Saturday, September 30, 2006

Message from the Son-In-Law of Rabbi Eliezer Eisgrau

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Rabbi Eliezer Eisgrau

Message from the Son-In-Law of Rabbi Eliezer Eisgrau
For a long time, I have been subject to intimidation through my Rabbis and Rabbis who know me because I refuse to tell my wife to shut up. They have been pressured to pressure me. Some of them gave into pressure. I don't have a relationship with some of them anymore. It's hard to find a rabbi with both a strong backbone and competence, but they are out there.

When molesters are molesting and their friends are protecting them, they believe in their own power to dominate the victim. That's part of their pathology. But occasionally they miscalculate. They run into people who can't be bought off or intimidated. They run into people who do not negotiate with terrorists. They quickly go from the all-controlling to people who have limited possibilities when faced with victims who don't play the victim forever. Then they try to control the victim harder. They threaten and ostracize and do vicious things. They may have started out as religious, but they end up conspirators.
  • How can they be such hypocrites?
  • Are they so full of their own power-trip that they are in denial?
  • Are their hearts hardened like Pharoah?
  • Do the molesters and their protectors know the extent of their sins?
  • Are they sorry?
  • Do they even doubt themselves ever as normal human beings do?
I don't care. It's not my job to figure them out. They won't get any mercy from me.

These molesters in the religious community will preserve themselves over all else. They don't have the ability to sacrifice for what is right, and neither do their Rabbis and friends in politics. They spend their days in anger and fear and panic. They are bluffing when they try to intimidate. Their ability to control is largely an illusion. Their arms only stretch so far. The conspiracy never can maintain itself. Ask the Catholic Church. Ask Woodward and Bernstein. People who go on the record and do the right thing are always around to talk about it later, and the perpetrators end up disgraced and above all, it's the conspiracy that ends up being the biggest sin.

The people in Baltimore whose names you can find on the blogs, who tried to intimidate my wife and me, did not calculate that we could possibility be stronger than they are. But our histories have made us very strong. We've been through more than they have. There are more names and more stories. There is more information that they don't want to get out. And I have it written down. And it will come out. And any new stunt they try and pull against me will also by publicized.

As victims of abuse, we have many options and choices and weapons. We will not back down and we hold many cards. We are sleeper cells waiting for the right time to fight. With patience and strength and intelligence we will prevail. The ultimate justice comes from God and he's on our side. The Torah and the Prophets rail against corruption and in the end of days, the evil people will not be able to camouflage themselves within the good people. So sayeth the Prophets. The Baltimore establishment made an Orphan out of my wife. God does not excuse that.

Embolden yourselves. Do not stay silent. Surround yourself with support. It's your turn. Write down the names and dates and stories and keep them. This is part of your arsenal. Find organizations, lawyers, police, websites, rabbis, politicians, leaders and donors. Find yourself a synagogue with decent and upstanding people who don't fall for their tricks. They might not be the same crowd you are used to, but there is only one hashgafa, the hashgafa of truth, the hashgafa of integrity. This is the hashgafa of Isaiah. This is the hashgafa of the Torah.

They will do anything to keep you from talking, but once you talk they can't do anything, and once you're beyond their web of influence, they can't do anything. Wait for the right time. And do not fear. It's their turn to be afraid.

- Husband of Daughter of Eisgrau
FYI - You might be interested in reading this too: Bullying, Intimidation, Extortion Attempts - Advocating for Survivors of Sexual Violence

Friday, September 29, 2006

Displaced Anger and Denial - Breaking the Taboo of Silence in 5767

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A key component of Jewish high holiday season is to ask for forgiveness from anyone one may have wronged during the previous year. To whatever extent possible, we want to begin the year with a clean slate -- and without anyone harboring a grudge against us. One should also be quick to forgive those who have wronged him or her.
Keeping that in mind I want to talk about those who enable alleged and convicted sex offenders.

I often wondered if those who verbally attack survivors and victim advocates are using a form of the defense mechanisms called Displaced Anger and Denial?

It's so much easier to attack someone who is breaking the taboo of silence then it is to own up to the truth. I wonder how long it will take our communities to accept the truth. We have a serious problem. We can no longer ignore it. With the thanks of people like Rabbi Yosef Blau, Luke Ford, Jewish Whistleblower, Vicki Polin and The Awareness Center -- it is no longer a secret. What do we do next? The answer is education. I don't mean people who have been a part of the problem doing the education. I'm saying we need to have those who have worked in the field for many years to step in and do educational programming in our schools, yeshivas and synogogues. I've been reading about The Awareness Center's certification program for rabbis and community leaders. I know they need the funding to get the program off the ground. I'm suggesting that everyone who reads this blog to donate $18.00 to The Awareness Center so we can really start to see change. They are a non-profit organization with tax exempt status. Send checks to:

The Awareness Center, Inc.
P.O. Box 65273
Baltimore, MD 21209

I also want to ask if there is a prayer everyone can say to make 5767 a better year for our children, young adults and everyone else who may be sexually violated?

Is there a prayer we can all say to make it easier for those who are already struggling with their survivorhood?

If anyone knows, please post them here.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Cantor Robert Shapiro Ordered To Pay $8.4M

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Cantor to cough up $8.4M for sex abuse

By O’Ryan Johnson
Friday, September 15, 2006

The former cantor of a Randolph temple who sexually abused a mentally retarded woman for nearly two years must pay $8.4 million to her family, under a judgment filed against him yesterday in Norfolk Civil Court.
“For the family it’s a vindication that they really didn’t get in the criminal proceedings,” said their attorney, Adam Satin, with Lubin & Meyer, P.C.
Robert D. Shapiro, 73, pleaded guilty to 14 counts of indecent assault and battery on a mentally retarded person in 2005, but cut a deal and managed to avoid jail time. He was sentenced to a year of house arrest and 10 years probation.
Satin said the woman Shapiro admitted to abusing was in her late 20s, but had the mental functioning of a 5- to 7-year-old child. Satin said Shapiro, due to his friendship with the family and his status in the temple, was the only person outside her family who was allowed to see her unsupervised.
“He was truly a trusted friend,” Satin said. “He was not just a religious leader. To have that come to light just devastated them.”
The abuse happened between 2001 and 2003 in Shapiro’s car, the woman’s home, and the Randolph temple, Satin said. She relives the abuse each time something reminds her of Shapiro, whether it’s a car similar to his or an ice cream cone like ones Shapiro bought her.
“Her therapist said she is not equipped to handle the trauma,” Satin said. “When she sees a trigger . . . she would think and relive it as though it’s happening to her for the first time.”

Does Rabbis Saul Berman, Joseph Telushkin, Tirzah Firestone and Psychiatrist, Stephen Marmer have the courage to do Teshuva?

Tis the season for doing Teshuva
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Will Mordechai Gafni enablers, Rabbi Saul Berman, Joseph Telushkin, Arthur Green and Psychiatrist, Stephen Marmer, M.D. and the rest of the Berman gang -- pick of the phone, make a few telephone calls with their personal appologies to the three past survivors of Rabbi Mordechai Gafni, Rabbi Yosef Blau, Vicki Polin and the board of directors at The Awareness Center?

Let's not forget that Rabbi Saul Berman was the brains behind the attempted campaign to silence survivors!

