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Brooklyn, NY - ‘Shame,’ And Community Not Ready to Listen Led to Dr. Twerski's Resignation. Hikind: "I Will Not Stop”

Published on: September 17, 2008 09:08 AM
By: The Jewish Star By Michael Orbach
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Benzion Twerski, Ph.D., graduated with a Ph.D. in psychology from University of Pittsburgh in 1985. He studied in Yeshivos in Scranton, PA, Baltimore, and Jerusalem. He has been one of the leading professionals in youth-at-risk and addictions in the Jewish community.Benzion Twerski, Ph.D., graduated with a Ph.D. in psychology from University of Pittsburgh in 1985. He studied in Yeshivos in Scranton, PA, Baltimore, and Jerusalem. He has been one of the leading professionals in youth-at-risk and addictions in the Jewish community.

Brooklyn, NY - New York State Assemblyman Dov Hikind pledges to press on with an effort to end child sexual abuse in the Orthodox community despite the sudden resignation of the leader of his newly formed task force.

“If you have a conscience, how can you not address this?” Hikind told The Jewish Star after Rabbi Benzion Twerski, a clinical psychologist, announced his resignation on Sept. 10, less than a week after Hikind tapped him to lead the task force. “I am committed to those in pain. I will not stop.”

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In an hour-long interview, Rabbi Twerski stated that he resigned because he felt that his adult children were being pressured from within their Chasidic community over his public dealings with the issue of sexual abuse. He said his children asked him to resign.

“You have to be moser nefesh, not someone else’s nefesh,” Rabbi Twerski said. “I don’t have it at my discretion to force my children to live in shame.”

Rabbi Twerski clarified that he had not been threatened, as reported in The Jewish Week.

“If anyone made any threats that involved my safety, I didn’t hear a word of them,” he said. “I felt threatened and my feeling of threat is based solely on my family living what they feel is a life of shame.”

He said that he spoke to The Jewish Week via a series of brief e-mails and stressed he used the word prosecuted, not persecuted.

“I was judged,” he said. “I always felt safe to walk the streets.”

An email from Rabbi Twerski quoted in The Jewish Week reads, “to protect myself, my family, and my reputation, I decided to withdraw from the project.”

Rabbi Twerski voiced concern to a reporter about the public nature that Assemblyman Hikind’s crusade has taken, which may have been a factor in his resignation.

“Maybe we’ve misjudged what the community is ready to listen to. There may have been some expectations that the community is ready and it’s just not ready yet. It’s not because we’re trying to protect molesters. I think it has a lot more to do with the fact that we’re dealing with a sensitive issue and you need to discuss it in a way that’s sensitive,” Rabbi Twerski said.

Another therapist, who requested anonymity, said that he had received threats because of his activities concerning child abuse in the Orthodox community. He is Orthodox, lives and works in the Five Towns and treats patients across the spectrum from Charedi to Modern Orthodox. His children were threatened, he said, with not being accepted into yeshivot or for shidduchim, and he was threatened with financial ruin.

“There is this situation where there is this virtue police trying to dampen down reality and say it doesn’t exist,” the man told The Jewish Star.

Reformers in the Orthodox community so far have faced an uphill battle.

“There is a problem in our community in which people who try to address issues that the community has swept under the carpet are intimidated by a sensibility … that anyone who tries to change the status quo is a threat,” said Dr. Asher Lipner, a psychologist who works in the frum community.

The mission of the new taskforce is to collect information concerning suspected child molesters and to make that information available to schools. The taskforce also intended to develop a protocol to deal with sexual abuse in the Orthodox community. In Rabbi Twerski’s words, the mission was to develop a policy “sensitive to secular law [and] to Shulchan Aruch,” that could be presented to the rabbinical leadership.

Hikind said that Rabbi Twerski would be replaced.

According to Hikind, a sexual abuse hotline he set up has been inundated with callers telling stories of abuse inside the Orthodox community –– perpetrated, the callers say, by rabbis, teachers and community members. His office has also met with accused pedophiles, since most victims in the Brooklyn community are afraid to press charges for fear of social stigma.

“If you’re a child molester, the best community to come to is Borough Park, Flatbush, Lakewood or Monroe. Your chances of being arrested are much smaller because people don’t press charges,” Hikind said. “Even if a rabbi gets kicked out of a yeshiva for doing things, he goes to another yeshiva. No one does anything about it.”

While he would not name names or reveal other details, Hikind says some of the cases his office is dealing with have come from the Five Towns and Far Rockaway. He also said he met with a number of Long Island-based therapists to discuss the issue.

Some therapists told The Jewish Star that there are some distinctions between the cases occurring in the Five Towns and ones in Brooklyn.

“In terms of my own practice, a lot of the cases in Brooklyn center around teacher/rebbe student abuse,” said Gavriel Fagin. He is a forensic social worker and adjunct professor at Yeshiva University’s Wurzweiler School of Social Work, who lives in Woodmere but maintains a practice in Brooklyn.

“The situations that I’ve been involved in the Five Towns, by and large, have been with older community members with younger community members. That could be a 17-year-old with a 9-year-old; a 25-year-old with an 1-year-old. But it has not been a teacher-student interaction,” Fagin said.

