Trump Triumphant; Jews Joining Islam?

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Dear Rabbi,
Here is a topical one: the ADL’s Jonathan Greenblatt inter alia has said that he’ll register as a Muslim if the Trump administration goes the route of such a requirement. [Most unlikely, IMO.] But Rabbi Gil Student questions whether this is permissible: http://www.torahmusings.com/2016/11/may-jew-register-national-muslim-registry/.
As you know, I’m a fan of Rabbi Student, but I’m not sure whether he really gets to grip with the question in this instance: would adding one’s name to a registry of Muslims really be pretending to be a Muslim? After all, one home visit from the authorities would quickly reveal the truth. What would you say?
All the best,
Stefan

Fascinating question, Stefan
It seems to me that Rabbi Student’s objection is to showing solidarity with Muslims, at the price of devaluing one’s own Jewish identity. I think you are right that one is not actually masquerading as a Muslim in doing so, but nevertheless allowing one’s self to be counted as a Muslim for demographic or other purposes. I also find this distasteful.
This is especially so for a Jewish leader, who is symbolically announcing that social and political liberalism is more important to him and more essential to his identity and value system than is Judaism itself. Of course he may claim (and even believe) that political liberalism is itself integral to and inseparable from Judaism. I don’t think Rabbi Student would agree with this, and neither do I.
There are surely ways of supporting religious liberty in the USA which do not involve the derogation of one’s own faith.
BW
Rabbi Rashi Simon

Questions & Answers
this week

Questions and Answers

Ask the Rabbi: Quinoa on Pesach
Dear Rabbi Simon,
Where do you stand on quinoa (and the kitniyot ban) for Pesach?
Many thanks,
Tzippy
***
Dear Tzippy,
In line with other American authorities, I am in favour of quinoa. Although I reject completely the voices (mostly from Israel) seeking to abolish the ban on kitniyot entirely, IMO we do not need to include in the prohibition pseudo-grains that were unknown in the Old World until modern times. Best to buy with a Pesach hechsher though, to be free of any possible wheat contamination.
Rabbi Rashi Simon
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