Monday, June 13, 2011

Covered up by adherents, media, Jewish leaders, pedophiles run rampant in Orthodox Jewish community


( -- by Rev. Ted Pike --

...Shmarya Rosenberg publishes Failed Messiah, a site devoted to ultra-Orthodox Judaism and exposing its sins. A former member of the Lubavitcher Hasidic movement who remains a practicing Orthodox Jew, he has published hundreds of posts about Orthodox molestation and says he gets dozens of tips per week.

New York journalist and attorney Michael Lesher says, “A certain amount of sexual deviance is going to be found in any society. What is really shocking is the extent of license that’s been extended to these people to victimize children and if you are a pedophile, the Orthodox Jewish community is one of the best places you can be…” (In The Wall of Silence, a Canadian TV documentary about haredi sexual abuse, part of a larger series.)

Amy Neustein is an Orthodox Jew who wrote Tempest in the Temple: Jewish Communities and Child Sex Scandals. She says, “What outrages me most about pedophilia in the Orthodox Jewish community is the systematic cover-up by its leaders of the ongoing crimes perpetrated against children. Rabbis who have a lot of influence in the community systematically intimidate and threaten abuse victims, their advocates, their supporters and their therapist. The abuse victims are left with no support and they’re fighting a behemoth that’s so strong they don’t know where to turn.”

But it is not only leaders who cover for abusers. An Orthodox rabbi, Yosef Blau, who counsels abuse survivors in New York, notes a significant difference between Catholic and Jewish sex abuse. "In the Catholic Church, the issue was the cover-up by the church hierarchy. Here, it's the community, not the hierarchy. It's the whole community not wanting to admit trouble in our midst." Another difference is that pedophilia in the Catholic Church is condemned by church dogma. Child abuse in Orthodox Judaism, however, is commanded by its most authoritative religious source, the Babylonian Talmud.

In 2008 a rabbi who investigates sex abuse in Orthodox communities was chased out of a synagogue by 200 Hasidic Jewish men in London, who formed a mob—even using their cell phones to call for backup—when they recognized him. (It is hardly possible to imagine this happening in a Catholic church.) Police had to intervene. The rabbi, Nachum Rosenberg, says he feared for his life.

Rosenberg has been investigating molestation in Orthodox communities for 18 months. He says, “These things are happening all the time, but the rabbonim prefer to take a quiet road.” A victim abuse counselor in Brooklyn said, “Outside the Chasidic community no one has heard of Rabbi Rosenberg, but all the Chasidic communities know of his work.” And they do not seem to appreciate it. When the attack outside the synagogue was reported on Jewish websites, there were hundreds of reader comments—mostly negative! Some called the rabbi a “pig,” “sick” and “mentally retarded.”

Washington Post reported on Rabbi Sidney Goldenburg, who had a 30-year religious career and spent it abusing children, shielded by the community as well as the hierarchy. He moved from place to place when whispers began. Not one family sued on behalf of their teenage daughters. Numerous authorities who knew of the multiple complaints against him did not mention them when asked for a reference after he had moved. The law finally caught up with him but after a mere two years in prison, “Goldenberg can still call himself a rabbi, because Jewish authorities say ordination is like an academic degree -- once conferred, it cannot be revoked.”

Failed Messiah reports that there are multiple religious obstacles for Jews who might otherwise report sex abuse. “The obstacles include traditional Jewish rules, adhered to in some pockets of the Orthodox world, such as a prohibition against 'chillul Hashem,' bringing shame on God’s name, and against 'mesirah,' informing on fellow believers to secular authorities.”...

The Jewish-dominated media (See, "Jews Confirm Big Media Is Jewish") has aggressively covered all details of child abuse by Roman Catholic clergy. Have you read anything in it or Christian media hinting that pedophilia is rampant among Orthodox rabbis? Meanwhile, the myth persists that Orthodox Judaism consists of “true Torah-believing Jews” who cling to the laws of Moses.

The truth is that, since the defeat of the Karaite rebellion, no branch of Judaism has deviated from primary loyalty to the Pharisees and their Talmud. Protected from the healthy influence of scrutiny or criticism, Orthodox Judaism reveals as much ethical poverty as its secular counterpart. That spiritual dryness was noted by formerly Orthodox Jewish/conservative talk show host Dr. Laura Schlessinger. She explained her abandonment of Orthodox Judaism on her December 31, 2010 radio broadcast. Dr. Laura said she tried for a lifetime to find some thread of true spiritual comfort in Judaism but could not...MORE...LINK
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