Norman Blumenthal, a psychologist affiliated with Chai Lifeline and North Shore-Long Island Jewish Medical Center, declined to comment on specific cases, but said: “I think we have to sit down with rabbis and educators and work this issue into the curriculum. We have to teach children to protect themselves. The corollary to that is that we also need to teach our children how to deal with their sexual urges and how to address them because we’re not really addressing that. We need to start talking to them about a Torah perspective on sexual urges and expressions.”

Hikind is confident that once the taskforce’s work is presented to rabbinical leaders, they will act.

“I’m not saying we’re going to solve the problem, we’re going to make a difference,” Hikind said. “When you get one pedophile off the street, do you know how many children you save?”


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1

 Sep 17, 2008 at 09:17 AM Anonymous Says:

Dov, we NEED people like you, warriors that will take on any pressing issue!!! May Ha-Shem guide you and assist you in all your endeavors and may you suffer NO consequences from dealing with the molestation issue. People need to wake up, and see how widespread this problem is. And I believe it is time to start naming the molestors, so we know who to be aware of, for every one we know about, there are 100 we do not know about.

2

 Sep 17, 2008 at 09:23 AM Chaim S. Says:

Dov I said this in this blog when you announced your task force and I wrote to your State website and I'll say it again. May Hashem give you the strength to go on with this project. Rabbi Dr. Twerski was an absolute perfect person to head your project. It's too bad that our community and the leaders don't agree. The Rabbonim who's heads are usually hid in the sand, take their heads out long enough to scream and then shove them right back into the sand. Our community must have a very huge carpet to sweep issues like this under it.

3

 Sep 17, 2008 at 09:22 AM McCain-Palin 08 Says:

Thank you Dov for making this happen don't be discouraged cause of a few who wont do the right thing.

4

 Sep 17, 2008 at 09:27 AM political analyst Says:

dov- chazak v'ematz.
the torah teaches us when jews go to war- to not be afraid- & if someone is afraid he can not go to war- take the torah's que- have no fear but for the one above.

5

 Sep 17, 2008 at 09:37 AM Anonymous sara Says:

pinchus he took things on his own
but it has be don leshem shomeim
only

6

 Sep 17, 2008 at 09:43 AM Anonymous Says:

Go UOJ Go

7

 Sep 17, 2008 at 09:44 AM formerly known as yodea sefer Says:

It is interesting to note that "Hikind is confident that ONCE the taskforces work is presented to rabbinical leaders, they will act". I wonder why he wouldn't present the plans to them FIRST!?! if he is so confident.

8

 Sep 17, 2008 at 10:08 AM future101 Says:

"Hikind is confident that once the taskforce’s work is presented to rabbinical leaders, they will act" I agree rabbinical leaders should be consulted from the beginning to the end and if they give an okay to make a task force so be it. Dov you will never be successful without guidance from torah authorities. "Hashem" and his people are bigger then you in every way, so before you destroy yourself do the right thing talk to the gedoli hador "Hashem does not take it lightly when you play around hurting families for generations to come.

9

 Sep 17, 2008 at 10:23 AM Anonymous Says:

Does Rabbi Dr. Twerski seriously think that his children won't be able to marry because of anonymous threats?

The only thing that would convince ME to forbid my children to marry his, is his refusal to deal with this. Chos v'sholom, let his own children be molested this time. Not mine.

10

 Sep 17, 2008 at 10:21 AM eli Says:

Dov is an oppurtunist a rabble rouser and that's it he's done nothing for the last 10 to 20 years with child abuse and molestation he is all talk and just like senator schumer he loves the camera that's it.
more was being done by real people behind the scenes than dov's public crusade and ratings for his radio show.we need more people that actualy deal with issues not politicians who look to profit from a crisis by pretending to be the ones taking on the issues its always the ones that scream write and talk about it that do the least to help out the problem.

11

 Sep 17, 2008 at 10:43 AM Anonymous Says:

Anon 10:23. He isnt obligated to deal with it any more than you are. Why should his kids be molested because he isn't involved? Should yours be because you aren't doing anything?

12

 Sep 17, 2008 at 10:42 AM rockaway Says:

has fagin taken his cases to the police

13

 Sep 17, 2008 at 10:36 AM Anonymous Says:

Norman Blumenthal, a psychologist affiliated with Chai Lifeline and North Shore-Long Island Jewish Medical Center, declined to comment on specific cases, but said: “I think we have to sit down with rabbis and educators and work this issue into the curriculum. We have to teach children to protect themselves. The corollary to that is that we also need to teach our children how to deal with their sexual urges and how to address them because we’re not really addressing that. We need to start talking to them about a Torah perspective on sexual urges and expressions.”

------------------------------------------
Dr. Blumenthal;

How about this for a thought, you should Interview all our Rebbis and Teachers to find out there Sexual Urges... Before they take a Job in our Schools.....

