Esther Petrack: Do-over. Rabbi Barry Gelman
Please see below:
I am Esther Petrack’s mother and since her level of religious observance has attracted so much attention on the internet, I feel the need to clarify a few points.
The fateful 4 words “I will do it” in answer to a question about working on shabbat, were the result of EDITING. Esther never said, meant that she would give up shabbat for the sake of appearing on a tv show; neither did she do it. These words were extracted from a long conversation Esther had about the laws of shabbat and the principles governing them and how she was planning to keep them while on the show. The producers then cut out these 4 words to create a more scandalous storyline. This is common practice in reality tv and careful viewers can actually see and hear that the words are edited; and I would have hoped that non careful viewers would also have known because they would have given Esther the benefit of the doubt (kaf zechus)…
I am proud of Esther’s comittment to Jewish observance which she carried throughout the show. As a cute example, the viewers of the show know that the girls were hosted in a house overlooking the Pacific Ocean. Esther used the ocean to tovel (dunk in a mikve) a pot she bought for cooking for herself in the house…
I am not the only one who got this email and I stand corrected and apologize to Esther and her family for not giving her the benefit of the doubt she deserved.
For more on this please see the following post – http://finkorswim.com/2010/10/19/esther-petracks-mother-speaks-esther-is-observant-it-was-all-editing/