Rabbi Shmuel Goldin.(Rabbinical Council of America)

Rabbi Shmuel Goldin, a north Jersey-based vice president of the Rabbinical Council of America, was the one who informed the New Jersey Jewish Standard that it might be best, from the perspective of its Orthodox readership (and advertisers?), for the paper to cease publishing same-sex engagement announcements. He quite scrupulously details the Orthodox community’s internal contradictions. “We believe in respect for all individuals regardless of their sexual orientation and stand adamantly against any physical, mental or social violence committed against them,” he says. “At the same time we have a deep commitment to the integrity of Torah law, which clearly proscribes same-sex relationships.”

His explanation for apparently leaning on the Standard (he denies there were any explicit or implicit threats, but it is difficult to think that he didn’t realize that the prospect of diminished circulation and/or advertising wouldn’t occur to the Standard brass whom he telephoned), however, doesn’t add up as well. “Sometimes people feel that they have the right to make their choices and then to obligate others to celebrate their choices,” he explains of his decision to ask the Standard not to run the announcements. “We believe that we cannot celebrate these choices.” Um, then just don’t?

What Do We Do When We Disagree? [New Jersey Jewish Standard]
Orthodox Unsure How To React to Anti-Gay Violence, Discrimination [JTA via JustASC]
Earlier: ‘Standard’ Publisher Clarifies Same-Sex Stance