14

 Sep 17, 2008 at 11:06 AM Anon. Says:

To all the negative commenters on Hikind,
Why do you think he has to ask the Rabbonim before he creates a Task force? Actually it should have been the Rabbonim who should be making a Task force. They have not stepped up to the plate for all these years, now a politician has to. If he is planning to present the recommendations to the Rabbonim afterwards, what more do you want? I know - you don't like him because he doesn't have a long beard and payos.
Don't worry I'm sure the Rabbonim will put in their two cents on how they want the takonah to read after it is presented to them.

15

 Sep 17, 2008 at 11:03 AM Anonymous Says:

Hikinds logo; "MAY I HAVE YOUR ATTENTION, PLEASE"!!

16

 Sep 17, 2008 at 11:00 AM Anonymous Says:

Anon 10:43. We are ALL obligated to deal with this. Short of spending every minute of every day, personally escorting our children everywhere, we are not doing enough. There are several things we can do -- notify our rabbeim and the police, give tzedakah to groups that investigate and combat crimes against our children.

As long as Rabbi Dr. Twerski sends his children and grandchildren to frum schools, they are in as much danger as the rest of our children of being molested.

If I had the zechus to have talents such as his, I would be honored to serve in such a position. As I do not, I'll keep supporting and davening for Assemblyman Hikind, and speaking to my friends and community about how important it is to watch out for evil predators attacking OUR children.

17

 Sep 17, 2008 at 11:19 AM Enoughof theBS Says:

To all those that disagree with Dov, you remind me of a joke: What is a conservative? A liberal whose wife was raped. Until it is one or your kids that are molested, you will keep screaming "daas torah". When will you realize that the "gedolim" don't give a damn about this? That low life, Lipa Margolis, did the same thing: Every time a kid complained that Kolko touched him, Lipa would slap the kid and then threaten the parents that they would never make shidduchim for their kids. And people still respect that low life.

18

 Sep 17, 2008 at 11:38 AM Esther Says:

Nuchem Rosenberg just vanished? Where is he? Nuchem come back. Do it leshem shomayim dont be affraid

19

 Sep 17, 2008 at 11:37 AM anonymous Says:

Is R. Twersky being pressured by fake concert ban rabbis who listen to liars in the community? It is time to ban the rabbis. They are trouble makers and have caused much harm. Enough is enough!

20

 Sep 17, 2008 at 11:36 AM frumsatire.net Says:

Who cares what Hikinds intentions are- even if they are for publicity. I would rather have publicity then a bunch of Rabbi Kolkos touching our little boys.

21

 Sep 17, 2008 at 11:40 AM Shloimy Says:

Dov, I give you so much credit for this.

PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, continue to ignore all of those trying to protect the molestors (including some that comment on this site), and help save these precious yiddishe neshomolach against evil abusers.

The ones against you are trying to protect molestors. They are using straw men like "avoiding mesirah" and "preventing busha", but really just want to see the molestors go without restraints. Better that children should be ch'v permanently harmed, I suppose.

I am sure that the majority of the heimishe velt is (at least silently) behind you. Yasher koiach!

22

 Sep 17, 2008 at 11:27 AM r u serious Says:

The best replacement is dr david pelcovitz

23

 Sep 17, 2008 at 11:26 AM joseph Says:

why does everything need to put before the rabbanim
where were these rabbanim all these years ?
covering for these perverts lest their children not be able to make shiduchim

the staus quo cannot go on any longer
there must be full education on this subject
for all those old fashioned and head in the sand parents and rabbonim
please understand that todays children know more about sex etc thatn you can possibly dream off
this is not europe or the dark ages wake up and stop being busy with gold shoes and housecoats for the cleaning ladies and separate buses and hatzolh for men and women
enough with the nonsense and get to work on the serious issues of the day and if you are not qualified to handle this as a rov(and not all are ) leave it to the professionals dont be embarresed to say "i dont know"

24

 Sep 17, 2008 at 11:52 AM yeruchem Says:

To anon. 10:23

R' Twersky made himself quite clear. He has no right to be moser nefesh on behalf of his children - whether he agrees with their decision or not.

25

 Sep 17, 2008 at 12:06 PM MARK Says:

DOV HIKIND DO NOT STOP FIGHTING MAPPEL

26

 Sep 17, 2008 at 12:06 PM Eli Reich Says:

P.S.
I wonder how many of you would post such rediculous comments if you could not hide behind
pseudonyms and "anonymous." Have the courage to stand behind your convictions and identigfy yourself!

27

 Sep 17, 2008 at 12:03 PM Anonymous Says:

who are you fooling the rabbanim and dayanim ???wake up they will do nothing i repeat nothing until it crimps them personally ,and since some of the rabbis themselves are guilty they are useless

28

 Sep 17, 2008 at 12:03 PM Eli Reich Says:

In regard to Dov Hikind's efforts to combat molestation, Future 101 wrote that he should have asked the Rabbonim if this is ok, because "Hashem does not take it lightly when you play around hurting families for generations to come."

