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Unread 07-27-2004, 01:04 PM   #1
noahidelaws
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Thumbs up The Rebbe's Mass Anti-"Family Planning" Campaign--what are we doing?!

The Rebbe called for a mass anti-"family planning" campaign, not only amongst Jews, but amongst non-Jews as well:

from http://www.sichosinenglish.org/books...reation/08.htm

Quote:
A Light To The Nations
What has been said above about birth control applies not only to Jews, but to non-Jews as well.
All people are created so that the world will be populated and not left barren: [12] "He did not create it a waste land: He formed it to be inhabited."

In a personal sense, too, having children brings settled purpose to one's life.

We have a responsibility to contribute to society at large by spreading an awareness of the principles and values that will enable all men to lead normal lives, in tune with their inner nature. [
13]

Beyond the limited sphere of our friends and acquaintances, we must convince the leaders of the country to fight against family planning and birth prevention by lobbying in Congress, simply, soberly, and with common sense.

The elected officials are normal people who will understand a normal explanation. They have the potential to create and encourage programs that will stimulate a greater understanding of the importance of raising families and enhance the prestige of such endeavors.


Freedom Of Choice
Calling for such programs has been protested as an invasion of privacy. The proper province of governmental concern, it is argued, extends as far as national security and economics, but not personal decisions such as having children.
As civilizations develop, however, we find governments assuming certain responsibilities for their citizens, even if doing so appears to limit their free choice.

In the United States, for example, a great deal of money is spent to maintain a Federal agency known as the Food and Drug Administration, which tests products to ensure that they are fit for human consumption.

A product which is proved to be dangerous is not permitted on the public market; the manufacturers are legally prosecuted if they persist in its distribution; if there is a possibility of harmful side-effects, a product must be accompanied by a warning on the label.

One might question the right of any government to limit the products its citizens are permitted to consume. It is obvious that some forms of social legislation are necessary, for in its absence, [14] "Men would swallow one another alive."

But isn't one' s ingestion of food and drugs a purely personal matter?

Nevertheless, a government that is truly concerned about its citizens will do everything it possibly can to keep them from harm, even harm which they choose to inflict upon themselves. And therefore that agency has been set up and continues to function.

This is demonstrated most graphically by a more radical example: society's response to an attempted suicide. If someone wishes to throw himself from a bridge, police and coast guard are mobilized. No matter how aged he may be, the government will expend immense resources of time, money, and equipment to prevent him from cutting his life short. It is not only an individual's desire to harm another which society finds intolerable, but the desire to harm himself as well.


Public Education
Here, however, we are dealing not with law enforcement, but simply with an education towards values.
The public resources that are being spent today to foster family planning should be put to positive use - to cultivate a widespread appreciation of the meaning of family, of what it means to raise and care for children.

The time-tested values of the Torah need to be translated into the vernacular and spread throughout society at large. For this purpose, research is also necessary.

The tools of social science should be employed to clearly demonstrate that the Torah's approach provides man with the environment best suited for meaningful and satisfying life experience.

It has been said that today there is no such thing as an apikores: there is only the am haaretz. [15]

Opposition - whether in the area of family planning, or, more broadly, in the area of taharas hamishpachah, the laws securing family purity - is rooted in ignorance; it is based on the misconception that the way of Torah runs contrary to a natural way of life.

When people are educated to appreciate the simple truth, that the Torah leads us to harmony with who we are and what our real purpose is in this world, their opposition will cease.
To anyone who could give a hoot: Please study the whole essay posted in the link above, which is directly compiled from carious sichos on the issue, and let's discuss strategies to promote this campaign.
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Unread 08-04-2004, 07:35 AM   #2
noahidelaws
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here is a question someone posed to me on this topic--anyone want to help with responses?

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So even if you knew that you didn't have the money to support any children, you should just go ahead and have kids, because really, God will provide you with all you need? Hmm. Doesn't sound right to me. Yes, i do believe that all blessings come from Him, but still, we have brains for a reason. You should keep in mind what situation you're in (financial). If you know that you are not financially equipped to have children, then why go and have them? You should be able to provide them with everything they need. If you were incapable of doing so, then I don't see why you should have kids. There are so many poverty-stricken kids in the world, or kids who are not getting what they need, why bring more into this less-than-perfect world when you know that you won't be able to give them what they need and make them happy?
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Unread 08-04-2004, 07:43 AM   #3
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1- This is the kind of thing that fits in the Rebbe's horaos thread, the one about the Rebbe saying things only once, or in this case, a limited number of times and then stopping.

2- As for the response you received, there are plenty of people who plan and have 2 kids who could just as easily have 3. Or those who have 3 who could have 4 without much difficulty. etc.

3- What did the Rebbe want Congress to do? Outlaw something? Or just encourage having children through a non-binding resolution, like Education Day USA?
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Unread 08-04-2004, 08:11 AM   #4
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1. the Rebbe didn't "stop." He went on to discuss other additional campaigns. He certainly didn't retract it, or indicate that it applied only for a limited time. Ma'alin ba'kodesh.

2. thanks for your comment!

3. it's pretty straightforward. The Rebbe never said to outlaw anything, but quite simply to encourage everyone, both Jews and non-Jews, not to restrict the no. of children they have. Accordingly, I discuss this in my classes with Jews and my classes with non-Jews, and I plan to write up and distribute a brochure on the topic.
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Unread 08-05-2004, 11:51 PM   #5
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re 3: Although use of contraception is not something that can be outlawed, I certainly regard as a positive phenomenon the govt. declaring that the birth rate ought to be increased, and even providing financial incentives to that end. That would certainly be a worthy means of promoting this message.

does anyone have any thoughts on how to respond to this question:

Quote:
There is already so much life in the world, already thousands of children in the world who aren't being taken care of properly! These children should be 'dealt with' first.
and this one:

Quote:
I want my kids to get a decent education, and I know that I can only accomplish that by sending them to a private school

Last edited by noahidelaws; 08-06-2004 at 12:31 AM.
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Unread 08-06-2004, 12:18 PM   #6
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>does anyone have any thoughts on how to respond to this >question:

>quote:
>There is already so much life in the world, already thousands of >children in the world who aren't being taken care of properly! >These children should be 'dealt with' first.

The assumption is false. There is no real way to 'deal with' someone else's children. To allow the perception that there is some way to 'properly take care of' someone else's children is to encourage irresponsible behavior that produces such children. What would be the result of fewer well-adjusted children?

Parents should be encouraged to take care of their own children, by positive reinforcement and arrangements (tax laws, parental rights, etc), or by negative sanction as becomes necessary.

It is natural for parents to love their children. When they seem not to, it is from outside influences.

>and this one:

>quote:
>I want my kids to get a decent education, and I know that I can >only accomplish that by sending them to a private school

Response? Give this parent a medal! Public schools are by design poisonous, valuing some kind of social engineering over the obvious best interest of the children.
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Unread 08-07-2004, 05:51 AM   #7
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the problem is that the person thinks that the lack of ability to provide proper education is reason to cut down their family size, r"l
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Unread 08-28-2004, 10:28 AM   #8
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Re: The Rebbe's Mass Anti-"Family Planning" Campaign--what are we doing?!

a great, useful site:
http://www.pop.org/
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