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November 04, 2012

Lower East Side's Rabbis AWOL In Face Of Hurricane, Some Residents Say

Hurricane Sandy Statue of LibertyLower East Side residents stuck without food (and sometimes without water) in the neighborhood's high rise buildings complain that the area's haredi and Orthodox rabbis left the area without helping the elderly, disabled and poorer residents they left behind.

Hurricane Sandy Statue of Liberty

Lower East Side's Rabbis AWOL In Face Of Hurricane, Some Residents Say
Shmarya Rosenberg • FailedMessiah.com

The Lower East Side’s haredi and Orthodox rabbis almost all left the area after Hurricane Sandy hit, leaving behind congregants who had no family or friends outside the neighborhood to evacuate to, local residents told FailedMessiah.com last night.

The residents, who are fearful of community retaliation if they are publicly named, complained that the neighborhood’s most prominent rabbis left the are for Shabbat, leaving behind the poorer, older and disabled without doing anything to secure help for them.

Electrical power in the neighborhood was off from the beginning of Hurricane Sandy Monday night until about 5 pm on Friday, a few minutes before Shabbat began.

Grocery stores were closed, residents’ refrigerated and frozen food spoiled, and Jewish hurricane relief was nowhere to be found.

But rather than stay and try to help, the areas haredi and Orthodox rabbis fled, these residents say, never checking on them or offering them any form of assistance.

Orthodox and haredi synagogues in the area were closed on Shabbat, with the exception of the Bialystoker Synagogue. Its rabbi, Zvi David Romm, stayed in the neighborhood while other rabbis, including Dovid Feinstein of Mesivta Tiferes Yerushalyim yeshiva reportedly left.

These Lower East Side residents also say that State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, who lives on the Lower East Side, was also absent, as was the head of the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty, William Rapfogel, who also lives in the neighborhood.

Rapfogel had not returned an email seeking to confirm his absence from the neighborhood at the time this article was posted and, despite the ongoing need for hurricane relief, both Silver’s New York City and Albany offices were closed shortly after noon today.

However, residents were happy to see Yeshiva University and Stern College for Women students, who went door-to-door in the high rise buildings offering residents water and limited food.

When told that the New York Jewish Federation’s main relief effort was confined to distributing a limited number of free challah breads in some hurricane ravaged areas, one disgusted Lower East Side resident quipped that no one had offered him a free challah.

Residents also reported that requests to Jewish community agencies for temporary shelter outside the neighborhood were referred to city agencies, and residents were told that if they did evacuate, they would have to use the city shelers and eat the non-kosher food those shelters provide because no Jewish shelters exist.

Several residents also complained that Orthodox and haredi Lower East Side neighbors who owned cars went shopping for kosher food in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, but did not offer to pick up food for their poorer neighbors, trapped because of the lack of public transportation.

“It’s like there’s no real Jewish community here,” one resident complained. “It’s every (rich) man and rabbi for himself.”

Update 2:28 pm CST I received the follwing email from Met Council head William Rapfogel a few minutes ago:

…[The] Met Council distributed thousands of pounds of non perishable foods to apartments in high rises on the lower east side with priority given to elderly and disabled.   We also picked up 3000 kosher MREs from the armory through the Governor's office and gave out to hundreds of people.  UJA did collect challahs for Friday distribution and together with the united Jewish council, HATZALAH and speaker silver we gave out some 600 on the lower east side and more in other affected areas. UJA has also now committed funds that will enable us to ensure food and necessities to impacted communities all week long.

Two of my sons are HATZALAH volunteers and barely slept in the HATZALAH ambulance or went on calls to help residents all over the area.  We all lived in darkness without water all week long and gave our own water, canned goods, blankets,etc to our neighbors aside from what we do professionally.

In addition I have been working with the communities in Staten Island, south Brooklyn and far Rockaway to ensure they have food, blankets and even security. Thousands of people have food because of met council.…

All I'll say is that the disabled I heard from did not get help and were not contacted by Met Council volunteers.

Whether these two buildings were missed, or certain floors within these buildings were missed, or whether more than these two buildings were missed is unclear.

Update 2:58 pm CST – William Rapfogel explains:

No one skipped anyone intentionally. Conditions were terrible for providers and recipients throughout the city not just on the lower east side. We are still trying to get fuel for our food trucks and repair vans.
As for where anyone was for shabbos i didnt ask and dint intend to ask.
As for me i was with family and managed to raise an extra $30.000 to help provide food to most impacted areas.    I just okayed some 2500 meals to brighton through masbia that were funding. Every dollar counts and ita no ones business where i was for shabbos.

I think part of the issue could be that many of the rabbis may not have provided responders with lists of their more vulnerable conregants.

The rabbis who are more oriented to building and maintaining a community may have done more than rabbis who are rosh yeshivas and long time community leaders.

Comments

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Uri L'Tzedek and the students from YCT have also been active.

Well, I hope those gedolim remembered to save the really important things, like their holy seforim.

Well, maybe if they're extremely lucky they can get a salad, coffee, bagel and a referral to FEMA.

Uri L'tzedek has been on the ground.

This shows how they only want to be served and not serve others, in short lazy and selfish.

As a Lower East Side resident who remained in the neighborhood, I saw Orthodox Rabbis as well as many orthodox lay leaders and shopkeepers who worked throughout the ordeal helping their fellow Jewish neighbors as well as non Jewish neighbors with food distribution and other assistance. In any situation there are individuals who will find some fault, but overall I was impressed and inspired by those rabbis and others who remained, and selflessly donated their time and means in helping their neighbors in the Lower East Side.

Thank you. I'm inspired and impressed too. Who were the orthodox rabbis?

“It’s like there’s no real Jewish community here,” one resident complained. “It’s every (rich) man and rabbi for himself.”

Fortunately the 5 towns/Far Rochaway community is mobilizing to help those in need. A model that should b emulated by all.

Its very easy to criticize and its a pleasure to do it for those who seek fault in the Orthodox community.
Here are some facts that you guys are not interested in knowing:

HASIDIC volunteers are doing dirty work NOW and the last few days in Far Rockway like pumping out water and cleaning houses.

Buses and vans from BORO PARK and WILLIAMSBURG with children's clothing were delivered to Far Rockway.

ONE individual from his own pocket took FIVE HUNDRED meals to Far Rockway for this shabbos without any publicity.

HUNDREDS of families came in for shabbos from monsey,and kiryas joel were many stayed at strangers houses
TENS of generators were donated by individuals for upstate families.

I bet that had anyone know that the lower east side is in such a great need people would of helped them.
ONE thing is for sure the ORTHODOX community did far more for Jewish new yorkers than Billionaire Bloomberg did for his citizen.With all his billions it didn't occur to him to go to Staten Island and give from his personal money food and generators for the suffering people.The marathons were much more important to him.

It is Bloomberg we must criticize and run him out of town.He is one piece of shameless rotten spoiled person he doesn't even understand what the average person is suffering now.
Lets see FM,you had a post how he didn't care about children dying of MBP.How about writing a post how disgusting he is behaving now?

Bill O'reilly like him or not had an excellent article in Fridays NY Post how the government does zero in a time of crisis its a must read.