Mr. Future, are you joking?! First of all, Dov Hikind is an elected official and does not require permission from the rabbonim to enact measures designed to protect his consituency. In fact, we are tought "Denah Demalchusa Denah." Since. as an elected official in America, Dov is a member of the "denah Demalchusa" it would seem to me that the Rabbis are hallachically required to listen to his ruling! Furthermore, I would think that your comment "Hashem does not take it lightly when you play around hurting families for generations to come" would be aimed at those who are attempting to sweep the issue of domestic violence, agunos, and molestation in our community under the rug. It is these people who are enabling the children of today's generation to be harmed and turned off to religion. In doing so, it is these individuals who are playing around and hurting families. This includes those who would threaten the families of a Rabbi who is trying to help address this issue.

29

 Sep 17, 2008 at 12:02 PM Rivky Says:

Everyone

Anyone with information please contatc Dov's office. My freind told me that they were very understanding when she told her story and are working to help her and to get the molester off the street away from children. His number is 7818.853.9616

Dov Thank you so much! This is the first time my freind is getting help

30

 Sep 17, 2008 at 12:28 PM Anonymous Says:

Dov go Dov you have the support of the community and every normal person and to those who are busy with asking the rabbinim you are full of baloney you just want to hide and protect the molesters behind a mask of rabbnim let me ask you when you see a thief breaking in to your house will you call the rabbinm first to ask das torah you fool what you are or you will call police theese molester are killing our kids you need protection what the heck has this to do with rabbanim its all a sham and Dov you will be the hero at the end of the game just organize and make sure to send out a news letter with all the stories mail this news letter to every household and let the parents read the what suffering families go true when god forbid their children are molested and how scary it is that on your block not the other block you will surprise how many you will have on your block when’re you kids are playing lets see how quite you will be fool we got somebody that is looking to protect us and we are blocking them the way such a stupid some people can be its unbelievable rabbinm you mix in when there is a torah issue for example eriv or lest say there kasrth problems

31

 Sep 17, 2008 at 12:27 PM Tree Says:

The so called rabbis are worthless. their only worry is the thickness of stockings and shrimp in the drinking water. the community is in need of leadership and there is NONE

32

 Sep 17, 2008 at 12:31 PM Jay from BP Says:

Dear Dov:
It is in a time like this, Chodesh Elul, which we need to take a deep look at ourselves & ask: Yudeinu Lo Shofchu es Hadam Hazeh? (Did our hands not spill this blood?) We know ‘Shtikah K'hoduyu’ (Silence is like approving).
Dov, you are from the very few in our community that could go this Rosh Hashanah & say out loud "My Hands Did Not Cause This Problem"! You’re the one that is out fighting for our innocent 'Tinokes Shel Beis Rabon' little children that did not taste a sin.
It is you, which did not stay silent! Please keep up your 'Avodas Hakadosh'.
You are not fighting for your children (I think yours are grown by now); you are fighting for my children, my neighbor’s children, my Brothers children. And yes Hashem's children.
So please Dov, don't be intimidated by people who are trying to hide their sins. The only reason they are not happy with what you’re doing is, either: a. Denial b. Shame. So regardless of their reason, they are wrong.
P.S. Thanks for the amazing evening last week in Crown Heights. Please do it here in B.P. as well.

33

 Sep 17, 2008 at 12:40 PM Anonemes Says:

I have a feeling that when Hikind and his staff find the magnitude of this problem, it's slowly going to go away. There is going to be a tremendous amount of pressure, threats and other roadblocks to go further with this. The people involved who are in high places will make certain of this. It's known that pedophiles and abusers can be anyone even people who are in very high positions and they will fight tooth & nail to suppress Hikind and his crusade.

34

 Sep 17, 2008 at 12:47 PM Anonymous Says:

All this outpouring of love for Dov (the polotician) and hatred toward rabonim (talmidei chachomim). What a wonderful way to prepare for the Yom HaDin.

35

 Sep 17, 2008 at 01:13 PM Frum Dem Says:

the heimshe taliban should be exposed for doing what they did

36

 Sep 17, 2008 at 01:21 PM Anonymous Says:

I don't get it. This issue has nothing to do with Dov Hikind or Rabbi Twesky.

Don't you realize that the children are to blame.
If they would stop listening to Lipa and the like or going to concerts these things would not happen to them. Or better yet, maybe the Rabbonim can come up with a ban on molestation - that should solve the problem - "when in doubt - OSUR"
Another solution would be for the Yeshivos to add another fee to the parents, $1000 per student sounds fair, for the Anti-molestation Fund. Like every other fee that's good for nothing, why not.

I can't answer for Dov Hikinds motivations, only he can, but at least he's trying to do something to help a really bad situation. Wake up and take off the blindfold - this is an epidemic and a large percentage of these kids end up going off the derech, and then we blame music and other things that have nothing to do with the problem when the problem lies right in front off us in the Yeshivos and in the homes.

37

 Sep 17, 2008 at 01:20 PM McCain-Palin 08 Says:

Too all of us bloggers:

If you have some input or info please call dov's office.

The Task Force reads this blog daily I even spoke to someone from his office that has been on it for a while.

Don't give up you know who you are if you need my help let me know

38

 Sep 17, 2008 at 01:18 PM Anonymous Says:

What did the heimishe taliban do? Who are the heimish taliban?

