The Religious Fanatics of Cults and Propaganda (Or: How Judasim is being destroyed)

On Sunday March 9, a massive protest was held in the middle of Wall Street to protest the IDF (Army) draft taking place 5,000 miles away. Now, you might ask: Why is something that’s happening in another country that doesn’t affect us being protested here? I don’t know but it’s a waste of taxpayers money and a waste of time. Now, I myself am a Jew and I will say that I didn’t go nor was I endorsing this in any way, shape or form. In fact, this isn’t the first time the Ultra-Orthodox pulled this stunt. What you have to understand is this: When things don’t go their way they throw fits of tantrums. They think that because of who they  are they are above the law.

Now, as I said I am a Jew. A religious one and by no means am I perfect but I do know the difference between right and wrong. I went to college. I was raised to have an open mind and be mindful of others. I grew up where it is okay to speak up and have open discussions of important matters no matter the outcome and this my friends is where the problem lies among  my people..

The Ultra-Orthodox grew up in a very closed society. They know little to nothing of the secular world. They don’t go to college (they are encouraged not to go) and 90% do not work. In fact, all they do is sit in a Yeshiva learning all day and night. In Israel, they are supported by the Government however, that’s about to change as they have warned the Yeshiva students that if  they do not join the Army then they will cut off all support to their yeshivas. Obviously this didn’t sit well with the Haradiem who started going crazy on them. But here is a question I propose to you: One of the commandments that G-D gave was: “Thou Shall Not Steal” so if this is true, why are the Haradiem continuously stealing from the Government? By this I mean they keep mooching off of them. So I have to wonder why this is okay but when the Government asks for something in return they need to go all crazy on them saying that the Government is interfering with their way of life? Seriously? This is our way of life? I must be in a different religion.

People are really stupid at times. How ignorant are these leaders of ours that they make suggestions and ideas without knowing a damn thing. Don’t they know that without the IDF there would be no Yeshivas?  Without the IDF we’d all be dead. Without the IDF we’d have no State to call our own. Do they also not know that by joining the army you are saving lives?

So the Government came up with a compromise: Serve the army or go to school and study secular courses. Of course this too was rejected. So next came: Serve the army or go to jail (Do Not Pass Go. Do Not Collect $200). The response: “We will gladly go to jail and proudly.”.  Okay, fair enough. That just proves your stupidity.

This is the same group of people that throw rocks at people on the Sabbath and teach their kids that it is okay to do so. This is also the same group of people who held a rally in protest of the internet (which ironically was streamed on the internet). This is also the same group who believes it is okay to molest children, distribute child pornography and then cover it up. This is also the same group of people who refuse to give their wives a GET (Jewish Divorce). This is the same group who decided that women have no rights. I can go one and on but you get the gist of what I am saying.

So the Ultra-Orthodox single handily make us look bad. Because of them, people hate us. Many people have left the religion because of the many restrictions imposed on us and sadly, many people believe all this stuff and fall prey to it. Especially the people who go through the conversions to be a religious Jew.

How come they blame everything on the internet when there’s much bigger problems facing our communities? Child Molestation? Blame the Internet. Sexual Abuse? Blame The Internet. The marriage Crisis? Yup, the internet again. So basically, the internet is why our religion is so messed up. Got it.  Like I said, these so called leaders of ours have no freakin clue. They look only at the negatives. The internet can be used for good as well. In fact, they went far enough to tell people to filter everything related to the internet. Phones, computers, tablets. As the title above says this all nothing but Propaganda brainwashing bullshit. They even have Kosher phones that does nothing but make calls. I believe this is what a “dummy” phone has been doing for years.

Now, I know people will read this and call me names like “Jew Hater“, “Anti Jewish”, “Nazi Lover” and I am okay with that and you know why? Because the truth hurts and people can’t handle it which in itself is another problem. No one wants to talk about it for some reason. What are people afraid of? Open dialogue is good. Be open and honest and think for yourself. Call me names if you must but what will that accomplish? People who defend Rapists, molesters or others are no better then they are. People don’t come forward because they are afraid of the consequences or as the “rabbis” say: It’ll hurt your children’s chances for marriage.  Come on this is bull and you know it…

In Williamsburgh, Brooklyn, the Ultra Orthodox community there think that they are Judge, Jury and Executioner of all who live or pass by there.  Really? So this means you have a right to put up signs all over telling women how to dress(even if they aren’t Jewish) or where to walk and when asked to take it down you answer if you don’t like it leave? When Nechmeia Weberman went to trial (he was convicted) the community kept on defending him and even went far by throwing him a party (Disgusting) and saying how a girl who was little at the time is making it up to be famous. Then they send in hooligans to try to obstruct the case (they were found guilty). One person even went far by throwing bleach all over someone’s face (Also found guilty).

Point:  This is NOT how we as  Jewish people are supposed to act. We are supposed to set an example for others. This is NOT how we should be raising our children. Sometimes, I am ashamed to be a Jew. We are our own worst enemy. So much hatred among our people that it’s no wonder no one likes us.

Once I publish this, there’s no going back. I know that I will get lots of flack for this. In fact, people will perceive this OP-ED as nothing but “Lies” and “Hatred” among other things. So be it. But I cannot remain silent when these things keep happening. I’m embarrassed and ashamed but I know that there are those out there who are thinking the same things as I am but can’t or won’t speak about it for whatever reason. But I can be their voice. Their crusader because I believe that when one voice speaks out repeatedly, people take notice and listen and while it may take time, I know with all my heart that there are people out there who feel your pain and respect and look up to you for speaking your mind.

IDF uniform colors

IDF uniform colors (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


 

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Afraid Of The Truth.

