I’m surprised at the number of my Orthodox friends who used to roll with Rabbi Meir Kahane. I’ve always thought of R. Meir Kahane as an extremist but Orthodox Jews in Los Angeles that I’ve met seem split 50/50 on the man.
Jack emails: When I was in 8th grade, R. Meir Kahane’s crowd would call me whenever there was a rally, and I’d get a bunch of classmates and we’d dress up in prisoner clothing and hold signs. We got a picture into the NY Times. So I was just a kid, but I heard Kahane regularly, and knew all his gang. And while I liked the ideology (sex and girls was not part of my yeshiva world, so that was where my hormones were directed), it quickly became clear that all the thugs and jerks and kids from the Bronx were not the people I wanted to hang out with. I couldn’t be a Jewish Supremacist, even though I tried for a while. I was around the settlements too for a long time, almost got myself killed.