Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Giving Up On Children

The news is out that Dr. Benzion Twerski was intimidated out of serving on a task force formed by Dov Hikind about rabbinic sex abuse of minors. Here is the Jewish Week article (link) and one by R. Yaakov Horowitz (link). I am struggling to judge him kindly for backing down due to pressure. What is wrong with us that the people trying to help are the ones who are harassed while those who molest and enable are considered respected members of the community? Where are the leaders of the community? Where are the people who are paid by the community to be their leaders? I can tell you one thing, I have been fielding calls, probably about a dozen, for the past two weeks from representatives of Agudath Israel (presumably doing an annual fundraising drive and calling many people) who can't seem to grasp the idea that I am intentionally choosing not to renew my membership.

From the Jewish Week article:

Hikind said he had amassed a dossier with the cases of “hundreds” of individuals who say they have been sexually molested by rabbis and other Orthodox community members during their childhood. And he threatened to broadcast the names of their abusers if community leaders do not respond to his call for action against them.
This bluff is going to be called. There is no way that anyone in a leadership position will do anything meaningful about this.

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