Matzav Shmooze: I Didn’t Know What Hashomrim Cards Were, Now I’m Appalled

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Dear Matzav Shmooze,

I read a letter posted on your website yesterday from the Roshei Yeshiva of Bais Medrash Govoha publicizing their opinion on Hashomrim Cards.

At first, I laughed at the absurdity of Rabbonim assuring playing cards – especially ones that have a positive message! Then I decided to see for myself what the whole commotion was all about and had a friend send me pictures of some of the cards (via WhatsApp, oy vey!)

What I saw (and attached to this email) appalled me. I don’t even have words to describe my feelings for the cards, I’ll let them speak for themselves. Who signed off on these? Which Rav gave his approval? I hope this fad does not spread too far and I’m glad the Roshei Yeshiva took a stand against these atrocious cards.



  1. Thanks to Hashomrim cards, my kids have actually learnt how to speak to me with utter disrespect. They openly show they despise me when i do something a little different.. (without phone involved).
    Hashomrim cards have taught our kids that they’re holier than their parents.
    Well! As someone told me something good.

    To be accepted in our Yeshiva, NO Smartphone (internet).
    To donate to our Yeshiva, YES Smartphone (internet).
    No wonder our kids turn their backs on their mechanchim.

    • “To be accepted in our Yeshiva, NO Smartphone (internet).
      To donate to our Yeshiva, YES Smartphone (internet).”
      lets be fair, money will be accepted from anyone even the lowest goy, hwvr accepting children has to do with home which in their opinion is detrimental .. but I get what your trying to say you want power from your money and find it not right to ask you for your hard earned money for a mosad you are not on the same page with but this is not hypicrosy on their part and definitely not the reason “our kids turn their backs on their mechanchim”.

  2. Hgaon Reb Aaron Shechter shlita once told someone regarding a supposed Rov who was liberally dispensing heterim don’t pay him any attention or protest against him. His actions will speak for themselves and he will be largely ignored. Whilst if you protest those seeking heterim will assume that the protest is simply a power struggle.

    I feel that should have been in consideration prior to the editor posting anything about the depraved individuals who created these cards.

    An avid reader

  3. Were the words of the Roshei Yeshivah when they spoke against the Internet and technology shown the same respect and acceptance as they are being shown now when they speak against the רוח of these cards? Are we acting with אמונת חכמים or אמונת עצמינו? Food for thought.

  4. I came across a group if boys waving these cards at an adult. I was appalled at the chutzpah. I told the boys “barasi Toireh Tavlin”. I would love to see cards of mishnayos, maamarei chazal and halacha! Imagine what power that would have against any impurity.

    • is your attention span short it seems somebody is always saying the same exact thing your saying. so I’m assuming your the same person. what is your issue?

  5. I disagree with all of you. These cards are important.
    We do the same thing and embarss and disrespect hashem with these phones. Face the facts guys. We’re doing pretty bad

  6. Willing to debate the core issue
    No smartphone has ever led anybody off the derech. Whoever uses the smartphone for immoral things that’s a symptom that something else is going on in that person’s life
    I’m not saying c”v not to HV a phone w/o a filter
    A smart phone is יצא שכרו בהפסידו

  7. These are absolutely terrible. There is a proper way to teach somethjng and this is not it!!! But you neglected to show pictures of the ones with parents in coffins and the like as well as words of gedolim totally taken out of context and sometimes misconstrued and most certainly were not directed towards young children!

  8. i live in ey where most people have a “kosher” phone ie, no texting etc… When i see my kids with these cards i make them throw them away. They teach kids all ideas that otherwise they wouldnt know. We are not a closed family at all but why fill their heads with this rubbish teach the same things a nicer way!!

  9. The Torah is Sweet and Pleasant its Derachea Darchei Noam,.. These cards are just an easy way out for Parents not to be Mechanech there Children, Be a Baal Achrayut take responsibility to educate your children on what’s acceptable according to your Rav/Familys Hashkafah. To put pictures of religious Jews going into Gehinam into a Fire… the last time I saw pictures of religious Jews going to be killed was Hitler sending Jews into the Ovens. OF COURSE THE INTERNET IS FULL OF FILTH and we cant sit Idle and not protest but there’s a pleasant way to explain to our precious children other than violent cards. History has proven in our Nation that when you go TOO Extreme you lose in the End and end up with a NEW RELIGION that is a Gross Chilul Hashem. May the Light of Shabbos light up our Neshama to see how beautiful and Pleasant are the ways of our Torah. Good Shabbos.

  10. While some of the cards are definitely, to use the expression of the roshei yeshiva “not our spirit”, in that they engender disrespect, i need to say that some of the cards posted here are really positive and educational…the one about the chuppah is similar to a cartoon I saw in a hamodia spread a few years ago, and the one of the bris is simply hilarious….the fact that they’re depicting frum people as going to gehinom…. I’d say “yesh ladun” if that’s going too far or not, but there definitely is potential and they should be told which cards to continue printing and which are unacceptable.

  11. It’s all about shidduchim. How can our Yeshiva out-yeshivish the next one, in an already crowded field? How can we stand out? How can our children be mishadeich with that oisher’s daughter? Sick arrogant small minded people.

  12. Frish; all you need to do to see that you’re dangerously mistaken is speak to any community rov who deals with the thousands of divorces and broken families, children off the derech etc, and you will see that saying such things is literally sakanas nefashos – the exact opposite is true…people go on the internet or have a phone because they think they have good intentions and that they will not look at or do anything inappropriate, when soon they are pulled into a new world that grips them and gradually wears down their inhibitions, as there is little resistance to something depicted on a small screen…”im just chatting harmlessly” is the kiss of death that has destroyed, literally torn apart families, and it all starts with “smartphones arent bad, people use them for bad”…. sometimes a bad thing is necessary and can be filtered, in which case we treat it as a dangerous, deadly thing which needs shmira

    Would you let your children have a gun, because “guns dont kill, people do”? And “ive never heard of someone killing with a gun unless they were murderous”? People die from accidental gun fire all the time in the south; the same thing here, just exponentially greater in number.

  13. Having a smartphone teaches your child much more chutzpah (it’s against the rabbunim ) and doesn’t bring you any good

  14. Amazing how many commentators here are using the internet to scream, rage, and cry about the horrors of the internet.


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