Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Judge Tells Off Community

...and rightfully so, it seems: (Hat tip: Vervel)
At the sentencing last week of a bar mitzvah tutor and social worker convicted of sexually molesting two boys in Brooklyn, a New York State Supreme Court judge lashed out at the offender’s Orthodox community for “a communal attitude that seems to impose greater opprobrium on the victims than the perpetrator.”

With his stinging critique, Judge Gustin Reichbach placed himself at the center of a fierce debate in the Orthodox community over how best to police the problem of pedophilia.

Speaking from the bench the day after Yom Kippur at the sentencing of Yona Weinberg, who received a 13-month jail term, Reichbach said he found it “troubling” that the community “seeks to blame, indeed punish victims who seek justice from the ... civil society,” according to a court transcript. He went on to add that the Orthodox community’s religious courts are “inappropriate” and “incapable” of dealing with criminal matters.

Making his comments before a courtroom packed with supporters of the 31-year-old Weinberg — among them, according to his defense attorney, school principals, two rabbis and civic leaders — the judge spoke of receiving more than 90 letters attesting to Weinberg’s character and innocence. None of the letters, the judge noted, “displays any concern or any sympathy or even any acknowledgement for these young victims which, frankly, I find shameful.”
Good for him. It's mind boggling - and disgusting - that none of the letters bothered to show any sympathy for the victims.


  1. More than time that someone took a stand publicly to say the frum community is at fault for protecting the perverts and forgetting about the victims.

  2. And big kudos to those of you in the Orthodox community (e.g. Ezzie) who are speaking out. You're the ones who can change this.

  3. Maybe the fellow is innocent?

    Evidently, the people writing the letters did not believe that he was guilty. Judges make mistakes too.

  4. >And big kudos to those of you in the Orthodox community (e.g. Ezzie) who are speaking out. You're the ones who can change this.

    Agreed. Although not enough UO people use the Internet. As long as they're still living in caves, change will occur at a snail's pace.

  5. whoa!

    BUT it happens in goyim world, even rape victim would looked down upon them because people thinks it is their fault because of the way they dress or acts that brings people to rape them like prostitute, teen who act like slut... and so on. Even victim of rape blame themselves for example: "(Rape) Victims who
    were impaired or incapacitated (from alcohol) during the assault reported more self-blame for the assault than nonimpaired victims." (Littleton, Grills-Taquechel & Axsom, 2009)

    Also in goyim courts also have problems with dealing with rape victims: "Standard court processes and plea bargaining behind closed doors often fail to meet the needs of the victims and members of the community (Van Ness & Strong, 2002)

    But here is the funny part:
    "Jewish law provides a more sympathetic and protective legal system for rape victims than American law does, both historically and currently." (Miller, 1996) That is from Colombia Journal!

    We are supposed be better than America! So that community is chutzpah and destroying our reputation of our jewish legal system!

    But here is my strong opinion, everybody is messed up and stop blaming anybody only yourself. Ezzie I know you are angry at Jewish community by dealing with this. I know we are supposed to be special chosen people and represented our nation to other nations but face this WE ARE NOT PERFECT and we could move on and try to be better person. For example, Priest and Rabbi are known for molesting young children or Bet Din are terrible with wives with get, I am tired of stereotyping of certain things of our nation and believed each person is different and other people's sin should not affect us OR be angry of everything what Jews did and will make Jews to stop being religious. I am only looking out myself and try to make better world not because of Jews only for Hashem's sake.

  6. Anon - Maybe the fellow is innocent?

    Maybe he is.

    But, first of all, he was convicted in a court of law. And he has an excellent attorney. And he has, as always, the benefit of the doubt.

    And second of all, even if this particular one is innocent, can they all possibly be innocent? No, of course not! Yet the community does the same thing (support, letters, Rabbis, etc) for almost all the cases.

    Shabbat Shalom & Chag Sameach to all!