As of today Berman's documents continue to circulate in his attempt to destroy The Awareness Center (the only Jewish organization that advocates for the rights of survivors of sex crimes). Saul has never made any attempt to remove these documents from circulation or made a public statement to correct the record.
Rarely does the abuser or the enablers take responsibility for what occured. A formal insincere apology need not be taken seriously. It is often part of a manipulation to reverse things and make the survivor feel guilty. Individual situations may not lend themseves to to a general answer. -- Rabbi Yosef Blau
The Gang:
  1. Metuka Benjamin (Director of Education, Stephen S. Wise Temple)
  2. Rabbi Phyllis Berman (Former Director Elat Chayyim summer program)
  3. Rabbi Saul Berman (
  4. Davidovich (Executive Producer, Israel Channel 2 Television)
  5. Rabbi Tirzah Firestone (Congregation Nevei Kodesh)
  6. Rabbi Shefa Gold (Director C-Deep, composer and teacher)
  7. Rabbi Arthur Green (Dean, Hebrew College Rabbinical School)
  8. Rabbi Eli Herscher (Stephen S. Wise Synagogue)
  9. Arthur Kurzweil (former Director, Elat Chayyim, Jewish Book Club)
  10. Avraham Leader (Leader Minyan, Bayit Chadash)
  11. Stephen Marmer, M.D. (Psychiatrist, UCLA Medical School)
  12. Jacob Ner-David (Board Chair, Bayit Chadash)
  13. Peter Pitzele (Ph.D., Bibliodrama Institute)
  14. Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi (Rabbinic Chair, Aleph Don Seeman, Ph.D. Emory University)
  15. Rabbi Joseph Telushkin (author, Jewish Literacy and Jewish Wisdom)
  16. Rabbi David Zaslow (Havurah Shir Hadash) Noam Zion (Hartman Institute)

Yom Kippur: Where Do Alleged And Convicted Sex Offenders Daven (Pray)?

Rarely does the abuser or the enablers take responsibility for what occured. A formal insincere apology need not be taken seriously. It is often part of a manipulation to reverse things and make the survivor feel guilty. -- Rabbi Yosef Blau
Yom Kippur is the Jewish day of repentance (teshuva), considered to be the holiest and most solemn day of the year. Its central theme is atonement and reconciliation. Many survivors wonder about the prayers said by alleged and convicted sex offenders. Can they really do teshuva?
  • The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.Will Rabbi Mordechai Gafni daven at a residential treatment center for sex offenders? Will 5767 be the year he recreates himself as a "cured" rapist (with a new name and identity)? Or will it be the year that his survivors will finally see justice? Three of whom have been waiting since the 1980's.

  • The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors. Will the prayers of the survivors of Rabbi Avrohom Mondrowitz's prayers be heard by God this year? Will they finally see justice? They have only been waiting since 1984.
  • The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors. Will confessed child rapist - Rabbi BenZion Sobel be davening with his friends at Migdal Ohr?
  • The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors. The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors. Will alleged child molester - Rabbi Eliezer Eisgrau and his buddy alleged sex offender - Rabbi Yaakov Menken daven in Rabbi Yaakov Hopfer's shul? Will they both continue to be protected by Rabbis Heinemann, Hopfer and Neuberger in 5767? How much longer will it take the community of Baltimore to wake up and "just say NO" to enabling sex offenders?

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Poll: Rabbis believe Internet hurts religion

The rabbis were also asked whether they believe that the media should report on crimes committed by rabbis. While all Reform and Conservative rabbis replied positively to the question, only 23 percent of haredi rabbis and 59 percent of national-religious rabbis gave a positive reply.
Research conducted by Holon Academic Institute of Technology reveals that many Israeli rabbis think media hurts religious values. Fifth of haredi rabbis are connected to Internet, while half don't read daily papers. However, all rabbis endorse freedom of speech, press
by Neta Sela
Ynetnews, Israel
September 26, 2006

A great majority of the rabbis in Israel – 87 percent of the haredi rabbis and 82 percent of the national-religious rabbis – believe that the Internet hurts religious values. Almost half of the non-Orthodox rabbis, 47 percent, share this opinion, a research conducted by Dr. Yoel Cohen of the Holon Academic Institute of Technology on rabbis' stances' towards the mass media in Israel revealed.

The survey included more than 300 rabbis of all religious stripes – haredi, national-religious, Conservative and Reform rabbis. The study was presented at a recent international conference on media, religion and culture that was held in Sweden.

The research showed that 95 percent of Orthodox rabbis believe that the press significantly hurts religious values, while only 31 of the non-Orthodox rabbis supported this claim. Similar data were found regarding the rabbis' stance towards radio, cinema and theater.

According to the study, 74 percent of haredi rabbis and 87 of national-religious rabbis have a computer at home, although only 22 percent of the Orthodox rabbis and 56 percent of the national-religious rabbis are hooked to the Internet.

The research also examined the rabbis' exposure to the daily newspapers, and revealed that half of the haredi rabbis do not read a daily paper.

The rabbis were also asked whether they believe that the media should report on crimes committed by rabbis. While all Reform and Conservative rabbis replied positively to the question, only 23 percent of haredi rabbis and 59 percent of national-religious rabbis gave a positive reply.

Most of the rabbis said they support the public's right to know: 97 percent of Reform and Conservative rabbis, 77 percent of the national-religious rabbis, 45 percent of haredi-national rabbis and 41 percent of haredi rabbis, agreed "to a large extent" or to a "very large extent" with the public's right to know.

The freedom of the press was also largely endorsed among the rabbis, although to a lesser extent. Rabbis born in Anglo-Saxon countries tended to acknowledge this right more than rabbis from other countries.

History of Child Abuse, Neglect and Sexual Abuse/Assault

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The Awareness Center, Inc. has been revising our page on the History of Child Abuse, Neglect and Sexual Abuse/Assault page. The page is still under construction

The information on this page includes some background history, information on various laws, cases in Jewish communities; and some historical books and articles.

If you know of any information that you believe should be included on the list that is missing, please forward to Vicki Polin
. I've been told that soon the page will also be available in a pdf format to make it easier to print out.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Repenting Before God - Answers for Jewish Survivors of Incest and other forms of childhood sexual abuse.

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Many survivors of childhood sexual abuse have many questions regarding Teshuva (repenting). There's a converstation going on here that may be of interest to others.

Rabbi Yosef Blau posted the following statement that I thought other survivors would find helpful. For more information on this the topic of Teshuva contact your local rabbi or post your questions here and hopefully we can help you find an answer.
The concept is that if a sin is between two humans then repenting before God is insufficient. This is where the notion of apologizing comes in, together with redressing the damage caused (aplicable in monitary matters). If the repentent is sincere and the other party refuses to accept the apology after three unsuccessful attempts it is no longer neccessary to further apologize.

Applying it to an abusive parent can be complicated . Rarely does the abuser or the enablers take responsibility for what occured. A formal insincere apology need not be taken seriously. It is often part of a manipulation to reverse things and make the survivor feel guilty. Individual situations may not lend themseves to to a general answer.

Yosef Blau

Barbara Streisand Sings Avinu Malkeinu

Higher Ground
You have to scroll down to song #12 to hear a preview on this web page if the following links don't work
Barbra Streisand sings Avinu Malkeinu

12. Avinu Malkeinu Window Media Player - Listen RealOne Player - Listen

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Tashlich: Perspective of an Incest Survivor - By Mara bat Mara

© (2006) By Mara bat Mara

My way of dealing with the high holidays is not to do them. I needed to get away from where I live so I went shopping. On the way back I saw people doing tashlich (throwing their sins away in a river). I got so angry at them. I kept thinking what hypocrites they were. I wondered how many of them abused their children in the past or currently are offending them?

