Thursday, October 30, 2014

Distinction between social judgment and judgment of beis din Rav Hirsh

In researching my new sefer on judging others versus judgment of beis din I came across this relevant quote from Rav Hirsch (Vayikra 19:15).

For judgment outside the court of justice, for judging our fellows in ordinary life, out of this sentence imposing the duty on the judge to adhere sharply to the absolute facts in all strictness, the Gemora ]Shevuos 30a] there learns the rule:הוי דן את חברך לכף זכות always give the best possible interpretation to all matters concerning your neighbour and judge him to his advantage. This is only apparently in contradiction with the judicial formula. For judgment in a court of justice and social judgment do not serve the same purpose. The former has to test the action solely as to whether it is in accordance with the dictates of justice or not, quite apart from any considerations of the individual circumstances or conditions and without regard to the motives. An action, although it may not be legal, can be entirely excusable and yet at the forum of justice must be judged as punishable. And an action judged by its motive can be stamped as highly vicious and yet legally be within the law and unpunishable. But Society has, on the other hand, above all, the personality, the character, in its eye, and every action is, to it, only a symptom by which to judge the integrity or the reverse of its members. Exactly the same justice which in court banishes personality entirely from the judgment, and judges the action entirely in absolute objectivity, that same justice demands in social life the most meticulous and anxious conscientiousness in considering every possible condition which could make the person and his character appear in a better light, and admonishes:

Be not hasty in throwing mud at anybody's character, always be inclined to find excusing circumstances for all actions! This is the same idea of justice which for social judgment says: אל תדין את חברך עד שתגיע למקומו "Judge not thy neighbour until thou hast been in a similar position" (Aboth II,5). "It differentiates between forensic and social judgment to such an extent that to the judge in civil cases it says: "When the parties stand before you, consider them both in the wrong, but once they have accepted your decision and have left you, regard them both as good men":   כשיהיו בעלי הדין עומדים לפניך יהיו בעיניך  כרשעים וכשנפטרים מלפניך יהיו בעיניך כזכאין כשקבלו עליהם את הדין (Avos 2:5).

Schlesinger Twins: Michael lies to court that Beth went to a beer festival on Yom Kippur to deny her weekend visits with her children!


Guest post from Beth Alexander


It seems there any no lengths Mr Schlesinger won't go and no depths too low that he won't sink to try to discredit and destroy me, the mother of his beloved children.

Every day of separation from my dear boys is another day of torturous pain and agony to endure. Special days like birthdays, holidays and celebrations are especially hard.

Shabbat and Chagim are the most testing of all. These silent lonely days are the harshest reminder of the heavy loss of all my hopes and dreams: the loving Jewish home I yearned to create together with my so-called 'religious' husband, the happy home of fun, ringing with children's laughter I struggled to build, the holiness and warmth I expected to fill my marriage - all devastatingly replaced by abuse, destruction and tears.

Unable to bear the pain of solitude on Rosh Hashonnah, I flew home to Manchester. I sat at the back of shul with my mother and we wept and sobbed in each other's arms, consoling one another; a mother bereft of her children and a grandmother's double pain for her daughter and suffering grandchildren far away. It is the 4th year without my children on the Chagim but the wound is just as fresh and raw as the day it was inflicted.

I wasn't able to stay until Yom Kippur so was forced to spend the fast in Vienna. I went to shul and cried again. Uncontrollably. I was comforted by the kindest people, strangers and old friends who shared my grief and understood what, for any mother in the world, is the greatest loss of all.

Sukkot and Simchat Torah - again separated - but the Tuesday visit I was able to take them to the shul sukkah on chol hamoed brought the three of us pure joy!

It's been a difficult month and truthfully, I'm glad it's over. Until Sammy and Benji are back in my arms, the Chagim will never be the same for me again. Simcha and celebration have been replaced with solemn mourning and meditation.

Yet to add salt to the wound, Michael Schlesinger wrote to the court this week to deny my application for weekend visits claiming that I am not religious and accused me of spending Yom Kippur 'the holiest day of the year' at a beer festival in some far flung place in Austria!!

