Friday, May 20, 2011

Jewish Wrestler Randy Savage Dies

I grew up watching the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) on TV. In fact, I even went to three WWF events including Wrestlemania 3 in 1987 at the Pontiac Silverdome. My two favorite wrestlers were Hulk Hogan and Randy Savage.

Randy Savage, who was known as "The Macho Man," died in a car accident this morning in Florida. Randy's brother, Lanny Poffo (also a former pro wrestler) told TMZ that Randy had a heart attack while driving and lost control of the car.

Randy Savage was born as Randall Mario Poffo in Columbus, Ohio. His father Angelo Poffo was Italian, but his mother Judy was Jewish making Randy Savage Jewish according to Jewish law. So, was Randy Savage Jewish? Yes.


I remember thinking how cool it was that before Randy "Macho Man" Savage was a pro wrestler, he was a baseball player. Savage played minor league baseball as an outfielder for minor league teams of the St. Louis Cardinals, Cincinnati Reds and Chicago White Sox.

Savage, who remarried last year, was 58 when he died in the car accident this morning. Hulk Hogan said, "He had so much life in his eyes and in his spirit, I just pray that he's happy and in a better place and we miss him."

9 comments:

Roland Hansen said...

Rabbi,
With all due respect, your descriptive phraseology in reference to the ethnicity of the parents of Randy Savage puzzles me. You write that the father was Italian; does this mean the father was a citizen of Italy or that his ancestery may be linked to Italy? Was the father not an American? You make no reference to the religion of the father, but you do make reference to the religion of the mother. In regards to the mother, you state she was Jewish. How is that a reference to the nation in which she was born, her citizenship, or of her ancesters' country of origin? Was she not an American?
I do not understand why the parental references in regard to ethnicity are of two different catagories. I am cosistently and constantly amazed at the frequency in which this type of thing occurs in our society.

Anonymous said...

With response to Roland. Your blog profile indicates you like "50's and 60's" music. Do you mean the 1750's and 1760's , the 1850's and 1860's? Also you indicate that you like Psychology and Sociology textbooks. High school textbooks? College textbooks?

Rabbi Jason Miller said...

Roland,

You pose a good point here. I should have stated that Randy Savage's mother was born Jewish and his father was born Catholic.

I remembered hearing when I was a kid that Randy Savage was Jewish so when he died I verified the information at Wikipedia where it says that his father was an Italian-American and his mother was Jewish. I obviously should have been more clear. My intention was to show that Randy Savage was Jewish from a strictly halakhic (Jewish legal) definition (i.e., his mother was Jewish).

In the "Floridian," there's an article that tells how Randy Savage's parents met and includes the fact that his mother was Jewish:

Angelo, having returned home from the Navy, enrolled in DePaul University in Chicago. One day, he slipped on the parallel bars while working out, and his foot whacked the shoulder of an attractive co-ed walking by. "So that was it, I had to marry her," he says.

He was older, but due to the war, she was a year ahead, a sophomore, in college on a diving scholarship. They joked about the mishap, started dating, and were married after Judy's senior year in 1949. It was a hard sell to his deeply Catholic parents, because Judy is Jewish.

"At the reception," Judy says, "all the Jewish people were on one side of the room, and all the Catholics were on the other, and his mother said to him in Italian, 'What have you done?' "

Roland Hansen said...

Thank you very much, Rabbi. I sincerely appreciate your response. I am aware of several religious intermarriages, quite a few of which involve those of the Catholic religion and those of the Jewish religion.
I also understand that the reference of Randy Savage being Jewish through maternal lineage is derived strictly from halachic law. As you know, Reform Judaism, which is the branch of Judaism that I observe, has several differences from Orthodoxy and from the Conservative movement, one of which is that a child is considered Jewish if either parent, father or mother, is Jewish. I like what my friend, Lubavitcher Rabbi Yossi Shemtov of Toledo, says - "A Jew is a Jew."
Again, I thank you for your reply.

Roland Hansen said...

Thank you very much, Rabbi. I sincerely appreciate your response. I am aware of several religious intermarriages, quite a few of which involve those of the Catholic religion and those of the Jewish religion.
I also understand that the reference of Randy Savage being Jewish through maternal lineage is derived strictly from halachic law. As you know, Reform Judaism, which is the branch of Judaism that I observe, has several differences from Orthodoxy and from the Conservative movement, one of which is that a child is considered Jewish if either parent, father or mother, is Jewish. I like what my friend, Lubavitcher Rabbi Yossi Shemtov of Toledo, says - "A Jew is a Jew."
Again, I thank you for your reply.

Allison said...

"Eat my warm bagel!" Jews suck.

Joseph Newhouse said...