Dear Resident Who Complained:
What exactly did you do?
On the LES, there were minyanim set up in each building, there was a teshuva regarding using flashlights on Shabbos in darkened hallways, the local kosher bakery and kosher grocery store was open daily, and kosher food did get distributed. Frum young men helped maintain charging stations wherein our local Rosh Yeshiva and all others could stay in cellphone contact. Some of us still do not have heat and yes, it has been tough, but we are proud of our Rabbanim who time and time again devote their energies to all of Klal Yisroel.

Posted by: Deremes | November 04, 2012 at 01:04 PM

Idiot.

Over and over and over again with regard to almost every issue you lie and confuse basic facts.

As bad as some of NYC's response has been, it is far better than the responses of other cities during lesser disasters.

NYC has shelters and food available.

Most of the people seriously suffering now are suffering because they failed to follow mandatory evacuation orders.

Was Bloomberg wrong about the marathon?

Yes he was.

Did he correct himself?

Yes he did.

Do you know if Bloomberg donated any money to the Red Cross or similar disaster relief orgs that are helping tens of thousands of New Yorkers?

No, you don't.

Some people are born stupid and others make themselves stupid.

In your case, you appear to have both problems.

Con Ed says there are now only 32 customers without power in Crown Heights.

http://apps.coned.com/stormcenter_external/default.html

Con Ed now has all the substations in their territory up. The remaining outages look like failures of single distribution transformers serving under 50 customers.

New Jersey and Long Island are in much worse shape. PSEG and LIPA are still reporting huge outages.

Michael Landy and rl are the same person.

What he or she is doing is sockpuppeting, using different names to make it appear as if his/her position has more support than it really does.

This is not allowed.

Stick to one screen name – or, better yet, your legal name – or I'll delete your comments and ban you.

Now tell us: did the rabbis leave the LES for Shabbat? Did they do so without seeing that the elderly, disabled and poor were taken care of?

Nothing you've posted so far does anything to show that the rabbis helped anyone.

And BTW, the open kosher grocery store was largely out of food, was it not?

Man, I wonder what bloggers and innocent bystanders would have said during the Holocaust when all those gadolim and rebbes were rushed out of the old country while all their congregants stayed and died.

Also: What can a rabbi do in this situation that average normal folks cannot exactly ...?

PS: I never, NEVER read this blog ... gah.

Man, I wonder what bloggers and innocent bystanders would have said during the Holocaust when all those gadolim and rebbes were rushed out of the old country while all their congregants stayed and died.

That is a topic that has been discussed on this blog many times.

PS: I never, NEVER read this blog ... gah.

Yeah, that's probably for the best. You'll read things here that will challenge your implicit faith in the holy rabbonim who converted you.

Run along now and adjust your blinders.

Shmarya,

Your reporting is as true as the FAKE PHOTOSHOP Image you posted.

Dovid Frank

http://www.chabad.org/news/article_cdo/aid/2026348/jewish/Volunteers-Crisscross-Manhattan.htm

rl is not the same person.
Your article is powerful enough.

"Mr. Goodman, 25, made his way up staircases on Friday using his iPhone as a flashlight to deliver hot meals to homebound elderly for Chabad, the Orthodox Jewish movement, he said he saw no other such relief efforts in the warren of towers of Midtown East." — The New York Times


https://www.mychabad.org/special/campaigns/hurricane_sandy/donate.asp?1=1&site=chabad.org

Posted by: Shmarya | November 04, 2012 at 01:15 PM

Bloomberg canceled the marathon not becuase he felt it was the right thing but ONLY becuase of pressure from all over plus the biggest factor was that he would of been booed in every neighborhood when passing by before the marathons.So again he did for selfish reasons.

Yes i know he donated money to the red cross and other philanthropic causes,who doesn't know that?
But it is below him to approach A suffering family in Far Rockway,Sea Gate,Mil Basin and offer $5-10-twenty thousand dollars when he has billions.Yes,you can give charity to plain folks in a time like this not only to big organazatios.BTW,the folks in Staten Island are saying the Red Cross is a disaster.
Some black residents in the Far Rockway screamed at the mayor yesterday when he went to visit "when are we getting f.... help" it was reported in the NY Post.

Mr. Rosenberg,

I greatly appreciate some of your righteous indignation on your blog since our community - like many communities – have room to grow and improve. But you have to make sure that you don’t go from being (perhaps rightfully so) a gadfly to a “kochleffl” (“a pot stirrer”).

When I see an entire article without one attributed quote, I get concerned. More so, I live on the Lower East Side and been helping and seeing many people help for the entire period of time that power was down (and people are still helping right now).

Rabbi Stone, not mentioned in the article, has, around the clock with his rebbitzen, been providing food and drink to all the residents (sometime climbing as high as 21 floors).

Hatzalah had a command post around the clock in the area. Moshe’s Bakery was open every day (providing fresh bread) as was the local kosher store. LES Shuls – a volunteer email service - helped arranged minyanim in each of the co-op buildings when people could not safely leave their building and kept people apprised of many needed updates.

I will not speak for Willie Rapfogel or Speaker Silver but, as for Mr. Rapfogel I do know that there were many communities that needed more help that the Med Council helped (Far Rockaway etc…) and Speaker Silver’s District is greater than the 12 buildings of Co-op Village (he office provided charging stations on the first day and had people “on the ground” everyday).

Rabbi Azriel Siff and others were here for Shabbos.

I, myself, who helped the entire week – up to right before Shabbos and donated more than 60 cases of water – was not here for Shabbos as well. That does not take away from what I and dozens of others did to assist our neighborhood without considered abandoning them.

There were so many heroes – Rabbinical and others – on the Lower East Side this past week and right now.

Rabbi Yuter of Stanton Street made sure that he reached every single one of his congregants. Rabbi Romm, as you mentioned, stayed. Rabbi Gary Ambrose, a lay leader and unofficial 2nd Rabbi to Young Israel, stayed and helped. The average age of the Rabbi's you don't mention(and I have no idea if were here for Shabbos) are in the their 70's and 80's. They look to the younger leaders (non-Rabbi's) to help in areas that they can not. They could not walk up or down countless flights of stairs. Do you expect Rav Dovid Feinstein to personally walk up, say, 10 flights of stairs to help someone, stay in the dark on Shabbos, have his wife, who uses a walking device, to stay homebound the entire Shabbos?

By writing this I am certain I will get flack by those that disagree with me or be the wrath of nasty comments. But I, very respectfully, do not agree with you here.

Can things been better, of course! But you make it sound a lot worse than it is and do not give credit where credit is due.

Please keep up the good work you do to shed light where light is needed. Please note that an article like this, without further research and attribution, does not help some of your otherwise good (if not fantastic) work.

Best,

Yankie Goldman
Lower East Side

Posted by: Deremes | November 04, 2012 at 02:19 PM

To say that you are an idiot is an understatement.

NYC's response to this disaster of unprecedented proportion is far better than the response of any other major city has been in this or in other disasters.

It isn't perfect, and no one from the city government – least of all Bloomberg – claims that it is.

But only true simpletons think that a mayor can snap his fingers and make everything all better.

Unfortunately for the Jewish community, because of the sorry state of Satmar education, all too often the words Satmar and simpleton are synonymous. In your case, they most certainly are.

Posted by: Yankie Goldman | November 04, 2012 at 02:25 PM

Please see the update that I just added to this post.

As for the "older" rabbis, they appear to have been much less concerned with their flocks than they were with their own comfort.

