Watch: R’ Yisroel Besser On Masks, Shuls, Controversy – and Plain and Simple Ve’ahavta Lereiacha

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  1. Very nice but it goes both ways
    There are people that cannot wear masks and have a very hard time breathing davening learning etc…. Bh in my kehilla we practice this מצוה עשה and accommodate everyone if you would like to wear a mask go ahead if not just make sure you are distanced from the people who are makpid that is it!
    No need for silly lectures and new ways to get us to wear masks
    The machlokes this caused is almost irreversible it will not be easy for us to heal so everyone please love your fellow yid and let them make a mature decision

    • everybody can wear a mask stop making excuses. also nobody is telling people to wear and n95 everywhere. even a cloth masks are used. so a peice of cotton is to much now? the human body is not so fragile.

    • whats not easy to heal is the lung damage in those who didn’t even think they had the virus or didn’t think they had the virus bad. stop making excuses their is no herd immunity and acting like their is is reckless.

    • Dave: You are absolutely correct in your right to not wear a mask. But, I pasken that you and others who cannot wear a mask for health reasons are absolutely patur from Tefillah B’Tzibbur and therefore must daven at home or at a Zoom minyan.

  2. Sorry you might be saying something important but I didn’t understand what you’re saying and I’m sure I’m not the only one. I tried it twice.

  3. I’m sorry, but I respectfully feel this Rav is missing a basic piece of information and I’d be curious to hear if this changes his viewpoint.
    I dont wear masks because they endanger ME, not because I’m inconsiderate.
    Masks catch germs, impair my immune system and cause me to have health ramifications.
    The question begs to be answered – do I have to hurt and endanger MYSELF to be considerate of others who have opposite beliefs?
    There has been science upon science from many, many drs who are honest and not politically motivated attesting to both the danger of wearing masks and the lack of their effectiveness. Are the Rabbanim unaware of this information? Are our own fellow community Drs unaware?

    • masks don’t endanger you. otherwise medical professionals who wear them most of the day would be coming down with health problem. any germs that would be breathed on a mask would be from your own body and wouldn’t pose a risk. what your doing is the equivalent of calling for the ending of crosswalk lights because nobody gets hit. and then you will be surprised when theirs a uptick in car accidents involving pedestrians.

      • Ah, that’s okay. I’ll take my chances. I like living life on the edge. If you’re scared like a little ocd baby, move out to the Ozarks. There you can purchase an underground bunker and you can wear your stupid mask 24/7 without anyone harming you.

        • even if that is the case nobody is forcing people to wear such a restrictive mask. just covering the face with anything is the acceptable norm! a cotton mask will do

  4. The aleph is, be a mensch. Think about others and their concerns. Basic middos tovos.
    The name calling is never called for. What started during the measles “crisis” with the “rodef” “rotziach” “rasha” “evil parents” etc…was completely uncalled for, and perhaps we are being punished now with the Coronavirus davka because of all the anoas divorim and lashon hara that was spoken then. Yesh din viyesh dayin. Think about that. All the hurt that the name callers perpetrated during the so-called measles epidemic. Hurtful words are forever and ever. Once it leaves your mouth, you can NEVER take it back.

    • once you kill innocent bystanders you can’t take it back. i had neighbors who is antivax her child was pregnant her child died because she did a home birth. would you say the parent was right for doing a home birth? everybody with common sense knows that without being in a hospital you take unnecessary risk to the baby and the mother. actions have Consequences.

  5. Those who wear a mask are concerned about their health and life. Sacrificing comfort and convenience to accommodate that, should be a no -brainer. And if you worried about germs- change your mask daily. Seriously

  6. This is also important information. Are we all being taken for a ride?

    Your Coronavirus Test Is Positive. Maybe It Shouldn’t Be.