Why do you tell such audacious lies, Michael? Why did you also lie that the twins were ill on my visit two days before Rosh Hashonnah? You claimed Sammy had pneumonia - which would take at least 2 weeks to recover from - but then both boys were in the Chabad shul just two days later on Rosh Hashonnah. Why did you then ask people to lie for you to deny that they were in shul when others had already seen them there and informed me they were there?

Worst of all are the lies to our children. They have a mother who loves them more than anything in the world. And you continue to deny them my love.

What lies do you tell them when they ask you why their Mama doesn't tuck them into bed at night and kiss them goodnight?

What lies do you tell them when they ask you why they can't run into their Mama's arms after a long day at kindergarten like all the other children?

What lies do you tell them when they hurt themselves and cry for their Mama?

One day soon they will discover the truth. Prepare yourself. How exactly do you expect them to react when they do?
========================Witness Statement =================
Vienna, October 29, 2014
I, Sofia Schweizer, Argentina, 65 years old and now living with my daughter, Deborah Collar in Iglseegasse *, **** (Percholdsdorf), Austria, for some weeks, I declare, on my own will, that I met Beth Alexander at the evening of Yom Kipur – Jewish forgiveness day – at the Main Vienna Synagogue, the Stadttempel and as we were sitting next to each other and she did not stop crying I asked her what was wrong with her. 
Thereafter, we spend during the whole Friday evening service and Saturday – all day long – together and on different times when she could stop crying she told me that she was very unhappy and sad because she was apart from her two little children and could not spend the Jewish Holidays with them.
                                                          
                                                            Sofia Schweizer
                                                           Argentine Passport 1.8******
                                                           Tel (in Vienna) 0650 *******

Permanent address: Araoz 282 – 6p 19
1414 Buenos Aires, Argentina

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Rav Shmuel Kaminetsky claims that vaccinations are harmful

Rav Shmuel Kaminetsky
Baltimore Jewish Times    Read the whole article including the comments

[...] R.B. encountered significant difficulties when she claimed a religious exemption at a local boys’ day school. Before her son began school, she contacted someone at the state Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, as well as the state attorney general’s office, to inquire about Maryland’s laws regarding religious exemptions.

“They said that the school could not refuse to accept a religious exemption,” she related. “But then school started and the nurse called. She said the school didn’t accept religious exemptions. I told her they had to accept them so she said I would have to speak with the principal.”

R.B. reached out to Rabbi Shmuel Kamenetzky, founder and dean of the Talmudical Academy of Philadelphia, whose wife, Temi, speaks out against vaccinating children. The rabbi wrote a letter on R.B.’s behalf, leading to her son’s principal relenting and apologizing.

When reached by phone, both Kamenetzkys confirmed their belief that vaccinations, not the diseases they prevent, are harmful.

“There is a doctor in Chicago who doesn’t vaccinate any of his patients and they have no problem at all,” said the rabbi. “I see vaccinations as the problem. It’s a hoax. Even the Salk vaccine [against polio] is a hoax. It is just big business.”

Kamenetzky says he follows the lead of Israeli Rabbi Shmaryahu Yosef Chaim Kanievsky, who rules that schools “have no right to prevent unvaccinated kids from coming to school.”

“What about the people who clean and sweep in the school?” argued Kamenetzky. “They are mostly Mexican and are unvaccinated. If there was a problem, the children would already have gotten sick.”

Sharon Billing, a Baltimore nurse and mother, said she once challenged Temi Kamenetzky at a lecture.

“How can you advise young mothers to do this?” she asked the rebbetzin. “You’re old enough to remember whopping cough and diphtheria. As Jews, we are required to guard our health.”
Billing has a cousin born just prior to the development of the polio vaccine.

“He was wheelchair bound all of his life and had the use of only one arm,” she said. “I find it distressing that so many are so uninformed about vaccines.”

In her 20 years as a pediatric nurse practitioner, Stacy Schwartz of Pikesville has rarely come across parents who refuse to vaccinate. Schwartz, who works in a private practice in Cross Keys and at Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community School once a week, says she believes in vaccinating all children.

