Article Regarding Rabbi Eliezer Silver's Position on Use of Microphone on Shabbos and Purim
September 7 1983
From The Jewish Post and Opinion – September 7, 1983
Use of Microphone
Swordfish and microphones, among other things, often divide Orthodox rabbis. Some feel that swordfish is kosher; others rule it’s not. As for microphones on the Sabbath, there is also a split. In a recent history of the Rabbinical Council of America, the organization of U.S.-trained Orthodox rabbis, Rabbi Louis Bernstein, once head of RCA, wrote that he heard that the late Rabbi Eliezer Silver, of Cincinnati, had given the Sabbath microphone a kosher stamp.
In the Algemeiner Journal, his son, Rabbi David Silver, of Harrisburg, Pa., denies it. He wrote that someone had once started the rumor about his father’s okay of the mick, but the elder Rabbi Silver at that time said that if there is any written word to that effect, it most be a forgery. Not only did Eliezer Silver disapprove of the microphone on Sabbaths and holidays, he also banned it on Purim, for he felt, write the son, that listening to the Megillah through an amplifying apparatus, like hearing it on radio or a tape, is not hearing the actual text.