For the last few weeks a few things have been going on that have been made public. I’ve been debating on whether or not I should keep quiet with how I really feel about this and while I have made my feelings known on Facebook, there have been things said to me privately which made my decision a lot quicker. Case in point: This morning I posted this: Rabbis Accused in Plot to Kidnap, Torture Husbands to Pressure Divorces. Then I tried to bring it up on the way to work where my co workers decided to gang up on me and tell me that i’m a “Self Hating Jew” and that I should watch what I say. Really? Why? What am I saying that’s wrong? Are you afraid of hearing the truth?    Now, on my wall, I got similar comments (which I deleted) ranging from it’s desecrating God’s name to “why make it public” to “you’re no better then them if you post it” and my favorite one: “Do you get pleasure in posting this? Actually, I don’t. Quite the opposite actually.  It makes me ashamed to be Jewish.

If speaking the truth makes me a “Self Hating Jew” then so be it but I will NOT back down no matter how many people tell me to take down anything I post.  They are scared and afraid of hearing the truth? Why that is I have no idea but they do get people talking. I’m also a believer in the mantra of: “One person can make a difference”. Even as I write this, I’m getting comments on my wall that calls me a “Jew Hater”  and one who’s adding “fuel to the fire”. It’s funny how people refuse to see things that happen right in their own backyard. I was raised and taught to be open minded and speak the truth and stand up for what I believe in and that is what I am doing.

It is sad that at least there’s one story every week coming out of the Jewish community that looks at us in a negative light. It makes me be ashamed of being Jewish sometimes.  Someone didn’t like what I did and felt I was wrong so he called me a “Nazi Jew Hater” which should offend me but he’s one of those people who grew up close minded and away from the secular world.

A few months ago, I started small by posting about a certain place to which the owner didn’t like and responded in kind (see an earlier post). He tried bullying me to take it down and I refused. Then other things started happening to which I posted onto my wall which pissed off many people to the point where they went and blocked me and started spreading rumors about me which were not true. At first, it bothered me but I have learned to be more strong and confident in my life and not worry about what others think. Truthfully, if this was years ago, I’d be to chicken shit to even speak up about anything.  But now, I’ve found a close circle of friends that really help me be a better person and advise me on certain things I otherwise wouldn’t have thought off.  It’s also somewhat of a learning experience because it allows me to find out about myself and what I am capable of doing.

Today I’ve been called many offensive and insulting names but I’m not concerned because I will stand up for what I believe in. I am not afraid of speaking the truth. It’s time someone did and called others out. I mean if we are supposed to look up to certain people and/or give them the honor they are supposed to get well, that all goes out the window. These so called “Rabbis” think that they are above the law. Okay, they can think that and to the crime and then tell the Judge whatever they want. At the end of the day you’ll end up behind bars so what’s the point?

There is a reason why so many people leave their communities and no longer want to be religious and I had the opportunity a few days ago to question two of them about it not because I wanted to grill them but because I wanted to learn more about it and gain an understanding into this world and I did and I felt a little sorry for them. I mean how can you not? In some of these communities no one does anything and I mean ANYTHING without seeking out their leader first and whatever he says they do regardless if it’s right or wrong. They are so close minded and insulated that it’s not even funny.

The thing is that many of these Rabbis are so behind the times. They grew up during Pre War Europe before the age of social media and the internet. They grew up in a world where they only now one thing and that is spending the days learning in Yeshiva but the times have changed now where we live in a secular world where technology is around us and no matter how much they try to keep us away from it it is almost impossible to do so. Why these rabbis can’t get with the times is beyond me and I think that ultimately this will be their downfall.

As I write this, I look at everything being written on my Facebook posts and it’s clear to me that I have my supporters that are glad I posted it but then there are others who think that I’m the one who’s committing the crime by posting it. It’s so nice to see people who are ignorant and foolish and when you ask them questions they can’t back it up so they continue blaming it on you.  People’s minds are warped for sure. These are people who are so close minded that no matter what you say, you will always come out looking like the bad guy and that’s okay because Freedom of Speech is a wonderful thing and as long as it’s used wisely then you will be okay.

I’m not a politician. Not on the city council but I don’t regret what I did and I would do it again in a heartbeat. The people who called me names for that I’m okay with because it shows me their true colors for who they really are and it shows me that they are just like these low lifes and everyone will eventually get what they deserve.

You want to hate me because I’m standing up for my fellow Jews and friends fine but don’t go insulting them to prove a point.  I will defend myself and my friends .  All you need is one person to stand up and speak out. When one person stands up and makes that difference, others will no longer be afraid to join in and speak up and as long as you have people on your side you can be confident that you will be successful. People can make a difference. Baby steps.

We need to step up and say no more to our “leaders” They need to lead by example and if they feel they can do it by breaking the law or by saying that only Jewish law applies to them then they are Not fit to lead. We are Jews. We are people who for thousands of years were persecuted for the simple reason that we were Jews and we are our own worst enemies and as long as people continue to sweep it under the rug and protect those who wronged well then may G-D have mercy on your soul.

We will not be bullied, coerced or threatned. We will punish those that wronged us and if that gets us kicked out of a community or looked down upon that’s okay because we know that in our hearts we did the right thing and one less person to worry about.