39

 Sep 17, 2008 at 01:18 PM Enoughof theBS Says:

anon 12:47: these rabbonim (talmidei chachomim) have brought it upon themselves. And it is they that should prepare for the Yom HaDin and beg mechilla for ruining countless childens' lives with their silence on this issue.

40

 Sep 17, 2008 at 01:17 PM Shnitzel Says:

Dr. Twerski, don't be affraid to say the whole truth. You don't like Hikind's approach to this! GROINEM is right!

41

 Sep 17, 2008 at 01:29 PM Anonymous Says:

How do you know it's an epidemic?

42

 Sep 17, 2008 at 01:32 PM Anonymous Says:

BS, which of the Rabbonim ruined a kid? Enough of it.

43

 Sep 17, 2008 at 01:31 PM Anonymous Says:

as more as i look in to this whole issue i must come to conclusion that all who are against Dov or agians this whole molestation issue to be public have some pedifila in their blood because it just and simple does not make sense why would anybody want to shut up the peaple who are trying to save our kids it stinks to high heaven and all i can say is if we let them win we are in deep deep trouble

44

 Sep 17, 2008 at 01:35 PM Anonymous Says:

when i look around whats going on i have to admit and ask Mechila from reb Nuchme Rosenberg because at first i felt the asknnim had a ligit argument that he is talking agaist rabnim and i understood now when i see what they are doing to Dov rabbi Twersky and all other sto protect tmolester i really belive that this whole fight against reb Nuchim that he is degrading rabbnim was a hidden argumnet to get him off the molestation issue and had nothink to do with his taking agaist Rabbnim Reb Nuchim i ask you for Mechila after all i see true the clouds that unfortunly lots of peaple are very naive and dont see tru the smoke

45

 Sep 17, 2008 at 01:35 PM anonymous Says:

1:29pm.
Who cares if it is an "epidemic" or just happening "occasionally?" If even one Rebbe is out there molesting children it must be addressed. Stop arguing symantics and focus on the problem!

46

 Sep 17, 2008 at 01:48 PM anon Says:

The only way this is gonna fix it self , is if some Big Shaker or big supporter of the Aguda and OU and/or some Big Rebbes daughter or son gets RAPED ,chas vesholom.

47

 Sep 17, 2008 at 01:45 PM Anonymous Says:

at guy asking who says it’s a epidemic who said we went to war with Iraq because the paper and radio says so I don’t believe them I believe there was never a war and this is just a made up storey

sorry but you are very stupid the people who know the situion all knows this is a epidemic the only issue us how to handle the situation everybody agrees this is an epidemic talk to 5 of and anybody who is reading to everybody a favor take your 5 closest friends and quietly ask them to be honest with you and you want for your information and even lie to them tell them you where molested one way or the other I would make a bet with you problay 4out of 5 will tell you they where molested one way or the other you will be very shocked try it I did you will be surprised its much worse then an epidemic you will laugh at this statement I believe 75 percent of our people where molested one way or the other

48

 Sep 17, 2008 at 02:05 PM Anonymous Says:

Wow

this is somethink but i am not suprised one think you have to do at least call in Dov hot line and give the name of that molester at least let him be on the list to be looked after why do you let others to suffer as you are unfortunlay suffering do your part report this guy asap tell Dov yu wish not to say your name but let his name be tehre because if 7-8 peaple will mention the same name we know we have a problem and need to work on it on 2 fronts first to work to save future doroys and then we have to put in work to hide it from so called askknim not to block it

49

 Sep 17, 2008 at 01:58 PM Anonymous Says:

Ive been quietly reading the comments related to this issue and I feel inclined to add my opionion. Being married to an abuse victim, I cannot fathom why there is so much resistance to exposing the truth.
Let me explain. People need to realize that this problem is a disease. Those that molest were likey taken advantage of themselves and those that do not become molesters have many demons which they in turn, not willingly, pass on to their families (if they are lucky enough to make it that far). This is so mostly because of the tradition of keeping quiet and not getting help. It perpetuates..........
To be even less vague, my husband was molested in his yeshivah at age 11. Coming from a well respected, involved in the community family he told no one. How would that reflect on the family, small community, and institution? Who would believe him?
Of course he got no help or counseling. In fact he never told anyone. To be even more frank, to this day hes not upset at the person that did the deed. That is how well the good ones cover thier tracts.
Are you scared yet?
Fast forward, the abuse victim got his revenge, hes a successful well educated executive with a beautiful caring family very far and removed from the community he grew up in and far from the messed up life he could have had. Sounds glamorous, lucky even. Look a little closer and the problems stemming from that period in his life keep getting more pronounced. Everyday is a work in progress. Slipups are regular. Hes quite lucky to have a patient wife.
The demons you ask?
Struggling with self confidence, Sexual identity, Intimacy, Acceptance, Right and Wrong, Over protective of children, Struggles with God and prayer and anything you can think of related to these issues. Use your imagination.
I write this because I am affected too. What did I do to deserve this? Rabbis and leaders out there, if you cant bring yourselves to help the victims for whatever reason (you all seem to have many), do it for the exponential number of secondhand victims. It suddenly is not a minority problem. Think about how many people you are really helping (or not).
As a side note, but mostly as a parent, I feel and obligation to inform the people living in lakewood that my husbands molester is teaching in your neck of the woods.