Certainly in some cases, due to age or infirmities they needed to leave.

What's disturbing is that they left without appearing to care much for those they left behind.

I am totally ignorant of what goes on in Manhattan because I'm cooped up in Brooklyn (I admit I can do more to volunteer, much more, but I did do a little bit), but I do recall stories from Katrina where Chabad saved lives.

Such as this woman; http://www.chabad.org/theJewishWoman/article_cdo/aid/310488/jewish/Being-in-Time-A-New-Orleans-Journal.htm
which road the storm in the Chabad Rabbi's home with others,

or, where President Bush famously declared; "...and one of those rescued from New Orleans put it this way: In the days after Katrina hit, Chabad saved lives"

I'm sure Chabad missed homes in New Orleans too, they couldn't reach every last Jewish home. I'm sure in this hurricane as well, Chabad, many other Orthodox organizations, and agnostics/ atheists as well, were working hard in the rescue/ relief efforts. Tragically, not every home was reached yet.

Rosenberg,
Even Rabbis have their first commitment to their families. If their families can endure them leaving their families at this difficult time, then they (assuming they are dedicated) go out to assist their communities.

Do you think every Doctor, EMT, Cop etc. etc. (and again, I refer to the devoted ones) were out for the maximum amount of time and never departed the relief work besides when they were eating and sleeping?

Shmarya with all due respect you have no idea what you are talking about on this issue.Hatzolah volunteer were busy all day doing carry-downs of elderly ppl all through the blackout. The manager of the coops who is also the head of hatzolah instructed all his ppl to do whatever was necessary including giving out flashlights,batteries water and food to all that needed it.In addition to organizing a walk through all the blds knocking on all doors to see what ppl needed.Met council was there giving out food from their food rescue division which is located on the lower east side from day one.As far as the Rabbis all who were physically capable were on the front line doing whatever was needed.Do no smear a whole community based on one person if there was one at all .

Yes a real mayor CAN do things.
Rudy Giuliani would of handled this way better.You can bet that had he been mayor now there would of been plenty of gasoline and Manhattan would of had electricity much quicker then now.
Go ahead and stick up for shiester Bloomberg and insult anyone who criticize an out of touch mayor.

Shmarya with all due respect you have no idea what you are talking about on this issue.Hatzolah volunteer were busy all day doing carry-downs of elderly ppl all through the blackout. The manager of the coops who is also the head of hatzolah instructed all his ppl to do whatever was necessary including giving out flashlights,batteries water and food to all that needed it.In addition to organizing a walk through all the blds knocking on all doors to see what ppl needed.Met council was there giving out food from their food rescue division which is located on the lower east side from day one.As far as the Rabbis all who were physically capable were on the front line doing whatever was needed.Do no smear a whole community based on one person if there was one at all .

Posted by: s | November 04, 2012 at 02:59 PM

All I know is that Stern College students reached people that no one else did, and that some people seeking help were not helped.

There will obviously be true stories of help provided by Hatzolah and other haredi orgs, and some haredi rabbis certainly did good.

But it appears that others didn't, or did much less than one would expect.

You have great stories of people climbing stairs in pitch darkness to offer help to shut ins.

But you have no explanation for why some of these shut ins were missed.

Any thoughts?

There are thousands of apartments in the local coops and surrounding areas if a few were missed that does not mean that no one was doing anything.Hatzolah had a command center set up rite in middle of the community 24/7 helping everyone and on Friday gave out close to a 1000 challahs to everyone .They also gave out cases of water and food .There was absolutely no abandonment by any rabbais or as you call them orthodox organizations. Wille Rapfogel head of Met Council .Harold Jacob President of Hatazolah Sheldon Silver were all present and accounted for doing everything in their power to help everyone

Thank you for your reply.

Your article is not as "big" as was made out to be with unnamed Rabbis and words like "appear to have" and "without appearing".

Some big shuls are Bilystoker (Rabbi Romm stayed), Young Israel (Rabbi Ambrose and former president Seth Gordon stated), Chabad (Rabbi Stone is a hero), Stanton (Rabbi Yuter reached all his congregants).

Stories have to have more facts. If there are people that still need help, they can call myself or Rabbi Stone, the Met Council etc.....

Posted by: Yankie Goldman | November 04, 2012 at 03:17 PM

Please.

You have people who were not reached and who did not find help when they looked for it.

I just spoke to one of those people now who pointed out that Stone knows him but he still wasn't helped.

Another rabbi saw a disabled person and, allegedly, offered no help and gave the disabled person no directions on where to find help. Yet you list him as a hero.

It is clear that the old time, long standing rabbis and rosh yeshivas and many of the senior yeshiva rebbes left and didn't do much of anything to help those left behind.

People were clearly missed and you won't admit it.

Yankie Goldman-GIVE it up you wont win.
Orthodox Jews according to FM are bad as bad can be.As much good you know they did and still do FM will find ONLY faults.As much as you will try proving that they did anything they could FM will answer how bad they still are.

Shmarya What were you doing to help the elderly in the aftermath of the hurricane.You have no idea what you were talking about You can give any person who feels they were not helped or still need help my email address and I will address their concerns and get them any help they need.Rabbai stone was standing out on the street corner handing out water and food for days so I do not see how saying stone knows him and did not help is any bit of the truth.And every able body Rabbai including Rabbai Romm ,Rabbai Ambrose,Rabbai Fishelis,Rabbai Stone,Heshy Jacob and many other were there doing it all so stop saying one person was not helped so we all did nothing

Obviously, I will not win with you.

I admit that more could be done. Even by you.

What have you admitted? That your story isn't as strong as it sounds?

Who have you named? No-one.

Who have you quoted? No-one.

I am not defending anyone as you did not point your finger to anyone (except Rabbi Dovid Feinstein who I rightfully defended and you did not, rightfully, protest).

I list Rabbi Stone as a hero as he is still working hard. Now he is getting heaters for people without heat (check his wife's facebook status if you don't believe me).

No-one I know will believe that he did not - knowingly - provide help to a disabled person. And if you do believe such, did you call Rabbi Stone to verify the story? I believe if he heard such a thing he would cry bitterly at such a actual or perceived neglect of a person.

I will not defend him - call him yourself at 646-662-5680.

Everything I said is verifiable and everything (of substance) you said has not been.

I admit people have been missed - there are 4,500 units. Can everyone have been better organized, prepared and done more? Can every Rabbi, layperson, Jew, gentile, organization done more. Of course. But so much was done and for you to throw cold water on the hard work that everyone has done is unfair and unjust.

Can you admit that this has not been your strongest piece? We all are not perfect (must be true with a Failed Messiah as well.) :-)

Otherwise, keep up the good (but always just) fight.

I hope this to be my final comment because there are much better things to do (I volunteered all last week and have more work to do). But I could not let certain things be left unsaid and unchallenged (much of what you do in your blog).

Wait, wait, Yankie, don't go yet! How did the Blue Moon, where Rabbi Stone held services, do? Were they able to take in some families?

I'm glad that you and Rabbi Stone are able to help. I see that as part of a Rabbi's job. That is the job of a leader. And he's a nice enough fellow, but I have to tell you that I was disabled and obviously quite ill once when I was at Rabbi Stone's house. I sat there quite ignored by all except the rabbi. He offered me salad.

I never returned nor was I invited.

