There are few Jews in the world, who weren’t pained with the stories and photographs in the newspaper and the live pictures on television showing our rabbeim in handcuffs, stoic faces, being marched off the bus and to court. We read every word in the paper and ask ourselves, how could this happen? And during the nine days no less. We try to give benefit of the doubt, but it is difficult. We see the sight of an 87 year old rabbi, the pinnacle of wisdom and holiness, with his head hanging low, being marched off to what might be his ends years in prison. We want it all to turn out to be a big mistake, for our brothers to be cleared of all wrong doing. We cry for the communities who have to deal with the loss of their rabbinic leaders and their trust. It’s devastating.
Since this website is Beyond BT, I want to suggest a new discussion post topic related to this.
Does anyone feel particularly embarrassed because it’s religious Jews, and it’s hard enough convincing your secular family that you’ve chosen the right path, but this doesn’t further that cause?
When the Madoff scandal hit, we were all embarrassed that he was Jewish, but for me, seeing religious Jews in handcuffs, with their long beards and peyos and kippot and tzizzis, it’s all the more painful. And I find myself wondering what my family is thinking, and if they will use this to further their already negative perceptions of religious Jews. Ideally, we understand that every religion has people off the derech, and it doesn’t mean the whole derech is bad. We have peaceful Muslims trying to convince us of that all the time.
So is anyone embarrassed about this latest shanda, as it relates to how your secular family already views religious Jews?