His first reponse: "The purpose of complying with kashrut is [a] to comply with Halâkhâh and [b] enable you to host Yehudim (even though they may still not trust your compliance with kashrut, decline to eat with you out of bigotry or may simply not be geographically proximate. It's part of qualifying your practice to meet community standards. Because of its centrality to all functions in the community, kashrut is one of the least flexible mitzwot."
He sent an additional comment later:"In my experience, there are some locations (notoriously, for example, south Florida and Tampa) where chauvinist Orthodox communities intransigently refuse to allow outsiders – even undisputed Orthodox Jews (much less Conservative or Reform) – to use their miqwëh. If that happens to you, realize that you're not the only one. While they should be helping and encouraging learners, don't allow their myopic arrogance to daunt, discourage or dissuade you because there are halakhically-acceptable alternatives: natural bodies of water such as seas, lakes, rivers and streams (but not bathtubs, swimming pools or the like).
"Some useful guidelines are found at:
"You'll need at least a couple of feet of water, since each utensil must be placed in the water individually and allowed to drop free and untouched by anything but the water for several seconds. Then remove the utensil from the water and set it aside. After all of the utensils have been immersed, recite the berâkhâh once for all of them." (Paqid Yirmeyahu, Ra'anana, Israel )
For more information, see the Netzarim website.
Is There a Difference? BODYWORLDS2, now exhibiting at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, displays human bodies, preserved through a process called Plastination in various and unusual poses. There is a stunning lack of criticism for an exhibit that is morally disgusting. While the exhibit is touted as educational, the same visual imagery could have been accomplished without resorting to using human bodies. It is probably true that the use of human bodies attracts more visitors and therefore more "education," but education in what? In the sensationalizing of human remains? In turning the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, and other exhibitors, into direct descendants of the circus freak show? In Jewish tradition, by the way, bodies are generally not viewed, the practice being considered disrespectful to a person who is best remembered in his or living form. Schueller House.
"2006.01.26 Why Hamas Win is Good for Israel — It should now be starkly clear why Fatah did its best to circumvent elections (and blame it on Israel): Hamas. No one with any sense can be even mildly surprised by the outcome. The Arabs only choice was between eternal impoverishment under a hopelessly corrupt and chaotic bunch of crony terrorists, on the one hand, or "throw the gangsters out" and vote in the non-corrupt terrorists. Is that hard to figure out? It isn't much of a stretch to assert that about the only votes Fatah received were from Fatah cronies on the take. The size of the vote for Fatah shows the depth of the graft and corruption that, until now, has impoverished and doomed Paliban society. There was never any doubt that, given the opportunity and lacking Arafat's cult-leader hypnosis, they'd "throw the gangsters out." The only question was the margin." (from Yirmeyahu Ben-David.) For more, go to the netzarim.co.il. (Note this newsy page changes quickly, so the link will probably only be good for a short time.)