Jan 7, 2012

THE NERVE!

Rav Malinowitz of BTYA has written his thoughts about the extremists and the need to criticize them and distance oneself from them. The article, after initially only being sent to the members, has now been posted on the BTYA website.  I would add that Rav Malinowitz is very consistent with what he said about this issue 3 or 4 months ago when it first came up.
(I removed the embedded file as I was told it was causing problems with the page loading. You can read the document on the BTYA website)

I allowed Rabbi Dov Lipman to respond, considering that parts of it are criticism of him and the community directly affected.

 A Guest Post by by Rabbi Dov Lipman

THE NERVE!

Attack me all that you want. I have been an activist, trying to set the city on a better course for years and people can disagree with me, even vehemently. That is fine and part of living in an open society. I accept it and never feel the need to respond. But when a local Rabbi attacks a little girl and her mother in the most vicious of ways, I cannot remain silent.

The following attack on little Naama and her mother, Hadassa, was penned by a local Rabbi. Everyone with a heart and soul should speak out against this distorted use of the platform given to religious clergy and his congregants should not only condemn him openly but should really think twice whether they want him to guide them in their personal and family lives.

Here is the quote:
"Poor 8 year old Naama Margolese. If my child was spat at, I would wipe the spittle off, gently, wipe away her tears, give her a piece of her favorite chocolate, tell her there are bad men in the world, and in 10 minutes it is over. Waiting three months (what’s that again? The huge outcry was orchestrated three months after it happened? Huh?) to create an overreaction, and having a huge escort to accompany the child to school, and having all sorts of people tracking through her house to visit her as if they’re coming for neechum aveilim… If this poor kid gets traumatized, I’ll tell you why!"
You almost have to read it again to make sure your eyes are not playing games with you because it is not fathomable that a person who has spent years studying Torah and connecting to God could ever even think of writing these words, let alone actually writing them and publicizing them.

Let's dissect the paragraph.

Wipe the spittle off, gently, wipe away her tears, giver her chocolate, and it is over? The writer clearly has no concept of the trauma little girls experience when being called "prutza" and "shiktza" and when they are spat at. Maybe children who are familiar with a world where violence and abuse are a part of life would be able to just move on, but in the Margolese home, the children are taught to respect other people and never raise a voice or condemn the actions of others. Therefore, it is very traumatic when a child in that type of home is exposed to this type of behavior. When children are being taught proper derech eretz, verbal assaults cannot simply be ignored. When children are taught respect, spit cannot simply be wiped away and forgotten.

Oh, wait a minute. I just realized something. This Rabbi never even came to the school to see, firsthand, what was happening. He probably subscribes to the camp that it is all an exaggeration. Isn't there a concept that one cannot really have an opinion about something without actually experiencing it? The nerve to make light of what many girls, not just Naama, experienced without actually seeing it in person!

Let's go further. "Waiting three months?" and "Three months after it happened? " Rabbi, perhaps it is time to get your facts right before writing such a strong condemnation. In case you did not know, the extremists returned within the last few weeks! They returned with more people and with an organized bus! Our informants in RBS Bet told us that if there was not going to be some kind of strong response the extremists were going to escalate things until who knows what could have happened to a Jewish child, rachmana litzlan.
"To create an overreaction and having a huge escort to accompany the child to school?" Since when is thousands of Israelis wanting to come to defend a little Jewish girl an "overreaction?" Baruch Hashem, all of those "horrible anti-Torah secularists" have a Jewish pulse and, upon seeing the tears of this Jewish girl wanted to help. What a strong contrast with the reaction of this Rabbi who for months upon hearing about the traumatized girls responded with a message which seemed to convey, "What do you want from me?"

We continue. "All sort of people trecking through her house like neechum aveilim?" What a sick and distorted image. All one had to do was see the look on Naama's face when MK Rabbi Amsalem gave her a siddur and tehilim (she davens from that siddur daily) to see how therapeutic and important this was for her. The same goes for the gift which Eli Friedman and the TOV party gave to her. These visitors are people who truly walk in the way of God and reach out to love other Jews instead of being defensive and writing nasty and soulless declarations. Perhaps in the divisive, extremist world visits of love and care feel like "nichum aveilim" but for the rest of the Jewish people they are actually quite pleasant and inspirational.

Finally, this "poor kid" will not be traumatized any longer. Her parents did what any loving parent would do and found a way to secure their daughter's safety. In addition, her parents were able to show their daughter the beautiful side of a unified am yisrael and the beauty of true chareidim.

All sensible and caring people must do anything possible to condemn this Rabbi's statements. But even more than that, we must work to make sure that people with this type of flippant attitude regarding verbal/physical abuse and assault and religious extremism not have any involvement in guiding Jewish children or their parents. Because when those "poor children" are turned off by what is presented to them as a soulless, uncaring, and extremist religion and their clergy not protecting them from abuse, no one will have to "tell you why."

113 comments:

  1. I don't understand this idea in the Frum world that people who do something wrong shouldn't be named and shamed publicly...Rabbi Dov Lipman, at the very least name him in a way that those locals know that you know who you are condemning.

    As for the piece...I completely agree and wish that more Rabbis would get up and say what you say. Unfortunately, though, it seems that you are a lone voice (among another few lone voices) preaching to the choir (and to a few who refuse to listen)

    Hopefully your voice will grow stronger as time goes on

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  2. Can you perhaps say who this rabbi is, and what the source is of the quote? The callousness of this statement is shocking almost beyond belief, but without any intention to challenge the guest author's veracity, I think the source for such an unbelievably ugly and callous statement should be made available in order for the readers to judge its accuracy. Assuming the content of the quote is correct, I believe the identity of the quoted rabbi is also important - if people are actually learning Torah and mussar from such a person, I think it is important for them to know the character of the person from whom they are learning.

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  3. The quote is , out of context, from a larger piece written by Rabbi Malinowitz and sent to the membership of the shul earlier today.
    It was very consistent with comments he made in the past about the situation.

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  4. "It was very consistent with comments he made in the past about the situation. "

    Prove it. Post the full context and show how in context there is an appropriate way to sarcastically write "Poor 8 year old Naama Margolese."

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  5. Rafi!!!!
    you have some nerve to bring in a guest writer who only quotes one agavdike paragraph out of a 14 page essay!!!!
    where is your honesty ?if you really want a honest disscusion bring down the whole article

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  6. I agree with anon - now that the quote and its author are in the public domain, I think it only fair to publish the quote in context.

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  7. Yanky - It was very consistent with comments he made in the past about the situation.