A Community Shattered. A Community in Denial

A few days ago, there was a case regarding a Hasidic Jew who was accused of sexually molesting a girl who at the time, was 12 years old. This guy it seems was the guidance counselor at the school she had been attending but as it turns out, he wasn’t licensed to be one. This girl who is now 18 came forth awhile back with accusations of her being molested by said guy. As soon as this happened the Stamar community was in an uproar claiming “It’s not true.” “The girl is crazy.” The mother has mental issues.”. Among other things. See, this community is very tight nit but the problem is that it’s a community where the women are treated as outcasts and the Men are treated like heroes. As a Jew myself, I find this disgusting and wrong. People say that this is a community that is misunderstood and seen in a wrong light. I don’t think so. In fact, I think we all understand perfectly. Here’s where I make valid points as to why I think this:

      For some reason, many Orthodox Jews live behind a facade. This is no way to live and it’s basically taking a cowards way out. When you live behind a facade you are only fooling yourself and those around you. Not everyone is stupid. Eventually the truth comes out  and there’s only so far you can go to deny whatever it is you are trying to hide before it all comes crumbling down. Why be a coward? I don’t understand why people are afraid to speak up.. What are they afraid of? I understand that a Jew is supposed to stand up for a fellow Jew but not when Jew is putting another one in danger(Emotionally). I won’t quote scripture here but back then, if harm was bought to a fellow Jew they would be brought before the court (Jewish Court) and based on the ruling they would be punished accordingly. Not so today. Today the whole process is a joke.

So fast forward to a few months later. A court date’s been set and now his “friends” come together to try to do what they can to get rid of that date. Okay, fine but that’s not the bad part. No, what is the most disturbing part of this is that they are glorifying him with a rally of support while condemning an innocent young girl who may be another one that has been scarred for life. What’s more disgusting is the fact that they take this time to do publicly humiliate the victim and her mother by calling them names, saying the mother has mental issues, the girl isn’t quite normal, etc, etc…. This is how righteous people act? This is how we conduct ourselves? Who are to judge others? If this is how we act, no wonder there’s so much Anti  antisemitism  We’re no better then a drug dealer or a killer or a thief.

Another point: Why does the community continue to deny these things? Actually, no, scratch that. Why do they not want to acknowledge that this is a problem? If you recall, I had mentioned on an earlier post how Citi Field  had been rented out (along with Arthur Ashe Stadium) for a convention regarding the problems of the internet and how it destroys lives. I had said back then, as I do now, that it was nothing but a joke and a waste of time. Today, like before, I still say that the internet isn’t the problem. The problem is what is going on behind closed doors in these tight nit communities. This IS the real problem and one that the rabbis and the community as a whole dare not discuss as they instruct others not to either. But why? Have they ever wondered why people leave the community and are no longer religious? Look, people can deny this all they want but the fact of the matter is is that Satmar is nothing but a cult.

So anyway, they had the case and the victim testified for 3 long days (she had courage that’s for sure) and while I don’t know what was said I can bet you that she went into graphic details about what happened. She was 12 at the time yes but you don’t forget something like this. When the Judge announced the verdict, (guilty on all 60 counts) pandemonium broke out. His supporters cried: “Anti Semetisim” and “Jury smeared the truth” and “We don’t believe in a secular court” This went on and on. What his “supporters” fail to realize is that the Jury also took into a count the fact that he was unlicensed which is considered a crime.

The aftermath of this is saying that they (his supporters) will do whatever they can to keep him out of jail because according to one:  “The Torah does not allow this”  But it it allows guys to treat their women like shit? It allows them to molest little innocent boys and girls? It allows them to do whatever they want? Isn’t t here a double standered here somewhere? I went to school. I learned Talmud just like everyone else and when a crime was committed  you got lashes or stoned or condemned. But what I also learned and just as important is to treat others as you would want to be treated which means: TREAT A WOMEN AS IF SHE’S YOUR EQUAL For G-D said that he created them because man cannot survive without them. Without women we wouldn’t have a family to raise.

Final Thought: When asked by the media how they would solve this problem they proposed sending “these people” to another land to “fix them” which what they are saying is: There’s no problems and the secular world should not spread rumors and lies about us and it’s nothing but propaganda. Well, look who’s calling the kettle black…

There is one happy note to this: Because of this victim, other girls have started to come forth. YAY!! Charles Hynes has also now gone on record saying that he will start cracking down because”The wall has been broken” The community just laughed it off but guess what: The joke’s on you guys because this has been a long time coming and you will all get what you deserve.

Oh and when one crusader tries to out those that are pedophiles and you throw bleach at him for doing so,well,you deserve what you get and I hope that person rots in hell.

 

 

Jew Vs. Jew

There is an event coming up that has seemed to have caused some controversy among a few people. Before I continue I should give you a little background of where I am coming from. I am an orthodox Jew and in our religion there are different types of “religion”.

1) Modern Orthodox

2) Machmir (MO)

3) Modern Orthodox (liberal)

4) Chasidish (Hasidim)

There are a few more but I want to focus on the top 3.

So this week is the Nine Days which is a sad time in Jewish History and it all leads up to the Fast of Av which, like Yom Kippur, is a sad day for the Jews and is spent in prayer and mourning. This lasts for 25 hrs. But during noon the next day, everything returns to normal  as such, people want to get away that weekend (Sabbath) to celebrate our victory to show that once again we preserved and grew stronger.

Which brings me to the topic at hand. The events I mentioned above. There are, as far as I know, 4 different events taking place at the same time in different locations. All but 2 cater to all types of Jews. The other caterers to the medical field and the other one caterers to number 2 (The all Machmir Frum Group) and this is the one I am going to discuss in detail. While I have already discussed this with a few people, I’ve never actually written down how I really feel and it’s really hard to remain silent on an issue like this and while I’d like to say I don’t want to offend or insult anyone, I believe that that ship sailed a long time ago.

What does it mean to be an Orthodox Jew exactly? Well to me it means being shomer shabbos, keeping kosher and doing the mitzvos that were given to us by G-D. Now I don’t claim to be perfect. I’m far from it but when you see an event advertised and says it’s for group #2 only  (see above link) and excludes everyone else, that is, to me discrimination. What you are saying is this:” You are not religious or frum enough for this group nor do you meet the qualifications for it”.  Let’s ponder that for a second…. The event committee is deciding my religious faith for me thinking they know what I or any of us want. I mean seriously you think you know the girl/guy we want better then we do? Are you saying that my level of religion is no good? Correct me if I’m wrong but shouldn’t we the individual have a say?