I have read your article and I must protest vehemently since I never left the Lower East Side and witnessed all the help that was delivered to Jews & non-Jews. Firstly I must defend Rabbi Stone. I personally witnessed him destributing meals on the street, and he would never discriminate against anybody. Secondly, Reb Dovid Feinstein who is a man of over 80 years old lives in a Zone A building where there was mandatory evacuation. Health professionals urged all seniors to leave since it was estimated that it might take additional 5 to 8 days for power to come on. As for the Speaker, he arranged for a trailer load of water and meals to be deliverd to every building and his staff joined together with over 25
maintenance men to deliver door to door. Every door was knocked on multiple times during this crisis. I personally spoke to him twice each day to update him on our needs and he came through. Gary Altman of Speaker Quinn's office was very helpful in getting us an additional load of water. Willie Rapfogel of the Met Council delivered food which again was delivered to the people on a non discriminatory fashion even though the food was glatt kosher. Hatzalah remained on the scene and did over 80 carry-downs, 25 of which had to be transported to hospitals. The orthodox community carried the majority of the load for delivering services yet you always find a way to bash us. Please make sure your facts are correct before printing them.

Posted by: s | November 04, 2012 at 03:50 PM. etc.

Why is it so hard for you all to grasp that people were missed?

Why is it so hard for you to grasp that some of those people who were missed were known to the some of the rabbis you cite as heroes?

And why in the world would anyone who was missed and who complained about it let an asshole like you have their name? The kind of visit you world provide isn't the kind of visit they want to have.

As for Dovid Feinstein, etc., I have no problem with them evacuating.

What I have a problem with is that these senior rabbis evacuated without doing anything significant to help those left behind.

Dovid Feinstein wasn't safe in Brooklyn organizing food and water deliveries to Lower East Side high rises.

He was safe in Brooklyn eating his own dinner – although by the time the Artscroll book comes out, the story will be that he had to dragged out of the LES kicking and screaming and that he worked 24/7 from wherever he actually was to get food and water to every last resident of the LES, Jewish or not, frum or not.

And you and your friends will surely lie to allow that book to happen.

according to the laws of sodom and gomorah, they are not allowed to practice charity. they only loot.

As I read this I am speechless!!!! Do you not get what just occurred here??? Are you not getting that because of slander , gossip and baseless hatred we are in the mist of G-D wrath!!! You have no idea what occurred here because YOU we're not here! What did YOU do to help us?? It just so happens that I witnessed first hand the tremendous effort of so many of our local Rabbis and members of my community! From giving out food and water to knocking on doors to ensure the well being of our elderly residents! I have a tremendous amount of hakaras hatov to them all!!! Furthermore how the heck do you know what Rav Feinstein said or did before NEEDING to leave!!! How dare you disrespect a Gadol Hador!!! How do you know what any Rabbi or person did??? I am impressed by all that was done !!!!

…I am impressed by all that was done !!!!

Posted by: Goldie | November 04, 2012 at 07:34 PM

I doubt you would say that if you were among those who these rabbis forgot or missed.

Firsty I would like to say that you do not know at all what was done In the neighborhood during the dramatic storm. I, personally was there and was thoroughly impressed by the amount of gratitude and help the people of the community were doing. WE ARE ALL ONE NATION and are trying to help each other out and we have to be Ldam vichasvichos for every single Jew. How do you know what our Rav Dovid - gadol hador said or tried to do! Maybe he didn't have an option! We're you there by his side the whole time?! Maybe he was sick and needed light! Maybe his wife who is disabled needed to evacuate! And besides all of that his building got flooded on the lobby so he was supposed to evacuate! you expect him and his wife to walk down all their steps to get to lobby and walk through a flooded lobby plus expecting his amazing rebbitzen?!How could you say something like that about our gadol! And speaking lashon hara about him?! We didn't have water for nearly a week nor electricity so did you live like that , that you could judge us?! Your not in each persons shoes so stop talking for all our rabbeim and gadols! You don't know what was going on. And as you said before with helping others out and BY MISTAKE not helping others it had no intent, I guarentee because I don't know if you know the lower east side but it's the warmest Jewish community I have ever seen and NOONE would've done something like that to their fellow neighbor . So yes everyone makes mistakes, But I guarentee There was no intention.

DH,

I will not leave.

Reading your post, I am not certain if you were touched by the fact that Rabbi Stone fed and acknowledged you when others did not or hurt that you were not invited back. I assuming both.

Please give Rabbi Stone the benefit of the doubt as he opens his house all the time, and, as you said, "he is a nice enough" fellow. Give him a call - I am certain it was an oversight or misunderstanding. He is a shirt off his back type of Rabbi.

Also, you can always reach out to me - 917-796-5445.

Best,

Yankie

You're right Shmarya, rabbis have absolutely NO right to take care of themselves & their families! How DARE they leave their neighborhood when they have no food, electricity, or water!!! Are you kidding me?!!!!!!

I really don't understand why you think that rabbis are magicians who would magically take care of food & shelter for all of the ppl. in the community when they don't even have any water in their apartments to flush their own toilets & all of the food in their own refridgerators were rotting!!

I am APPALLED by the Chutzpah in your article where you try to find fault when there is NO fault to be found.

It is of course unfortunate if some LES community members were left without basic supplies but what makes you think that the rabbis even if they HAD stayed in their freezing cold & dark apartments for the weekend would have in ANY way even been able to help these individuals about whom you write about.

I just cannot BELIEVE the complete absurdity of your article & it makes me skeptical to believe future (& past)articles that you will or have written (as you ALWAYS do) about the evils within the Orthodox community & it's rabbis.

What is up with you seriously "whom the RABBIS missed"......are you serious??? Once again besides the RABBIS in this community we also have MANY other dedicated and devoted people who went beyond the call of duty to assist others!!! I myself (even with my own little children at home including a special needs child) ran around up and down knocking on doors and offering whatever help I could!!! This was a time of chaos and confusion!!! Sure things were not PERFECT but under the circumstance we did the best we could!!! Once again don't go judging things that YOU know nothing about! And if I am am wrong I want to apologize to you for missing you when YOU were down here running up and down stairs knocking on doors and delivering food and water !!! I would have wanted to thank you in person for ALL of YOUR efforts on behalf of My Community!!!!!!

I am disappointed.

First, you called someone an “idiot”, then “idiot is an understatement” then you dismiss my respectful note with the word “Please”, then you call someone – either Heshy Jacob or myself (or both) - a vulgar term. And we were both extremely respectful. (I rather be with Heshy Jacob than with you any day.)

It is clear that you go to the Bill O’Reilly school of journalism or debate.

Accordingly, there can’t be much in intellectual honesty or debate. Which is disappointing, please a good, honest debate can really make a difference (as well as good, honest journalism).

Rav Dovid Feinstein role is not that of pulpit rabbi, he does not coordinate meals etc. You know that. Your post isn’t whether ArtScroll books are historically accurate – you know that too. It is not whether “we” will distort how Rabbi Feinstein will be portrayed in biographies – you know that as well.

Failure to stick to the issues are a great deflective tool – but one that is transparent.

I have no intention of otherwise repeating what I and other have already said.

Currently the community and many Rabbis in the neighborhood are getting as many heater to the buildings called Seward Park which does not have heat as welcome as welcoming them into our homes to shower as they do not have hot water either.