“For us, it’s a public health issue, and there is no credible research to show that vaccines lead to developmental disabilities,” said Schwartz, who added that Beth Tfiloh follows Maryland’s state vaccination policy. [...]

R Freundel accused of Mikve camera: Police set up hotline for those who think they were victimized

Washington Post Authorities investigating a Georgetown rabbi accused of secretly recording women in a ritual bath in Northwest Washington have set up a hotline number for people who think they might have been victimized. 

D.C. Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier, in her first public comments on the arrest of Rabbi Barry Freundel, said Tuesday that the investigation is expected to take a long time as forensic experts comb through computer storage devices seized in the case.

“It’s really a tragic case and it is going to take some time for all the details to unfold,” Lanier told Bruce DePuyt on her monthly appearance on NewsChannel 8. “I think this case will be rolling out for some time.” She added, “For people who are potential victims, that is agonizing.”

The number at the U.S. attorney’s office is . There is also an e-mail address, usadc.bernardfreundelcase@usdoj.gov, and a web site with updated information: www.justice.gov/usao/dc/programs/vw/bernard_freundel.html.
 
Lanier said it is important that potential victims “who are part of this larger family can follow what is going on.” [...]

Each life is precious: The life of children with severe brain damage

YNET    The children of the Chronic Respiratory Care Ward at Herzog Hospital have severe brain damage, but for the dedicated staff it is a priority to give them quality of life.

When Eli arrives to visit his 14-year-old daughter Rachel at the Children's Chronic Respiratory Care Department in Herzog Hospital in Jerusalem, he fights to hold back the tears. Instead of crying, he tries to be positive, telling her about the upcoming holiday, sharing all the recent news from their large family, and praying with her.  

Sometimes, as he prepares to say goodbye to his beloved child, he thinks she is moving her head as though trying to reach for him. But, painfully, he understands that she can't.

The department opened in 2004, based on the successful treatment of adults requiring respiratory support. There are at present 24 children in the ward - some are conscious and others have minimal response to stimulus.[..]

 "Almost half of our children had periods of hypoxia due to various disastrous incidents, such as a baby who suffocated on the lace of a pacifier or a toddler who pushed his head inside a pickle jar full of water," Gil says. 

"The second group contains children with congenital problems such as a developmental defect leading to brain dysfunction, a hereditary disease or malfunction created by some genetic defect during fertilization, or complications following meningitis, which unfortunately still occur. The common denominator is their constant dependence on a ventilator," she says.   

"However, our work doesn't end with prolonging their lives; it is also about improving their quality of life. Our children receive physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, therapy with animals, music therapy, bibliotherapy and more. The adherence to daily stimulation has certainly proven itself; there are conclusive physiological responses, for example their muscles, which under normal circumstances are very rigid, become looser, and the heart rate and blood pressure decrease.  

"Furthermore we have noticed that the children look at us and recognize us, despite the fact that they can't communicate verbally. Obviously they feel more than they understand."  [...]

At first glance they seem so helpless, remote and in pain that crying is an inevitable response. But when you sit next to one of the children, who is wrapped safely in the arms of one of their special education teachers, the picture changes. [...]

Often," says Prof. Gil, "when people hear about this ward, they immediately think 'What kind of life is this?' But studies show that children with severe disabilities are content with their lives; it all comes down to how you look at it. In our culture, and especially for me as a Holocaust survivor, life is so precious that it's unthinkable to give it up.

"There are hospitals around the world where when the doctor breaks it to the parents that there is nothing he or she can do to improve their child's condition, the parents take one last photograph with their child, they say their goodbyes and ask for the child to be disconnected from life support. 

"In Israel, apart of the fact that it is forbidden by law, it just never happens. Throughout the years we have had cases where we have succeeded in weaning children off the ventilator, and these are our greatest success stories."  [...]

Observations about the Salk Polio vaccine - National Public Radio




The Guardian    In 1954, over 300,000 doctors, nurses, schoolteachers and other volunteers across the United States, Canada and Finland took part in one of the most complex and monumental medical trials in history. The plan was to test the effectiveness of a newly-developed vaccine for a disease that was devastating the lives of children across the US: polio.