50

 Sep 17, 2008 at 01:57 PM Enoughof theBS Says:

anon 1:32: which of the rabbonim??? Kolko, Margolis, and every one that has kept quiet on the issue and gone out of their way to protect these monsters. Face facts: We do not have gedolim today. If they were the least bit interested in the welfare of our children, they wouldnt be silent for so long. Unless of course, Lipa has another concert. Then they will crawl out of their holes because the ASSkanim will be there to fardrei a kop.

51

 Sep 17, 2008 at 02:14 PM hahoy Says:

the mishugoyim in brooklyn who perpetrated this crime against the klal will someday have to give din vcheshbon for doing what they did. they are worse than the taliban

52

 Sep 17, 2008 at 02:28 PM rabbi h Says:

thanks dov keep up the good job. dov we are with you hashem will help you all the way

53

 Sep 17, 2008 at 02:29 PM Anonymous Says:

Anonymous @1:58,

I feel your pain. You and your husband need to publicize the name of the molester immediately. If he is still teaching in Lakewood, you are putting countless other children in danger.

54

 Sep 17, 2008 at 02:31 PM Chaim Says:

what is the phone numbers to the Help-line? Where do I call if I've got info to share?

55

 Sep 17, 2008 at 02:43 PM eli Says:

dov will drop this issue as soon as he finds a new hot topic to get publicity from we all agree that something has to be done about molesters but dov is not the guy especialy that his record shows he is all for attention and publicity but not for results.

56

 Sep 17, 2008 at 02:51 PM Anonymous Says:

chaim is right does naybody have the number to call please post the Dov Hikind hot line number please

57

 Sep 17, 2008 at 02:32 PM anonymous Says:

It is time to have a major public meeting / demonstration in the major yeshivahs including the ones to who the fake concert ban rabbis belong to. If you value anything in life, this is the correct thing to do. You should have a voice and oust these dangerous people. It is a cancer and it it needs to be stopped in this new year. I urge everyone to stop supporting these schools immediately - and demand that these fake rabbis step down and stand down. There are alot of people they need to answer to - they should publicly ask forgiveness from jews. Let it be done with the media - press (print & tv) on hand and let them finally publicly apologize and make things right.

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 Sep 17, 2008 at 02:54 PM Anonymous Says:

Nobody denies that the problem exists, but calling it an epidemic is going overboard. Even one is too many, but again calling it an epidemic is going overboard. Stop this hysteria before it will defeat its purpose.

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 Sep 17, 2008 at 03:06 PM Anonymous Says:

let me ask you 9-17 how do you know its not an epidemic when nobody in the world besides 2 people came forward so do you really thin its basically 2 people who where ever molested you know the answer well that nobody is coming out and nobody is willing to talk because of the unconfortability that these so called askknim not an epidemic did you talk to anybody did you do research its unbelievable how people just want to make this go away

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 Sep 17, 2008 at 03:02 PM Anonymous Says:

well i say fight terror with terror we need to organize and mail out flyers with explaing whats going on and expose the thugs that are behind this terror thats the only way you can fight them the truth is everybody is afraid of those few so called fake funny askknim and i dont blame anybody for not coming out because they have a full time terror machine and we need to fight them with terror to open a secret fighting machine and if money is the hold back just send one flyer and ask for donation to fight this war and y ou will see how much money will come in if anybody just showes they are taking on the fight i myself ready for a 1000 donation if i see andbody really is fighting them tooth and nail and i belive lots of others are so angerd that they will particpte

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 Sep 17, 2008 at 03:08 PM MARK Says:

1-718-853 9616

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 Sep 17, 2008 at 03:24 PM Anonymous Says:

wait why are you blaming VIn they just let your critic up here does tell you that anybody can post i feel your pain that too very little peaple agree with you its not VIN that is bashing go back to your foxhole and stop molesting why are you so afraid of this issue i wonder...

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 Sep 17, 2008 at 03:23 PM Anonymous Says:

To the one asking "how do you know it’s not an epidemic", I ask, how do you know that it is an epidemic? Labeling a problem an epidemic is irresponsible. I guess attacking the Rabbonim is a pain reliever for many. Again, let's take care of the problem, but not by going overboard and flushing the Torah down the toilet.

65

 Sep 17, 2008 at 03:18 PM deepthinker Says:

WHAT A BUNCH OF SQUEMISH SISSIES!

RAV AVIGDOR MILLER SPOKE OF THESE MATTERS OPENLY AT HIS WEEKLY THURSDAY NIGHT SHIUR FOR YEARS.

HE MADE VERY GOOD SHIDUCHIM!