Please continue your work in exposing those that really need to be – but in a fair, honest manner.

Rosenberg,

You were given phone numbers to reach out to those who YOU complain that did not receive any help, just pick up the phone and call Rabbi Stone or call Yankie Goldstien their numbers were left on your blog, give them the so called address of the so called people who YOU claim were not helped or ignored and they will go over PERSONALLY and help these people, but as NY1 put it, your the man that posts bad news on the Orthodox community and sometimes your news is not backed up by any reliable source such as this piece of news.

I think you might be better off posting of what weirdo rabbis say about the hurricane such as Rabbi Levine and let the REAL people who are on field assisting the victims do their job!

Please.

People were missed. People who needed help didn't get it. A large number of your rabbis closed their shuls and left the LES, and there is no evidence that they tried to help anyone before they left or afterward.

The truth is that the difference between a haredi rabbi on one hand and a priest or minister on the other is that the non-Jewish clergy are there to serve a congregation and/or a neighborhood, and they often act as such, while rabbis are there to be rabbis – to pasken shaylas, issue the occasional kol koreh, and teach.

Many rabbis feel no special obligation to their congregants – or for that matter, to their neighbors and associates.

I've seen this many times over the years, although never with a large natural disaster.

You know very well that many rabbis left and that some did little or nothing to make sure their congregants who could not leave got help.

On the other hand, a few stayed and of them, some did a lot to help.

You take the actions of the minority and project them as if they were the majority and were normative. But they were not.

Yankie, I did contact Rabbi Stone after last year's storm of the century.

But what shape is the Blue Moon in, do you know? If the basement where the men daven is flooded, is it fixable?

Thanks.

Shmarya, you keep referring to "the rabbis" who were supposed to be going door to door through 20-odd floor buildings. Many of these rabbis are themselves elderly and were told to evacuate. Had they not done so, and became a burden to first responders, you would criticize them too.

I think it should be clear from the first-person stories cited here that many able-bodied young people with hats, beards, shaitls and/or yarmulkas stayed behind and helped out their fellow LESiders whenever they could. Many of those had young children themselves and gave up offers to go elsewhere so that they could be of assistance in the community's time of need. I know several of the commenters here personally, and I believe their word before that of some anonymous disgruntled "resident".

Posted by: Dovid Frank | November 04, 2012 at 08:16 PM

They don't need your rabbis' phone numbers, genius – they have them.

And despite being poor and disabled, they managed on their own to get some food and water, and then got more water from the Stern College students.

The last thing these people want to do is expose themselves to retribution from people like you.

…Rav Dovid Feinstein role is not that of pulpit rabbi, he does not coordinate meals etc. You know that. Your post isn’t whether ArtScroll books are historically accurate – you know that too. It is not whether “we” will distort how Rabbi Feinstein will be portrayed in biographies – you know that as well.…

Yes. Of course. Silly me. It isn't the "role" of Dovid Feinstein to help people.

You just made my case, Yankie – although I doubt you understand that.

Shmarya, you keep referring to "the rabbis" who were supposed to be going door to door through 20-odd floor buildings. Many of these rabbis are themselves elderly and were told to evacuate. Had they not done so, and became a burden to first responders, you would criticize them too.

I think it should be clear from the first-person stories cited here that many able-bodied young people with hats, beards, shaitls and/or yarmulkas stayed behind and helped out their fellow LESiders whenever they could. Many of those had young children themselves and gave up offers to go elsewhere so that they could be of assistance in the community's time of need. I know several of the commenters here personally, and I believe their word before that of some anonymous disgruntled "resident".

Posted by: shoshy | November 04, 2012 at 08:20 PM

Please.

You're distorting what I wrote.

I never claimed that 80-year-old rabbis should be running up and down stairs delivering food and water.

What I claim is that many rabbis did not do very much, if anything, to make sure that those who could not evacuate with them got food and water.

You can see that some rabbis – like Romm and Stone – tried to help people and succeeded in helping many, although they missed some shut ins.

Most of the other rabbis just left.

This behavior isn't problematic to you because you're able bodied and you had food and water.

For those who are not and who were missed by Stone, Romm, etc., the fact that so many rabbis left means a lot.

You don't grasp this, however, and you probably won't until you're on the wrong end of something like this.

I think you're confused between the role of a rabbi and that of a FEMA worker or EMT. Why did Bloomberg tell FEMA they were not needed when their help was offered before the storm? That's the real scandal here.

Here's the problem. In this culture the rabbis are not the givers. Their "congregations " are the givers, the anointers, the ass kissers and yes, WSC, the lickspittles. Almost always all the rabbis give them is plenty of opportunity...to, you know, lickspittle and the like.

Are we talking about those pre-historic spittle-dripping powdery-boned men Shmarya sometimes shows pictures of while their, um, supporters are shoving life support systems down collapsed throats? Of course no one is talking about them dragging their clinking bones down dark hallways (cliiiiiiink, clink) and up seventy two thousand flights of stairs (clink, clink) . Why has it not occurred to you stellar thinkers that perhaps they could provide another source of comfort?

Ah, yes, the wife and the cane. She shouldn't go by Rabbi Stone with that condition.

Shoshy, a captain does not abandon his sinking ship, a pilot is the last one off the plane, the parent doesn't split for higher ground in the flood, the teacher doesn't ditches the students during an earthquake.... see Shoshy, a true leader leads. He does not abandon those that he leads.

Thankfully, some leaders are rabbis. Some of them climb stairs, some give solace. But those rabbis that left, short of being pre -historic skeletal living remains, they are not leaders. Rabbis, sure. But not leaders. And just because someone is a leader doesn't make him a hero.

DH,

I do not know the condition of the Blue Moon Hotel - sorry! Please take me up on calling me anytime.

Shmarya,

Thank you for the more cordial tone. I understand very well and while I like the argument technique that you use (it is clever) "You just made my case, Yankie – although I doubt you understand that" - you are wrong and wrong. Rabbi Feinstein helps people all the time - more than you will ever know or care to admit (like my clever argument technique?). It's all about roles and I am certain you and I can and do disagree (respectfully I hope) and see it differently.

I really hope to call this quits. It has been a very long week.

I hope what we can agree on is that we need real peace among us and real honestly in debate. I think you look to find error and it clouds your objectivity. I admitted more than you have - I haven't heard one admission from you. A question I ask for you to answer to yourself only: when is the last time you admitted to something?

Have a great night.

Yankie

Posted by: Yankie Goldman | November 04, 2012 at 09:30 PM

Perhaps you should read the updates to my post.

As for Dovid Feinstein, I had contact with his father years ago and remember him fondly. Dovid Feinstein isn't his father.

Shmarya - you're such a low, small-minded lout. The only way you'd be happy is if R' Dovid and every other haredi or black-hatted "rabbi" on the LES and in every other Sandy-stricken area died while struggling heroically to save others.

Yankie, stay safe.

It's nice that Willie Rapfogel even bothered to reply to this self-righteous blogger. While he's holed up in Minnesota raising funds for his blog, Jews in New York were busy collecting supplies, distributing food, cnadles, flashlights, blankets, and more. Rapfogel's mastery at fundraising and organizing makes this possible.

Shame, Shmarya. Huge shame. You didn't spend Shabbat on the Lower East Side, either.

