As many of you know, FailedMessiah has broken many major stories, from the Rubashkin family's shenanigans to Rabbi Leib Tropper's extortion and sex scandal, along with important parts of the New Square arson/attempted murder story and child sex abuse reporting, to name a few. (You can see links to some of these stories on the far right sidebar of this page. I haven't seriously updated that list in a long time; if I had, it would be at least twice as long.)
FailedMessiah has made a difference.
Very few blogs are read by Jewish leaders – haredi leaders and Modern Orthodox leaders and Federation leaders and Members of Knesset. But judging from the emails and calls I get, FailedMessiah is.
They read what I write – and they read what youwrite here, as well.
It influences them and, sometimes, it moves them toward positive change.
In order to make this blog possible, in order to keep making a difference, I need your help.
You may not realize that every story I personally report takes a lot of time and effort.
Some of these stories you see posted here.
Most you do not.
Because the leads I was given turned out to false or impossible to confirm or, sometimes, because victims of child sex abuse promise to go on the record using their real names, but then back out at last minute due to pressure from spouses or from other family members.
All of this takes much more time and effort than you probably realize.
One the questions I get regularly from journalists is, How do I do it? How do I handle a workload that is, in their minds, insanely heavy?
A reporter for a large Midwestern paper told me he spent time trying figure out how much time I spent each day running FailedMessiah. He came up with 12 hours per day, 5 to 6 days per week.
He was close.
The real answer is 12 hours per day, 6 days per week, with Fridays and Sundays being a little lighter, and Monday through Thursday often heavier.
During the first 8 months after the Agriprocessors raid, I regularly pulled 16 hour days. During the time that Agriprocessors workers were left hungry and out in the cold, as heat and electricity was being shut off to their houses, as some were being evicted, and as Postville's small food shelf was being overwhelmed, the days were even longer.
Some of you may remember that Jeff Abbas, who ran Postville's radio station, opened a small soup kitchen during that time and fed hundreds of destitute Agriprocessors workers. He was also deeply involved in arranging transportation for these poor people if they wanted to go back to their homes in Indianapolis or Texas – or even Palau.
What you don't know is that I helped him in any way I could during that time. We played good cop/bad cop with the State of Iowa, which led to heating assistance for everyone in Postville who needed it – including many members of Postville's Jewish community – along with other help for Postville.
We spoke every day, except Shabbat and Yom Tov, for months at 5:30 am, and then through the day as necessary. (We even spoke once on Shabbat when the Jewish community was, supposedly, out of food.)
My point in telling you this is to show you that what I do through this blog is much more involved and extensive than you probably think.
It takes a lot of time and a lot of effort – even when there isn't a crisis like Postville.
And to keep doing it, I need your help.
Whatever you give will be appreciated.
Please give now, and please give generously.
Thank you for reading and for your generous support.