    This is probably correct - apparently he's consistently been wrong about this issue.

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  8. I have to think about it, and I assume ask permission from the author. I thought it would be strange when rabbi lipman asked about posting, but I thought his quoted paragraph would be enough.

    Anyway, it is a 13 page essay explaining why he wont say 2 sentences denouncing their actions. And it basically says the same reason as last time, though this time nobody (from outside his own membership, that I am aware of) asked him for his opinion.

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  9. Would your Rabbi Malinowitz treat his own daughter or granddaughter like that? That's training a child to accept abuse.

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  10. Joe in AustraliaJanuary 06, 2012 7:40 AM

    This is a classic case of people considering their own minhag to be normal, and the minhagim of strangers to be outrageous.

    Women in the Margolese family regularly walk in skirts above their ankles, so they can't understand why anyone would object to it. And similarly, I must assume, women in the rabbi's family are regularly called these names ...

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  11. While I agree with R. Lipman's outrage and the need to do something, I can't help but feel that the situation feels like Bar Kamtza calling in the Romans.

    And I hope R. Lipman realizes that, and finds a way to alert the police and the politicians without making a big media event out of it.

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  12. well at least he got in his plug for amsalem. it is so blatantly obvious that dov has higher aspirations and although he is being tremendously helpful and sincere; there is another agenda as usual. (amsalem)

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  13. Heh, I just noticed the pun with Amsalem, and Am Shalem. :)

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  14. I totally agree with everything the rav said. Esp what he said about Naama M. he is 100% right.

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  15. Anonymous - What difference does it make if Dov has future political aspirations? It would be a shame if he didn't. He tirelessly works for the betterment of Bet Shemesh and Israel in general. If there were more leaders like him around Bet Shemesh would be a much more pleasant city to live in!

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  16. Dov has been involved helping our community deal with this scourge for over 5 years... long before there was any possibility of him having political aspirations.

    Halevy, politicians in this country should have a faction the integrity and drive to help people the Dov does.

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  17. Dov Lipman and the rest of the community that brought in the press and exasperated the Chillul Hashem to unbelievable proportions need to do teshuva.

    Talk about abuse, to use an 8 year old girl (evidently months after the issue came up) to further bash the charedi community is beyond disgraceful.

    What rabbinic authority gave them the permission to do what they did?

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  18. While I wrote the comment about Rome and the Media, I strongly object to what Joe wrote.

    What teshuva does R. Lipman have to do?

    The leaders failed to speak up. So he didn't forsee all the conseuqences, for that he has to do teshuvah? No, for that he should learn and do better in the future, but the only people who need to do teshuva here, are the ones who failed to stop the Sikirim from abusing the girl.

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  19. Joe,

    Classic blame the victim!

    Who are you to say the "Chilul Hashem" of the media coverage is worse than the Chilul Hashem of the behavior of these Chareidim over the past 5 years? Where were you when 14 yr old girls were being beaten up, people being threatened, kids being harassed, property being vandalized?????

    For the first time, thanks to the publicity, something is actually being done! I hope the media campaign continues until this scourge is eliminated from our country.

    Real sorry if it make you uncomfortable, but that is the so the price everyone must pay for allowing the REAL Chilul Hashem to fester for so long.

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  20. 5 comments:

    1 - Yasher Koach to Rafi for continuing to publicly decry the action of the thugs. Thugs and bullies only withdraw when they feel that the entire world stands against them.

    2 - I wonder how many of the Rav Malinowitz's supporters in this forum have actually been at Orot when the "crazies" are out. Rafi has. And his presence, as well as the other people who came with their hats and jackets, helped demonstrate that not people who might term themselves Haredi are NOT represented by the thugs, but rather by people like Rafi. I suspect that the people who are so publicly calling out Rafi and Rabbi Lipman as well as supporting Rav Malinowitz discussed most probably have NOT seen things first hand.

    3 - A thug spat on my wife. Others upon at least 3 of my neighbors (that I am aware of the incident). And yet another on Naama. There have been numerous accounts of spitting incidents among other forms of harassment. My wife spat right back. You may not agree with her response, but to say - wipe it off and here's a candy is ridiculous. If this had been a non-Jewish adult spitting on a religious kid in Brooklyn, the cops would have been called and the person arrested. And ALL the Rabbis would have demanded it.

    4 - I find it interesting that of all the pro-Rav Malinowitz talkbackers, only 2 or 3 actually put their names to their words. And only one disclosed his full name. Are you ashamed of something that you need to post anonymously??

    5 - Rabbi Dov Lipman and I painted over sidewalk graffiti in 2006, well before Am Shalem was even a gleam in Rav Amsalem's eye. While he and I do not always agree on tactics, I have no doubt that Dov has done more work toward the betterment of community relations with BOTH sides than ANYONE else. Unfortunately, they were not fruitful. I would then add that Dov's massive investment of time and effort, not only for Orot, but to the entire city, is an unbelievable feat, one none of us can match. Despite his political activities, anyone who dares assert that Dov's activities are not altruistic first and political second, does not know Dov. While he may (and hopefully will) benefit in the political arena, his first thoughts are for the people in his community. If he is able to gain a side benefit from his efforts, more power to him.

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  21. "I find it interesting that of all the pro-Rav Malinowitz talkbackers,"

    I neither support Rav Malinowitz nor do I support R. Lipman making this a big press thing. (According to the NY Times, R. Lipman gets the credit of making this all over the news).

    Black and white thinking only adds to the problem. It's what the press likes to do.

    I am anonymous, because I don't like Google associating my name with non professional things.

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  22. Dov,

    Please tell us who poskened for you that it was mutar and appropriate to call the media in.

    Thank you,

    Joe

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  23. For those under the misconception, apparently including Rav M. This 'issue' of grown men in Charedi Chasidish garb screaming 'whore' 'pritzes' & 'shiksa' at little girls AT THEIR SCHOOL, might have began months ago, but it continues! WHY? Because the greater Jewish community did NOT come out and say "NO!"

    Because those who now accuse the victims of starting a war, already saw the families of Orot banot as their enemies and so just didn't care enough or perhaps they were just too lazy to get up and do something.

    Every other avenue was tried. Community activism, fighting back, the police etc etc etc. A few dedicated people who cannot stand to see little girls verbally and at times physically assaulted arrived daily at the school to defend them documenting and sharing to anyone who was interested.