If the statistics are correct one out of ever 4 girls and one out of every 5 boys are being molested this yom tovim (holiday).

Do these parents really believe they can throw away their sins of molesting their children? Or their friends children?

Do they really believe they can throw away their sins of standing idly by doing nothing when they suspect a child is being abused or neglected?

What about all the rabbis who help to cover up these crimes? Do they think they can just toss their sins away too?

I just found this list. I was wondering what kind of bread does a child molester throw into the river? Or what about a rabbi who helped to cover up this type of criminal behavior?
"Occasionally people ask what kind of bread crumbs should be thrown," the e-mail reads. "Here are some suggestion for breads, which may be most appropriate for specific sins and misbehaviors:
For ordinary sins..................White Bread

For complex sins..................Multigrain

For twisted sins.........................Pretzels

For sins of indecision...................Waffles

For sins committed in haste......Matzah

For sins of chutzpah..............Fresh Bread

For substance abuse......Stoned Wheat..."

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Happy New Year? by Tali Zahara

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L'Shanah Tovah
© (5767) by Tali Zahara

Happy New Year is what I should be saying, but I can't. I am so angered and sickened by the way our rabbis and community leaders have been handling cases of sexual abuse I don't want to have anything to do with Judaism any more. I can't imagine myself entering my shul to daven.

My rabbi left a message on my voice mail inviting me to come to his home for a meal. A few years ago I would have jumped at the chance. I would have felt so honored. This year I feel completely different. I'm having an extremely difficult time wanting to do anything related to being a Jew. I no longer say my daily prayers. It's very seldom I say bracha's prior to eating or doing anything.

I hate to tell you how many times in the past I went to my rabbi and other rabbis looking for help. I hate to tell you how many times a rabbi told me they did not believe me that I was sexually abused as a child. I'm sick and tired of feeling that our rabbis care more about protecting sex offenders or their own assets then they do about helping those of us who have been sexually victimized. I'm tired of the ignorance. I can't even imagine walking into my shul. I can't imagine davening with people I no longer can connect with. I think I will feel better if I just go camping.

Friday, September 22, 2006

My Mom is Different Available for Free Download - For children of Parents who have a dissociative disorder

My Mom is Different Available for Free Download

[cover] My Mom is Different by Deborah Sessions -- a children's book about a parent with Multiple Personality Disorder -- is available for free download in Adobe Acrobat format.

Always positive, My Mom is Different reinforces the idea that, even with the difficulties that dissociation may bring, a family with a multiple parent can be loving, supportive, and nurturing, and problems can be overcome.

My Mom is Different also contains lovely illustrations by Susan Chalkley.

Download the book here. (The file is 21.4 Mb, and will take approximately 1-2 hours to download over a 56.6 Kb dial-up connection, or about 15 minutes over DSL or cable modem).

Is Ken Wilber Treating Rabbi Mordechai Gafni for his "sickness"?

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Back on May 17th blogger Mobius reporterd:
The following was written by Ken Wilber, one of Gafni’s friends and colleagues, on his weblog. Wilber apparently intends to treat Gafni for his “sickness,” and seems to expect his eventual return to teaching.
On Tuesday, May 9th, 2006, three women from Bayit Chadash, a spiritual community in Israel headed by Rabbi Marc Gafni, filed complaints of sexual misconduct against Gafni with the police. Upon reviewing relevant testimony, the steering committee of Bayit Chadash decided to remove Marc Gafni from the Bayit Chadash staff.

Back in the 1980's Mordechai Winiarz sexually abuse two very young teenage girls (Secoya and Judy). There was an attempted assault on a 19 year old woman. We keep hearing rumors of other women who were sexually manipulated by Winiarz/Gafni for over 20 years. Don't you think it's time for Marc Gafni to face up to his crimes and return to Israel?

Remember Mordechai Gafni is an extremely manipulative individual. He was able to get his ex-wife to lie about their marriage.
"By early August of 2004 I demanded and received a divorce. . . Soon thereafter, Mordechai came "under attack" by his enemies in America. In the fall of 2004, articles about his sexual misconduct and questionable reputation came out in America and Israel. He begged me to keep our divorce a secret until all of this bad press died down. I reluctantly agreed – mostly because I believed that the work that was going on at Bayit Chadash was valuable and I did not want to jeopardize it. Mordechai lied to the reporters and all who asked, saying that we were still married. He also lied to the Rabbinic supporters who helped wage a campaign to protect him. Mordechai refused to publicly tell the truth about our divorce until Pesach of 2005 (March/April). I am ashamed to admit that I was manipulated into also remaining silent and covering up to protect him, as I had done myriad times during our marriage.

Cantor Howard Nevison and The Judge

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Judge has cantor tour jail after getting probation

By Margaret Gibbons
Ardmore Main Line Life, PA
September 21, 2006

A renowned New York City cantor, who once sang for the Pope, Tuesday received a probationary sentence for sexually assaulting his young Lower Merion nephew in the mid-1990s.

But as an unusual condition of his probation, 65-year-old Howard Nevison first had to tour the Montgomery County prison in Lower Providence Tuesday afternoon before returning home.

"If you ever come back on a violation, that is exactly where you are going to go," said Montgomery County Judge Paul W. Tressler.

Explaining he was limited by the law and justice and not guided by either mercy or revenge, the judge sentenced the unapologetic Nevison to 12 years of probation and fined him $4,500.

Another condition of his probation is that Nevison is to have no contact with or be involved in teaching children under the age of 12.

Nevison in June entered an Alford plea to misdemeanor charges of indecent assault, simple assault, terroristic threats, corruption of a minor and endangering the welfare of a child.

Under an Alford plea, Nevison admitted that the prosecution could prove the case against him but that he disputed the factual allegations on which the charges were based.

In return for that guilty plea, the prosecution dropped the two more serious felony charges of involuntarily deviate sexual intercourse that initially had been filed against Nevison, the former long-time cantor at New York's Temple Emanu-El synagogue.

The fact that Nevison had only pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges and had been a "perfect citizen" other than for his arrest on these sexual misconduct charges call for a probationary sentence under state sentencing guidelines, the judge explained.

Nevison, who in the sentencing hearing said he had "compassion" for his nephew but never apologized, declined comment on his sentence.

Instead, a crowd of some 40 family members and supporters who had traveled from New York and New Jersey surrounded Nevison as he left the courtroom, swearing at reporters who tried to ask him questions.

"We are gratified Mr. Nevison is walking out of here today with a sentence of probation," said defense attorney Ralph Jacobs.

First Assistant District Attorney Risa Vetri Ferman, who had requested some type of prison sentence, admitted that the guilty plea to misdemeanor charges ties the judge's hands. Her office agreed to the guilty plea to spare the nephew, who is now 17, from having to testify at trial to incidents that began when he was just three years old, she explained. At that time, the family was informed that Nevison might never serve any jail time for the offenses, she said.

After meeting with the family after the sentencing, Ferman said that the family asked her to relate to reporters that they were "thrilled that they can finally put this behind them."

"The young man has lived with this for 14 years," she said.

"What the family views as a victory is that, no matter how Howard Nevison tries to disguise it, he pleaded guilty to being a child molester," said Ferman. "He can dance around it and try and save face as much as possible but Howard Nevison is a convicted child molester."

Two different views of Nevison emerged during the hearing.

The 10 supporters and family members who testified in Nevison's behalf described him as a kind, gentle, decent man.

"His voice stirred the soul in worship," testified Rabbi Ronald Sobel, the former pastor of the Temple Emanu-El synagogue.

