Why did the OU allow the abuses at Rubashkin? Rabbi Menachem Genack, the head of OU Kosher, gives an (inadvertant) answer while responding to the new video put out by noted author Jonathan Safran Foer:
"Video taken at any slaughterhouse would be gruesome," Genack told the
Forward. "It’s inherent to the process. There’s no method of sanitizing
it." Genack maintained that he must strike a very delicate balance —
among USDA regulations, rabbinic law and the economics of the meat
industry. "We’d be failing our constituency if we didn’t provide
affordable kosher meat," he said.
In other words, as long as there is money in it, all aspects of tzaar baalei hayyim law are off the table. Can you imagine the OU allowing Rubashkin’s abuses if the Jewish law being pushed aside was Sabbath observance? Yet, that is exactly what the OU is doing here, pushing aside Jewish law meant both to protect animals and to instill in those of us who eat meat a reverance for life in order to provide Boro Park and the Five Towns with cheaper ground beef.
These are our rabbis, people. It’s time for a change.