    Asking Rabbanim to condemn the behavior of these crazies has no relevance whatsoever to asking Italians to condemn Mafia behavior. The Mafia does not claim to act in the name of Italy. A more fitting analogy is asking (expecting) Muslim clerics to condemn radical Islamic terrorism because, just like these guys- they claim to act in the name of their faith- And so, it IS up to those who are Torah leaders and who also claim to work in the name of the Torah & HKBH to Absolutely and Unconditionally say that these monsters do not in any way represent Torah. Period.

    Anyone who considers himself a leader has a responsibility to his people to teach them the right way to be- sadly and shockingly - this is a failure of leadership.

    Lastly, I cannot express my sorrow at the characterization of Naama and her parents. This girl (and others!) is traumatized by the regular barbaric and frightening behavior of very scary, nasty men outside her school. I have been there and I was spit on by these 'men' it is a terrifying thing for an adult- imagine being a little girl.

    No one else came to her rescue- the greater Torah community FAILED to run these guys away from the school. It FAILED to defend her and walk her to school. It FAILED to stand up for Torah and right.

    And so, the greater Jewish community did it. The 'evil' secular media and those from far away came down- oh the nerve- oh the hatred!

    I want to believe that Rav M doesn't realize the divisiveness this thought process and letter is causing. I want to believe that he regrets making the Margoleses defense of their daughter sound like opportunism. I want to believe that if his daughter was continually harassed by thugs that he would stand up for her in any way he had to. I want to believe it, because to believe the opposite is literally painful.

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  24. Shmuel - things must be really bad if the haredim are represented best by me... :-)

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  25. When the story about the sexual predator in NCSY was broken to the press, people also screamed that it was mesirah and a chilul Hashem and that the rabbonim had not authorized it. But you know what? It was the only thing that finally got the frum world to address the problem.

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  26. Joe,

    Let's rephrase the question.

    Who paskened for Dov, a person who spent over a decade learning in yeshiva and kollel, and then another decade teaching torah for a living, that after getting no real help from fellow chareidim, no help from local political leaders, no help from local police, no help from national political leaders and police heads, that he should try using the national press to stop goons from assaulting little girls especially after getting info that it could be on the verge of escalating to worse physical assaults?

    Is that your question?

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  27. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  28. you should post the comments of Rav Grylak from his editorial in this week's hebrew Mishpacha. I would be interested for Lipman's reaction to that!

    As for the Margolese family - my sympathies are with poor Naama. First she gets spat on by some crazies and then two months later [and this timing is a point that should be emphasized] she gets 'spat on' (figuratively speaking) by her parents and Lipman who use her for political gain.

    Your astute friend.

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  29. Yep Menachem,

    That's pretty much my question. Who told him this was the right thing to do?

    You see, not a single Rav in the world including those you demand to condemn these thugs would ever say what they are doing is mutar. We live by the Torah, not what we want to do are what we feel is the right thing.

    Did Dov ask a shaila about the potential massive chillul Hashem he would exasperate or did he go to the press on his own?

    Any person with the Dov's resume would know that you don't take such a serious action without discussing it with others (especially when you are so involved and nogeia b'davar).

    So please just answer the question.

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  30. Dovid from ModiinJanuary 07, 2012 10:51 PM

    Where are the "Gedolim" of our generation?


    The charadi community needs to prove and convince everyone that they have no connection with the Zealots/Sikrikim. They don't agee with their tactics and will not impose their Chumrot (made up) on the public. It will take more than words and a letter or two from the Gedolim to convince everyone. The Charadi Rabbonim, Charadi community leaders and Charadi MKs needs to send 10,000 men to counter demonstrate against the Zealots/Sikrikim. The Zealots/Sikrikim needs to be overwhelmed and showed that this type of behavior is not the way of the Torah and is not the way of Charadim.

    - Dovid from Modiin

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  31. I have nothing new to say here, but since these comments do not have "Like" buttons, I want to stand up and be counted as being in complete agreement with Shoshana's comment of 9:43 P.M.

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  32. Rafi- No need to post this. I was the comment deleted and I will make sure my comments on this are known- and I will make sure your intellectual honesty is clearly profiled as well. I used my name on the first post. Not bothering this time as you know exactly who I am.

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  33. Actually Joe, the point of that rhetorical question is that Dov was perfectly qualified to make this decision on his own.

    Frankly, I don't even think it's a "halachic" decision. If you're a "daas Torhnik" and you think you need to ask a Rabbi your life's quandaries then that's your issue.

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  34. And Joe, what you're missing is that going to the media was SOLUTION to a massive Chillul Hashem that has been going on for years. The "Rabbis" abdicated their credibility to weigh in on this ages ago.

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  35. What's Good for the Goose..January 07, 2012 11:12 PM

    No one should be surprised by Rav Malinowitz's "poor Naama" comment.

    This is the same man who has trivialized victims of sexual abuse and made a campaign against David Morris.

    The same man (Malinowitz) who has banned Lema'an Achai by association to David Morris has righteous indignation when he is criticized along with the zealots.

    So if Lema'an Achai is responsible for the actions of David then Rabbi Malinowitz too must be responsible for the actions of his fellow charedim (and their rabbonim).

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  36. Menachem,

    This makes for quite a funny situation. People who think they can just act without consulting rabbaim and cause tremendous chillul Hashem are demanding that the rabbi's tell people who will never listen to them to stop acting the way they are.

    BTW please don't insult the Chareidim by calling Dov one of their "fellows."

    Shavua tov.

    Joe

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  37. 1. There was/is a huge Chillul Hashem going on and the media event was planned. It was not a response to something that happened a day or two before.

    2. I think Dov does need to publicize if he acted on his own (which would make him a zealot) or which Das Torah he went to that gave him rishus to bring in the secular media like he did. The fact that he learned in Kollel for 10 years is nice and that he taught Torah for 10 years is great, but when you are dealing with what has become the greatest Chillul Hashem in 2000 years, I would not want to be the one responsible for it unless I was the Gadol B'dor or had a P'sak from one.

    3. Rav Malinowitz wrote this for his Tzibur who is familiar with his style of writing. If you are not familiar with Rav Malinowitz then I can see how you would take everything literal from what he wrote.

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  38. Dovid from Modiin - first they needed to speak up. now that they did (some at least), that too isnt enough and they must send 10000 out to protest? get the demands in order please.

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  39. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  40. anonymous - I could not let the comment calling him a name remain. everything else would have been allowed. sorry

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  41. Rafi,

    Please remove my last comment (the one quoting the Rambam) until we hear from Dov himself and not Menacham as anonymous wrote. Thank you.