The victim had a different recollection of that voice.

"He told me in his deep voice that if I told anyone, he would kill me," the youth recalled.

Initially, the boy said, he had contemplated suicide but ultimately decided he had too much to live for.

"I fought the beast and I won," the victim testified. "I exposed him for the monster he is. Uncle Howard is a coward on every level."

The charges against Nevison stem from alleged incidents of sexual abuse of his nephew when Nevison visited the home of the boy's family for holidays and other family functions between 1993 and 1997 when the boy was between the ages of four and eight.

County and township law enforcement officers first learned of the alleged abuse in November 1998 but no charges were brought at that time because the boy was terrified to testify against his uncle, said county District Attorney Bruce L. Castor Jr. when announcing Nevison's arrest.

Since that time, the boy has received psychiatric counseling and, in the fall of 2001, the boy's parents and psychiatrist advised authorities that the boy was now prepared to testify against Nevison.

The boy subsequently testified against Nevison at Nevison's preliminary hearing in April 2002 before District Justice Henry Schireson. Schireson ruled that there was sufficient evidence to hold Nevison for trial.

The trial was delayed as a result of pre-trial skirmishes, particularly concerning the issue as to whether Nevison's two brothers would be allowed to testify at the trial that Nevison allegedly sexually abused them when they were boys although no criminal charges were filed against Nevison.

The purpose of having Nevison's two brothers testify, according to an initial filing by the prosecution, was to show that Nevison has a pattern of "violent, forceful and intimidating sodomy of young relatives" under the age of 10.

Tressler in June 2003 ruled that the pair's testimony would be permitted.

Nevison's defense lawyers appealed that ruling to the state Superior Court, which overturned Tressler's decision. The state Supreme Court declined the prosecution's request to hear the issue.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Mistreated children more likely to smoke, drink, fight and suffer from depression as adolescents

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University of North Carolina (School of Publich Health)
September 05, 2006

Children who are left home alone, physically neglected, physically assaulted or sexually abused are more likely to smoke cigarettes or marijuana, drink alcohol, abuse inhalants and be depressed or violent when they reach adolescence, according to a study by researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Public Health.

The study found that the most common form of maltreatment was leaving a child home alone, with two out of five respondents (41.5 percent) reporting that their parents or other adult caregivers left them home alone at least once when an adult should have been with them. The researchers hope the finding raises more concern about the link between neglectful parenting and future health.

“Although child neglect is the most common type of maltreatment, it receives much less attention than physical or sexual abuse,” said Dr. Jon Hussey, research assistant professor of maternal and child health at the UNC School of Public Health and a fellow at the Carolina Population Center. “However, the associations between child neglect and adolescent health risks were largely comparable to those found for child abuse.”

The study, published in the September 2006 issue of the journal Pediatrics, examines the association between maltreatment of children and their state of health when they reach adolescence. Using data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health, researchers found that supervision neglect, physical assault, physical neglect and contact sexual abuse before the sixth grade were all associated with a number of major adolescent health risks. Each type of maltreatment was associated with eight or more of 10 adolescent health risks, including drug, cigarette and alcohol use; violence; and depression.

More than one in four children (28.4 percent) reported physical assault, defined as being slapped, hit or kicked by a parent or other adult caregiver. The third most prevalent type of maltreatment was physical neglect, where a parent or caregiver did not meet a child’s basic needs, such as keeping him/her clean, fed and adequately clothed. Finally, by the time they entered sixth grade, about one in 25 (4.5 percent) said they had been victims of contact sexual abuse committed by a parent or other adult caregiver.

“Because many behaviors that influence adult health are initiated and established in adolescence, understanding how childhood experiences influence these behaviors will help prevention and treatment efforts,” Hussey said. “Children and adolescents stand a better chance of growing up to become healthy adults if we can intervene early and effectively.”

Co-authors include Dr. Jonathan B. Kotch, a UNC professor of maternal and child health, and Dr. Jen Jen Chang, assistant professor of community health in epidemiology at the Saint Louis University School of Public Health.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Eighth allegation of sexual assault filed against Israeli President

By Roni Singer-Heruti, Haaretz Correspondent
September 21, 2006

An eighth has been filed against President Moshe Katsav accusing him of sexual assault, it was revealed on Wednesday.

Channel 2 broadcast on Wednesday the testimony of one of the complainants, who has accused Katsav of assaulting her while she worked for him during his tenure as a cabinet ministera few years ago. She said the President sexually harassed her repeatedly, and tried to touch her inappropriately.

Her complaint, the second to have been filed, is one of the central allegations being considered by the investigative team into the matter. Her testimony was revealed some two-and-a-half months ago in Haaretz, along with the testimonies of four other complainants.

Katsav's attorney Zion Amir called the second complainant's testimony "a shocking story bordering on fantasy."

"The evidence that we have in our hands completely disproves this woman's testimony," he said, adding, "she was fired from her job and swore to seek revenge."

The team investigating President Moshe Katsav for alleged rape and other charges presented its intermim findings to Attorney General Menachem Mazuz on Tuesday.

Investigators believe the material collected so far contains enough evidence for at least three charges in the affair.

Based on the evidence it appears highly likely that at the end of the investigation, the team will recommend indicting Katsav apparently on three charges.

While the evidence is strong regarding the charges of sexual harassment, in the other matters, improper conduct in the granting of pardons and wiretapping of President's Residence employees, more evidence is needed. But police sources said there is some evidence on which to base these charges.

Most of the investigation, which started about two months ago, has been completed, and sources close to the investigation said the probe could end within a few weeks after which a decision could be made on an indictment. Contrary to rumors over the past few days, it was not decided in the meeting to hold a confrontation between the former staff member known as A. who claimed Katsav raped her, and the president.

Investigators said it would be enough for Katsav to take a polygraph test to prove his version of events.

At the end of Tuesday's meeting attended by State Prosecutor Eran Shendar, his assistant Shuki Lamberger, other senior Justice Ministry officials, and the head of the police investigation, Brigadier General Yoav Segelovitch, Mazuz instructed the investigators to requestion a number of individuals. Katsav is not expected to be questioned again.

Haaretz has also learned that the detectives on the case are expected to question individuals who have not yet given testimony next week. The team has been instructed to complete the investigation as soon as possible due to Mazuz's decision not to publish an interim report. Mazuz is expected to render a decision in two to three months.

Where is Rabbi Mordechai Gafni?

Call To Action: Locating Rabbi Mordechai Gafni and His Return To Israel
(aka: Marc Gafni, Mark Gafni, Marc Winiarz, Mordechai Winiarz, Mordechai Winyarz)

What Name Is He Going By Now?

Back in May, 2006 new allegations were made against confessed child molester Rabbi Mordechai Gafni . This time the allegations were made by three twenty-year-old women who filed a complaint with the police in Haifa (Israel). The new claims were of professional sexual misconduct. The alleged offenses occurred during Torah lessons given by Gafni.

Immediately after the charges were filed Rabbi Mordechai Gafni confessed and then fled Israel for the United States. He first landed in Boston, MA, where it is believed he stayed with one of his many female friends. There were rumors that soon after arriving in Boston he continued on to Boulder, CO and stayed with a colleague and then moved on to Utah. It is unknown where he is today. It is believed that he is in hiding and will attempt to reinvent himself again as he did back in the 1980's after the first allegations were made against him of child molestation.

The Awareness Center, Inc. is seeking justice for all of the survivors of Rabbi Mordechai Winiarz (past and present). If you have any information regarding the current location of Rabbi Marc Gafni please notify The Awareness Center, Inc. at once.