I get confused with Hebrews a lot of the time. you say he was Italian and jewish. do you mean he was Italian a Lithuanian. I don't know. too many times when you ask someones whos faith is Hebrew they say their nationality Is jewish. Judaism is not a nationality. It Is a faith. the originals jews nationality is Israeli. People whos families were from Europe at one time or another converted because it was brought to their countries as religion. I believe they call them Yiddish. Surprising that they get labeled the poor European bastards to signify their is a difference between Israeli Jews and European Jews. Everyone talks about the holocaust. Do you know who got killed in Warsaw Poland. Their own people. Polish Jews. Who do you think got killed in Germany? German jews. Who got killed in Italy. Italian Jews. I will be accused of being anti semetic but who cares. Its funny to be that after 6 million Europeans were executed during world war 2, Israel was given back to the Israelis In the mean while 6 million poor sob Europeans never got to see Mother Jerusalem. Can you imagine if they were still alive. Jerusalem would of been flooded. The good old Israelis went back home to the holy city. Kinda messed up. Im not a bigot towards race creed or color but enough is enough. If you hate muslims for the same old stupid reasons that hate has made its way through time which is being different. The Arabians, Iranians and Iraqis and Israelis come from the same region of the world. So if your a bigot for color race or creed and you hate muslims from that part of the world then you have to say the same for Israel. You shouldn't be skeptical for those petty reasons. The same traits that jews and muslims share is if you live in their countries and your not their religion then you get taxed. Same for both. At least Christians who are just as full of shit do not do that. They are the most liberal of the three but just as guilty. The Israelis would not of allowed 6 million poor Yiddish to cross into the gates of mother Israel. Even back to the times of jesus the man not god and the jewish high council known as the san hedrin, Jesus basically told them to get off their high horses and stop thinking they were above anyone else and he got put to death for telling them off and shortly after that Israel conformed to more of a roman like way. Do you really think they would let 6 million dirty Europeans into Israel. They wont share with the Palestinians and they are the same nationality. Just one is Hebrew and the other is either muslim or Christian. So if they wont share with their own people(nationality wise)do you think 6 million non Israelis would be let in. The same goes for mecca. They tax jews and chrisians extra in mecca. You should not get taxed because you want to live in a supposed holy city.

Joseph Newhouse said...

I get confused with Hebrews a lot of the time. you say he was Italian and jewish. do you mean he was Italian a Lithuanian. I don't know. too many times when you ask someones whos faith is Hebrew they say their nationality Is jewish. Judaism is not a nationality. It Is a faith. the originals jews nationality is Israeli. People whos families were from Europe at one time or another converted because it was brought to their countries as religion. I believe they call them Yiddish. Surprising that they get labeled the poor European bastards to signify their is a difference between Israeli Jews and European Jews. Everyone talks about the holocaust. Do you know who got killed in Warsaw Poland. Their own people. Polish Jews. Who do you think got killed in Germany? German jews. Who got killed in Italy. Italian Jews. I will be accused of being anti semetic but who cares. Its funny to be that after 6 million Europeans were executed during world war 2, Israel was given back to the Israelis In the mean while 6 million poor sob Europeans never got to see Mother Jerusalem. Can you imagine if they were still alive. Jerusalem would of been flooded. The good old Israelis went back home to the holy city. Kinda messed up. Im not a bigot towards race creed or color but enough is enough. If you hate muslims for the same old stupid reasons that hate has made its way through time which is being different. The Arabians, Iranians and Iraqis and Israelis come from the same region of the world. So if your a bigot for color race or creed and you hate muslims from that part of the world then you have to say the same for Israel. You shouldn't be skeptical for those petty reasons. The same traits that jews and muslims share is if you live in their countries and your not their religion then you get taxed. Same for both. At least Christians who are just as full of shit do not do that. They are the most liberal of the three but just as guilty. The Israelis would not of allowed 6 million poor Yiddish to cross into the gates of mother Israel. Even back to the times of jesus the man not god and the jewish high council known as the san hedrin, Jesus basically told them to get off their high horses and stop thinking they were above anyone else and he got put to death for telling them off and shortly after that Israel conformed to more of a roman like way. Do you really think they would let 6 million dirty Europeans into Israel. They wont share with the Palestinians and they are the same nationality. Just one is Hebrew and the other is either muslim or Christian. So if they wont share with their own people(nationality wise)do you think 6 million non Israelis would be let in. The same goes for mecca. They tax jews and chrisians extra in mecca. You should not get taxed because you want to live in a supposed holy city.

Joseph Newhouse said...

Again the christians(in this instance catholics who are a bunch of Satanist worshipping pedofiles themselves win)As long as you cam afford to live their anyone can live in Rome and not get taxed extra for not being catholic or Christian whatsoever. The problem with these people is they think they are chosen. They think they are the guides of the world. All they prove is they will work with anyone but will you ever ever be considered an equal or a friend. No. Because when people as a people think they are righteous then people they do not consider to be the same they think they can guide often treat people like they are expendable. If fortune comes then cool. If not then they will move on and not care. God was made up a long time ago to make a 90 percent evil world at the time fear evil. Okay its the 21st century now. And through freedom and a lot of mistakes we now know its wrong to be evil. I do not need to worship ora fake god to be morale and good to others. I love and respect the creator for creating our species but do I worship a god. Hell no. I do not think a being that evolved that can create life, would follow or be a a part of a man made concept of worship. Worship is what small men have sought out throughout recorded time. The being that created us wanted us to get to it one day. Not one lifetime but a grand scale of things so that one day through evolution and making the right choices that you will be able to see the creator and get to where the creator is and by the time that you get their and have that power, the idea of guiding a lesser being would not even cross your mind. Would you try to guide ants? No you will hope for the best and let them make their own destiny.