I am sad to say this but in the Jewish world, our lives are dictated by our  “leaders” and there are those who live by their word.  What also is a shame is that we aren’t defined by who we are as a person but by a label and last I checked labels belonged on clothing and food not humans. So if you don’t fit a certain label then you don’t belong . But is this right? Nope but sadly there’s nothing we can do to fix that. Come to think of it, this is one reason why Orthodox Jews wander astray from the religion.

When God gave us the commandments he didn’t say okay those who are really religious and in between stand here to receive the Torah and those who are Modern please move to the side. The commandments were given to everyone even to those who were not yet born. A Jew is a Jew no matter what and when you tell people they can’t come because they do not fit the criteria, well that is offensive..  Again, what right do you have to say to X or Y that they aren’t religious enough? Why are we separating our fellow Jews from each other?

I had no idea that the Jewish religion was one of “Big Brother” where if there’s a certain type of person there you won’t go. Really? So if your husband/wife is at this event you will lose out on him/her? What makes you think G-d will give you another opportunity to meet them? If you are talking to someone for 24 hrs straight and the conversation is great, you are enjoying each other’s company and so on. Suddenly it’s Saturday Night and you’re getting ready for that evening’s extravaganza when you see them come back down wearing a tank top and Jeans and now you are no longer interested in them… Are you for real? Seriously? Because of how they are dressed you no longer have interest? Why should that matter? If everything else went perfect then why should clothing be a deal breaker? Are we that shallow?  We, myself included, are all hypocrites but we need to change. It is written that we have to love our fellow Jews but how can we when we are turned away. By turning us away that ain’t love  that’s “hate”.

The irony is that the point of this weekend is to celebrate and enjoy after the tragedy that was the Nine Days and Tisha b’av and the reason the Temple was destroyed was because of our hatred through this: Kamtza and Bar Kamtza: The Story of Tisha B’Av. And now, thousands of years later, the exact same thing is happening and no one even realizes it. We are our own worst enemy.

This is a discussion that should be discussed openly and freely without any repercussions but the problem is that people are fraid to do so for whatever reason. So when you get a weekend that caters  to all Jews young and old, we go because we know that we are being accepted with open arms for who we are and for what we believe in. We don’t have to pretend to live a lie or be in this facade that isn’t true. The good thing about being an individual is that we can think for ourselves. We know what we want and need and if we don’t, we search within us to figure it out. As a Jew, we should be accepted wherever we go no matter how we practice and let our journey to find our better half lead us on the right path instead of being turned away by those who’ve already chose it for us. The only one who can choose for us and decide what our wants and needs are are that of Hashem (G-D) and our parents who teach us what it means to be a Jew. They teach us what’s right and wrong and most importantly they allow us to choose our own destiny and while we will make mistakes along the way, we get right up and continue because mistakes is how we learn.

But when you label people you are no better then the Nazis and as long as you continue to offend, insult and discriminate against you’re  fellow brothers and sisters, then we will never see   Moshiach (Messiah) or the temple be rebuilt and those of us who are being turned away cry for you, pray for you in hopes that one day all Jews can live together and peace and harmony regardless of religious level.  At Sinai we were all accepted as one nation and I pray that one day we can all live like that again without any hatred among us.

The Israeli Day Parade

This past Sunday I had the honor and pleasure of  once again marching in the parade alongside the group: Skaters and Bladers (and Walkers) which is in memory of JJ Greenberg whom I never met nor heard of until last year. I think i’ve been a part of the parade now for about three years. It all started when I came back from Israel where I lived for a year. After I came back, I had the opportunity to volunteer on staff for the parade which, at the time, I thought would be cool and somewhat of a new experience which it was but not as fun as I thought it would be until the end when I got on our float which signals the end of the parade. I admit that being on that float made me feel like royalty. The float driving by and waving to everyone knowing that maybe some of your friends are in the stands watching. You have that switch in your mind going “Look at me Igot a great view and you puny people in the stands don’t. Ha ha “. Yeah It made me feel good and it was fun but it’s one of those experiences I won’t forget for awhile.

So in the second year, I wasn’t sure I wanted to be involved in the parade because as easy as it seems on TV, it’s not as easy as you think to put on a parade and frankly, it’s not as fun when you run around doing all the work instead of actually watching it. However, one thing led to another and I don’t remember how this came about but  around this time I was introduced to some group called Skaters and Bladers which I knew nothing about but as it turns out, a friend of mine was basically running the group in memory of JJ Greenberg whom as mentioned earlier did not know or meet which considering he’s no longer with us would have been impossible anyway.

From what I do know of him though it seems that he was very active in anything related to Israel including being one of the founders of Birthright which I’m proud to say was how I got to Israel for the first time. The parents of JJ started up this group as a way of keeping his memory alive. which I think is very commendable and I respect them for that. Anyway, based on that and who was part of the group, I decided that I would be honored to march with this group. I did and haven’t looked back.Now I don’t skate or blade but I do bike and I was thisclose to bringing it but backed out of it at the last minute thinking it wasn’t a good idea but if an old guy on a unicycle can march with us then why can’t I? Oh well, always next year….

This was my 2nd year marching and it brings me pride and joy when I march. I don’t really know why but knowing that people from all over come to celebrate their heritage and freedom just … When you lived in Israel for a year, you begin to look at things in a different light. Perspectives change. I never heard of the Parade before I even went but I don’t think I can look back . To me it just makes me wonder how with so many things our people have been through for hundreds and thousands of years, how people can look away and say this isn’t a “Jewish Event”. Just because you don’t believe in the state of Israel doesn’t mean it’s not one. There are many of us who do believe that as decreed in the bible when G-d gave us the land and we continue to fight for that land every day.  So the parade symbolizes that. Well, in my opinion anyway.

