I read with curiosity Mr. Silow-Carroll’s “Guns and Moses” column and would like to respond to three items therein: Mr. Silow-Carroll infers that our discussion of “JINOs” is a blanket statement excising all non-Orthodox Jews from the Jewish people; nothing could be further from either our intent or statements. In fact, that section of the paper, entitled “Adulterated religion — Jews in Name Only.” begins with the statement that:
Arizona-based historian Michael E. Newton, author of The Path to Tyranny (Elephtheria Publishing, 2010), posits that part of the problem rests with Jews who no longer believe in Judaism, and have replaced their previous religion with a popular new one: so called “social justice.”
In addition, I note that my coauthor Alan Korwin is not an Orthodox Jew, and I know he does not believe that his lack of observance makes him non-Jewish as Mr. Silow-Carroll implies.
Mr. Silow-Carroll states that I “give shooting lessons to fellow Orthodox Jews.” While that is technically true, it is a far more narrow statement than the reality: As an NRA-certified instructor, I give instruction to anyone not disqualified to own firearms under New Jersey law. It is true that most of those I have introduced to shooting are Orthodox Jews, but that simply reflects the reality that Orthodox Jews suffer less from the hoplophobia that plagues the more liberal segments of the Jewish world.
Mr. Silow-Carroll states that he doesn't “get” guns or why anyone who isn’t a hunter or a jeweler would want to own one.” To help correct his knowledge shortfall, I have offered to spend an afternoon with Mr. Silow-Carroll so that he can learn about the various issues involved in gun ownership for Jews — the applicable secular laws and freedoms at stake; the Halacha of self-defense; the practical safety issues; and the challenges of the shooting sports.
Rabbi Dovid Bendory
Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership