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June 16, 2010

Shmuley Boteach: The "Never-Ending Onslaught" Against Sholom Rubashkin

Rubashkin smile verdict All people carry the presumption of innocence until proven otherwise. Unless you're Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin, that is, in which case even once you're found completely innocent on charges of child labor by a jury of your peers you are still guilty.

Shmuley Boteach is wrong.

To recap, the trial proved dozens of children illegally worked at Agriprocessors.

Sholom Rubashkin's defense centered around three assertions:

1. I was not responsible for the HR department; it reported to my brother Heshy.

2. Two or three minors were fired in 2007 when they were discovered, and this proves I did not want children working for me.

3. It isn't easy to ferret out minors – all these Latinos look like kids.

Rubashkin was able to get away with this defense because of a judge's ruling that excluded from evidence hundreds of Federal no-match letters sent by the Federal government to Sholom Rubashkin. Those letters each represented one employee, and showed that the employee's documentation and ID were false.

The judge wanted to keep the trial narrowly focused on two issues:

1. Did minors work at Agriprocessors?

2. Did they work under hazardous conditions prohibited by law?

By doing this the judge excluded irrefutable evidence proving Sholom Rubashkin knew many of his employees had used fake IDs and fake documents to get hired, and that he had taken no steps to remedy that situation.

The state notified Rubashkin of its child labor investigation in the months before the immigration raid.

The fact that the state made this notification, combined with the Federal no-match letters, proved Rubashkin knew there was a strong possibility kids were working in Agriprocessors and that Rubashkin did not act to stop it.

The jurors were not allowed to see this evidence and more like it. Without that evidence, the state had difficulty proving its case beyond all reasonable doubt.

But those of us who know about this evidence do not have to disregard it in judging Sholom Rubashkin.

In the same way, those of us who heard stories of rape, extortion and exploitation from these and other illegal Agriprocessors workers, and know people who warned Rubashkin about these crimes, do not need to ignore this evidence in judging Rubashkin, even though this evidence was also excluded by the judge, again to keep the trial narrowly focused.

The totality of the evidence proves Sholom Rubashkin's guilt.

The legal system bends over backward to protect the accused from the powers of the state. Sometimes that protects the innocent; other times it frees the guilty.

We accept the latter because we view the former as supremely important. We err on the side of freedom.

But that does not mean we need to believe OJ Simpson did not murder his ex-wife and her boyfriend, or that Lemerick Nelson did not murder Yankel Rosenbaum. And we do not have to believe Sholom Rubashkin was ignorant of the crimes being committed in his name.

Shmuley Boteach knows this. But Shmuley Boteach is not an honest man.

I also need to note that Boteach resorts to anti-Catholic bigotry in his attempt to make Sholom Rubashkin look like a martyr.

The nun Boteach denigrates spent hundreds of hours helping Agriprocessors workers survive the raid. She heard first hand about the abuses these workers suffered under Rubashkin, and she knows the kids he used like slaves.

She knows Rubashkin is guilty. And she has every right to say so.

The Never-Ending Onslaught Against Sholom Rubashkin

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach • Huffington Post

So much for Christian charity.

Sister Mary McCauley, the former pastoral administrator at St. Bridget's Catholic Church in Postville, Iowa, who provided support for families affected by the Agriprocessors raid, publicly condemned the complete acquittal of Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin on charges of child labor violations as a tragedy. "I was heartsick," she declared. "I had to just sit and deal with the heartbreak I was feeling."

Never mind that a jury deliberated only 12 hours to reach a verdict exonerating Rubashkin on all 67 counts. Never mind that Rubashkin, a father of ten with a long of history of charitable acts feeding the hungry and the poor, has been so demonized in the press that it was practically impossible for him to receive a fair trial, and still he was found innocent. The good sister is convinced that the man should have gone down. Her heart tells her so. The jury be damned.

Funny that.

When I, as a Rabbi and broadcaster, read of the unending accusations against countless priests and even nuns for molesting children, and against the Pope himself for covering it up, I went on the air on my radio show on America's most listened to station, WABC 77AM in New York City, and begged my audience to place the allegations in perspective. The Pope had been tried in a media circus without being given an opportunity to respond or defend himself. Further, all judgments about the morality of the Church had to be assessed in the context of the global good it does in running the world's largest network of orphanages, hospitals, and schools. Whatever crimes were committed against children by men and women sworn to G-d's work were despicable in the extreme and abomination against all that is decent. And they would have to be held accountable. But wait before you lynch any innocent man.

I was heavily criticized on the air by my own devoted listeners, with the angriest calls coming from Christians and Catholics. 'How can you defend our Church, Rabbi Shmuley? You who promotes family values and ethics? Do you not understand what these men have done?'

Yes, of course I understood. But allow the facts to emerge before you disparage the whole of the Church. Don't paint with a broad brush. Point a finger only at the Priests who are guilty and refrain from assailing the papacy itself until you hear more. Amid the caller onslaught, I stood my ground. All people carry the presumption of innocence until proven otherwise.

Unless you're Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin, that is, in which case even once you're found completely innocent on charges of child labor by a jury of your peers you are still guilty.

Senator Obama, campaigning in Iowa to be President in August 2008 and promising a new era of civil American political discourse, forgot his commitment when it came to Rubashkin: "When you read about a meatpacking plant hiring 13-year-olds, 14-year-olds -- that is some of the most dangerous, difficult work there is. They have kids in there wielding buzz saws and cleavers? It's ridiculous. And the only reason they're hiring these folks is because they want to avoid paying people decent wages and providing them decent benefits." The President is a politician and might be forgiven for pandering for votes, although it would still be encouraging if now, in light of the acquittal, he would publicly apologize for his slander. But sister McCauley is a nun consecrated to Christ and has no such excuse.

I have no doubt that the sister is a good woman who wants to defend immigrant children, even as they admitted under oath to falsifying their work papers in order to work at Agriprocessors. I agree Sister Mary that these children were desperate. The cowardice on the part of the American government in repeatedly failing to address the immigration crises with serious reforms leads to these tragedies. But does Sister Mary not reserve even a tiny sliver of her heart for Rubashkin's ten children, one of whom is autistic, even as their lives have been turned upside down as their father has been painted as the anti-Christ?

Let me be clear. I am on record in several columns as saying that Rubashkin is no hero. He has been found guilty of financial fraud and will be punished. Whatever good he and his family have done - and they are justly renowned for their charity and philanthropy - in no way cancels out his conviction, even if his intentions were to temporarily avert near-certain bankruptcy that was caused by an INS raid and eventually pay the bank back. Wearing a yarmulke and a beard, Rubashkin is a public representative of the Jewish faith and he has let us all down. In our religion there is no greater sin than desecrating the divine name. No doubt the pain Rubashkin feels in having done so is more excruciating than anything the penal system can do to him. He will have to repent of his actions before G-d and man. He will also have to serve time, tragic as that is for a man with a large family who are now destitute.

But the time served must be fair and just. For goodness sake, stop the never-ending lynching. Treat the man fairly. Prosecutors, stop portraying him as a monster. Stop the absurdity of demanding a life sentence. Don't subvert justice in the name of justice. Six former Attorney-Generals of the United States have already strongly condemned the recommendation for a life sentence. Let the insanity end.

On the home page of the Sisters of Charity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, with whom Sister Mary is affiliated, it declares, "We are women of steadfast love called to live the mission of Jesus through our core values of FREEDOM, CHARITY, EDUCATION, and JUSTICE." Those are values I applaud and respect. Are you listening sister?

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach is the founder of This World: The Values Network. His new book is 'Renewal: A Guide to the Values-Filled Life.' (Basic Books) Follow him on Twitter @RabbiShmuley. His website is www.shmuley.com

Comments

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Very weird to comment on an article before it is even presented to the reader. How is someone to proceed? If one should read the article then read the spin then why is it not presented as such? To read it first is silly since you are reading about comments that you have not even seen yet.

Case in point, the very first sentence ->

Shmuley Boteach is wrong

Wrong about what? Just wrong in general in what ever he says?

What about "I also need to note that Boteach resorts to anti-Catholic bigotry in his attempt to make Sholom Rubashkin look like a martyr."

Again without reading the article how is one to know what it was that Boteach said?

It's 6 days and counting, Harold, till SMR's Doomsday.

What kind of cockamamie comments are you going to make after that?

What kind of cockamamie comments are you going to make after that?

Unlike this article, I will wait until the decision then I will make my cockamamie comment.

'harold'–

Please.

If you do not like it, leave.

At least I printed that piece of crap Boteach wrote.

Your friends over at Chabad.info, CrownHeights.info, Chabad.org. Shturem.net, ColLive.com, Matzav.com, and YeshivaWorld only print articles favorable to haredim.

You'll note I print articles critical of and favorable to haredim, and I rarely comment on either.

When I do comment, I do so openly, in my own name, and I stand behind what I write – and where I write it.

You on the other hand hide behind a pseudonym.

You are both a coward and a troll.

Now either deal with the facts Boteach misrepresented or leave. There is no in between for you.

Go it?

Shmarya's comments are spot on.

In my opinion based on interviews with victims, Rubashkin skated on these child labor law violations because of the judge's error in excluding evidence that clearly showed SMR knew and did nothing about undocumented workers and child labor law violations. That is called willful negligence.

At least I printed that piece of crap Boteach wrote

I am simply question of the style of the post. As I said before, how is one to read the post? To read it as written is useless, so my question was why this contorted style? This question has nothing to do with Chabad, VIN, CrownHeights.info or CNN. Nor does it even have to do with the content of the story in question. The excerpts that I presented were meant to show that the story as written is stylistically flawed.

As I said before, how is one to read the post?

Please.

If you don't know how to read it try hauling yourself over to something easier for you to process, like Matzav.com and other propaganda sites.

Now, again, either deal with the facts presented or be quiet.

When I, as a Rabbi and broadcaster, read of the unending accusations against countless priests and even nuns for molesting children, and against the Pope himself for covering it up, I went on the air on my radio show on America's most listened to station, WABC 77AM in New York City, and begged my audience to place the allegations in perspective.

I wonder if this had anything to do with Shmuley's campaign to become the Pope's new Jewish friend.

If you don't know how to read it try hauling yourself over to something easier for you to process

Believe me I know exactly how to read it and know exactly the purpose of its presentation style.

The purpose of my posts was to point it out to the peanut gallery in case it was not obvious to them.

Believe me I know exactly how to read it and know exactly the purpose of its presentation style.

The purpose of my posts was to point it out to the peanut gallery in case it was not obvious to them.

Don't worry, 'harold.' Most people here are far smarter than you.

Harold seems to be an "expert" in his own mind.

The best definition of an expert, was stated by Harry Truman:

"An expert is a fellow who's afraid to learn anything new, because then he won't be an expert anymore."

by shmarya only orthodox jewish , chasidim & lubavitchers are guilty!

if you want justice for the hispanic workers, if what drives you is only to see the peolpe who they commited crimes against the workers at agri.

you have to go also after , matt drecker , & people that know about underage in agri like the teachers in postville.

butt shmarya dosnt care about the poor hispanic people , only about shalom rubashkin.

you are a no one.

you are bias.

you are an anti orthodox bloger , u r doing this only bcs they reject you fat ass every where you try to imposse your sick ideas.

you are a very sick person.

you should go to a crazy house asap!


"Shmuley Boteach knows this. But Shmuley Boteach is not an honest man."

Of course he is. Like Scotty, Shmuley is a former chabadnik. Unlike Scotty, Shmuley has actually been successful in doing something and even making money at it. End result, Scotty has to identify some method of denigrating Shmuley.

"I also need to note that Boteach resorts to anti-Catholic bigotry in his attempt to make Sholom Rubashkin look like a martyr."

He uses a stupid analogy, but there is nothing bigotted about his statements. Compared to the statements that you regularly express on this blog, he statements about catholics would be categorized as pro-catholic.

As I had posted awhile ago, Shmuely ought to be behind a pushcart hawking chazerai. He is an aftethought at this point in his 'career'.

you have to go also after , matt drecker , & people that know about underage in agri like the teachers in postville.

I know you have great difficulty processing information and learning new things, but I'll try this again:

There were several supervisors raping, extorting and sexually abusing hispanic undocumented workers. Some of this abuse goes back to at least the mid-1990s, and involved abusing, extorting and raping Eastern European undocumented workers.

Hosam Amara, a senior Agriprocessors supervisor, was behind most of this.

He isn't being prosecuted because HE FLED INDICTMENT with the help of Sholom Rubashkin and is hiding in Israel.

So is another implicated supervisor, Zev Levi.

There are warrants for the arrest of both Levi and Amara, and the US wants both to be extradited.

Israel, however, isn't rushing to do it.

"Levi and Amara"

Levi and Amara were persons of interest in the immigration violations. There is no known association between either and any sexual abuse of workers.

Levi and Amara were persons of interest in the immigration violations. There is no known association between either and any sexual abuse of workers.

That is absolutely false.

Amara led the car extortion scam, which you conveniently forgot to mention.

He also led the sexual harassment and abuse.

The state of Iowa wants him for both.

The Feds want him for immigration violations.

S Boteach hopes that they will take him back!

Jason says (quoting Shmuckley Botox):

"When I, as a Rabbi and broadcaster, read of the unending accusations against countless priests and even nuns for molesting children, and against the Pope himself for covering it up, I went on the air on my radio show on America's most listened to station, WABC 77AM in New York City, and begged my audience to place the allegations in perspective."

I wonder if this had anything to do with Shmuley's campaign to become the Pope's new Jewish friend.

*******************************************

You're almost there, Jason. Now that the King's son-in-law has left the building, Shmuckley wants to graduate from merely being Michael Jackson's rabbi to being the Pope's rabbi.

Shmarya

Pitiful, you hail the judgement when he was covicted, but can't accept it when he was acquitted.

I hope you are right and the jury in the first case got it all wrong too.

I said it before you are a very angry man , get over it

So, he's convicted of 86 counts of fraud and he's innocent because he's acquitted on this other stuff? Please.

Montreal: And he stated the reasons why. You get over it.

"25 on 22"

Anyone know where the situation on back taxes stand? The sentence will probably be delayed again. Money seems to play a big item in this whole situation. By the way his family does not appear to be living in poverty. The party after the aquittal went on for hours at the Rubashkin residence. I thought if you were living in poverty that there would not be finances for those type of parties????

Don't worry, 'harold.' Most people here are far smarter than you

I know, only the best and brightest frequest this blog, problem is that they are also not too generous to the cause, present company included.

This gang of 8 which posts here against Sholom Rubashkin which headed by Rabbi Morris Allen are trying to compare OJ with Sholom Rubashkin:

OJ was Acquitted of Murder because most oft he Jury was black = Bias.

Rubashkin was found not guilty because there was NO evidence to suggest that he knew there were Minors, one must not go into details at this point and time the Jury of his peers already heard all the evidence at hand and we trust our Judicial System but Rabbi Allen and his gang are trying to fight this judicial system even though their pedophile hero Mathew Derrick was their star witness.


One cannot compare OJ with Sholom Rubashkin the crimes of the accused are totaly opposite.
Let us hope that the June 7th not guilty will reduce for June 22 t something good or maybe an early parole or even some probation this may or may not help, we do not know.

So, he's convicted of 86 counts of fraud and he's innocent because he's acquitted on this other stuff? Please.

No one is saying Rubashkin is not guilty of Lying to the banks and paying late to the Cattle dealers and not stealing a penny from the bank, how ever we are hoping something good will happen due to the not guilty that Sholom intentionally hired minors..