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  42. Is the chillul Hashem you refer to the thugs harassing girls in the name of Torah or the utter failure of the Torah world to stop them? Either way, the ones perpetuating the Chillul Hashem are neither the Orot community, Rav Lipman, or the media.

    Shoshanna

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  43. then send it back to me and I will repost it.

    And why can he call other's names, say they did things, publically call people liars, but saying something about him is off limits. I will come up with something different from dispicable human being if you want, but it is still a case of hamayvin yavin.

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  44. And have the honesty to tell me my most was removed and why- not so that I hear it from someone else.

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  45. I've been consulting with Dov on this issue. The following are RHETORICAL questions based on what he told me.

    1) Who was the daas torah for R. Malinowitz not condemning the violence for 4 months?

    2)If someone was attacking Joe's daughter right now and the only way to stop it was asking a channel 2 news crew for help would he call his rav first?

    3)Greatest chilul hashem in 2,000 years? Really?

    4) Why is he so concerned with Dov's daad torah for this? What was his daas torah for not standing out there every day to defend the girls?

    Like Joe said, Hashem can figure out who really has been desecrating his name here. And I'm very confident that Dov won't even make the long list.

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  46. Shoshana, the Chillul Hashem I am talking about is the stories that were published on CNN, Fox News and others that have made all Haradei Jews look like the Srikim. I have already heard to many stories of non-jews in America saying terrible things about the Jews just based on what they saw in the news.

    This of course does not condone in anyway what the srikim did or their part in the Chillul Hashem, but it wasn't them they brought this to the world news.

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  47. Menachem, please tell me of a greater Chillul Hashem that you know of. If Madoff would have been Orthodox that he would have had a shot.

    Also, please ask Dov for me if he feels he in anyway contributed to the huge Chillul Hashem that is happening. I'm not looking for his justifications, just is he feels he is responsible for it in anyway. Or perhaps he doesn't feel there was one.

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  48. So you are saying it would have made world news anyway if it had not happened in the first place or been stopped right away so the parents did not feel helpnes working within your ideals and so turn to outside help? Interesting.

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  49. Anon-

    I make it a point not to spk with people who won't put a name to their words,but I will ask: Surely you understand the terrible missed opportunity for Jews/Torah Jews to make a kiddush Hashem and nip this in the bud. Blaming the victims for seeking help when 'their own' didn't come is a sad case of refusing to take responsibility and stepping up to help fellow Jews. That this made the news should shame everyone who didn't come out and cause them to point a finger ... At their own reflection.

    Shoshanna

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  50. "Menachem, please tell me of a greater Chillul Hashem that you know of. "

    In the past 2,000 years? I can think of a few.

    But lets just go with the past 10 years.

    Yeshiva students arresting for smugling drugs into Japan.
    The largest kosher slaughter house in America being raided by the FBI and the owner found guilty of multiple crimes.
    The Orthodox Jewish press seemingly supporting the guilty people and calling the American Justice system a bunch of anti-semites.

    Then ofcourse there was Paublo Christiani and Shabbatai Tzvi.

    Perhaps it was the Rabbi who went to visit with the Iranian government, or the "Rabbis" who sit in Hamas's government.

    Maybe Jesus calling all the Rabbis a bunch of corrupt money crooks?

    Kamtza and Bar Kamtaza bringing in the Romans to solve Jewish problems?

    Amongst the top 10 hillul Hashems in the past 2,000 years... I think this latest episode ranks up there with that guy on the subway who once cut in front of me while wearing a kippah.

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  51. My deleted post (slightly altered with Rafi's permission)

    Rabbi M. is a loose canon who needs to be stopped before he is the cause of direct rather than indirect harm to someone. He thrives on blaming the victim. He also has a history of using other people to spread his gospel or using other methods to keep his position "unofficial and off the record" so to speak.

    What he wrote itself was deplorable. The way he tries to manipulate himself out of having any liability tot his words makes it that much worse.

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  52. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  53. Baruch Hashem for great leaders like Rav Malinowitz. Thank you for courageously standing up for what you believe in!

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  54. Bukingolts,

    Put down the computer and open a sefer. You spend WAY to much time on twitter...Aren't you supposed to be 'learning' in Kollel? I think I should have a word with your Rosh Yeshivah...

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  55. Shoshanna, Menachem and Shmuel, I'm with you fully. See Dov K's great (and respectfully written) letter to R' M (on Facebook).

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  56. 1) Daas torah is pure fiction. it is a new term, evolved from emunas chachamim, and has real bearing in halacha. It is simply used and bandied about loudly nowadays, to shut down frum people who have a brain and can make decisions for themselves. People scream dass torah as if to deligitmize that persons decisions because it doesn't fit in with the sccusers hashkafic ideals.

    2) Rafi, you didn't realize you were at an anti-torah rally?! Acc to RM, that's what you were doing. Danny would be sop proud! Now I know why he went with you! :P

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  57. http://torahmusings.com/2012/01/without-daas-whence-daas-torah/comment-page-2/#comment-50488

    Worth reading for those who were wondering about where was whose daat torah.
    KT
    Joel Rich

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  58. "Joe"- aren't you being a bit of a coward in refusing to use your full name?

    Also, can you imagine the Kiddush HaShem, if instead of circling the wagons and claiming to be victims, you and your cronies had come out in massive numbers to show that what Naama went through was NOT the view of the Torah?

    So, if I can ignore your hyperbole in calling this the greatest chillul HaShem in the last 2000 years, perhaps it is you who needs to do a cheshbon hanefesh, not Dov.

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  59. This is all me talking now.

    Dov made his decision and anyone who comprehends, in the slightest, what's going on here applauds it.

    The obsession here with Chilul Hashem is beyond bizarre. This is the same sickness that prevents some in certain communities from reporting crimes of child abuse. Please get over it.

    It is very clear that God is mochel his Kavod in the face issues of between man and man. Like Joe said, let Him worry about it.

    I personally picture Him, after being "disgusted" by the behavior of His so-called zealots and their apologists, beaming with pride over the actions of people like Dov who are standing up for His true honor in trying to fix such a horrible distortion of His Torah.

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  60. "Kol Haposul B'Mumo Posul"

    Rav Malinowitz feels that the Chilul HaShem here is what individuals have done to bring this to the limelight.

    While I agree that the coverage of Bet Shemesh and its portrayal as a "Fort Apache" have been overdone I also believe that the time has come for some in the Charedi rabbanite to introspect.

    Rav Malinowitz's stand on child abuse of "come to me not to the police" is not only a major Chilul HaShem but extremely dangerous as well.