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 Sep 17, 2008 at 03:17 PM Anonymous Says:

mark thank you

67

 Sep 17, 2008 at 03:17 PM Anonymous Says:

who has a full time terror machine its those few so called askknim that are busy with the eriv and lipa smelcher and the Williamsburg fress truck and they are who in some way go tto twersky and Nuchme Rosenberg this is organized by a a few so called assknim like organized crime they work the same way they make sure to quite up the victims and getting everybody scared including the rabbinim and they do whatever they want if they should decide that they want sukkas to be tomorrow you will have sukkus tomorrow that’s the bottom line they talk in the name of religion lehvdil like the Taliban’s and they shut everybody up one way or the other under different masks you don’t have das torah you talk on rabbnim you have to watch how you handle an issue and the whole Bs yes this are organized and are a terror machine

68

 Sep 17, 2008 at 03:33 PM Anonymous Says:

wait who is flushing the torah down the toilet you see that is the problem when you go out ageist molesters automatic you are against the torah and against Rabbnim this is the trick to shut everybody up nobody is dissing the rabbinm or going against the torah its simple we see that this is an issue that the rabbinm have a problem handling there are so called askknim that are blocking it and feeding false information to the rabbinm and they with terror always have the last word so does that mean we are not giving respect to rabbinm this issue has to be addressed by the people who have experience in this field would you have rabbinm solve a robbery or a murder why not because you need the special people who understand this problem this is not a torah issue or rabbnim issue just like solving a crime is not a torah or a rabbinm issue when there is an hasgucha problem or an eriv problem anything that is an halachic problem its the rabbinm but molestation and robberies murder cases is not their field come on stop falling in to that trap that its against the rabbinm besides the fact i believe once somebody will take all the testimony and after shocks to the rabbinm with the approval of the so called askknim every think will change once the rabbnim see the full picture but this all to stop getting this issue out to the public and it will never stop otherwise as its going on for years and years

69

 Sep 17, 2008 at 03:49 PM Anonymous Says:

Anon 3:41m What you are talking about is not sexual abuse, it is another type of abuse, which I also witnessed as a child, The Rebbe is shoin oifen oilom ho-emess. Let's not lump everything into one group.

70

 Sep 17, 2008 at 04:09 PM Informed Consent Says:

Correction to previous post:

But unzereh chasidim have this baseless fear that they will NOT be able to "do a shidduch" because of this or that.

71

 Sep 17, 2008 at 04:08 PM Anonymous Says:

I (a female) grew up in an ultra-orthodox/orthodox community, and was routinely sexually abused by a an esteemed brooklyn institution's yeshiva bochur 11 years my senior. I was 5/6/7/8 years old.

Today I am in my mid twenties. If you passed me by on the street you might think i'm a perfectly normal person, sophisticated and intelligent even.

My three sisters are married and have kids. I'm still wondering if i might be a lesbian. I'm still trying to focus on reality instead of instinctively falling back on the defense mechanism i created as a child: dissociation from reality. I'm still trying to feel less ashamed of my existence. I'm still trying not to indulge my ever present, unnaturally strong, pain.

Every man that begins a relationship with me ends up regretting it: I cannot trust, I cannot believe intimacy. This is not merely thoughts i need to change. This is the way i am now wired. If i could easily change it, i would have done so already. I try with vigor.

Because there is nothing else I would like more than to experience genuine love. To experience a breath of fresh air without shame. And to be the person i would like to be without perpetually self sabotaging myself.

After severe internal chaos, that includes a suicide attempt when i was 16 and countless agonizing episodes, I understand that the only way i can achieve that is by fighting myself every day.

I will do that. I will fight every day in order to be just to my own self. But by now, I am well aware that it will never be easy.

The pain and the consequences of sexual abuse truly cannot be understood.

I am sure, or perhaps i am just thinking ideally within the context- that this yeshiva bochur who now has five beautiful kids, and learns Torah every day, has asked god for forgiveness.

But that is actually the TRUE injustice of sexual abuse. The perpetrator can liberate himself. The victim CANNOT.

Sexual abuse, like another commentator said, is truly a cancer.

What incredible anger I feel when i learn that the effort in the orthodox community went towards eradicating the possibility of hope, concern, understanding and aid. Shame, true true shame on this community.

If only i had been armed with some knowledge as a kid that it was not me who had to feel ashamed. IF ONLY MY PERPETRATOR HAD HEARD A COUPLE OF WORDS ABOUT THIS CRIME AND ITS CONSEQUENCES.

What callousness. What selfishness. What outright immoral behavior this response from the orthodox community is. Keep hiding, keep idolizing only your image as a religion, and eventually if it isn't already, the orthodox community will be nothing but stupid savages.

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 Sep 17, 2008 at 04:07 PM Informed Consent Says:

Seems - after all - it boils down to the old chassidishe do-all-end-all purpose of the universe.....

The shidduch.

Es shtert der sheedach.
Rabbi Twerski's children have children. One day they will want to get married and maybe some of them already have.

But unzereh chasidim have this baseless fear that they will now be able to "do a shidduch" because of this or that. Due to the proliferation of this fear it has become a reality so to speak. But, in effect, it speaks to a lack of backbone, a lack of belief that it is Hashem who is mizaveg zivugim and our bitachon in his system.

You obviously have not instilled this belief in your children as they pressed you to leave avodas hakodesh simply for their own sense of social security. How shallow.