Shmarya - you're such a low, small-minded lout. The only way you'd be happy is if R' Dovid and every other haredi or black-hatted "rabbi" on the LES and in every other Sandy-stricken area died while struggling heroically to save others.

Posted by: apikorus al ha'esh | November 04, 2012 at 09:41 PM

No.

My points – which I've stated clearly several times already – are that certain rabbis, perhaps the majority of rabbis, did not show much real concern for those left behind.

A few others did, and an even smaller number stayed and helped tremendously.

At the same time, some shut ins were missed. (Largely, it could be argued based on what I've learned later today, because their rabbis didn't pay much attention to their congregations during this storm.)

Shmarya,

Thank you for letting me know that there are updates to the original.

The comment about Rav "Dovid Feinstein isn't his father" is not needed, not part of the discussion and is provocative and just a sound-bite like Bentsen's "Senator, you are no Jack Kennedy" to Dan Quayle.

Let's leave on a more positive note, where we can both think about what the other said and see how we can incorporate and give value where exists.

Have a great night!

Yankie

It's nice that Willie Rapfogel even bothered to reply to this self-righteous blogger. While he's holed up in Minnesota raising funds for his blog, Jews in New York were busy collecting supplies, distributing food, cnadles, flashlights, blankets, and more. Rapfogel's mastery at fundraising and organizing makes this possible.

Shame, Shmarya. Huge shame. You didn't spend Shabbat on the Lower East Side, either.

Posted by: Sk | November 04, 2012 at 09:49 PM

Idiot.

I didn't LEAVE the LES and I didn't LEAVE my congregation and community behind – but many of your rabbis did.

As for my street cred, unlike you I've covered homelessness and poverty issues for years, including writing posts that explained why the Met Council didn't have certain needed services (the Federation wouldn't pay for them is the short answer).

That you in particular lack the mental balance and acuity to process what I've written isn't a surprise. You have the reputation of being a fool.

"Shmarya - you're such a low, small-minded lout."

"Shame, Shmarya. Huge shame."

"Idiot"

"you in particular lack the mental balance and acuity to process what I've written isn't a surprise."

Is any of this really necessary? What is this, the Jerry Springer Show?

I don't know if we expect better from some posters, but Shmarya, I ask you - please respond better than you do - you will have better creditability (although a little less entertaining - if one goes for the white-trash Springer garbage) as someone who really cares, well thought out...

Hopefully, I will be saying this for the last time tonight here - have a good night!

Yankie

Hey Yankie, what...are you on the Board of Directors here? Or perhaps you are a big donor. Yeah, probably a big donor.

I'm sure Shmarya will give your advice the consideration it deserves.

"This shows how they only want to be served and not serve others, in short lazy and selfish."
Janci,
What did you do???

…I don't know if we expect better from some posters, but Shmarya, I ask you - please respond better than you do - you will have better creditability (although a little less entertaining - if one goes for the white-trash Springer garbage) as someone who really cares, well thought out...

Hopefully, I will be saying this for the last time tonight here - have a good night!

Yankie

Posted by: Yankie Goldman | November 04, 2012 at 10:14 PM

Oh, please.

If you were honest, you'd have criticized the jerk who attacked me in that way.

Instead, you equate my response to that attack with the attack itself, kind of like some news outlets used to do when Israel responded to terror attacks.

So, lets recap.

Lots of your rabbis left the LES, some for medical reasons, some not, and many did nothing of merit to help those left behind.

You excuse this because, well, it isn't their "role" to help people.

And you're really, really concerned that I not respond to idiocy like that posted above with derision or scorn.

And the people missed by the frum relief effort?

We both agree that mistakes were made.

Rudy Giuliani would of handled this way better.You can bet that had he been mayor now there would of been plenty of gasoline and Manhattan would of had electricity much quicker then now.
Go ahead and stick up for shiester Bloomberg and insult anyone who criticize an out of touch mayor.

Posted by: Deremes | November 04, 2012 at 03:02 PM

Only a complete idiot like you could write that.

There is a gas shortage, moron, because the pumps needed to fill tanker trucks run on electricity. The same is true for the pumps that fill cars.

And there was (or still is) no electricity in many areas because of massive storm damage – damage so massive and so widespread that the US Department of Defense loaded utility repair trucks and workers from as far away as California on huge cargo planes and flew them to New York and new Jersey to help restore the power – which is the job of utility companies, not the mayor, little man. There is nothing the mayor can do other than ask the utility companies to try to work faster.

You are a colossal uneducated fool.

Just to test your journalistic ability which rabbis beside Rabbi Fienstien who is 80 yrs old and lives in zone A left the community? Rabbi Romm, Rabbi Ambrose, Rabbi Fishelis ,Rabbi Stone were all there helping ,which rabbis are you referring to that left the community without helping?I live here my whole life I do not know many more rabbis that live here


Yeah, that's probably for the best. You'll read things here that will challenge your implicit faith in the holy rabbonim who converted you.

Run along now and adjust your blinders.

Implicit faith? "Holy rabbonim" ...? Clearly you don't know me or my story, or anything about me, or you'd know that I'm not someone who wears blinders. I am, however, someone who believes that some things are implicitly "bad for the Jews," and this blog is one of them.

to add...
your "powerful" article has been "drowned" out due to its washed out misleading accusations
shamearya

Shmyarya,

"If you were honest, you'd have criticized the jerk who attacked me in that way."

I did. This is, however, your blog and you can control the decorum on this blog (to continue my analogy, Oprah would not allow any guest or audience member to make the show the "Jerry Springer Show" or call their guest a "jerk" or a "colossal uneducated fool".) You can delete or edit posts that violate set rules of decorum - you can control it fairly and properly.

"Instead, you equate my response to that attack with the attack itself, kind of like some news outlets used to do when Israel responded to terror attacks."

You called myself and / or Heshy Jacob a vulgar name when we were respectful. And, again, you have to control to delete and edit posts or ban users that violate stated policies (ie be respectful).

"We both agree that mistakes were made."

I agree everyone could have done better.

(I will not repeat my full position for the n-teenth time).

Have a great day.

Yankie

I am, however, someone who believes that some things are implicitly "bad for the Jews," and this blog is one of them.

Uh huh. You really have no clue.

Rabbi Yisroel Stone is a hero.

Rabbi Yisroel Stone inadvertently missed out on helping someone he supposedly knew - and let's say that Shmarya is right and Yisroel (he is an old friend of mine) did know this person, his condition, and where he lives, rather than just having met him once and knowing his name as is the case with many Chabad rabbis and locals who just turn up for an event or two. Let's even say that at the time of his need, this man somehow had a way of contacting Yisroel when phones and everything else were out.

No contradiction. No one except Shmarya is perfect. The best surgeons in the world cannot save every one of their patients. But Shmarya sits in his hovel, vomiting out his venom, and decides how others 1,000,000 times his value to society should have behaved.

Shmarya, you have truly proven yourself beyond contempt once again. You are the Solomon Dwek of yellow journalism. Yasher koiach.

Posted by: Yankie Goldman | November 05, 2012 at 06:26 AM

Please.

You pose an equivalence that is not there, and you excuse the bad actions (or non-actions) of all the rosh yeshiva, yeshiva rebbes, etc who left by claiming that caring for the community is not their "role."

Talk about civility all you want to.

Just remember to obligate all your rabbis and rebbes, and remember not to pose false equivalencies.

Now that shouldn't be too hard for a rssponsible man like you, now should it?

…No contradiction. No one except Shmarya is perfect. The best surgeons in the world cannot save every one of their patients. But Shmarya sits in his hovel, vomiting out his venom, and decides how others 1,000,000 times his value to society should have behaved.

Shmarya, you have truly proven yourself beyond contempt once again. You are the Solomon Dwek of yellow journalism. Yasher koiach.

Posted by: The Anti-Schmerl | November 05, 2012 at 07:02 AM

Please.

You're a disgusting piece of crap with a long documented track record of protecting haredi criminals, child molesters and assorted other scum who happen to be your friends, neighbors or rabbis.

Again, for you and those of your fellow travelers who are similarly brain addled, people were missed who needed help, and admittedly, the rosh yeshivas, yeshiva rebbes and other haredi elite left the LES for whatever reasons and did not play a significant role (or any role) in helping those left behind. Those are the facts.

I never blamed Stone or Romm for anything – in fact, I praised them for staying.

But defective pieces of sludge like you don't care about the facts or about who gets or got hurt.

You care about protecting your friends (even if they rape children – as you've proved) and attacking anyone who dares expose those crimes.

And therefore someone who has exposed those crimes and who refuses to go away is a target to be spat on and attack no matter what he or she does or writes.

And that's the case here.

Now waddle off.

I will ask you once again,and I know you have no problem naming names which so called Rabbis left the community without helping .You have no basis for your article and unlike yankie goldman says that mistakes were made and we could have done better I totally disagree we were out there 24/7 doing all we can .If you are so concerned for your fellow person did you even lift one finger to help any community no matter the race or religion.

Posted by: s | November 05, 2012 at 09:25 AM

Ooooh! I tremble with fear at your penetrating question!

Do try to process: The LES has many more rabbis than the small handful you mention and you know it.

You also know that many of those other rabbis left.

But you play a moronic game, hoping that I won't know all or most of their names, and therefore your side – the rabbis – will look good.

It's like someone reporting that all but three of a dozen or two Buddhist monks fled a disaster, and then having a rocket scientist like you demand that the reporter name each monk who fled because, in the rocket scientist's tiny mind, if the reporter can't name a monk, well, then that monk doesn't really exist.

S (not Shmarya),

I agree with you with one exception...

no-one is perfect.

"unlike yankie goldman says that mistakes were made and we could have done better"

I said we can all do better - said some people were missed (some did not answer doors, maybe someone forgot a person that may need help), , we could have had one master lists of all seniors in the 4,500 unitl - but a tremendous job was done

Mistakes made? Sure - we all make mistakes everyday - our response was tremendous but not perfect.

I know you are not fighting with me, but I do disagree with your full statement.

By the way, put you full name out there - I did.

Yankie Goldman

PS 2nd exception to what you said: how do you know what someone else (ie Shmarya) did to help someone else?

You're a disgusting piece of crap with a long documented track record of protecting haredi criminals, child molesters and assorted other scum who happen to be your friends, neighbors or rabbis.
--
Anyone who knows me well knows that I do not even support the efforts to "free" Rubashkin, let alone helping or coddling any other haredi crooks and child molesters.

Those who know me the best know that I literally regret not dealing "the old-fashioned way" with two men I later found out were molesters back when I had the chance but only knew that they were "off" and "gave me the creeps." (Sadly, that number just went up to three - they're all in the legal system.)

However, I am realistic and recognize that nowhere does it say a haredi lifestyle will prevent criminality. If it did, half the Gemara and plenty of the Torah would not be necessary.

That is why I can accept that a man like Yisroel Stone, who tomorrow can choose to be part of a very successful business and instead devotes his life to helping Yidden begashmius uberuchnius, can make a mistake and miss one person whom he happens to know. That mistake does not detract from his work one bit - because he never claimed to be as perfect as Shmarya. What galls me is that someone of Shmarya's ilk has the nerve to point that out in public when Yisroel is probably quite easy to reach (assuming phones work in NYC as they do in other affected places where I have family and friends). If he really cared, he could have called Yisroel and said that person X needs his help. Yisroel would probably be happy to hear he can help one more person in need.(Just maybe this person X, if he exists, is a freeloader or someone who wants so much attention that it would take away from efforts to help others).

Shmarya, I wish you a long life so that you can continue to serve as a perfect and very entertaining example of someone who cannot even help himself and therefore denigrates those who help others.

Scott
You are an ass, a very obnoxious one.A very self righteous "know it all" prick.

Scott
You are an ass, a very obnoxious one.A very self righteous "know it all" prick.

Posted by: James | November 05, 2012 at 12:24 PM

Please.

Some disabled and elderly people were missed. Some rabbis did leave the LES and most of them didn't do much of anything to try to see that people got help.

Other rabbis stayed and a few of those – Stone and Romm, for example – did a lot to help people.

All of these are facts.

That you dislike those facts really isn't my problem.

"Some rabbis did leave the LES and most of them didn't do much of anything to try to see that people got help"

And these Rabbis names are?!

…What galls me is that someone of Shmarya's ilk has the nerve to point that out in public when Yisroel is probably quite easy to reach (assuming phones work in NYC as they do in other affected places where I have family and friends). If he really cared, he could have called Yisroel and said that person X needs his help. Yisroel would probably be happy to hear he can help one more person in need.(Just maybe this person X, if he exists, is a freeloader or someone who wants so much attention that it would take away from efforts to help others).

Posted by: The Anti-Schmerl | November 05, 2012 at 11:03 AM

If I had found out while they still needed help, I would have contacted Romm and Stone and told them.

Unfortunately, I only found out after the fact.

But you have to be a truly sick individual to object to people knowing that some people who needed help were skipped.

Shmaray,

So what are the Rabbis names that ran away?!

OK, here's what some people are missing when they say "People could have gone here for help" or "Food was being given out there". Some people are unable to leave their homes, or. even their beds.


There was advance notice of Sandy. Would it really have been so difficult for congregations to make lists of the most vulnerable members of their community? If someone is stuck in their bed with no power, no food or potable water, without a working phone, then they need help. Proponents of Tevyeism are always banging on about community, the klal, of amazing support systems in the shtetl.


Being trapped like that is terrifying. Imagine you depend on equipment like hoists or powerchairs that rely on electricity, and without them you're literally stuck in one spot. No way to get to the toilet, to prepare food, or to get help. Just sitting, waiting in the dark, wondering if anyone will ever come by.

Disabled and elderly people who've given to their communities in spades throughout their lives, have been abandoned by that self-same community, right when they needed them most.


If your job is to lead a community of your congregants, people who literally pay your wages, then it is your duty to ensure that your entire flock is as safe as they can be in times of crisis. Find out who has left the area, who's staying locally, and who is available to help in an. emergency.

Nobody's saying that elderly rabbonim should do all of the heavy physical work, just that they ensure that someone does it. Delegate, organise, just try to make sure that some effort is made to safeguard those who need it most.

Shamarya. Why do you care so much! Is this what you do every day, trying to pick on rabbis who you have no idea about?! Do something else that's something not based on lashon hara!! Your wasting your time thinking you know it all. I was there and that's not what happened. So first get your facts straight from each rabbi themselves and then go on yapping your filthy comments.!