The Awareness Center, Inc.

e-mail: Vicki Polin

Publicizing Scandals Involving Haredi Rabbis

From: JWB

<>"Only a quarter of haredi rabbis favor publicizing scandals involving their peers, but three-quarters admit muckraking is an effective deterrent."

Rabbis said they were concerned that investigative reports on the misdoings of rabbis would desecrate God's name, said Dr. Yoel Cohen, of the Holon Institute of Technology, who conducted the study. "Generally speaking, religious people misunderstand the media. They think media has an ideological agenda when in reality it is driven by commercial concerns."

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Survey: Rabbis wary of muckraking media
By Matthew Wagner
Jerusalem Post
September 19, 2006

Only a quarter of haredi rabbis favor publicizing scandals involving their peers, but three-quarters admit muckraking is an effective deterrent, according to a survey funded by the Lipshitz Religious Education College.

Rabbis said they were concerned that investigative reports on the misdoings of rabbis would desecrate God's name, said Dr. Yoel Cohen, of the Holon Institute of Technology, who conducted the study.

"Generally speaking, religious people misunderstand the media. They think media has an ideological agenda when in reality it is driven by commercial concerns." Over the past several months Cohen surveyed 300 haredi, national religious and non-Orthodox rabbis. Those surveyed were asked to express their opinions on freedom of the press, the public's right to know, and the impact of the media on people of faith.

In his survey, Cohen differentiated between "mainstream" national religious rabbis and "hardalim", a hybrid term that combines haredi and "leumi," or nationalist. The term refers to the more conservative, mostly younger, settlement rabbis who combine a very strict interpretation of Jewish law with religious Zionism.

"I found huge differences between mainstream rabbis and hardalim. Hardal rabbis are very similar to haredim in their outlook," said Cohen.

"They tend to be more suspicious of a free press and less liberal." Cohen found that rabbis born in Arabic countries were the most conservative on issues such as freedom of the press, the impact of the media on religious values, and the conflict between media and religion.

For instance, only 17 percent of rabbis born in Arabic countries said they agreed with the Western principle protecting the public's right to know.

In contrast, 61% of Israelis and 83% of Anglo-Saxons from all streams of Judaism said they favored the principle.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

This is Outragous - Howard Nevison ONLY Gets Probation

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Cantor placed on probation in assaults on young boy

Associated Press
Centre Daily Times, PA
September 19, 2006

NORRISTOWN, Pa. - The former cantor of a prominent New York City synagogue was placed on probation in connection with alleged sexual assaults on a young boy during the 1990s in Lower Merion Township.

Montgomery County Court Judge Paul W. Tressler, however, on Tuesday ordered Howard Nevison to visit a New York prison to get a clear understanding of what awaits him should he violate his 12-year probation.

Nevison, 65, the popular cantor at the 10,000-member Temple Emanu-El on Manhattan's Upper East Side, was ordered to have no contact with children under 12.

Tressler said probation was a standard sentence for a person without a prior criminal offense. He said Nevison had been "a perfect citizen" before the criminal case and posed little threat to the community.

After four years of fighting the charges, Nevison entered an "Alford plea" in June to five misdemeanor charges, meaning he did not admit any wrongdoing but acknowledged that prosecutors would likely win conviction at trial.

He entered the plea to charges of indecent assault, simple assault, terroristic threats, corruption of minors and endangering the welfare of a child. A felony charge of aggravated indecent sexual intercourse was dropped by prosecutors as part of the plea agreement.

The courtroom was packed with supporters of the cantor, including the temple's senior rabbi, Ronald Sobel. Nevison was put on leave from the Reform synagogue in 2003.

Authorities said the attacks began when the boy was 3 and continued until he was 7 years old. Two other men have served time for sexually assaults on the same boy.

The youth, now 17, called Nevison "a coward" who robbed him of his trust and happiness as a child. "As a cantor in the Jewish religion, you should know that what you did will not sit well with God," he testified.

Nevison said that he had "compassion" for the boy but did not apologize in court.

Unorthodox Jew Blog Going Into Retirement?

I was just made aware that the Unorthodox Jew (UOJ) will be retiring.

I remember the first time UOJ sent me an e-mail regarding the Kolko case. This was prior to the famous New York Magazine article. I was apprehensive about what he was doing. He was a virtual unknown entity at the time. I had no idea if what he was saying for real or not.

As time progressed UOJ proved himself. He was definately doing what he could to advocate for those who were sexually victimized by Rabbi Yehuda Kolko.

UOJ definately is a HERO! Besides exposing the Kolko case, UOJ was instrumental in exposing the case of Rabbi Moshe Eiseman and advocating for him to be kicked out of Ner Israel. I don't think anyone else could have been so successful.

I wish there was a way of talking UOJ out of his retirement, yet I totally do understand his need to leave. This kind of work is extremely demanding, frustrating and sickening. UOJ will definately be missed. He is definately someone who deserves everyone's upmost respect. If he entered a room, he would definately be someone I would stand up for.

I just found the following comment on another blog that talks about UOJ's retirement, which you can find below?

The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors. Rabbi Yosef Blau on UOJ
UOJ brought to the attention of the broader public the problem of sexual abuse, particularly from rabbis and teachers, in the Orthodox community. The rabbinical leadership has not been effective in dealing with serious accusations in the past. What is being done to protect the young and the vulnerable.

I agree that anonymous postings are a license for irresponsibility. That is no excuse for denying a real issue and for not developing serious mechanisms to prevent further abuse. Now that the establishment does not have to show that they are not responding to UOJ will they acknowledge that our community is not immune to a scourge that exists in all societies.

Will the response be again that there are no two witnesses to the abuse. Or that the boys or girls were not halakhicly minors. Anyone in contact with survivors of abuse is aware that they rarely get any support when they complain to rabbis. How many teachers have been fired from one school only to be hired by another. The true reason that they were let go was not revealed because the fellow needs to make a living and the scandal will hurt his family. Proper considerations but where is the concern for new victims and their families?

I am troubled by the gloating that perhaps would be in place if the real crisis had been resolved. The true losers are all of us as we allow the existing chillul hashem to continue.

Yosef Blau (my real name)

Update on the Case of Ephraim Ohana - Domestic Violence

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Click here for information about:
Orthodox Jew fights for her right to divorce
by Kelsey Volkmann, The Examiner
Baltimore Examiner
September 18, 2006

BALTIMORE - More than one year has passed since Cynthia Ohana divorced her husband, who was convicted of abusing her, but she still cannot date, remarry or move on with her life.

Ephraim Ohana, a student at the University of Baltimore School of Law, has refused to grant Cynthia Ohana, of Baltimore, a Jewish divorce, or a “get,” which, according to Orthodox Jews, is required to terminate the marriage.

“It’s a life sentence,” Cynthia Ohana said in a telephone interview with The Examiner on Sunday.

“It’s a continuation of abuse, the last bastion of abuse, where he’s got control.”

Cynthia Ohana and other Jewish community members will demonstrate today outside of the law school to call for Ephraim Ohana’s consent to a Jewish divorce after 18 years of marriage.

This is the second rally within the Orthodox Jewish community, which women advocates have criticized as being too insular when dealing with abuse against women. The first rally occurred in June outside of Ephraim Ohana’s Baltimore residence.

Baltimore City Circuit Judge Audrey Carrion found Ephraim Ohana guilty of abuse, voluntarily quitting his job to avoid paying child support, and infidelity in May 2005, according to the Jewish Coalition Against Sexual Abuse/Assault in Baltimore.