Shame on you Rabbi Twerski. You have likened yourself to a tree with no roots which cannot withstand a simple wind. Your Holy Grandfather, ob"m, I'm sure, is shaking his head.

73

 Sep 17, 2008 at 04:24 PM Benzion Twerski Says:

To Informed Consent @ 4:07

I spelled out that the shidduchim worry is not mine. What does matter is that my children are being shamed about this. I do not have the right to subject them to living with shame. Many very choshuv people have agreed with this.

As I have stated several times, I will continue to contribute to the process in many ways without getting the kavod for the success that will hopefully achieved. The topic will also shy away from the media where is does not succeed well with our community.

As for my grandfather, I have no idea how he feels about this. He might be upset with my decision, or he just might be applauding me. Neither of us have any way to know.

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 Sep 17, 2008 at 05:18 PM anonymous Says:

anon 9/7/08 3:49

i don't see what you are refering too

75

 Sep 17, 2008 at 05:46 PM A licensed MH pro from BP Says:

Why must there be a Task Force? Why can't Dov continue speaking out on the issues; urging victims to come forward? The victims will then be referred to the police to investigate the allegations and hopefully put the perps behind bars. The victims can be referred to Mental Health professionals who can help them overcome their pain and shame and get on with their lives. No task force, no press just justice and recovery.

76

 Sep 17, 2008 at 06:30 PM Dick Regan Says:

If the victim is beyond their 21st. birthday they're passed the criminal statue of limitations and the police or courts can't do anything.

77

 Sep 17, 2008 at 07:04 PM Informed Consent Says:

Rabbi Twerski,

I am honored by your response.

As my credo is that our ideals and opinions must conform with daas torah, and who am I to claim such knowledge, I must therefore place my questions to Torah authorities. And how can a Torah Authority, in the absence of ruach hakodesh claim to know what is Hashem's will for me without truly "getting to know someone"? It takes hard work, time and siyata d'shmaya to find a true Rov.

The fact that you have sought council, however, changes my view of the matter. This is our mesorah, tradition and saving grace. We look to Hashem for guidance in the form of our leaders. You have done so. Although another Rov or Rebbe may have steered differently, no further questions can be asked on your actions as you have been guided in the name of Ratzon Hashem.

Ye'yasher Kochah'cha

78

 Sep 17, 2008 at 07:26 PM Anon Says:

Rabbi Twersky says the Jewish community is not ready for this now? The Jewish community will never be ready to admit there are child molesters in our midst. SO start now! If we wait, noone will ever take care of this problem. How many children need to be hurt before anything is done?

79

 Sep 17, 2008 at 10:27 PM formely frum Says:

correction

I think there are still some, many in the community who feel that one should feel ashamed if they were abused even today

80

 Sep 18, 2008 at 01:12 AM a yiddishe mama Says:

our precious 3 year old victimized son is being helped through the holy and noble work of Dov and staff and YES THE MEDIA was our messenger from hashem to provide us the number 718 853 9616 DONT DELAY GET HELP TODAY WITHOUT CARE DAMAGE DOESNT GO AWAY HATZLACHA

81

 Sep 18, 2008 at 09:47 AM yochi Says:

Well, if they need any civilian help with this, I'm game! I don't care to get paid, it'll just be volunteer for me. Just the fact that I will help bring these despicable child rapists out into the open, where justice will be served.
That's right, you can't hide under you beard, or yeshivas, you will all be found and be brought to justice!
To the people in the community who are NOT acknowledging these terrible acts, because they are afraid of "chillul Hashem," and embarrassment to their rabbi's and community or they pretend it doesn't exist, I ask you this, Do you think Hashem is PROUD of what you are doing? Do you think He is Happy that there are children's lives ruined, and children's lives to be ruined in the near future, because you are looking the other way?
You are sick to let this happen, to deny this is happening, you are no better than the RAPISTS themselves.
You may not be committing these dirty acts, but you are aiding these animals to have the opportunity to to hurt these children, now that they know they have your support, and they wont be persecuted.
They may think everything in their lives are all cushy, but there are children, and adults coming forward, and they aren't afraid of these animals anymore.
Rapists in my mind are WORSE then murderers, because these poor children have to forever live with this pain. Every time they put these children through such misery, it's as if they are killing them every single time.
I think we should take these repulsive, disgusting, animals (I don't consider them to be of the human race), put them in a cellar, lock the door, and throw away the key. Their names should be known and stripped of their titles!

82

 Sep 18, 2008 at 12:51 PM Livid Says:

Yochi- They are worse than murderers.


Anon 4:08- That was bold of you to share. I'm sorry for your pain.

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 Sep 18, 2008 at 03:46 PM Anonymous Says:

Anon 4:08, I am pained by your story. Based on the information you give us he was 16/17/18/19 years old. If he did teshuvah and if he is a mentch he should ask you for forgiveness. Not that it will take away your pain, but that it will give you the ability to put it behind you. If your torturer sees this, or anybody else out there who has done something similar, you owe it to your victim to ask for forgiveness, and not just blocking it out of your mind. Here you have a suffering victim crying out for help.

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