In the several years that I have been on one rabbinic listserv and one year on a second one (there’s even a third one I’m on, I think, as well), I have seen an immunity from Godwin’s Law. For those unfamiliar with Godwin’s Law, coined by Mike Godwin, it states “As an online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches 1.”
Now I don’t claim to be an expert on listservs generally or even of rabbinic listservs specifically, nor have I been a member of all rabbinic listservs, so I can’t say that rabbinic listservs are absolutely free of Reductio ad Hitlerium, however, this is what I’ve experienced. And let’s get one thing out there, just as Jews have a million opinions, you can be sure that rabbis certainly have their myriad of opinions, all the more so, so it isn’t like there is immediate consensus on any given topic. Moreover, some discussions will get rabbis excited, but Hitler and Nazis are never (or maybe I missed particularly contentious posts in which they were invoked (although I wouldn’t be surprised if someone showed me a post comparing Ahmedinajad to Hitler)) mentioned. Although there could be a variety of reasons for this omission, I think it’s largely due to the ridiculous nature of bringing them up in conversation. Perhaps it’s due to rabbis having a deep sense of the seriousness of the Holocaust/Hitler and refuse to bring them into a common argument. Discuss

About the author


Having begun blogging in the summer of 2005, Drew joined the Jewlicious mega-Jewblog after Jewlicious Festival 6.0 in February 2010. Drew is committed to serving the Jewish people, and is one of a small number of rabbis who were bloggers whilst in rabbinical school. He's thrilled to be a part of Jewlicious: The Blog and aims to spread his views, thoughts, and ideas amongst the masses.

Leave a Comment