Bava Kama and the Soprano’s?

The ShikkerDovid has started learning the third perek of Bava Kama for a Refuah of a close friend. The Mishna begins with a simple fact patter: If somone places a jar in the public domain and somone else breaks it, the second person is not liable. The Mishna continues and if the pedestrian is injured, the owner of the jar must pay.

The talmud breaks off into a tangent about enforcing law by himself or claiming property without first going to beit din. Reb Nachman says you can enforce the law and Reb Yehuda says you cannot. Reb. Nachman qualifies his position by saying, you can enforce where there will be loss if not enforced immediately.

A funny guy named “Ben Bag Bag” (believed to be a ger) chimes in and says, never go onto a neighbor’s property to retrieve your own stuff without permission.

The Talmud does not really resolve the dispute, either way, however Ben Bag Bag words ring truest. The real justice is when even if you are right and you have the right to something, you forebear so as not to give the wrong appearances. When one excercises restraint, one is doing true justice.

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