    When this stand of certain school leaders (and not in any way linked to him specifically) was mentioned in a Jerusalem Post article he (and some of his chaverim) retaliated by having an apologist write about their shita in another Jerusalem Post article which begat another response to the apologist.

    Perhaps Rav Malinowitz should have just wiped away his tears of righteous indignation, eaten a piece of his favorite chocolate (or drank a Diet Dr. Browns) and gotten on with life.

    Instead he made it a personal vendetta and took his revenge against Lema'an Achai banning them from public displays or appeals in his shul.

    So Rav Malinowitz has been a shining example of what it means to blow things out of proportion and invite all of the publicity that results from overreaction.

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  61. "While I agree with R. Lipman's outrage and the need to do something, I can't help but feel that the situation feels like Bar Kamtza calling in the Romans."

    I don't remember our tradition blaming or judging Bar Kamtza. While I see why, on the surface, he seems the villain of the story, it's generally the rabbis, or if you're the kind of guy who must blame a layman, the host, who shoulders the burden of the blame, not Bar Kamtza.

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  62. this phrase "chillul hashem, chillul hashem" has become a weapon phrase, like "lashon harah". people will use the words "lashon harah" to stop any discussion, however needed, about current events, politics, what is going on in a school, etc.

    chillul hashem is now being used in the same way. there is a crisis, children are, according to everyone, being abused, yet nothing should be done about it because of "chillul hashem". if the people who yell "chillul hashem" would propose an alternative solution, some other way of saving these girls, than i could listen to what they are saying. but stam yelling these words, with the underlying message of "don't do anything" - your words don't even go in one ear and out the other.

    btw - by saying that this story was the greatest chillul hashem in 2,000 years you are assuming one of the assumptions that many of us find ridiculous - that ONLY a news story which makes chareidim look bad is a real, serious chillul hashem.

    I am anonymous, because I don't like Google associating my name with non professional things.

    i use my name and don't worry about it. why? because i write things about which i am not ashamed. people may google me and disagree with what i write, but no one will slam me for writing this things. i try, with a little help from above, to restrain myself and check myself before hitting the "publish your comment" button.

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  63. re bar kamtza: there are a million drashot on the sugiya, and yes there are people who explain why bar kamtza was also to blame.

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  64. One question:

    Isn't there a possibility that what is being said is being exaggerated?

    In the Beit Shemesh paper called Chadash they write about the former City Council Member Ilan Gal-Dor (Mafdal)questions the veracity of the "spitting " incident as his own daughter goes to the Orot school who said that she has never seen a Chareidi spit, throw things or even yell.

    The youtube videos don't even show the kids in the video so we really have no clue about what is actually going on.. We are only hearing/seeing what the camera person wants us to see or hear.

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  65. "I don't remember our tradition blaming or judging Bar Kamtza."


    "re bar kamtza: there are a million drashot on the sugiya, and yes there are people who explain why bar kamtza was also to blame."

    Both missing the point. EVERYONE in the story is to blame. Everybody did something wrong, and nobody did anything neutral or correct. All of Am yisroel is trouble together when it comes to these things. Even the other guests at the party.


    I'm not ashamed of what I write, but I'd also rather my professional material be found before my politics,religion, and other things that are not discussed in polite company.

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  66. In response to Robert. I 100% agree with your statement. To quote someone from a recent Facebook Talkback, " Rav CZM called the kanaim kooks, but David Morris was called a Rasha and a Jackass. Surely these are harsher words for a ba'al tzedaka than for a group of sick thugs".

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  67. "Isn't there a possibility that what is being said is being exaggerated?"

    No!

    First of all Chadash, as an organ of the mayor, lies. That's a fact.

    Besides that, having the good fortune to work at home during US hours, I have been able to be out on Rechov Herzog whenever needed. And I have been out there almost every time there have been incidents. In the beginning of the school year it was almost daily. I have taken over 1000 photographs. I have pictures of almost every villian. My friend Dov K. has something like 20 videos. And some of them definitely do show the girls being yelled at by these cretins.

    I actually have a video of an egg and water balloon being thrown the lands just between me and the girls I was escorting. Here's the video:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eN80iXsyLAE

    Here's a video I took the next day of these creatures throwing something at boys walking by from the roof of 35 Herzog.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eLqnEupn7vo

    I have been spit at and shoved. I've seen women spit at. My video friend was assaulted and thrown to the ground.

    If anything, anything, what you're seeing in the media is a gross UNDERSTATEMENT of what we've been dealing with for the past 5 years and certainly the past few months.

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  68. such selfishness.

    I go to a protest for equal rights and women's rights

    and all I hear about from the charedii sector is that it was an anti-charedi protest.


    People ask the govt for help protecting children and women from men who have no fear in harrasing them

    and when the media reports it is a chillul hashem?

    But no attack on charediim dressing up like holocaust members, which made far more waves in the intl press than the women's rights protest

    a number of rabbi's come out against the behavior of these particular members of the charedii group, but by and large, the rabbis who speak out are rabbis that command no respect in the charedi world, like ovadya yosef etc.

    in fact, at the same time that ovadya comes out with a statement, eliyashav published a letter that stated categorically, to stay out of the idf, out of college, and out of training programs.


    So I guess my real question is, how is it possible to have a chillul hashem against charediim when they aren't even jews?

    I guess technically they might be, in the way a karrite who has a jewish mom, or a jew for jesus might have a jewish mom, but we don't accept them as jews.

    So you guys do what you want and think what you want, but I don't consider elyashav and members of his extreme group to be jewish anymore and thus there is no chillul hashem.

    see how simple that is?

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  69. Lipman can argue his point and defend himself against the Rabbi.
    However, the way he bashes and insults rav Malinowitz just shows that he has no respect for anyboduy more knowledgable than him. It also shows how he ended up on the other side of the chareidi fence and validates himself as a fitting partner for chaim amsalem and his platform.

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  70. There are many extremists. Every society has them. They are willing to sacrifice extraordinarily for the 'greater cause' (whatever, whichever that is). The sacrifice is usually other people, but some are genuinely selfless.

    Hareidi rabbinical leaders in RBS are characterized by their extreme devotion to Rabbinical Authority (what they call "daas torah" - as used by, ahem, Joe). ie their own communal positions and the haredi power structure. It is their 'greater cause'.

    Regretfully, this "greater cause" is more important than their personal honesty, than the safety of the community's children, than the needs of the poor, than derech eretz, than chilul/kiddush H.

