Saturday, February 9, 2008

The Kashrut of Dinosaurs

A classmate of mine sent the following question around to our student list:

>Dear Chevre,
>It's 7:15 am in our house and a question of pressing halachic concern was brought up by Reb Levi.
>Are dinosaurs kosher?

Now, it must be noted that Reb Levi is three years old.

A variety of people responded with varying degrees of seriousness to the question (some perhaps not realizing the age of said questioner)

My favorite response (aside from my own) said:

>I say they are definitely Kosher as long as they come like this picture.

Another person brought up unicorns, and in response I said:
...may be true, but Meital did put unicorns on Noah's ark, and like many families, we do have at least one dinosaur, too. Dinosaurs today, however, are best described as "food not fit for a dog" or "eitz b'alma". Therefore, they would fall under the category of dvar hadash. As such, some authorities would permit eating them and others would forbid. One must also consider, however, the recent health concerns regarding items originating in China and whether said dinosaur therefore constitutes a potential danger, however minor, to health and is therefore to be forbidden under the principle of pikuach nefesh. Given that pikuach nefesh doche Shabbat, it most likely supersedes the simple kashrut concerns of dvar hadash and renders the dinosaur forbidden.

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