Again with the Gang of 8 headed by Rabbi "Give 'em the Horseshit" Allen. Dr. Shmoe, who are the other 7 members?

And harold, what do you consider "the cause" (re. your post of 01:40)?

I forgot to echo the refrain of my collegues which I find more compelling by the day: 25 on 22
TWENTYFIVE ON TWENTYTWO!

"Let us hope that the June 7th not guilty will reduce for June 22 t something good or maybe an early parole or even some probation this may or may not help, we do not know.
Posted by: Dr Moe"

Here's your something good: The feds did away with parole years ago.

schmuley boteach is a clown , a great performer , an opportunist .

schmuley boteach knows how to use famous and wealthy pp to make money .

he is very skilled at it .

in this case , he is using a high publicized case to get more publicity .
he will probably write a book to make more money about the rubashkin case , he does not care about it at all .

he used the weak, credulous , then, young michael jackson . and pulled up all his conversations he secretly taped to sell them , after his death .

schmulet boteach is a calculating person .

he also recently used the highly publicized case of john gosselin .

just the way he befriended michael jackson , he befriended the vulnerable
john gosselin who was in the middle of a divorce to schedule pointless lectures ,
alerting the press to get publicity .

schmuley boteach is a phony .

he is not chabad. just like everything he does , he uses chabad as a well known
sect he pretends to identify to , to get
some status .

the only chabad in his family is his wife .
not him .

schmuley boteach got a very good training from chabad in england .

just like chabad uses the very wealthy to collect their tax returns and their donations , schmuley boteach uses the rich and famous to make money , using their presence and to write books .

someone in the chabad sect supports schmuley boteach , endorsing him as a chabad rabbi to get his multimillon dollar
estate in englewood, new jersey ,tax free


I applaud Sandara, she has bigger betzim than Dull Messiah, harold, and Dr.Moe put together.

Go SANDRA!- Boteach creeps me out too...

This all just seems too convoluted to truly express a concise opinion about. The bottom line is that the immigration issue is complex and exploitive for many and perhaps SMR was able to take advantage and profit from it...no surprise. Seems that (and I'm giving the benefit of the doubt here), if he didn't "know about the abuses, etc." then he at the least was negligent...whatever! The only thing that seems obvious to me is that SMR has/had a very shrewd Lawyer (Defense) who was able to use the "loopholes" inherent in this sick illegal immigration issue to his advantage, oh well...

http://www.ajjacobs.com/books/yolb.asp

In 'The Year of Living Biblically', read A.J. Jacobs' description of what a slimey whore Boteach comes across as in person.

Even in what Jacobs thought would be a friendly casual conversation, there was the always-ready-for camera/microphone slick style of talking in rapid-fire sound bites, always pushing the pop-psycho-babble-in-your-face talking points scheme.

One of the most off-putting people you've ever met.

When Roseanne(Jewish girl from Utah) had a short lived talk show, Boteach was on several times trying to find a shidduch for her daughters. Remember Shmuley's short-lived TLC show "Shalom in the Home" It was creepy like watching the Real Housewives of New Jersey. This guy will do anything to get on T.V. and in the press to make money. Recently he had neighbor problems with the Libyans who live next door. He reminds me of an unfunny and not-at-all charming version of Kathy Griffin. I guess I watch too much television!

HAHAH your all Jealous of Shmuely, Sandra in 2 weeks Shmuley maybe on Oprah or Larry King making more money leaglly, while you will be on Failed messiah trying defend your Pedophile sexual predator hero star witness Mathew Derrick.

Atleast Shmuley is making money in a legal way unlike half of the secular Jews like Rothenstien, Milken, Madoff, Ivan Boesky, Marty Siegel.

And for Sholom Rubashkin he can stand his head up high with dignity which Rabbi Morris Allen (who still did not apologize to Sholom and his family) cannot take away from him, Sholom stands above all of you, at least he lied to the bank to save his business and pay the salaries to the Guatemalans and the money was not for hookers, like the secular Jewish crooks, a man who did not steal not a single penny from anyone. And yes Sholom Rubashkin will be sentenced for a crime that others who have committed worse then him sat for merely 2 years with a small fine, also Sholom will be sentenced for a crime NOT one person ever sat in jail for and that is paying the cattle dealers late not paying the cattle dealers on time, even though so many people paid cattle dealers late they never ever sat in jail never mind a fine.