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  71. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  72. no name calling. argue respectfully

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  73. I read Rav Malinowitz's entire post. He wasn't saying that what happened to Naama Margolese was no big deal,he was saying that the media circus might not benefit the child. He may be right that it doesn't really help anything to issue "condemnations."

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  74. What's with the rabbi's hero worship at the end for Ayn Rand?

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  75. Here are some replies to my reply.

    1. Your examples of Chillul Hashem supposedly greater than what is happening now is not even close. Mostly because what is happening now because of media such as TV, Internet, social media etc. makes anything happen that much greater. To say what happened to the bochurim in Japan is even in the same parsha as the Chillul Hashem that is happening now is just insane. The only thing which may be in the parsha, but still does not come close is the Rubashkin story, but even that did not have much effect outside of the USA as what is happening now and that was one person where as here every Chareidi is being made to look like a dangerous and warped zealot.

    The effects of this Chillul Hashem will sadly be felt for many years to come. It will be noticed in the amount of Tzeddaka that will be given over to Chareidi organizations such as MDA and Zaka etc. It will be felt by every Kiruv Org in the world and very sadly not just in terms of money. It will be felt in the next elections here in EY. It will effect Moshe Feiglins Campaign and what his organization is trying to do. And I can go on and on...

    So my questions are still not answered. Did Dov speak to a Gadaol B'Torah before he acted or is this something he decided to do on his own like Pinchas or Matisyahu? If he did speak to Gedolim then which ones? If he didn't then is he fully aware of the tremendous Chillul Hashem that is happening and his role in it? Again, without his justifications or "buts".

    2. For those who are saying "but only if the Charedim protested then things would have been different and we would not have had to call in the secular media". To you I say "Seriously?". You seriously think that if all the "moderate" Chareidim came out and protested months ago then this would have gone away? The Srikim would have said “Oh, now we really must stop what we are doing since BTYA and The Gra etc. are now protesting. Now we are afraid!” Get real, your desire for having the Chareidim stand up and protest has nothing to do with the Chillul Hashem that was caused because it would not have prevented anything!
    3. Who is the real ones to blame? (and I’m not taking about the great Chillul Hashem which we know who is responsible for it) It is the police/government! Yes it is very easy and fun to make the Chareidim the scapegoat, but if the Police or your politicians had done their job then this would not have happened. But instead of dealing with the Police and staging protests outside the homes of the Chief of Police or for whomever was responsible for not ending the outrageous, disgusting and yes Chillul Hashem acts by the Srikim, out of your frustration (and I understand why you were frustrated) you brought in the secular media who you KNOW has it in for the Religious in general and the Charaeidim in specific. And that is what caused this huge global Chillul Hashem. It was a stupid move, but since you got the results you want then you must be happy no matter what desecration happened to Hashems name.

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  76. Let me try to give you a moshol. Let’s say there was a row of 10 homes on a street and one of the homes caught on fire. So you call the firemen and they send one person to check it out, but he only has a cup of water, so he throws it at the fire and then leaves. Meanwhile the fire continues to burn and that cup of water did not do anything. So now you get a bunch of people to all call the fire department and demand that they put out this fire. So now the fire department sends a truck and 2 firemen. And they put out the fire, but not really fully. They were not so careful and the next day the fire returns from some embers that were not extinguished and now the fire is spreading throughout the house. So now you get 200 people to demonstrate against the fire department and the mayor of the city and now they send two trucks and they do their best, but they simply can’t put out the fire, it is too strong and they said we need at least 10 trucks to put out this fire and they leave. So what happens? The leader of the 200 people has a great idea! He say’s lets light the rest of the 10 houses on fire! That way we for sure won’t be ignored and they will be forced to send in everything the whole country has! And that’s what happens. The “leader” creates a fire in the other 9 houses and sure enough it can’t be ignored and the whole world is talking about this crazy fire. Dear “leader” you just burnt down 9 more houses that did not have to be destroyed!!! The fire in this Mashul is Chillul Hashem. Yes, there was a Chillul Hashem burning in that one house, but what you did (and did NOT have to be done) was create a Chillul Hashem that was 10 times as great! And that my friend is what makes me nervous for you, unless of course you were acting out the will of the Gedolim (or you have nevuah) in which case the responsibility lies on the great shoulders of the Gedolim.

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  77. If the thousands of charedim in RBS/ BS who are allegedly against violence would have come out in support of Orot and against the thugs, there is NO WAY that the media could ever have presented it as a "charedi problem."

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  78. Sadly you are being a little naive. I don't think you understand the agenda of the Secular Media or the way the truth sometimes gets lost. And remember the "Spitting" incident happened 2 months before the video aired.

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  79. Stupid stupid stupid people- THE SPITTING WAS REGULAR AND OFTEN- AS ARE THE SCREAMING PSYCHOPATHS WITH SWINGING PAYOS AND LONG BLACK BEKASHES CALLING LITTLE GIRLS DISGUSTING NAMES AT THEIR SCHOOL- Throwing feces, dead fish and rocks. WAKE UP!

    You are the biggest bunch of whiners I have ever seen- blaming everyone but yourselves. Its sickening and embarrassing. You should throw out your hats and grow a set.

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  80. I don't know what the media would have done if many (not just some) visibly Chareidim (even Anglo) would have come to show support to Orot, and to say "your derech is not our derech, but your freedom and safety is our freedom and safety".

    I do know how Orot parents and students would have felt.

    And you can see now how many of them feel.

    That's the saddest part of the whole story.

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  81. Oh, and that guy you call "Dov" has smicha from R' Weinberg. You're welcome to disagree with his politics (do you have something better?), his communal efforts (have you done anything?), or his Torah (how many years did you spend teaching?), but you owe him the courtesy of the title.

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  82. "nervous for you"

    I think anonymous should be nervous for himself, and let Dov Lipman decide whether he has to be nervous for himself. I think Dov Lipman should be proud of himself, not nervous. Whatever his political ambitions may or may not be, he's put himself on the line for the students at Orot, which somebody had to do. Rather than Pinchas, I think he was carrying out "in a place where there are no men, try to be a man."

    If you want to complain about people acting like Pinchas, why don't you complain about all of those unnamed Pinchases on the buses who have screamed at, and sometimes even physically assaulted women for exercising their right to sit where they choose on public transportation? And by the way, some of the things Rav Malinowitz said about the segregated buses are simply untrue. "...no imposition of Mehadrin standards onto the general public..." Haredim aren't the only people who take many of these bus lines. Other people besides haredim take the bus to the kotel, other people besides haredim travel from Beit Shemesh to B'nei Brak, other people besides haredim sometimes need to take the 418 bus, to give a few examples. Moreover, many haredim don't want these segregated buses either. I lived in Beitar when a group of zealots imposed the segregated standards on a public many members of which did not want them at all. And many women have been accosted by zealots on these buses since long before this became a media issue, including many haredi women.

