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Is it a problem for a Jewish person to be a fan of a non-Jewish sports figure? Since there is an issur of "lo sechonem" -- not to praise a gentile for his prowess or other attributes?

(I suppose being a "fan" would certainly bring someone to praise this particular sports figure.)

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The pashut answer is that seemingly being a "fan" would include speaking of the praise of this non-Jewish sports figure (specifically to admire his strength and abilities) then it would fall into what it says in SA YD Siman 151 Sif 14 and therefore ossur. Of course says over there if he's doing it with the kavana to be m'sheba'ach HaShem and give thanks for creating such a "sports figure" then perhaps it would be another story. I posted the question though to see if anyone else has more insights into this particular shailo or this halacha in general that would be worth sharing.

  • I've heard this answer explicitly b'shem R' Moshe, but I don't know where he says it. – DonielF Mar 24 '17 at 14:56

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