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Shmuz #89

Malbin Pnei Chavero

One of the more peculiar social norms is the “Ha Ha heter.” It works as follows. You may say whatever you like, no matter how cruel, nasty and hurtful, provided the people standing around say, “Ha Ha Ha!” Then, it is all permitted.

As strange as this sounds, we have come to accept the put-down and the jab as all in good fun, even though it isn’t any fun to be on the receiving end.

Using the events of Dovid HaMelech and Tamar as a backdrop this Shmuz focuses us on the damage of the words we say, and the Torah’s sensitivity to every Jew’s pain.

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