    "...the Mehadrin lines are Egged’s invention, to keep the ultra-Chareidi business..." Absolute bull. In Beitar, as I wrote, Egged didn't even run the bus lines. The bus company, Beitar Tours (at the time) didn't particularly want segregated buses, and the city government did not want them either. A group of zealots went around threatening people to sign a petition for the buses. When that failed, they simple started enforcing gender segregation on their own, by passing out leaflets and screaming at women who didn't sit where they were "supposed to." The rabbis had nothing to say about all this, except for one brave rabbi, a true tzaddik, who once (at least once) stood up and screamed at the other male passengers when the segegated seating arrangement left women standing while all the men were seated.

    I give this example because I'm familiar with it, but I don't think the situation was as simple as Rabbi Malinowitz makes it out to be in other places either. This was an issue long before the media got hold of it, and long before outsiders started riding these buses to prove a point.

    And finally, anonymous, if you're going to make these accusations against Dov Lipman, why don't you at least be a man about it and put your name to your words? If you're worried about Google searches, maybe you just should't post on blogs.

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  83. Sorry, but I really really don't understand this obsession with Chilul Hashem.
    God gave us the rules, by which we should live. If we accept the yoke of heaven, we are committed to follow these rules, sometimes more successfully, sometimes less.
    These rules include obligations to our fellow man. Fine.
    But what is it our business how someone else makes God look?
    If you believe in God, I hope you believe that He can take care of Himself. Our concern is what we expect of ourselves and others, who claim to go in His way. But not how it makes God look!
    Obviously, if there are political, national or other ramifications to the behavior of certain Jews on other Jews, these should all be considered, pragmatically, rationally and appropriate policies should be implemented.
    The "appearance" argument is very unappleaning. You want to improve your ways; you want others to behave differently, better, do something to help bring it about. Don't worry so much about "what will people say?".

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  84. OK for all of the apologists on this comment list.

    "Bo nagid" that I agree with you about the out of proportion reaction to the spitting.

    Could you please answer how you can explain the following (right here in RBSA):

    1)The mikve take over attempt

    2)The silence about child abuse

    3)What happened to the Ma'ar that was quashed

    4) The discrimination against children who attend "certain" schools

    5)The "bitul" of Lema'an Achai, their posters being torn down and their exclusion from many shuls

    6)The bitul of non Charedi rabbonim by the Anglo Charedi crowd

    7)The tznius signs in all merkaz stores

    8) Why each year fewer and fewer streets in RBSA have the degel Yisrael around Yom Ha'atzmaut time

    All of the above pertain to RBSA and almost all of the above have the endorsement of (or are the brainchild of) local Charedi rabbonim.

    Of course there is hatred against us from the secular.

    If we hate each other so much and are forever looking down how could we expect anything different from non religious?

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  85. Personally I like Dov and think he does amazing things. I am also sickened by a Jew that can spit or curse at another Jew. My posts are only because as much as I want to think about other things, the desecration of Hashem's name is too great to comprehend. And I just wish things were done differently while getting the same result and I think they could have been.

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  86. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  87. Anonomous of 1:07-

    We ALL wished this had been solved differently. We wish the Torah community had been so shocked and appalled, that regardless of their other agendas that they had all stood as one with us in denouncing the goons.

    IMAGINE the achdus/t IMAGINE the joy that would have brought to Shamayim!! To my mind, these thugs are sent like the satan, to challenge us & make us show who/what we really are. It seems that those who scream and cry "Chillul Hashem" failed miserably at this test.

    Now that that is over, I hope you take your thoughts and put them into actions and that others like you (not that I have a clue who you are) choose to do the same. REealize that the inaction was wrong and that we have A LOT of work to do- Yitzchok is right, with so much disrespect and disgusting behavior here in our own ranks who can blame outsiders for their perceptions??? Yalla, lets work on it together and set it right and cause a huge kiddush Hashem and being the Geula!

    Are you in?

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  88. Rachely

    the "obsession with CH" really isn't. look we are all subjective of course and everyone sees something different. anonymous sees the CH is the tv report. i see it in the silence.

    having said that i still think that anonymous is playing a game. And I just wish things were done differently while getting the same result and I think they could have been.

    yet he doesn't say how. it is simple kvetching, at best, and de facto support of the status quo (because that is what silence means) at worst.

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  89. I did say how. To protest against the chief of Police, or whomever is responsible for protecting the girls. They were the ones that should have been gone after. Take a video or videos of the inaction of the Police.

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  90. Anonymous:
    January 08, 2012 12:20 PM
    "Who is the real ones to blame? (and I’m not taking about the great Chillul Hashem which we know who is responsible for it) It is the police/government!"

    The Mayor's Office failed to stop this at the very beginning. Instead of standing up to those who want to ruin this city, he tried to close the school and try to blame the police for his cowardly decision.

    The Mayor and City Council are Haredi. I don't think you are allowed to criticize them without permission from a Gadol. Otherwise it is just a Charedi bashing.

    Rabbi M. didn't go to the Gadolim to try to get their involvement to prevent a Chilul Hashem. He didn't try to use his "Daas Torah" to put the political pressure on the Government at either a Local or National level.

    Instead of offering some sort of solution, he did nothing. It wasn't his problem that little girls were being bullied. Would his efforts have worked. I don't know. By doing nothing he helped guarantee the outcome we got.

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  91. Then I would go after the Mayor!

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  92. yet there have ein sof complaints to the police, this stuff has been going on for years, nothing happened. and now, thanks to the news report, it has changed. so your idea of somehow pressuring the police (and what does it mean film them doing nothing???) was tried and failed. next.

    like i said, you are simply using the CH phrase as a weapon to shut down a legitimate protest.

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  93. plus your (and many like you) refusal to see that this whole issue is a small part of a huge problem also contributes to the problem and lack of a systematic solution.

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  94. Rabbi Malinowitz may be telling the truth when he likened the experience over the past couple of weeks to receiving a punch in the gut.

    Indeed, he was uncharacteristically breathless and silent for those weeks.

    Now he's got his wind back, he's coming out swinging...