    Excerpts from New York Times article 8/29/20:
    Some of the nation’s leading public health experts are raising a new concern in the endless debate over coronavirus testing in the United States: The standard tests are diagnosing huge numbers of people who may be carrying relatively insignificant amounts of the virus.
    …In three sets of testing data that include cycle thresholds, compiled by officials in Massachusetts, New York and Nevada, up to 90 percent of people testing positive carried barely any virus, a review by The Times found.
    …Tests with thresholds so high may detect not just live virus but also genetic fragments, leftovers from infection that pose no particular risk — akin to finding a hair in a room long after a person has left, Dr. Mina said.
    Any test with a cycle threshold above 35 is too sensitive, agreed Juliet Morrison, a virologist at the University of California, Riverside. “I’m shocked that people would think that 40 could represent a positive,” she said.
    …The Food and Drug Administration said in an emailed statement that it does not specify the cycle threshold ranges used to determine who is positive, and that “commercial manufacturers and laboratories set their own.”

    PLEASE READ entire article here:

  7. Dave is right. It goes both ways. I can’t wear a mask. It itches my nose and face and makes me sneeze.
    Why are people not considerate of my needs?
    Sorry R’ Besser. Stick to writing.

  8. Great news!

    “I dont wear masks because they endanger ME”

    They do not. They provide exactly 0 risk. thats zero none zilch nada.
    Rest easy. Put your mask back on

  9. @MIG Rabbi Yitzchok Dovid Smith is a Chabad chasid who believes the rebbe is mashiach. If people want to believe that I am not going to argue but that is not the normative view for most readers of this website or Reb Srully Besser.

  10. I’m gonna go dig a bunch of holes. anybody wanna argue that I don’t need to fill them so nobody gets hurt? because thats what I keep hearing “dont wear a mask”.
    sounds to me like leaving a uncovered hole in a public area!

  11. You are a phenomenal writer and please keep it that way don’t take charge of matters that are greater importance and should be made by the leaders of the generation not writers!!

    • Sorry. Not quite sure that I understand why ואהבת לרעך only applies to nonmask wearers towards mask wearers and not the other way around. I find it very unsettling to be in a mask both physically and emotionally. Show me some love

      • nobody is forcing you to wear a n95 mask. which could be uncomfortable. most people are wearing cloth masks. but keep on making up more excuses.

  12. Poster #7, mig, who is Yitzchok Smith? Is he a cousin of John Doe?
    Rabbi besser made an excellent point! Somehow the Yetzer Hora is working overtime, on the eve of Rosh Hashana, during Elul, to get us to be indifferent to others and thus ignore the simple Mitzva of ואהבת לרעך כמוך among others.

    • Exactly! in these erev yom kippur days we ought to exercise great care when speaking about an esteemed Rov as rav Rabbi Yitzchok Dovid Smith!
      Who so eloquently presented the torah view , and just the opposite we should thank him for opening our eyes to truth.

  13. AMAZING , how so many arguing, are MAKING HIS POINT!!!
    The inconvenience, discomfort, etc. should take a back seat to a high risk person otherwise not be able to come to shul AT ALL. I’m not gonna even mention the more severe possible outcome of G-d forbid spreading the virus.

    If you think it should be the other way around, please go back and UNread my comments, because you have zero sechel and I’m not talking to you.

  14. I don’t wear a mask. I don’t like to wear a mask. The shuls, botei medrash and for the most part even stores which I frequent do not require masks. However I think what Rabbi Besser is saying is nothing but common sense and menchlichkeit. All the posts above that suggested otherwise struck me as either callous or plain silly and dumb.

  15. Mentchlackeit?
    Who is not being a mensch here?
    That is what we must determine !
    Is it at all Muttar to wear a Mask ? Or against the Halacha?
    Is wearing a mask a danger to the wearer?HOW WILL IT AFFECT HIS IMMUNE SYSTEM?
    If one wears a mask is it permitted we allow him into our Shul? if yes HOW? where will he dispose of his contaminated mask?
    DOES ALL THE AIR LEAK OUT FROM THE side of the mask ? is the person wearing freshly shaved ? Has it been fitted professionally?
    Has the beard been removed ?

    how much virus if not all passes right through the mask?
    Once we figure all this out we can begin to talk about a Mentchlach solution
    We mustn’t fool ourselves !


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