web analytics
April 18, 2015 / 29 Nisan, 5775
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post


Q & A: Sabbath Shuttle? (Part VII)

QuestionsandAnswers-logo

Another question: Are we obligated to wonder about the background of the person we ask to perform a melacha for us? Or can we just assume someone is not Jewish if he seems not to be?

When hiring someone to push a person in a wheelchair, a more personal relationship usually results and it may be easy to discern whether the individual is Jewish or not. But what about when riding on an elevator? If the elevator operator, or random person pushing the elevator button, seems not Jewish, can we just assume he isn’t?

My first thought is to compare these scenarios to the one presented in the following baraita (Pesachim 9b): There are nine [butcher] shops, and all of them sell kosher slaughtered meat, but a tenth one sells [non-kosher meat]. If one took meat from one of them but is not sure from which, the meat is prohibited. However, if the meat was found [in the vicinity of the nine butcher shops], then we follow the majority [and eating it is permitted].

The Mechaber (Yoreh Deah 101:3) explains as follows: In the first case, since the meat was taken from a makom kavuah – a specific place – then the rule is that we treat the numbers of stores as mechtzah al mechtzah – as if half the shops sell kosher meat and half the stores sell non-kosher meat. The meat, therefore, is forbidden. On the other hand, meat found in the marketplace (or in the vicinity) is permitted, even in the hand of a non-Jew, because kol d’parush me’rubah parush – whatever is found is considered to have come from the larger group (which, in this case, is the nine kosher butcher shops).

The Mechaber notes, however, that the Sages prohibited eating the meat in the second scenario. (This rabbinic ruling is due an unrelated reason. As the Shach (sk20) and Ba’er Heitev (sk11) explain, the problem is basar she’nisalem min ha’ayin – meat that went unseen by a Jew and may have been substituted.)

Now let us compare the meat cases to our situation. If one tries to piggyback a ride on an elevator with another individual who most likely is a resident of that building, it is possible that doing so is forbidden if the majority of the residents in that specific building are Jewish (unless one is certain that the individual is a gentile). However, if there is an elevator operator (or a shuttle driver, in our other case), then perhaps riding on it would be permitted if the city has a non-Jewish majority.

Indeed, there are authorities who permit riding on elevators with an operator in a mostly gentile city since we assume the operator is a gentile too. Yet, these same authorities do not permit riding on a shuttle in mostly gentile cities. Why not?

About the Author: Rabbi Yaakov Klass, rav of Congregation K’hal Bnei Matisyahu in Flatbush, Brooklyn, is Torah Editor of The Jewish Press. He can be contacted at yklass@jewishpress.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Q & A: Sabbath Shuttle? (Part VII)”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Daniel Lubetzky  president of V15 and CEO of Kind "healthy" bars
No Victory for V15 and Not Healthy ‘Healthy’ Snack Bars
Latest Judaism Stories
Hertzberg-041715

Lincoln was not a perfect man. But he rose above his imperfections to do what he thought was right not matter the obstacles.

Arch of Titus

Adon Olam: An Erev Shabbat Musical Interlude Courtesy of David Herman

Daf-Yomi-logo

Oh My, It’s Copper!
‘…And One Who Is A Coppersmith’
(Kethubboth 77a)

Grunfeld-Raphael-logo

The omer sacrifice of loose barley flour was more fitting for animal consumption than human consumption and symbolizes the depths to which the Jewish slaves had sunk.

Question: If Abraham was commanded to circumcise his descendants on the eighth day, why do Arabs – who claim to descend from Abraham through Yishmael – wait until their children are 13 to circumcise them? I am aware that this is a matter of little consequence to our people. Nevertheless, this inconsistency is one that piques my curiosity.

M. Goldman
(Via E-mail)

When Chazal call not eating treif food a chok, that refers to how it functions.

His mother called “Yoni, Yoni!” Her eyes, a moment earlier dark with pain, shone with joy and hope

Kashrut reminds us that in the end, God is the arbiter of right and wrong.

In a cab with Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach & Rav Elayshiv discussing if/when to say tefillas haderech

The successful student listens more than speaks out; wants his ideas critiqued, not just appreciated

Why would it not be sufficient to simply state lehoros from which we derive that in such a state one may not issue any psak?

What do we learn about overcoming loss from the argument between Moses and Aaron’s remaining 2 sons?

Each of the unique roles attributed to Moshe share the common theme that they require of and grant higher sanctity to the individual filling the role.

Because of the way the piece of my finger had been severed, the doctors at the hospital were not able to reattach it. They told me I’d have to see a specialist.

“The problem is that the sum total is listed is $17,000. However, when you add the sums mentioned, it is clear that the total of $17,000 is an error. Thus, Mr. Broyer owes me $18,000, not $17,000.”

More Articles from Rabbi Yaakov Klass
Q-A-Klass-logo

Question: If Abraham was commanded to circumcise his descendants on the eighth day, why do Arabs – who claim to descend from Abraham through Yishmael – wait until their children are 13 to circumcise them? I am aware that this is a matter of little consequence to our people. Nevertheless, this inconsistency is one that piques my curiosity.

M. Goldman
(Via E-mail)

Question: What if someone forgot to count sefirah Thursday evening but only realized after he finished davening Friday evening? The catch is that he accepted Shabbos early so that it is still light outside. Can he still count for Thursday evening and then count for Friday night with a berachah once it gets dark?

Pesach Bernstein
(Via E-Mail)

Question: What if a person counted the Omer but forgot to utter the blessing beforehand? Has he fulfilled his obligation? Incidentally, why do we recite a blessing for this counting but not for the “zayin nekiyim – seven clean days”?

M. Goldman
Miami Beach, FL

Question: Must one spend great sums of money and invest much effort in making one’s home kosher for Passover? Not all of us have such unlimited funds.

Name Withheld
(Via E-Mail)

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/ask-the-rabbi/q-a-sabbath-shuttle-part-vii/2014/02/13/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: