"We can empathize with Holocaust survivors who lose faith in G-d and in people, so why are abuse victims who are no longer observant or trusting of “Daat Torah” labeled as “traitors” with “an agenda?” If there is an anti-religious agenda present in reporting molestation to authorities and bloggers, it would be best confronted by demonstrating to the victims that our community leaders are worth their trust. Molestation cannot be treated internally. The tools are not there. It must be confronted in partnership with legal authorities, mental health professionals and advocacy groups"
Editorial: All voices must be heard
The Jewish Star
What began as an exercise in exclusion ended on a positive note, with Ami Magazine editor Rabbi Yitzchok Frankfurter making a promise on the Zev Brenner Show, to meet with abuse survivors and advocates, giving much-needed self-examination to a topic that should have been addressed much sooner.
But would Rabbi Frankfurter meet only those survivors who share his point of view, such as a Pinny Taub, or a much larger pool? Would he meet with Ben Hirsch of Survivors for Justice? Would he meet with members of Footsteps, an organization geared to formerly haredi individuals, which includes members who left the fold because of abuse cover-ups?
Rabbi Frankfurter’s promise has a caveat. He would not meet with those individuals who, in his view, have an anti-haredi viewpoint, and seek to “besmirch” the community.
On the radio show, he argued that Dr. Michael Salomon is not haredi, and should be focusing on his own community. Aside from the fact that both of them are Orthodox, Dr. Salomon’s extensive experience with secular, modern Orthodox and haredi clients indicates a stronger sense of perspective. For survivors of abuse like Taub, who remain religiously observant, much credit is given; but for those who leave the faith, understanding is needed.
We can empathize with holocaust survivors who lose faith in G-d and in people, so why are abuse victims who are no longer observant or trusting of “Daat Torah” labeled as “traitors” with “an agenda?”
If there is an anti-religious agenda present in reporting molestation to authorities and bloggers, it would be best confronted by demonstrating to the victims that our community leaders are worth their trust. Molestation cannot be treated internally. The tools are not there. It must be confronted in partnership with legal authorities, mental health professionals and advocacy groups.
Here's a small part of what Rabbi Frankfurter believes:
“…This issue has been used against us by self-hating Jews.”…
“No one would dare indict the Catholic community for the sins of its church hierarchy or individual priests,” he said, “but tarring the entire Orthodox Jewish world seems not to violate the standards of political correctness.”…
Rabbi Frankfurter called Pinny Taub his hero for sticking by the haredi community. “You can become prejudicial against your own kind if you are molested. There are those who are using the abuse issue to bring down the community, but my policy is that my enemy’s enemy is not my friend.”…
As an alternative to outside reporting, Rabbi Frankfurter made an on-air promise to meet with advocates and survivors of abuse, but he added that those with “an agenda” would not be considered.
Read the post immediately below this and you'll see why Frankfurter loves Pinny Taub, and you'll also see why Pinny Taub is a fool.
And Frankfurter is, of course, dishonest.
Advocates and survivors have long condemned the Church for its coverups of child sex abuse, and they have also criticized the rank and file Catholics who continued to blindly support the Church even as its years of coverups were made public.
In fact, pundits, editorialists, and ethicists have done the same.
People who are shown evidence of child sex abuse but who choose to support the abusers and their enablers are morally guilty and they should be criticized.
Since the number of haredim who are not abuse survivors or members of their families who have publicly protested abuse coverups can be counted on the fingers of one or two hands, it's safe to say that the vast majority of haredim either actively support the rabbis who lead these coverups or they passively do so.
To violate Godwin's Law in the almost surely vain hope that this concept will be easier for the Frankfurters of the world to understand, the Germans who stood silently by while Jews were stripped of their rights, interred and murdered bear a moral responsibility for those deaths.
In fact, that's the explanation used by rabbis to justify the actions of Shimon and Levi when they slaughtered the entire population of the city of Shechem – the Shechemites did not protest the rape of Dinah, so they became morally culpable for that crime. Therefore the slaughter was justified.
The halakhic concept is shtika k'hoda'ah, silence equals acquiescence.
You either protest injustice or you own it.
It's true that someone who faces the likelihood of torture or death if he speaks out against a crime has a strong mitigating factor in his favor if he remains silent.
But haredim don't have that.
Frankfurter and Company seem to think shtika k'hoda'ah applies to non-Jews whose leaders hurt Jews but not to haredim whose leaders hurt haredi children, and they don't even seem to notice what they're doing.