There are always protesters that pop up that are usually against the parade and some people who are missionaries but as long as we ignore them we will continue to thrive because that’s what we have done for centuries. No matter how many times people wanted to persecute us we kept persevering and becoming stronger. Why? Beacuse we are a nation of one. A nation who rises up in unison to fight those that are intent of destroying us but we are strong. We grow in numbers and together we will wipe out everyone until there is no one left. Until we can all leave in peace and harmony in the land we call home saying together as one: AM YISROEL CHAI.

The Aftermath Of The Protest/Rally And The Aisfa (Convention)

     As you know, yesterday was the big day where the METS (Citi Field)  hosted a huge convention for the Ultra Orthodox Jews regarding the evils of the internet.  At the same time, there was a counter rally/protest titled: “The Internet Is NOT The Problem.” I have already given my thoughts on how I felt about all this so now I will discuss the aftermath of said convention and rally.

     First I want to clear something up. I did not attend either the rally/protest or the convention. As far as I know none of my friends went either.  What I do know is that I got attacked from both sides about why I didn’t go. Some felt that because I’m one of them and always bashing my own kind I should stop being a hypocrite in denial and put my money where my mouth is and do something about it. First of all, I don’t “bash” my own kind. Second, I only bash those that deserve it and frankly sometimes I feel ashamed to be a Jew because of their actions which makes us look bad. No one should judge a book by it’s cover without knowing the facts. People come to their own conclusions based on things they see, hear or read but it’s wrong . If something was written or said…. Well, generally a smart person would know the stories before they post things. A good writer knows to research first and then base the comments on what they found out.  While I admit that there are two sides to every story, one of them is usually the correct one.    Now, I’m not perfect but I’m not ignorant either. It’s very easy to tell when someone is in denial or guilty or even hiding the truth. The thing is that it takes time to figure it out because at some point when the same thing is happening to others and it starts to come out, you realize there’s a pattern here and it’s just a matter of finding out where it leads to. You just have to know where to look.

And this is where the protest rally comes in when I’m asked why I didn’t show up and do something about it. Well, who says I don’t? There are other ways to protest without showing up in person and sometimes that’s the best way to do it… For instance, I write on here about my thought, feelings and opinions and try to get the word out this way. Doing it from home is also the safest way without getting arrested or trampled. Just because I don’t show up to something to show my support does not mean I don’t care. I just choose to do it my own way. What people fail to realize is that sometimes protesting in person does more harm then good. What they also fail to realize is that if it gets out of hand (and they tend to), it turns into a huge Chilul Hashem (Desecrate the name of G-D) and that’s not good. At least when you do it in private you can remain anonymous with no harm done.

     I’m a firm believer in Freedom of Speech so if people want to protest and stand up for what they believe in I respect them . But you have to know where to draw the line and what not to cross. We protest for a reason. We fight for what’s right for a reason but when we cross those lines we are no better then those we are protesting against and sometimes people who are protesting like to go overboard and anyway you look at it people think that protesting means going out to the front lines holding up a sign to get their message across and hope it helps but I’m still not sure how effective this really is. I still think there are better methods but to each his own.

Which brings me to yesterday’s event. While I was elsewhere, I was still being updated with what was going on through pictures and status updates (see Facebook is useful). Most of them were in good taste and in fact I was very surprised that it all went off without a hitch because usually when it comes to these things, the other side can be sensitive. I’m not really sure how big the turnout was but I don’t think that’s important. What is important is whether or not the message got across  and the points were made. I do know that the group on Facebook will remain active and future rallies are planned but in what way or capacity I don’t yet know.

While the protesting was happening outside the main event was happening inside Citi Field. They were sold out so they rented out near by Arthur Ashe Stadium.  Again, I won’t give my thoughts because I already gave them in my last post but I will say that I’ve read reviews of it along with pictures and amazingly I, along with others seemed to be right all along and then some.  Here are some quotes I read and got from others..

1) “Most speeches were in Yiddish with no English subtitles.”

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Well, I don’t find this at all surprising considering the majority of people there were Hasidim. But for the other folks who don’t speak a word of Yiddish I find this pretty unfair and inconsiderate. I mean how are you to get the message across if not everyone can understand it?

2) “It was billed as “A Big Problem Needs a Big Solution”

As a gathering to EDUCATE people on the latest filter technology

There was supposed to be a technology expo

It was NOT billed as a “Kinus on Shemiras Einayim” (which is what it turned out to be)

There was NO solution proposed.

There was NO education

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Basically it was just rabbanoim repeating things that have been said in the past. Things that can be said in a synagogue or a school. Don’t really need 40,000 people to come from all over. What was basically said was that if you need to use the internet at work then filter it but at home it’s not necessary to have one… So you need to pack a stadium to tell people this when people already know this? First of all it’s not always easy to filter the internet at work if it’s not your company or if your employer isn’t an orthodox Jew because it’s their company and they can run it as they see fit. By the way, schools and libraries already filter the internet.

I’m still not certain that these people are educated at all on the internet because they are only looking at the negative of it when there iss o much that’s positive about it. For instance: People use it to post jobs, get jobs, research for school and work, shopping, daf yomi among other things. That’s the real problem here that people just look at the bad and that’s it and if that’s the case, how do you resolve it because I really don’t think banning internet is really sensible if almost impossible. By the way, if this whole thing is about banning the internet then why the hell did they stream it online? Isn’t that hypocritical? It’s pretty much being said that yes the internet is evil except when it’s convenient for us. There’s a double standard here.