“One of the things that happens to someone who is an observant Orthodox woman is that until she gets a get, while he can remarry without giving it, what happens to these women is that they are held in a limbo state,” said Vicki Polin, executive director of the coalition’s Awareness Center.

If you go
  • What: Demonstration calling for a Baltimore man to grant a Jewish divorce
  • When: 4:30 today (September 18, 2006)
  • Where: Maryland and Mount Royal avenues, Baltimore

Monday, September 18, 2006

Update: Case of Cantor Howard Nevison

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Tomorrow (Tuesday, September 19, 2006) is the date set for the sentencing hearing for Cantor Howard Nevison.

In June, 2006 Nevison plead guilty to five counts of sexually abusing his nephew over a four-year period, Cantor Howard Nevison continues to maintain that he did nothing wrong. The boy was
between 4 and 7 years old at the time of the offenses, which include indecent assault, corruption of the morals of a minor and terroristic threats.

Thread #15 - The Secret Cases of Shmuel Juravel and Rabbi Moshe Eisemann

This is a continuation of the discussion of Thread #14

It appears that Rabbis' Heinemann, Hopfer and Neuberger were able to keep these case out of the news media.

Shmuel Juravel (AKA: Samuel Juravel) / Rabbi Moshe Eiseman (AKA: Rabbi Moshe Eisemann)

Samuel Juravel
Shmuel Juravel is the son of Rabbi Moshe Juravel who is employeed as a teacher at the Torah Institute of Baltimore.

Shmuel Juravel was indicted on March 29, 2006, on the offenses of using a computer to persuade, induce and entice a minor to engage in prostitution or other sexual activity, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 2422(b) (Count One); traveling in interstate commerce for the purpose of attempting to engage in illicit sexual conduct with a minor, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 2423(b) & (e) (Count Two); and, knowingly possessing material containing images of child pornography, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 2252A(a)(5)(B) (Count Three).

On August 10, 2006 he plead guilty to three counts of traveling to have sex with a child and use of the Internet to entice a child to engage in illegal sex acts.

Samuel Zev Juravel will spend 262 months in jail and a lifetime of supervised release. He also faces a fine to be determined by the court upon sentencing. There is no probation, no parole and no appeal. That was the plea agreement.

Excerpt from Shmuel’s court documents:
He was in Alabama to meet (Name Removed). The name on the email headings was (Name Removed), but he thought his true name was (Name Removed). (Name Removed) was introducing Juravel to two boys, ages 11, 12, or 13. Juravel said it was not sex, “it was an exploration.” His plan was for the boys to masturbate while he watched. One of the boys was supposed to have brown hair with hazel eyes and 95 pounds. The other had brown hair and brown eyes. When asked about the “j/o and porn” mentioned in the emails, Juravel advised “j/o” meant jacking off.

Juravel said he had two computers at his residence, one located in the den and the other in the master bedroom. His internet service provider was Comcast with a screen name of szjj@comcast. He advised there were some gay porn movies in his home, but no movies of children. He claimed he is not gay, but has been curious for about a year. He had a male massage in Atlanta once which “came with release,” although he had to perform the release himself. When asked “why young boys,” Juravel responded “I don’t know.” He had some sexual experiences when he was 12 - 13 years old with some male friends of the same age which consisted of mutual masturbation or “masturbation both ways.” Juravel advised he had never met (Name Removed), and said “we had an arrangement.” (Name Removed) made Juravel cut the bills, three $100 bills, in half and mail them. He gave (Name Removed) the other half at the time of the meeting. Juravel advised he brought a suitcase containing adult porn videos, magazines, and condoms. He stopped on the way and bought the condoms because he thought (Name Removed) would ask if he had them.

Rabbi Moshe Eiseman
There have been serious allegations made against Rabbi Moshe Eiseman over the last several years of molesting boys at Ner Israel Rabbinical College (Baltimore, MD). The allegations were first reported by a blogger by the name of Unorthodox Jew. These allegations have since been confirmed by various reliable rabbinic sources.

Recently there was confirmation that Rabbi Moshe Eisemann was removed from Ner Israel. The problem is that it is unknown to where he has moved to. Many people are concerned because he is STILL a danger to boys in what ever community he now resides in. The demand was that he pay restitution to all of his past victims, that he enter into residential treatment for sex offenders , that he never work in an enviroment that he has access to children, that he be monitored when ever he is out in public and that he makes a public apology.

If you have any questions regarding the allegations made against Rabbi Moshe Eiseman, please contact the administration of Ner Israel and also Rabbi Yaakov Hopfer.

Each day that goes by the Rabbi Moshe Eiseman is in hiding puts another child at risk of harm.

Those who have been sexually victimized deserve to be treated with respect and dignity by professionals who have the experience and training to work with survivors of sex crimes. It is also very helpful if survivors contact local rape crisis centers who have free legal advocates available to go with them to file police reports.

There is a realistic fear that Rabbi Eiseman will return to Russia or return to working with Russian immigrants. These communities also need to be made aware of the past allegations and that if survivors come forward that they be referred to local rape crisis centers.

Those in power at Ner Israel have a long history of covering up cases of child sex abuse.

Don't forget that those connected to Ner Israel were actively involved in covering up the case of Rabbi Matis Weinberg for over forty years. The first known case of Matis offending was when he was only sixteen years old. His first known victim was his own sibling. We can't forget that Rabbi Matis Weinberg is the beloved son of Rabbi Yaakov Weinberg (past Rosh Yeshiva/Dean of Ner Israel and Rebbitzen Chana Weinberg. Matis Weinberg is also the nephew of Rabbi Noah Weinberg of Aish HaTorah. His sister Aviva Weisbord is married to the current dean of students of Ner Israel - Rabbi Beryl Weisbord.

The goal is to prevent on more child from becoming the next victim and to ensure those who have already been sexually victimize receive help.

Ner Israel Contact Information:


Rabbi Aharon Feldman - Rosh Yeshiva (Head of the School)

Rabbi Beryl Weisbord - Dean of Students

Rabbi Sheftel Neuberger - President

Rabbi Yaakov Hopfer Contact Information:

Shearith Yisrael (Glen Ave. Shul)


410-367-9183 fax

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Ritual of transformation

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By Jessie Milligan
Fort Worth Star-Telegram
September 16, 2006

A woman enters a back room of a synagogue. It could be anywhere. Fort Worth. Houston. New York City. The tradition is ancient, and it is practiced throughout the Jewish world. She is going into a "mikvah" -- a monthly ritual bath.

She will immerse herself in a pool 4 or 5 feet deep. If she follows age-old Jewish law, she will be taking the bath to spiritually cleanse herself after the end of her monthly menstrual cycle and at the end of seven days of abstinence. The spiritual purity of conception will be assured.

Janice Rubin, 51, and Leah Lax, 50, of Houston, set out to document this ritual of transformation, and when they did, both say they became transformed.

Rubin initially had rejected the monthly immersion baths as anti-feminist.

"I used to see it as stigmatizing women as unclean," says Rubin, a photographer whose work has been published in Rolling Stone and Newsweek.

Then in the late 1990s, Rubin renewed a friendship with Leah Lax, an Orthodox Jewish woman.

Lax had written a short story about a woman who used a mikvah after sexual abuse. Lax wanted no one to see the fictional story. She hid it under her mattress. She didn't want anyone to know that she was suggesting a nontraditional use of a tradition dating to Biblical times.

"Who would marry my children if I am seen as rebellious?" asked the mother of 10.

