Breaking is essential to, in this case, turning a piece of Matzah into dessert. It's also essential to the story of our liberation -- Shifra and Puah weren't the only ones breaking rules.

Moshe, whose upbringing was palace-level privileged, watched a taskmaster breaking the body and spirit of an enslaved person while touring the work sites of the city. He looked all around, and he killed the taskmaster.  We're told that the enslaved were treated in a way Tanach calls "b'farech," with the intent to inflict pain -- in so many words, the cruelty was the point. 

In that moment of breaking, Moshe became a traitor to his own privilege, carefully and with open eyes.

Stokely Carmichael said: "Dr. King’s policy was, if you are nonviolent, if you suffer, your opponent will see your suffering and will be moved to change his heart. That’s very good. He only made one fallacious assumption. In order for nonviolence to work, your opponent must have a conscience. The United States has none." Pharoh also, in our story, is described multiple times as hard-hearted. 

Can we call Moshe's act a righteous murder? Violence is essential to this story -- later in his life, Moshe outlawed killing in the Ten Commandments, but when we see mistreatment with the intention to harm, how might we find courage to look around, then act as traitors for justice? How can we channel our anger in ways that allow others to know us for our values, and how might those actions change us, or allow us to become fully ourselves, as in the case of Moshe?

haggadah Section: Yachatz
Source: Ariel Kates