3)”$1.5 million of community  funds wasted?  How many people could have been fed via Tomchei Shabbos with a tiny fraction of that money? How many people could have been given professional training to help them earn a living for themselves and their families? Yeshivos supported? “

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So true. Yeshivas keep complaining that they have no funding. Families complain they can’t afford to buy food. People lack the skills for a job. People give money to organisations all the time and about half are not real ones. But what do we do? Spend $2 million on a convention about the evils of the internet when it’s really not even necessary when that money could be evenly distributed to those in need. If people have no job they can’t support their family. If they can’t afford to put food on the table they starve and if schools can’t get funding then no one gets an education and if no one is educated then they reaqlly don’t know which is part of the problem in the Jewish community because about half don’t go to college nor do they have any secular studies so they are ignorant and only listen to what their rabbi tells them and it may not necessarily be in their best interests.

I mean it’s nice to bring the Orthodox community together and I’m all for it but when it’s for a good cause and reason. I mean school buses were rented. Coach Buses and even a ship. A ship? Really? Isn’t that going a bit overboard?

4) The ASKUNIM said that the Gedolim said that we must go. There were many gedolim (from the R’ Aaron of Satmar to R’ Shmuel Kamenetzky) who did not think that the asifah was necessary. We are living in a new world, where the *askunim* determine what is daas Torah and what is not.

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Funny thing about how people don’t do anything unless their rabbi tells them to do it. Basically a follow the leader game. None of us have a mind of our own. They basically tells us what we’re allowed to do and what we can’t. So if they say jump we ask how high. I’ll be honest and say that I myself have a rabbi that I go to to ask questions because it’s said that every one needs a Rav(rabbi) and I do ask him questions when I don’t know what to do but he doesn’t dictae my life for me and he’ll sometimes tell me to use my own judgement but he also knows me since the day I was born so he knows the kind of guidance that I need. But I really respect him for the wisdom and respect he has for others of all walks of life. Jewish or not.  When I asked him what he thought of this event at Citi Field he was against iit saying that it is the job of a parent to educate their child and it is the job of a school to educate their students. He also said there are bigger problems that need to be dealt with that no one wants to deal with and it’s a bigger sin if we just look away when people go off the derech and no longer want to be religious.

I was not ashamed or embarrassed to have this conversation with my Rav (Rabbi) nor was he shying away from having this conversation with me. He added as a side note that when people come out and say they are no longer religious because of this reason or that, it’s considered a Chilul Hashem, Sinas Chinam (hatred towards someone) and a little bit of Anti Semitism. He also stressed that this was one of the main reasons of the Holocaust. He also mentioned Yom Yerushalayim and it was taking away from other events related to that which he said was inappropriate to do.

Like I said, my Rav is very smart and knowledgeable and very educated and does not keep his mind closed.. While I may not agree with things he says, I do respect him. He consideres me his “son” and I’m proud to be associated with him but I would never argue against what he says because my father always says. If your going to ask a question to your Rav be prepared for the answer and follow through with it even if you don’t like the answer.

So while I do agree that yes,  listen to your Rabbi when you ask them a question, I do think that some are really out of touch with today’s world.

I don’t want to bash any of the rabonnim (leaders) who were there because it’s wrong to do so and I have no reason to. What my goal here was to talk about what went down and what people thought and a  lot of people actually were bored. A few even wondered why evening prayers took 2 and a half hours to complete.

The good thing that came from this is the amazing Kiddush Hashem that was shown throughout it all. No fights. No arrests. No lashon hara (Bad talk). It could have turned into a blood bath but it did not. While I think the Aisfia (Convention) was a waste of time, it still bought thousands of people from all over to one gathering  in a sports stadium but it wasn’t to see the US Open or to see a MET game and while nothing was accomplished it was still awesome to see everyone come togetehr and be respectful even to the protesters. What was seen on Sunday was something that may never be seen again but the next time the organizers want to make a gathering of this nature, perhaps then they can actually accomplish what they set out to do and recognize the problems other then the internet.

We can’t remain silent on the problems facing our communities.We can’t be afraid of them. If we don’t stand up for our brothers and sisters who will? What will happen when it’s to late? What will become of us if we leave? What will we do if no one will help us? If we are hurt do we not bleed? If we cry do we not shed a tear? We fight for what’s right. We cry for those that can’t. We hurt for those that can’t. We face those that are cowards. Silence is golden but for how long? At some point we have to stand up and say: “NO MORE” and unite as one and justice for all.

The Problems Within The Jewish World

Disclaimer: The following are my thoughts and mine alone and does not reflect the opinions of others.

What I’m about to discuss is a sensitive topic and may hit a few nerves and while I’ve tried to remain silent on several issues that reference the title above, I feel that recent events have caused me to remain silent no longer so  I apologize in advance for those who get offended by this piece.

End of Disclaimer.

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On May 20th, there’s a rally(protest?) being held at Citi Field titled: The Internet is NOT the Problem. Basically, this is what it’s about in a nutshell:

On Sunday, May 20th, 2012, thousands are expected to gather in Citi Field to rally against the perceived evils of the internet. Join us for a massive rally to bring awareness to a far bigger problem in the Frum (ultra-orthodox Jewish) community: keeping our children safe.

We are fed up with rabbinical leaders’ dismissive attitude towards sexual and physical violence against children, inadequate educational systems and the shattering of families due to the religious choices of parents or children.

This is NOT an anti-religious protest. We are ultra-Orthodox, Modern Orthodox, Reform, Conservative, secular, male, female, young and old. This is not an ideological issue. This is not an issue only for “insiders.” When it comes to the safety of our children, we must be united and unabashed in our actions.