I stayed with Shmuley for a shabbos a few weeks ago. He's a sincere and good person and he really wants to make the world a better place. He shows kindness to everyone and emphasized in his dvar torah to a large group of children and adults that we should go out of our way to befriend and be kind to people who have no friends or are lonely.

He uses his time in the spotlight to encourage people to do the right moral things. When he met with the pope he told him that to help out the Catholic world, the church should emphasize his idea of having a Friday night meal with 2 guests, 2 hours and 2 topics of conversation. He's spreading this idea all over and many big celebrities have signed on to publicize this idea.

Also his "problems" with his neighbor involved Omar Kadafi, the wicked head of Libya who owns the property and Shmuley wanted to stop him from setting up his tent there.

No one is perfect, and no one gets it right on every issue, but the Shmuley bashing here is misplaced and just plain wrong.

All people carry the presumption of innocence until proven otherwise.

Only in a court of law. I am not a lawyer, but I took 9th grade Civics with Coach Hood, the football coach. Go Bears!

Scott,
Rubashkin was "only" acquitted because the Judge didn't allow the SSN "no match" discrepencies to be admitted? No match means by definition the submitter is minor? Do you have any take on why the state dropped all 9311 child labor counts againsyt Aaron and reduced the 9311 against SMR to 68 counts on the morning of the trial? You don't think it had anything to do with the 2600 page report that didn't cite a single witness that SMR knew of child laborers? or that the prosecution didn't bring any such witnesses? or the prosecutions own documentation showing that there were plenty of people applying for work at Agri, all were paid on the books (and where exactly did the SSN no match letters come from for all the people that you're going to tell me were paid in cash?) and hence no reason or benefit to hire minors? The man was acquitted because there was zero evidence of guilt. I know you don't like it when orthodox Jews don't get punished for things they didn't do, but those are the facts of the case.

Rubashkin was "only" acquitted because the Judge didn't allow the SSN "no match" discrepencies to be admitted? No match means by definition the submitter is minor?

Reading comp issues?

Hundreds of no match letters mean that hundreds of workers used fake IDs and papers to get hired.

Not following up on those no match letters means the employer is not doing due diligence.

And that makes Rubashkin guilty.

Do you have any take on why the state dropped all 9311 child labor counts againsyt Aaron and reduced the 9311 against SMR to 68 counts on the morning of the trial? You don't think it had anything to do with the 2600 page report that didn't cite a single witness that SMR knew of child laborers?

First of all, there was testimony that Rubashkin knew.

Secondly, prosecuting that many counts is very difficult and extremely expensive.

The state decided to save money and prosecute fewer counts.

They dismissed against Aaron because he would have been the hardest to convict, because he was in Brooklyn most of the time, and because he's old.

Two others from Agriprocessors who were charged pleaded guilty, and another is still facing trial.

the prosecutions own documentation showing that there were plenty of people applying for work at Agri, all were paid on the books (and where exactly did the SSN no match letters come from for all the people that you're going to tell me were paid in cash?)

Rubashkin had two payrolls, one for the legal workers and one for the illegal ones. The checks were color coded.

People paid off the books tended to be mashgichim and shochtim, who sometimes got part of their pay in cash, and supervisors.

The man was acquitted because there was zero evidence of guilt.

Not at all.

The "man" was found not guilty because the defense created reasonable doubt, in part by blaming other people for the dozens of kids working in his plant, and in part because the judge excluded the no match letters and other similar evidence.

But those of us who know about that evidence do not need to disregard it. In fact, we must consider it.

Sholom Rubashkin is guilty, just as OJ was guilty and Lemerick Nelson was guilty.

And I highly doubt you and your friends would have championed Lemerick Nelson's innocence, now would you?

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