Rabbi Grossman, if you read my posts, you would see that I have no problem condemning Orthodox violence. I have done so many times before on this blog and in other publications. Nor am I, nor have I ever been interested in apologizing for any form of violence.
Regarding your claim that I am defensive about condemning violence: Huh? I don’t know where you got that from, maybe you are confusing me with a different Rabbi Stern.
If it makes you feel better, I would like to tell America: “I condemn Orthodox violence.”
All that I am saying is that I am bored silly with clichéd liberal statements about Orthodox Jews being violent. I have no problem repeating things and saying the obvious but not when such comments and statements become blinders preventing people from dealing with other issues. Your comments are at best obvious and at worst a blinder. Personally, if I was a conservative rabbi, I would asking myself why Orthodoxy has been so successful in the past 20 years while my own movement has not.
What you fail to address is the real story, which is that more Jews are becoming Orthodox. Why don’t you take a minute and try to understand that phenomenon and the allure of more right-wing Jewish groups. Is it, as Rabbi Waxman says, because of certainty? Maybe. Perhaps it’s because Orthodoxy offers peoples answers in their lives?
You see, Rabbi Grossman, it is very easy to beat up on Orthodoxy. God knows how many times I could do it every day. What is more interesting and ultimately productive, however, is trying to understand Orthodoxy and its cultural logic.