Sunday, October 02, 2005

Sand and Bans

The latest ban (covered by GH, Yeshivishe News, Zionist Conspiracy, and others) brings something to mind. When you go to the beach and pick up a handful of sand, you cup it in your hands. If you try holding it in a fist, the sand falls out of your hand and through your fingers, leaving you with a lot less, more compacted, but still diminished.

These bans accomplish the same thing. The small core, which will listen to everything, is further compacted. Through outside (read: peer) pressure, a core, with a strong sense of community remains.

That core retains a respect for those who issue bans. The others lose all respect. The blame for this loss rests at the feet of the issuers.

Bans have a place. But the more they are used, the less force they have. Eventually they become a laughingstock to all of us, who have long since fled the enclosing fist.