It was a mammoth task – a double-blind experiment, in which 650,000 schoolchildren were given the vaccine, 750,000 were given a placebo, and over 400,000 children acted as a control group and were given neither. For taking part, each participant was given a sweet and a certificate proclaiming their role as a ‘Polio Pioneer’. The results, announced in 1955, were just as monumental: the vaccine was safe and effective. As a direct result of the development of the vaccine, polio was completely eradicated in the US by 1979. [...]

One other aspect of Salk’s story still plays a vital role in the development and use of vaccines today: public support. In many ways, the 1954 field tests of the polio vaccine are a major success story in public health and scientific engagement – according to some sources, a Gallup poll that year showed that more Americans knew about the trials than could give the full name of then president, Dwight Eisenhower. In short, it appeared that there was unprecedented support for the vaccine. 

It is therefore a sad and strange irony that there now appears to be a growing backlash against vaccines in the US and UK – particularly the MMR vaccine. Since Andrew Wakefield published a fraudulent paper in 1998 purporting to show a link between the MMR vaccine and autism, incidences of measles and mumps have risen greatly. Despite this, and despite studies showing clear costs to society when vaccine rates drop, antivaccinationists still insist on ignoring the evidence when it comes to immunising children. It therefore seems like the celebration of Salk’s 100th birthday is an apt time to remember how hugely important vaccination is – not just on an individual level, but for public health as a whole.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Polygamist cult leader Goel Ratzon sentenced to 30 years in prison

YNET  The Tel Aviv District Court sentenced polygamist Goel Ratzon on Tuesday to 30 years in prison for sex crimes against his wives and daughters as part of what prosecutors described as a mind-boggling saga of dominance and delusions of deity.

Last month, Ratzon, 64, was convicted of a number of sexual offences, including rape of a number of his wives. He was cleared, however, of separate counts of enslavement regarding 21 spouses and 38 children he had kept in various homes around the city. He was also found guilty on the majority of the other sexually related offenses, condemning him in the highly publicized trial as a serial rapist.[...]

In an interview he gave to Yedioth Ahronoth in 2010, the first since his arrest, Ratzon denied the charges against him and claimed his relations with the more than 30 women who lived with him were based on love and respect.

During the interview Ratzon said: "There was no slavery. We had warm relations. (There was) full understanding between us, a genuine desire to help one another. A woman does not stay in a place she is not pleased with for 15 years." 

Monday, October 27, 2014

Karen Mosquera hy"d - second victim of Hamas terror attack at train station - is buried

Arutz 7 Karen Jemima Mosquera hy''d, fatally wounded last Wednesday by a Hamas terrorist in Jerusalem, succumbed to her wounds on Sunday and was buried in the capital. She became the second victim to die from the attack, along with three-month-old Chaya Zisel Braun hy''d.

A year-and-a-half ago Mosquera came to Israel from her home in Guayaquil, Ecuador, to complete her conversion to Judaism, a Foreign Ministry statement on Sunday said. It revealed she chose to convert after discovering she was descended from Conversos, Spanish Jews forcibly converted to Catholicism after 1492.
"She spent the last two months in a Midrasha, an institute of Jewish studies for women, with other women from South America. Prior to moving to Israel, she had studied Family Psychology at the Catholic University of Guayaquil and was planning to study archaeology in Jerusalem," added the statement [...]
"She was a quiet girl who believed in her path, fought to become a Jew and nothing bothered her," said a friend. Mosquera's bereaved mother said her daughter’s dream had been to come to Israel and build her life here, but her life was cut short. [...]

Top Cop's Housemaid Admits She Made Up Affair - accusations destroyed his career

Arutz 7   A woman who was employed as the housemaid of recently retired Commander of the Jerusalem Police Maj. Gen. Yossi Pariente has admitted that she lied about being sexually exploited by him, according to IDF Radio.

"I made it all up," the maid now reportedly says.

Pariente retired surprisingly last week, and the housemaid's allegations appear to have been a major consideration in his decision to cut short his career. The woman, who used to clean the Parientes' home in Jerusalem, claimed that she had an affair with him for two years, and that he sexually harassed her. [...]