But Lax talked about her short story with Rubin.

"I started to see the mikvah as being about transformation from one state to another," Rubin says.

As Rubin started to accept the tradition, Lax started to feel comfortable about discussing modern uses for the mikvah.

Eventually Lax would take the short story out from under the mattress and use it as part of her application to the University of Houston creative-writing program. Meanwhile, Rubin's photos became "The Mikvah Project," a touring exhibit now on view in Fort Worth, Texas, that sheds light on why modern women continue the tradition.

Lax went along when Rubin went to photograph mikvahs in Houston, Austin and Fort Worth's Congregation Ahavath Sholom. Models were used in those photographs.

"The models were all at a place of transition in their lives," Rubin says. "There is an edge of something real in the photographs."

One model had just sent her last child to college. Another was going through a divorce. Yet another was recovering from a serious illness.

"It's this incredible moment in a frenzied life where you stop completely still," Lax says. "When a person is under the water in another dimension, it is not the present, it is not the past. It's complete silence. This is a way of accessing my deepest spirituality."

Women started talking to Rubin and Lax about the mikvah.

One woman said that she used her time in the mikvah to mourn her infertility. One saw it as a way to cleanse herself of an abusive marriage. Another told of how her conversion to Judaism was not complete until she could participate in the mikvah. Still others use it in the most traditional sense.

In addition to the photographs using models, Rubin and Lax decided to photograph actual mikvah participants.

Those photographs depict the women without revealing their faces. As it has for centuries, privacy still surrounds the mikvah.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Two Arrests Signal a Giant Step Forward for the Civil Rights Movement for Children

Thursday, Sep. 07, 2006

The last true frontier in civil rights in the United States is that of children's rights. It is our country's ugly secret that massive numbers of children are abused (a shocking one out of four, if a recent New York City study is to be believed). Yet the law has been excruciatingly slow both in stopping ongoing abuse, and in deterring abuse before it happens.

Fortunately, two arrests last week indicate that the tide is turning in favor of child abuse victims. First, Warren Jeffs -- the prophet of the polygamous Fundamentalist Church of the Latter Day Saints of Jesus Christ (FLDS) who was on the FBI's 10 Most Wanted List, was captured and arrested. Jeffs was then indicted on two felony counts of sexual conduct with a minor and conspiracy to commit sexual assault with a minor.

Second, the monks at the Christ of the Hills Monastery outside Blanco, TX, were arrested, based on allegations of pedophilia, and the monastery was closed.

There was a time when abuse, especially by religious figures, was a see-no-evil phenomenon. Law enforcement would rather have eaten lightbulbs than pursued a religious figure for child abuse.
Thankfully, that attitude seems now to have been relegated to the past, partially thanks to the Catholic Church child abuse scandal, and the author Jon Krakauer. One can only hope that viewpoint - that religious figures can do no wrong -- has fallen to the bottom of the dustbin of history.

Warren Jeffs' Arrest
Even while on the 10 Most Wanted List, Jeffs had managed to remain on the lam for months. He was discovered during a routine traffic stop in Arizona; his car held weapons, and tens of thousands of dollars.

Jeffs is alleged to have personally transported many underage brides to the arms of much older men, who added these girls to their harems. He cited religious belief as an excuse for his illegal and destructive behavior

Both authorities in Utah (where there is much polygamous behavior) and prosecutors within the federal government had turned a blind eye to the FLDS for decades. It took a bestseller -- Jon Krakauer's chilling book Under the Banner of Heaven, based on accounts by activists like the formerly-polygamous, based on accounts by activists like the formerly-polygamous-wives' organization Tapestry Against Polygamy -- and other intense media att Column continues below Å´

Now, both Utah and Arizona intend to prosecute Jeffs on the charges of sexual conduct with a minor and conspiracy to commit sexual assault with a minor. One would hope that the federal government will follow up with federal prosecution under the Mann Act, which forbids adults from transporting children across state (or country) lines for the purpose of sex.

The Closure of the Christ of the Hills Monastery
Also recently, Texas authorities closed in on the Christ of the Hills Monastery outside of Blanco, Texas. This monastery appears to have been an excuse for pedophiles to gather together to abuse children. It should have been shut down years ago; finally, it has been, and the monks have been arrested.

The first allegations came to light in 1999 -- when the monastery's mother organization, The Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia withdrew its imprimatur. By now, there appears to have been multiple child victims, who were lured into participating in oral sex and sexual orgies.

(It also appears that the monastery was engaged in a huge hoax. Many believers made pilgrimages to the monastery's Virgin Mary, which purportedly cried rosewater-scented tears. There appears to be solid evidence that the "tears" were placed there by the monks, using eyedroppers.(

There was a time when the children abused in such settings had no chance for justice. Here was a small religious organization, outside a small town, in the large state of Texas - with a miraculous Virgin Mary, no less. In the past, no one would have listened to complaints about monks, of all people, especially when the alleged charges were said to occur on the same property as an ongoing miracle.

But times seem to be changing, and laudably, these victims' voices were heard, and Texas authorities did the right thing in taking action.

Authorities Should Be Lauded for Finally Taking the Side of Child Victims
When we see childhood sexual abuse victims prevailing on the system, and the system responding as it did in Blanco, what we are witnessing is the increasing momentum of a new nationwide civil rights movement -- one that is for children, to protect them from the horrific abuse so many suffer.

As I've argued in previous columns such as this one, there is much left to be done to protect children. (Most especially, states must abolish the statutes of limitations that are permitting far too many serial pedophiles to strike over and over again.) But children are in a better position today than at any time in United States' history. We need to press for even more change, but we should also praise the authorities who have the courage to go up against religious figures when children's well-being is at stake.

The Jeffs arrest is especially striking, because Jeffs was the head of an entire community that acquiesced in his treatment of his girl victims. Even some of the girls - immersed in their community's twisted mores - may defend him, at least at this point. (With some maturity, and the ability to speak to women who have been in their position, yet moved on to a better life, the girls are likely to change their minds.) Despite this potential problem with trial testimony, the FBI still moved against Jeffs - rightly so.

That means the government was taking the side of the child victims over and against vehement religious adults. When defenseless children can prevail under the law, even when their tormentors claim righteousness, you know we are on the right path.
Marci A. Hamilton is the Paul R. Verkuil Chair in Public Law at Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University. An archive of her columns on church/state issues - as well as other topics -- can be found on this site. Her email address is Hamilton02@aol.

Marci A. Hamilton is the Paul R. Verkuil Chai God vs. the Gavel: Religion and the Rule of Law (Cambridge University Press 2005).

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

What The Clergy Abuse Crisis Has Taught America - Marci Hamilton

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From The Awareness Center's Daily Newsletter:

This is a video tape of Marci Hamilton at this years
SNAP conference. This presentation, is vitally important. Well worth watching. It looks at those fighting clergy abuse as a civil rights movement for children.

Marci Hamilton holds the Paul R. Verkuil Chair in Public Law at the Benjamin N. Cordozo School of Law, Yeshiva University.Professor Hamilton is the First Amendment and Constitutional law advisor for victims in many clergy abuse cases and was appointed to advise the District Attorney of Philadelphia on constitutional issues during the investigation of clergy abuse in the Philadelphia Archdiocese.She spoke to SNAP Prevention & Recovery National Conference July 22, 2006 in Jersey City,NJ.

FYI: Vicki Polin also spoke at this conference. I don't believe her presentation was video taped.

How Many Alleged or Convicted Sex Offenders Are Connected To

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It really bothers me whenever I google the name of a rabbi where allegations were made of professional sexual exploitation and the rabbi has articles or information up on the web page.

