Monday, December 11, 2006

Shame on Shafran

Holy Smokes:

Asked to provide comment [on the Kolko case], R’ Avi Shafran replies in an e-mail:

Why would we have comment about the arrest of an individual? Because he was an employee, more than 30 years ago, of one of the camps we run (that have had thousands of employees over the years)? I don’t think that requires comment on our part. We are not even a party anymore to any lawsuit filed against the accused, as I understand it. The suit of the accuser who included Camp Agudah in his action (John Doe #1) has been dismissed (without prejudice, I believe, so it can still be refiled, but hasn’t been)." [On Canonist, via Orthomom]
Let's help Avi out. He asks: "Why would we have comment about the arrest of an individual?"

1 - Because he was an employee, more than 30 years ago, of one of the camps you run! (Credit Avi Shafran himself for that one)

2 - Because men closly associated with your organization have been running interference for him for 25 years.

3 - Because as an organization, Agudah's takes it upon itself to comment on almost everything that happens in the (right wing) Jewish world. Blogs, for example, were on your agenda at the recent convention. In the past, Agudah has politely ordered schools to participate or to ignore various rallies and campaigns. You make your thoughts known about various acts of legistlation and the position of various rabbis from across the Jewish spectrum. And so on. Why would such a chatty and meddling organization suddenly go silent?

4 - In the past, you, as an individual have published fiery condemnantions of Conservative Judaism, feminism, and religious pluralism. You've had 23 letters published in the New York Times, many of them filled with indignation. And your work on Cross Currents, the worst blog in the world, ranges from attacks on homosexuals to liberals to the media. But now, when a child molester who has enjoyed the protection of Agudah Rabbis is caught in your own back yard, the cat finally catches your famously flapping tounge? Now, the blood pressure medicine begins to work?

I call BS Avi. And your abdiciation of responsibilty here does more to explain the decline in deference for your organization and the Rabbis it represents than do the scribblings of any blogger.

If you agree, please send this post to Avi with my greetings.


Last year, I reported that Agudah was working with the Catholic Church to undermine a NY State law which would require parochial schools to report abusive teachers. And at the height of the Lanner scandal, Avi Shafran argued against the creation of a centralized body to deal with the problem of sexual abuse in schools. He said: [Complainants would be encouraged to] “go to the rebbe or community rabbi” on an individual basis. And when that happened during the Kolko case, the people who went to Kolko's boss on an "individual basis" were marginilized, ignored, humiliated and scorned.

Let's get the drum beating: I am calling right now for the resignation of Zweibal, the chief Rabbi of Agudah, and his hack PR flack Avi Shafran. If you agree, please post this on your blogs, and your bulliten boards and distribute it via email to anyone who cares about children.

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