Saturday, April 30, 2011

ATTENTION CAMPS: Educate your staff members about dealing with sexual abuse in camp. It has happened, and we need to be ready for it. We don't want our children getting hurt. More importantly, we don't want to get sued! [sarcasm]

Click to view the guide which was distributed to representatives of 30 Orthodox summer camps.

Article in The Jewish Star:

Camp directors learn about preventing abuse
By Michael Orbach
Issue of May 7, 2010/ 23 Iyar, 5770
More than a hundred representatives of 30 Orthodox summer camps attended a two-hour meeting in Flatbush last week to discuss ways to deal with sexual abuse in a camp setting. The event organized by Sacred Lives, an organization that advocates for sexual abuse victims and for greater education inside the Jewish community, was closed to the media. Several journalists, including a freelancer for The Jewish Star, were ejected, but the materials used at the meeting were leaked and published online the next day by the news website They included a manual, as well as a form letter and information prepared with the approval of the Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah, the ruling body of Agudath Israel of America, that the camp administrators were advised to mail to parents of all prospective campers before the summer...
Read More on The Jewish Star

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

"Guard Your Eyes" Handbook (For Scrap Paper Use Only) - UPDATED 11:48 am

At the recent Torah Umesorah Convention, sexual addiction was addressed. A handbook was presented to all attendees. This handbook on sexual addiction was produced by the anonymous authors of Guard Your Eyes. Guard Your Eyes (GYE) is "a website for Jews struggling to maintain their moral purity in today's world."  It claims to have helped many people with sexual addictions. 
Click HERE to see the letter from Torah Umesora to schools regarding GYE.

UPDATE (11:48 AM): According to Yonasan Rosenblum of Mishpacha Magazine, GYE has helped many people with the support groups they offer. I highly recommend support groups when they are moderated by skilled therapists. If you wish to use them, find out who is moderating the group and what his credentials are. However, a support group can be very helpful regardless of the therapist's credentials. The shame surrounding sexual issues can be very much alleviated when it is shared with fellow frum Jews struggling with the same issues. Although it's great that support groups are provided for this greatly under-addressed issue, I am suspicious of GYE. Their Handbook on how to deal with sexual addiction contains some kinky ideas.
Click to view the Guard Your Eyes Handbook (from the Torah Umesorah Convention) in PDF form.
          This stuff is worse than garbage. They tell you to punish yourself, and they are wrong. Before you write me off as being against Da'as Torah, you need to realize that today's poskim hold that sigufim (self-flagellations) are not only uncalled for nowadays, they are assur - prohibited. That is because we are not on the level of being able to grow from sigufim; we can only lower ourselves by punishing ourselves. The reason this site is so successful, is that people think they are right! More Painful = More Frum. But this is against Da'as Torah.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Rabbis Publicly Support Kellner, and Prosecution of Lebovits

Two prominent Rabbis have announced their support of Kellner's pursuit of Baruch Mordechai Lebovits's prosecution on child molestation charges, and have written and signed a letter declaring that.

The letter has been posted on (the letter is in Hebrew).

Here is my translation of it (it's almost a transliteration, actually, so it's quite precise):

Friday, April 22, 2011

A new post on Nuchem Is Right.
"During these 1st days of Yom Tov, you heard people all over the community saying. Hey Nuchem – Lebowitz is out or Rabbi Rosenberg – You are next, and some similar brilliant statements. Let’s get the record straight for a second..."

 If you're having doubts as to who the real criminal is, after all the joy which seems to surround the possible reversal of "Rabbi" Lebovits's conviction, you need to read this article.

Posted by Nuchem Is Right.

On Lebovits and Other Criminals: Rabbi Rosenberg's Encouraging Words

         Lebovits is not in prison now, which is a frightening thought for our community. It might even cause flashbacks for survivors of abuse. It is definitely a slap in the face of every victim of his to see their abuser released from prison.
         But Lebovits is not free. He is under house arrest for 120 days and then he is back in prison, since the appeal does not negate his conviction. Frum Follies has explained this situation.
         Still, concerned citizens are worried about this molester being out of prison, and are wondering what this says about our justice system. Many abuse victims are getting confirmation for their worst fear, that "There is no point in going to the police. They just set the abusers free. They don't punish them."
         Here are Rabbi Nuchem Rosenberg's reassuring words, loosely translated from the Yiddish-language recording that he posted on his website:

Friday, April 15, 2011

Prevention: How to eliminate the risks of abuse happening

          There is far from enough talk about fighting abuse. A blog here and there cannot be construed as a movement, which is what our community really needs: a “Movement” to expose molesters and help victims get help. There needs to be more talk about this.
But what about prevention? We need another “Movement” to teach parents how to make their kids less vulnerable to abuse.
         (There is an organization dedicated to prevention, called Jewish Parents for Safe Yeshivas - click to see their Facebook page. They are currently organizing workshops for parents on how to educate and protect your children.)

Monday, April 4, 2011

BREAKING: Michael Sabo's Hearing (No News)

Michael Sabo, alleged molester and poster of child pornography, did not even appear in court today.

A source who attended the hearing says that Sabo's lawyer, Schwartz, did not appear either. A different lawyer served as a backup for him. As has been the case for the last 10 hearings or so, the lawyer requested more time. Unlike the other times, however,