rules are being waived.


Why not have a tiny loop around one utility pole and define everywhere outside that loop as private space?


I really can’t get worked up about this any more than requiring a suit and tie for work, combed hair, hoas, or any other made up thing. In fact, that brings government into scope. Frankly I think it is fascinating.


i’m not Jewish, but i’m surprised people are spinning it as a some attempt by them to “fool their god” or something. look, it’s not your faith, that’s fine – but it’s theirs, and they found a way to adapt to modern living without adversely affecting anyone else. there’s nothing wrong with this to my mind. in fact, it’s one of those little things that i now know that makes visiting cities that have these a much richer experience. humans are so clever!


The Jewish version of the wire seems less exciting than the HBO version.


Not really. A synagogue does that. A festival meal does that A wedding or funeral or bar mitzvah does that. This eruv is just a shoddy loophole, one of many (that’s before you get to the Rube Goldberg gadgets used to turn on lights and use elevators). I’m sure every fundie religion has these cheats that allow the “pious” living in the modern world to avoid the inconveniences of the ancient religions to which they’re so “dedicated.”


Well, I belong to the religion (fill in some B.S. here), that says it is a sin and against the laws of God to exist in a place that is enclosed by a wire put up by people who are worshiping a false (not my) God!
I’m taking this to court. That wire is coming down.


Religion: still the top reason we can’t have nice things.


Yeah, but couldn’t the same thing be said of any community’s expenditures? The local gaming groups spend $100’s of thousands on entertainment, for example.

I’m Jewish so I’m biased, but I always saw the New York eruv as a demonstrably wonderful thing, born of community effort and partnerships.