The reason why this is a concern is because it can be seen as a way of promoting an alleged sex offender. It's not uncommon for someone to google's someone's name to find out who they are, or what organizations they are connected to. Doing this can be extremely misleading.

As we all know there have been series allegations of clergy abuse made against Rabbi Yaakov Menken, who is the founder and director of the web page and Team Genisis. Menken is also the author of "Everything Torah Book".

Here's a list of some of them. If you know of others please post them. Believe it or not, there's no articles on his site by Rabbi Matis Weinberg or Rabbi Eliezer Eisgrau.
  1. Rabbi Shlomo Aviner
  2. Rabbi Moshe Eiseman (Eisemann)
  3. Rabbi Yaakov Menken
  4. Rabbi Ben Zion Sobel
  5. Rabbi Aron Boruch Tendler
  6. Rabbi Mordecai Tendler

I think we should also make a list of the alleged and convicted sex offenders who daven in Rabbi Yaakov Hopfer's Shul.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Uncomfired Report of Mordecai Tendler's Court Date

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By New Hempstead News

Rabbi Mordecai Tendler, told everyone who would listen that he wants his day in court. Today Tendler instructed his lawyers to appeal the Judge’s ruling for discovery!

If Tendler really wanted his day in court why is he appealing? Why didn’t he instruct his lawyers to let the case move on -- so that he can present his “Innocence"?

The answer is, because "Mordy Tendler" wants to delay, delay and delay, hoping that he will never have to testify.

As the weeks move on, more and more horror stories about Mordy will be coming to light, which will astonish even his closest “friends” …. (The ex-Rebbitzen, once told someone in confidence that she “has no friends.”)

By the way did Tendler get a new lawyer for the Anti-Slapp motion in CA (
Bloggers Vs. Mordecai Tendler)?


Please read the following excerpts . . .

Committee of Rabbinic Integrity - December 24, 2005

  1. "It is forbidden to ask for Mordecai Tendler for advice on Jewish law.

  2. This Rabbi can no longer officiate at divorces, weddings, batei dinim, etc...

  3. No one is obligated to give him any respect such as standing up for him, etc.

  4. He can no longer be a Rav or Rabbi or Dayan amongst the Jewish People!

  5. One should never allow their wives or daughters to go to his classes or to go to him at all including counseling... and all his rulings are null and void!

  6. " it is our opinion that one must not seek any advice in any area including Shalom Bayis, and certainly not in any Halachic matters pertaining to Divorce, Marriage or Conversions!"

Israeli President - Steps Down for 16 Hours?

The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors. President Requests to Step Down for 16 Hours
Israel National News
September 12, '06 / 19 Elul 5766

( President Moshe Katsav has requested to step down from office on Thursday, from 08:00 until midnight, seeking to absent himself from the swearing-in ceremony on incoming Supreme Court Chief Justice Dorit Beinish.

Mr. Katsav explained on Monday that he does not wish to detract from the ceremony and realizes his presence will divert attention from the chief justice due to the ongoing police investigation against him.

Mr. Katsav stated that he and First Lady Gila Katsav are confident that at the end of the police investigation, he will be found innocent of charges of sexual assault.

The president will be questioned by police later this week for a fifth time.

Let Today Be The 9-11 For Mordecai Tendler

Today is the pretrial hearing on the civil suit being brought up against "rabbi" Mordecai Tendler.

Be sure to keep his survivor in your prayers. The survivor definately earns the hero status for going up against Tendler and his family.

Don't forget to say a prayer for the Tendler survivor and thank her for attempting to put a stop to a man who manipulated many women into having sexual relations with him.

Mordecai Tendler is a married man, who also was an orthodox rabbi.

Please read the following excerpts . . .

Committee of Rabbinic Integrity - December 24, 2005

  1. "It is forbidden to ask for Mordecai Tendler for advice on Jewish law.

  2. This Rabbi can no longer officiate at divorces, weddings, batei dinim, etc...

  3. No one is obligated to give him any respect such as standing up for him, etc.

  4. He can no longer be a Rav or Rabbi or Dayan amongst the Jewish People!

  5. One should never allow their wives or daughters to go to his classes or to go to him at all including counseling... and all his rulings are null and void!

  6. " it is our opinion that one must not seek any advice in any area including Shalom Bayis, and certainly not in any Halachic matters pertaining to Divorce, Marriage or Conversions!"

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Legal Dates Schedule for 5767 (2006-2007)

From The Awareness Center's Daily Newsletter

The Awareness Center, Inc. wants to thank Blogger - Jewish Whistleblower for compiling the following list of important dates of criminal and civil trials, sentencing and other legal matters relating to alleged and convicted sex offenders in Jewish communities.

Jewish Whistleblower is someone who deserves the utmost respect and honor for his continued dedication to addressing sexual violence in Jewish communities.

If you know of any dates that are missing please forward them to me. Also if any links are not working let me know.

Vicki Polin, Executive Director
The Awareness Center, Inc.

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Legal Dates Schedule for 5767 (2006-2007)
  1. Sep.11, 2006 - Rabbi Mordecai Tendler - pretrial conference civil trial NY
  2. Sep.19, 2006 - Cantor Howard Nevison - sentencing
  3. Sep.??, 2006 - Rabbi Edward Schlaeger - arraignment for criminal trial
  4. Sep.21, 2006 - Cantor Michael Segelstein - Motion scheduled in Pre-Trial
  5. Oct.10, 2006 - Cantor Michael Segelstein - additional Motion scheduled in Pre-Trial (see #4)
  6. Oct.12, 2006 - Rabbi Mordecai Tendler - anti-SLAPP motion California
  7. Oct.12, 2006 - Cantor Philip Friedman - sentencing
  8. Oct.17, 2006 - Cantor Robert Shapiro - house arrest ends, probation begins
  9. Oct.24, 2006 - Cantor Michael Segelstein - Pre-Trial Conference
  10. Oct.31, 2006 - Cantor Michael Segelstein - Trial by Jury
  11. Nov. 13, 2006 Yosef Sagiv Ofri (Israeli Consul) - Trial begins
  12. Dec.01, 2006 - Rabbi David Kaye - sentencing
  13. Dec.05, 2006 - Eric Dorfner (former BBYO counsellor) - eligible for parole
  14. Dec.??, 2006 - Moshe Katsav (Israeli Presidnt) - investigation expected to release findings
  15. Jan.06, 2007 - Rabbi Jerrold Martin Levy - prison release scheduled

Dates To Be Determined:
Gary Dolovich (former director MBK Kosher) - criminal trial
Rabbi Gershon Freidlin - civil trial
22) Samuel Juravel (son of Rabbi Moshe Juravel) - sentencing on plea agreement
14) Rabbi Yehuda Kolko - civil trial
Haim Ramon (Former Israeli Justice Minister) - criminal trial
Cantor Stanley Rosenfeld - civil trial

Dates in 2008 and Beyond

  1. Apr.24, 2008 - Rabbi Baruch Lanner - potential parole
  2. Oct.10, 2008 - Rabbi Israel Kestenbaum - probation ends
  3. Nov.03, 2008 - Eric Dorfner (former BBYO counsellor) - eligible for parole
  4. Jun.28, 2011 - Rabbi Alan J. Horowitz, MD - Post Release Supervision ends
  5. Mar.03, 2023 - Rabbi Richard Marcovitz - probation ends
  6. ???.??, 2023 - Cantor Phillip Harold Wittlin - probation ends