Children have a special measure of strength in Torah and mitzvos, as the verse states, “From the mouths of babies and infants You have established strength.” This power (in Torah and mitzvos, as our Sages say, “‘strength’ refers to Torah”) is even more evident in members of Tzivos Hashem.
I therefore have a suggestion for the children. Since it is connected with the education of children, there is even more reason for the children themselves to carry it out.
Pesach is the proper time for this, since the Haggadah stresses the idea of education — and all of you certainly asked the Four Questions and also understood your father’s answer, avodim hayinu, etc.
By way of introduction: the situation in both the religious schools and the public schools is in need of improvement.
Regarding the religious schools, the law currently prohibits the government from giving financial support, even in areas unrelated to religion. Therefore, the yeshivos must spend money on transportation, lunches, etc. instead of using that same money for education itself. The schools should therefore raise a tumult: all other schools receive governmental assistance for such things as transportation, etc., whereas the schools that teach religion are punished and denied such assistance!
In the public schools, the law currently prohibits mention of the Creator, of “The Eye that Sees and Ear that Hears,” etc. We are witnessing the result of this attitude in the children the public schools are producing: children whose behavior is improper and unjust, to the extent that it resembles that of animals in the jungle! The cause for this is a lack of recognition of Hashem’s existence and presence in the world. It is therefore necessary to make a furor and urge the passing of a law requiring that each school day begin with a Moment of Silence, during which the child will have the opportunity to think about the Creator of the World, how He observes everything that happens, etc.
The suggestion is, then, that the children themselves try to accomplish this by sending petitions to the President of the United States (and to members of the Senate and House of Representatives) calling upon him to pass the two laws mentioned above. The children should, so to speak, “mix in” with the way the United States is run!
Therefore the children should organize themselves, and request their teachers to prepare a text of a petition requesting these two points.
The text should be brief and in English, and reflect the temimus (simplicity or naivete) characteristic of children. The content should be, more or less, as follows:
“We, the children signed below, feel the necessity and importance of knowing that, ‘In the beginning Hashem created the heavens and the earth,’ (a child knows this as well as an adult, and sometimes with even more depth and feeling than an adult) — that the world is not a jungle and that there is Someone in charge.
“We therefore request that the President do everything within his power to enact a law requiring every school in the country to begin the day with a Moment of Silence, set aside for thought and meditation about the Creator of the universe.
“So too, we, the children, request the nullification of the shocking policy that religious schools cannot receive any financial assistance from the government.”
All children should sign the petitions, and they should be the ones to send them to the White House.
The yetzer hora might interfere and argue, “How can a child affect something which has to do with the entire country?” The first answer is that children have a tremendous power to accomplish things which relate to Torah and mitzvos, as we quoted previously, “From the mouths of babies and infants You have established strength.”
That same verse concludes, “to nullify the enemy and the avenger”: those who have no feeling for religion, and even those who oppose religion will find their objections weakened, to the extent that they are “nullified” completely.
Furthermore, even according to the natural order of things, it is almost certain that children will be more successful in obtaining concrete results than politicians! We see that the request of a child — especially in something he feels personally — leaves a very deep impression. Therefore, even according to nature, there is a high probability that their request will be accepted by the President, and that he will do everything within his power to change the two laws mentioned above.
It is obvious that this does not only apply to the children gathered here. All children should participate, both from religious schools and public schools; both Jewish and, l’havdil, non-Jewish children. Non-Jews must also know about the existence of the Creator, that He watches over them, etc.
Certainly everyone will participate in this; I am not doing it for glory, G-d forbid, but rather for the benefit of hundreds of thousands of Jewish children (through aid to yeshivas) and millions of non-Jewish children (through recognition that the world has a Creator). As the Rambam puts it, “accept the truth regardless who says it!” Anyone who thinks about the idea itself will certainly conclude that (even should there be a doubt as to its success) its importance merits the greatest possible effort.
In conclusion: Pesach, which is the Festival of Liberation, is the proper time to “free” all inhabitants of the world from the yetzer hora’s arguments. This includes the idea that the world is a “jungle,” since there is no Supreme Being running it, G-d forbid.
As mentioned above, this should begin with the children, through signing and sending petitions. This should be done as soon as possible but, because of the holiness of Chol HaMoed, it should start Isru Chag — but immediately thereafter.
If everything is done with sufficient effort, it will surely be successful, as our Sages promised, “Exert yourself and you will find.” This includes the idea of “finding” a lost object, where the reward is immeasurably greater than the effort expended. So too here, once the proper effort is invested, you will see that success is much easier than previously imagined.
The previous discussion regarding the petitions spoke only of the participation of children. Obviously adults should also participate in signing petitions, and to do so as soon as possible. Children were mentioned separately because that is an innovation: it is directly relevant to them, they have a special ability to achieve this, etc. However, adults should also sign and send such petitions.
In addition, anyone who has influence in a particular school or contact with teachers or the administration of a school should do everything possible to ensure that all children in that school sign and send petitions to the President.
Even the time before Isru Chag can be utilized, including Shabbos Chol HaMoed, Yom Tov, etc. Every shul’s Yizkor speech should include mention of the importance of participating in this project.
May it be Hashem’s will that these activities nullify the darkness of exile and thereby bring the immediate revelation of Moshiach.