Leading criminal lawyers have claimed that allegations of male sexual misconduct against women are extremely hard to disprove in Israel's court system, due to the pervasive influence of a radical women's lobby in the Knesset and media, which insists that false allegations are very rare.

The matter was discussed in a heated debate last month in the Knesset's Committee for Advancement of the Status of Women, when three female lawyers who head the Committee on False Allegations and Parental Alienation in the Tel Aviv District of the Israel Bar Association claimed that such allegations are a very common phenomenon.

Representatives of women's groups linked to the New Israel Fund hotly disputed the claim and the parliamentary committee's chair, MK Aliza Lavie, read out what she said were police statistics, according to which there were only 12 cases of false allegations by women per year, and a similar number by men. The representatives of the Committee on False Allegations and Parental Alienation called this number "ridiculous." [...]

Today: Satmar Hasidic Men's-Mikva sexually abused activist Joey DiAngelo Candlelit Memorial in Monsey Upstate NY.

 Guest Post
Candlelit Ceremony at the Burial Site:
6:30-7:15pm - 221 Brick Church Road, Spring Valley, NY 10977

Memorial, Remembering Joey:
7:30-10:00pm - Rockland JCC, 450 W Nyack Rd, West Nyack, NY 10994
Bring along some form of ID (Standard JCC building security requirement)


America is now all consumed and busy with the woman's mikva voyeurism abuse, but by us Hasidim in Bror Park Williamsburg Monsey & Monroe, men and boyz use a naked bath house together called the Men's-Mikvah, and kids are sexuality molested and abused! Nobody cares!

One now died of a overdose. Please come over to report this vigil and lets stop this abuse once and for all!

Rabbi Nuchom Rosenberg will be talking. 

Here are some reports on this terrible loss of life due to abuse in the Mens Mikvah

1.  like by Deb Tambor the family stole the deceased body, that they disowned while alive because he was talking about his trauma, and didn't let his friends be by the funereal.



2. Here you can read about the cold callous divisiveness of our pain by the community mouth pieces, how they shun and hush those who speak out against child sexual molestation.


3. Mark Openhiemer of the NY Times, this weekend went so far re the Woman's Mikva voyeurism scandal, to dip himself in the Mikva. Little does he care that by Hasidim children get abused in the Mens Mikva!


4. At minute 70 hear Joey in his own haunting voice, how he opens his up his wounded heart, to the world, describing his life full of pain guilt and anguish, since he was abused in the mens mikvah as a young kid as old as 8!



5. Was it a suicide or an accidental overdose is the question? Read how one community activist says its a "Homicide!!!" Because the community silences those victims like Joey! And they have no other way to go but to die.



6. In Yiddish a short but heartwarming report.


The Shabbos Project: New Versus the Old -- Questions and Challenges

Guest Post by RaP 


The Shabbos Project (TSP) of 2014 has now come and gone. Tens of thousands of people partook in this milestone global event. With heartfelt hopes and prayers that TSP will inspire people of all walks to become more Shabbos/Shabbat observant. Congratulations to Rabbi Warren Goldstein (RWG) and his backers on achieving such an incredible success. TSP for 2015 is now in the works and it will no doubt build on this year's amazing success.



update As Rabbi Irons has challenged the accuracy of this article and I have no independent way of checking it - I am taking the article down for the time being. In general RaP has been a very reliable and insightful commentator - but I don't know whether his assertions here are from direct knowledge or conjecture.

Rabbi Irons wrote:
It's very surprising that the author is anonymous and is not willing to write his real name. I suspect that the author is not involved in kiruv, nor is aware that Rav Zelig Epstein was a big backer of Rabbi Buchwald, and the Agudas Yisroel never came out against AJOP. To use this incredible kiddush H-shem of the Shabbos Project as a platform for motzei sheim rah is a chilul H-shem. I recommend that this article be taken down, if not to prevent the spread of motzei shem rah, but also to preserve the journalistic integrity of this blog which comes into question on such hearsay and non-verified assertions.