    At everyone, the Press (Press-Bashing?), the Police, the politicians, Rav Lipman, the parents of Naama, the left wing demonstrators who came from out of town, the bloggers, the dati leumi/noar hagavaot, the women's rights lobby... I guess twenty swipes at anyone within range.

    Except the hareidi rabbonim.

    I think Rav Malinowitz should dump his wild bashings, and simply say:

    "Sorry, I made a grave mistake, which I sincerely regret; in my position as a Hareidi Community Rabbi, I should have condemned the behaviour of the "sikrikim" months ago; I hereby now condemn their despicable behavior, totally, completely and without any reservation or justifications, and I ask my colleagues to do likewise."

    Thus turning the Chilul Hashem, to a Kiddush Hashem.

    Rav Malinowitz - Yes You Can!

    (And if you can't I suggest you resign).

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  95. To protest against the chief of Police, or whomever is responsible for protecting the girls.

    (1) The RBS bet zealots can then continue to scream epithets at the little girls to their hearts' content because they are not violating any laws. The zealots have the right to scream and the police are not empowered to prevent them from doing so.

    (2) The actions that actually cross the line of legality also don't give the police much to work with. How long can you put someone in jail for spitting or throwing a water balloon?

    (3) My understanding is that the Orot parents have been pleading with the police from day one to do all they could and it didn't produce any results. Only the massive media campaign put pressure on them to act as best they could.

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  96. Rafi, thank you for re-posting this. We need to know who we're dealing with in the community. It boggles my mind that Jews of all stripes from all over the country showed up to Bet Shemesh out of outrage over Naama's and the rest of the girls, story yet a Rabbi who's in the backyard of this whole mess is sitting with his eyes and ears closed, refusing to lead when he's supposed to be a leader.

    I really hope those who follow him and his derech will not just blindly follow his words as 'daas Torah', but will use their brains and soul search a bit to see if this is really who they want to be following... a leader who won't lead.

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  97. Not Joe,

    Rabbi M apologize? Are you kidding?

    Let us not forget his Orientalgate and Sushigate where he killed out 2 businesses, discovered that the facts weren't as he stated and chose to never apologize (at least publicly..perhaps he did offer a private apology).

    Obviously apology is not part of his derech hachaim.

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  98. Not Joe,

    Rabbi M. will never say sorry or express regrets. He made that absolutely clear at the end of his dissertation when he instructed his followers to emulate Ayn Rand's Howard Roark as a hero, quoting Roark's famous statement "I do not think of you."

    This is the hear of Roark's macho personality. He shows no emotion, concern or interest in what anyone else thinks of him. I find it fascinating that people here are debating the nuances of chillul hashem, when the whole point of the piece is "I don't care what anyone else thinks."

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  99. The RBS bet zealots can then continue to scream epithets at the little girls to their hearts' content because they are not violating any laws

    actually the courts are going to decide this issue.

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  100. "Healthy Man" from the video ("Moshe") was so convinced that the Rabbonim supported spitting on little girls that he was unashamed to say so on National TV, with the cameras rolling.

    Any ideas as to what would cause a reasonably rational and lucid individual to be so certain that Rabbonim support this, if not for the fact that he never heard otherwise?

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  101. you guys are soooo silly, complaining about how secular jews hate charediim.

    As the most secular jew I know, far to the left of right wing zealots like christopher hitchens, and active in the secular community including successful kiruv work (getting people to turn secular, or more secular as the case may be) I am more than qualified to speak on the issue.

    We, by and large, don't hate charediim.

    We pity them.

    We don't think most of you are really jews anymore.

    And we feel that you suffer from a form of mental illness. And you don't hate people who are sick, you pity them.

    We protest and fight against charediim because it would be the same if a group of functioning schizophrenics got together and gained political power. We fear what mentally ill people in power might do.

    We are more than happy to have you guys do your thing in the privacy of private establishments, home, shul etc. But in the public square and with public funds we are frightened of you because we pity you and don't want to live according to the guidelines proposed by the mentally ill.

    But hate? I don't know of one secular jew who hates charediim. I'm sure they're out there, but you guys confuse pity with hate. Not surprising because persecution complex is a big part of mental illness.

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  102. The Way,

    It's not just a persecution complex but a theological tenet for charedim to believe that they are hated. Their world view adopts the fundamental belief that "Eisav soneh et Yaakov" and since they are the authentic children of Yaakov, it must be that everyone who acts differently than they are really B'nei Eisav.

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  103. which is one of the reasons that it is so easy to be mekarev the ultra orthodox.

    They clearly don't really believe, if they did they wouldn't need to try so hard and be so rigid. People who are harmonious in their faith are harmonious in their lives.

    So someone like rafi is not someone I try (much) to be mekarev.

    But becuase this mental illness is ingrained in their ideology, because it is flawed, when presented with harmony and joy and freedom, it has an affect.

    Being charedii is like cooking a huge meal every day fro guests who never show up. Pray to god all day to no avail. Pray for mashiach every day and he never shows up. So they have to cook more and more food, hoping that if they just make the right dish or the right quantity then eventually the guests will arrive.

    But the guests never do show up because they only exist in your mind.

    which is why charediim are so angry and do things like spit on girls and wave chickens over their heads. Wouldn't you be angry if every day you cooked a banquet and no one ever showed up?

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  104. we three amigos!!!

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  105. If a rabbi of mine ever cited Ayn Rand as anything more than a worthless talentless hack who wallowed in self-absorbed delusions of philosophical grandeur - that alone would be sufficient reason never to step foot into that shul again.

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  106. An-On,

    Agreed that Rand was talentless, a hack and a pseudo philosopher. Unfortunately, her ideas seemed to have gained some traction among very right wing minded Orthodox Jews notwithstanding that she herself was an avowed atheist and the ideas (as sophomoric as they are) she preaches are directly at odds with principles of chesed so prevalent in traditional Judaism.

    In the end, all Rabbi M. was saying is that he has no responsibilities to anyone but himself in the mode of Howard Roark and he encouraged his congregants to follow his lead.

    That is almost as disturbing as claiming that child abuse should be dealt with by giving the child a chocolate.

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  107. anon

    you do yourself a diservice to rag on rand like that.

    The fact is that there are numerous think tanks filled with people like alan greenspan devoted to her works.

    Unfortunately, rand in the hands of a thing like this rabbi M is like teaching a woman gemara.

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  108. Kudos to Rafi on his blog posts about RBS. for a "regular joe" he sure is a tzaddik.

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  109. haha! thats funny. many would say just the opposite

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  110. Rafi,

    don't demean yourself, you've always been dads number 1 triple A son and now you are RBS' as well!

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