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All Questions Answered by
Rabbi Yaron Kapitulnik

Question: May a husband and wife with mutual consent (and assuming niddah, seed spilling, etc. are not an issue) use handcuffs or other restraints or toys to spice things up? [Admininstrator's Note: Related questions can be found on JVO at: http://www.jewishvaluesonline.org/question.php?id=67 http://www.jewishvaluesonline.org/question.php?id=486 http://www.jewishvaluesonline.org/question.php?id=978 http://www.jewishvaluesonline.org/question.php?id=1130]
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Question: I am a 52 years old man, raised Conservative, who has had to contend with autism my entire life. Oftentimes it is not the condition which affects me more than it is peoples' attitudes towards it. For example, back in my early 20's I was back East working on my Master's degree and had ample opportunity to at least consider dating Jewish women. However, the two that I hit it off with dropped me quicker than a hot potato once their parents learned from my parents that I have autism. Back then (30 years ago), it was considered by such families as grounds to be an unsuitable suitor, much like a family history of cancer or mental illnesses also was then in those days. I had far more successful relationships with women of other faiths who themselves or whose families were a whole lot less judgmental regarding either the fact that I am Jewish OR have autism. The Jewish families who interviewed me said I was unsuitable for their daughters, and had given me to understand that I was not obligated to marry because my disability had made me expendable, and that my progeny were not essential to maintaining the numbers of their people. I took them at their word and married out, so I wouldn't live a lonely and childless life. Did I settle? Yes. Because life is unfair, and one can only make the best with what one is given. I decided that with such a cold reception I would take a cold and hard look at what Jewish life meant to me, and I decided that martyring my chances to be married by waiting for the right one to come, just to sanctify God's name, was far more than I reasonably expected God to ask of me, because the autism issue would come up each and every time I sought a besheret (soulmate/match). I am asking what Judaism would say to me today in light of the situation I found, and the choices I made. [Administrator's note: A somewhat related question appears at http://www.jewishvaluesonline.org/question.php?id=860.]
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Question: Is it appropriate for a rabbi (as a religious leader) to discuss partisan political issues either from the bimah or as part of a kiddush program in shul (synagogue) on Shabbat?
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Question: I am a Hispanic male that decided to convert to Orthodox Judaism. My best friend belongs to the Reform movement of Judaism and she told me that Hispanics are not allowed to convert to Orthodox Judaism and that only the Conservative and Reform movements allow Hispanics to convert. I wanted to see what Rabbis from the various movements would say, and if an Orthodox rabbi agrees with her.
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Question: I am a Jewish man interested in marrying a Jewish woman. I often ask women why they want to be with someone Jewish and they tell me it would be "easier" or it would make their mothers happy. These to me don't seem like good enough reasons. My reasons are strongly tied to character traits, mainly accountability, that I associate with Jews. What I wondered was what do you consider the biggest and most tangible problems with interfaith marriages?
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Question: There is a big debate in Israel over army service, and whether Haredim ("ultra" Orthodox) should have to enlist. The Haredim claim that they *are* defending the country, by learning Torah. Is it valid to say that defending the country by studying Torah and defending the country by putting your life on the line are truly equal?
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Question: I had a career in television and film during which I represented sexual acts in the films. I feel very bad now. I was so unwise in choosing my roles. I wonder if it could possibly all be forgotten or forgiven, as I have suffered foe 30 years since. I wonder if this is a sin, and if so, is it so bad? I fear I will pay for it till my death. What does Judaism say about my situation?
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Question: What are the Jewish laws regarding respect and treatment of one's siblings?
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