Now, don’t get me wrong. Everyone is free to protest in any way, shape or form they like as provided to us with our first amendment rights but it’s also allowed within reason and as long as it does not get out of hand which I fear this will become. Now I have a problem with this protest/rally or whatever the hell you want to call it. There’s a far bigger problem here that no one seems to notice which is that no matter what you do, there are far more powerful “forces” that aare pulling the strings. I understand the reason behind the rally and why it’s being done however the problem I have with it is several :
NO WOMEN ALLOWED
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    This actually would be one thing against the rally in the first place. Why in the world are women being banned from this when it affects them to? Why can’t anyone see that in the Jewish Orthodox world, women are treated as 2nd classes citizens? Why? This is so wrong and so inappropriate… First off, without a woman the man is nothing. Man provides but he provides so the women can take care of him. Whoever made the statement: “Women should  stay at home where they belong” is nothing but a chauvinistic and sexist pig. We are no longer living in the dark ages. Two people come to mind here: One stood up for Women’s Rights and the other stood up for Racism. However, in today’s day and age I feel that we are regressing back to these eras where women have no rights and that men are taught to “steer clear of a woman”.
    Here’s the thing I don’t get.. When you’re married it comes with all the benefits yet when I walk in the street, I see the husband walking and the wife 10 feet behind him. What the fuck is that? A guy should be proud to walk with his wife hand in hand, arm in arm and not be ashamed of doing that but are so called”rabbis” have instilled in us that this is bad because the Torah (Bible)  says so. Actually, no it doesn’t at least not to my knowledge. If a woman wants to go to shul (Temple) to pray why the hell does she have to go around the corner to enter the building while the guy can go right in?  If I go to a concert why am I forbidden to sit with my wife? Why do we have to separate? Is this not a form of racism? Is it not the right of a women to do as she pleases? If this was a Muslim country I would not question any of this because over there it’s expected and known but here in America where women are doing things that would have been unheard of several years ago, well our communities are undoing that as fast as they can with the reasoning of “it’s not proper” okay fine I’ll give you that one but what’s not proper about it once you’re married?
   So I stress again.. Why are women being turned away from this event?
Admission Fee
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I want to quote this: Why is the Internet Asifa at Citifield for Men Only?  The writer of this piece makes some valid points here. Just to show you how my point above is valid: They are charging the magnificent sum of $10 for the pleasure of attending the prayers preceding the rally. Problem: Only 50% are allowed to go. The other 50%? Yup, women. They are NOT allowed to come. The protest yes but this not. Why? If this so called “problem” is affecting the entire Jewish population then why are we excluding them? As I said above, women’s rights are non existent and this just proves my theory. This is  unacceptable. If the threat of the Internet is so great, as the Ichud HaKehilos claims, how in the world can they make the marquee event for awareness and education about the Internet exclusively for men?! Are women not susceptible to the harms of the Internet? Should mothers of our children not be educated about the dangers of the Internet?
   As I said on Facebook, this event is a joke. First off, how come this isn’t being publicized? Where’s the press release?  Second: Are so called “rabbis” will keep playing the brainwashing game and people will be stupid enough to fall for it. You can admit all you want that it’s not true but there are people out there who are smarter then that. Everything is a facade. The rally is called Internet is NOT the problem and this is true. So why is it called that? Simple… The real culprits are hiding the truth because they are worried how it’ll affect their children for a marriage partner or a job or something else? Seriously? Are we all fucking retarded or just to stupid to realize it? Think about this for a second: If you are worried about this then why do it in the first place? Why do rabbis/teachers feel the need to molest little boys? Why do they feel like it’s okay to be abusive to their wives? Isn’t their a double standard here? They can do what they want but if we do it we’ve just committed a grave sin?

I honestly cannot fathom how the Ichud HaKehilos can say on the one hand that the Internet is so dangerous and then on the other hand exclude the mothers who are home with their children more than their fathers and the teenage girls who are just as present online as teenage boys. If anything, the girls have more access to computers and Internet than boys in yeshiva


The writer has a point. Not only is it wrong to basically tell the women to “fuck off” because you don’t belong here but this is also pretty hypocritical. The way I see it the rabbis themselves are the problem. Here they preach the  gemerah, the torah, what’s right and wrong but they themselves do what they tell others not to. These are the people we look up to? These are the people we’re supposed to emulate? Very well then. I’m going to go home tonight and “smack my bitch up” and once she’s asleep, I’m going to invite my neighbor’s little boy over and molest him then deny the whole thing when asked about it because I did nothing wrong and I want my son/daughter to marry and this is all okay because my rabbi/leader of the community told me it’s okay to do this.

Again, I don’t think anyone needs to go to this Asifa. But for the Ichud HaKehilos who feels that this is the most important issue of our time, there is absolutely no excuse for limiting attendance to men only.

Well, it’s just not this really. This is a daily and universal occurrence. I don’t understand who decided that the men were the judge ,jury and executioner among the rest of the communities. Look, it’s a free country so if I want to walk the street half naked or hold a girl’s hand or live in the secular world that’s my right as an individual. You have no right to tell me what’s forbidden and what’s not. That’s the job of a parent not the other way around. That’s why we have a G-D. If I want to be part of a collective I’ll become a BORG ….

This is just further evidence to me that the project is flawed, lacks leadership and vision, and is very hard to fully endorse.

I agree 100% . Get your ass out from behind you and see the big picture. Can’t have a rally when half the people involved are hypocrites themselves.

So charging for an event that only half can go to is just stupid. Women can pray just as well as men and sometimes better. Don’t see how this is really helping. Could make it worse…. I believe the  advertising  is misleading when it says come and pray for the solution to the problem. So excluding the other half is solving the problem? Why are women a problem? If I didn’t know any better I’d say this sounds a bit like Nazi Germany.