More about the neighborly acts of Orthodox Jews on the LES during Hurricane Sandy:

http://nymag.com/news/features/hurricane-sandy-shut-in-2012-11/

Getting back to the issue of all these so-called haredi rabbis who abandoned their flock:

There is no centralized Orthodox leadership nor database of all the elderly people in the neighborhood. There are many small shuls, some of which barely scrape together a minyan. Shul membership is loose and fluid; some people are members of multiple shuls; some never pay dues anywhere; some shuls have no rabbi. The neighborhood is "full of rabbis" in the sense that there are a lot of frum Jews and many of them have smicha. There are very few of what you would call classic pulpit rabbis or leaders of congregations. That's the way the community is structured. MTJ is not BMG. The yeshiva itself is quite small and even if Rabbi Feinstein carried a list of all the yeshiva's students and everyone who davens there on Shabbos the vast majority of the LES Orthodox community would not be on it.

The largest synagogue is Bialystoker and its rabbi, Rabbi Romm, stayed. Even he doesn't have a list of all the seniors in the community.

".If you are so concerned for your fellow person did you even lift one finger to help any community no matter the race or religion."

Actually Shmarya helped me by encouraging emails that the worst would soon be over. Sometimes when one is in a stressful situation, an outsider can bring levity to the situation. In the middle of the night when we were freezing, Shmarya kept writing to me. I truly appreciate his updates on this website even though they were difficult to read on a small screen phone with low power.

But you have to be a truly sick individual to object to people knowing that some people who needed help were skipped.
--
I am HUMAN. I automatically assume that any person or organization that tries to help in any way does not always succeed 100 percent, and that someone always falls through the cracks in any system. I am sure that you can dredge up a story about someone disappointed with anyone who is known to help others.

That is why it is not newsworthy when someone claims Yisroel Stone did not reach him while reaching hundreds of others. It is as newsworthy as the postal system where I live losing one important letter of mine when they got plenty of valuable packages to me in record time.

Posted by: The Anti-Schmerl | November 06, 2012 at 12:37 PM

You're truly a dolt.

In your tiny twisted pathetic mind, no one should report the failures because there were so many successes.

That the next time there could be more failures if the failures aren't reported, or that there should be any honest public assessment of how things were handled is completely beyond your ability to grasp.

Let me throw this question out there....
The halls are pitch black dark...
No elevators
terrible phone service
If I was to knock on your door would you open it up during a black out?
It could possibly be a looter-
You might have gone to a shelter-
You might have gone to a relative-
Tell me people, should we stand at the door and wait? Should we kick it down because an elderly might by chance still be there?

Rabbis do not help people, people help people

LOL. That one failure will happen next time and in any situation because only the great Shmarya is perfect. (And that is assuming the hearsay is reliable, and that this person is not just a local crank who never even needed help or who would have taken so much in terms of resources that ten people would have suffered on his account.) The rest of us know that even 70% in a miserable situation like that is a great showing.

Only those who PARTICIPATED have the right to assess the situation. Armchair wannabes like you, Shmarya, should just shut up and know their place. When your time comes, believe me, it will be a ness that whoever you spat on for no good reason comes to help you anyway.

You're a sick little man.

Since people in power rarely asses their failings unless forced to do so, people who report on those failings serve a valid purpose.

Without us, there is little chance that assessment will ever be made.

And process this, asshole.

Your friend overlooked, forgot about or intentionally ignored some people he otherwise knew about.

I'm inclined to think that he accidentally overlooked them in the rush of the disaster.

But the more I read the deranged garbage you post, the more I'm tempted to think that he's like you, and that whatever happened needs to be more fully exposed.

Shmarya,

You know I love you but the attack on Rabbi Stone is not called for. I know that he personally walked up 10 flights of stairs to deliver food to elderly friends. Did he miss somoene? Maybe he did. Was it intentional? No. The man would give you the shirt off your back if you needed something to wear. His theology may be questionable but not his Ahvas Yisroel.

While no worshiper of Reb Dovid he is an elderly man (great grandather) and his wife has some health issues as well so you have to be a mentsch and cut him a little slack.

Rabbi Romm stayed all of Shabbos. Not sure about the Rabbi of the YI but he is no spring chicken and is a great grandfather as well.

People did their best hear given the circumstances. It was chaos no doubt about this but taking pot shots at people who tried to help is not fair.

Again, if I hadn't done this post, no one would know people were missed. No one would know that some of these rabbis behaved in less than optimal ways.

You can't wish away the truth, and you can't wipe away the bad behavior of some of the rabbis with alibis and a wave of your hand.

If you go back and read the comments, you'll see two things that I've written:

1. That Romm and Stone helped a lot of people.

2. That some people were missed who Stone and other rabbis knew personally.

Both of these points are FACTS.

But you and other friends of Stone or some other rabbi want me to write about point one and completely ignore point 2.

I won't do that.

Shmarya, you're full of more crap than our overflowing toilets were.

Yeah, if it wasn't for you, no one would know that a Rabbi in his 80s under mandatory evacuation orders wasn't climbing flights of stairs to deliver food packages. And the Rabbi who was? Well he's evil too based on the anonymous sources you made up.

If it wasn't for you, then no one would know that a volunteer Rabbi originally from outside the neighborhood in a place where thousands of elderly people, many of them unknown to anyone, live missed some people in a blackout.

And what were you doing at the time, when you could have been going up 20 flights of stairs to deliver food packages, like the Devil Rabbis were?

You were looking for your latest Evil Jew story of the day to meet your quota so you can get your share of pageviews from your Neo Nazi readers.

You're not "exposing" any facts or failings. Like every bigot out there, you're looking for more "Black people steal stuff" or "Latinos are lazy" stories because that's what your audience wants.

If you actually cared about those people, you would have helped them. Instead all you do is spread hate and then act self-righteous about it.

You're not fighting "powerful interests".

All you are is a hatefilled goblin stomping away at the keys and looking for someone else to smear. The worst fate in life that I could imagine would be being condemned to be you.

Fight on brave keyboard warrior.

Hi Kommissar Karpa. Can you read these words: "See Spot Run"? I was wondering because
1. It has been established that Rabbis, no matter what age, infirmity, may be able to provide more to people in need than food delivery. Maybe that's not your experience.

2. Since the veracity of the FM reports are not in issue, and people were missed, no one would know if it wasn't posted here. Now known, hopefully, they were found and won't be missed again.

3. It has also been established as to what he was doing the hurricane. He was on the telephone all night with people who were contacting him, not you, not their rabbis, not FEMA, for help and comfort.

4. I'm a Neo Nazi? Who knew!

5. "Exposing...facts or failings" is exactly what you are upset about. This is not a resource for Latinos or African Americans. FM displayed important information before, during and after the hurricane as well as fielding communications from readers in need and readers who wanted to help those in harm's way.

6. FM put aside "powerful interests" in favor of hurricane issues. But hang in there, or here, he'll pump it up just for you.

7. Sheeesh, you're anti-goblin too? You don't like those mischievous guys because they annoy little creatures... like, dare I say, you.

8. Fundamentally, Colonel Klink, it is precisely because of little creatures like you who couldn't imagine living in the light of day, that FM is the resource to turn to. If you could imagine being like FM then FM wouldn't have been needed at first and integral at present.

After reading all the comments about the neglect of the poor/elderly, of the LES, It's now clear that Rapfogel was busy looting the charity rather than helping those in need.

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