Propaganda and lies. That’s the world we live in when you are an orthodox Jew. Yes, be angry at me. Tell me I’m a self hating Jew. Tell me I’m an Am Harretz. Tell me I’m wrong . Tell me whatever you want but know this: The truth hurts. We blame it on others because we either can’t deal with it ourselves or don’t want to. Yes, it’s easy to blame others but doesn’t that just make things worse?

There’s a good reason why people are leaving the communities and/or no longer a practicing Jew. Well, there are many reasons but it’s impossible to list them all here so here are a few:

CLOSED MINDED

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I understand there’s something called a tight knit community where we stick together and that’s commendable. What I don’t understand is why there are so many restrictions put upon people. I don’t know if it’s put more on women then men but I do know that a lot of these restrictions are out of control. For instance:
A) YOU MUST BE MARRIED BY 17 AND HAVE YOUR FIRST CHILD WITHIN A YEAR
 Really? I must? Says who? On what planet is this a rule? If this is the case then I guess I’m to old to do anything anymore. By my calculation I’ve reasoned that I’m still in high school but shortly after graduation I must marry, regardless if I want to or not, and then make my wife pregnant immediately so she can have it by 18/19 years of age while me the husband sits and learns all day. Well, Rabbi Joe thank you for running my life for me. I’m just confused here Rabbi Joe. Are you my parents? Are they dead? Isn’t it their job to decide when I’m ready for marriage? Oh, wait I forgot that’s what they were taught that whatever the head of the community says goes. I’m sorry. I forgot the rules.
Side Note: I would never let my child marry at such a young age especially since I would want him/her to get a college education. Which brings me to:
B) COLLEGE IS A NON JEWISH THING AND JEWS SHOULDN’T ASSOCIATE WITH THEM NOR DO WE NEED SECULAR STUDIES  CAUSE IT’S NOT IMPORTANT.
 Really? Getting an education isn’t important? Again, I ask. Are you leaders stupid, retarded or just plain ignorant. So we’re not allowed to have an education. Yippee. Now it all makes sense why our rabbis tell us what to do. WE’RE ALL STUPID. Well, by golly why didn’t I realize that. Cause I never went to school. No, wait I did go but all I learned was Jewish studies. I can’t write, spell, read man what the hell is 2+2? What’s evolution about? What’s sex? I’m so stupid I may never know.
  Yes, I know that paragraph may seem idiotic and that’s my point. Orthodox schools refuse to have secular studies because apparently it “poisons the mind” however the flaw in this is that NY State Law requires just that in order to get funding so the schools really have no choice but the loophole is that it’s not English studies as we know it. In fact, when it comes time for the regents, a lot of the answers are given to the students (Evolution and Reproductive) so cheating the state is okay but … yup there’s a double standard of hypocrisy here. Frauding the government seems to be okay here.
   No, it’s not. There are families that need it more then you do and it’s because of you that others can’t get it.
C) WE CAN’T WORK BECAUSE WE HAVE TO STUDY AND LEARN
 Learning 24/7 isn’t for everyone and, let’s face it, the way the economy is today you can’t afford not to work. Also, how will I support my 13 kids?
D) WE ARE OUR OWN WORST ENEMY
This really pisses me off big time. It makes me ashamed to be a Jew sometimes. Seriously. And I point to no other then:
EXHIBIT A: CHAREDIM
And here’s where I have fun: Israel. The Promised Land. G-d’s gift to us. Our home. It is stated in the Torah. However, these bozos think otherwise. Granted, they live there and everything but they still don’t believe in the Jewish State as it is now because and I quote: “THE CURRENT GOVERNMENT IS FILLED WITH ANTI SEMITIC PEOPLE WHO ARE JUST LEFTOVERS FROM HITLER AND WANT NOTHING MORE TO RID THE STATE OF ORTHODOX JEWS.” Okay… I’m pretty sure that’s not true and I’m pretty sure that it would be illegal, immoral and unethical to even do something like that. Having said that, I want to know the following:
Why is okay to spit on an 8 year old girl because you don’t like how she dresses?
Well, who the fuck are you to determine that.. She’s 8 years old… You’ve scarred her for life. Emotionally and Mentally. Forget the fact that it’s a Chilul Hashem for a moment and just think how you would feel if that 8 year old child was yours?
Second: The buses.. Segregated buses? Really? Dude if you don’t want to sit next to a women that’s fine but the bus company isn’t yours to do with as you see fit. You want to go only through Jewish neighbors okay great I’m all for it but if you want to start your very own bus line because contrary to what you think your not the only one living there and your not G-D’s gift to humanity. Far from it.
By the way, this problem is here as well. I myself deliberately sat on the wrong side of the bus to make a statement (and to piss people off) but again, I’m not going into the specifics as to why.
I can go on and on and on about this topic but there’s just so much so I will just say this: The rally, while a good idea in theory may not solve anything. In fact, it might make the situation worse. I fear that this whole thing will do more harm then good. Sadly, there’s only a few of us that realize this but what can we do? I’m alone in thinking that this protest/rally is more propaganda and lies and hate mongering but that’s the world we live in. Brainwashing to the extreme and many who want to stop it are powerless to.
 But I wonder what would happen if we did stand up to those in “power”. What would happen if we didn’t hide from the truth? What would happen if instead of us being mindless zombies we actually thought for ourselves? The truth is we can’t because we know the repercussions and we know the outcome. But it’s our job to live our lives as we see fit and to protect those that we love from falling into the “trap”.
 It’s shameful that there’s so much hatred in this world and most of it comes from us but one day with God’s help we can stand up and say to our fellow brothers and sisters: “No More”.
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