Please enable JavaScript in your browser to experience all the custom features of our site.
Please Use Our New Website
still under constructions
to purchase safety books and educational materials

Mr. Harry Skydell, Chairman
Mr. Mark Karasick, Vice Chairman
Rabbi Yakov Horowitz, Director
Rabbi Avrohom M. Gluck, Director of Operations
The first 1000 members will have a chance to win a
16 GB
with Rabbi Horowitz audio

Membership Benefits:

  • Save articles to your favorites folder.
  • Save and print selected articles in a PDF journal.
  • Receive emails containing the latest comments on your favorite articles.
  • Mark articles as "READ".
  • More member features coming soon...

Raffle Rules:

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. To enter, complete the signup form and join as a member. Incomplete entries will be disqualified. All entries shall become the property of CJFL. CJFL is not responsible for lost, misdirected or delayed entries.

The contest is open to the general public. Members need to be at least 18 years old. Identification must be produced on request. Employees of CJFL, its raffle sponsor, advertising and promotional agencies and their respective affiliates and associates and such employees' immediate family members and persons with whom such employees are domiciled are excluded from this raffle. ALL PREVIOUSLY REGISTERED MEMBERS WILL BE AUTOMATICALLY ENTERED INTO THIS RAFFLE. The prize is not redeemable in cash and must be accepted as awarded. Decisions of the raffle judges are final - no substitutions will be available. By claiming the prize, the winner authorizes the use, without additional compensation of his or her name and/or likeness (first initial and last name) and municipality of residence for promotion and/or advertising purposes in any manner and in any medium (including without limitation, radio broadcasts, newspapers and other publications and in television or film releases, slides, videotape, distribution over the internet and picture date storage) which CJFL may deem appropriate. In accepting the prize, the winner, acknowledges that CJFL may not be held liable for any loss, damages or injury associated with accepting or using this prize. CJFL retains the rights, in its absolute and sole discretion, to make substitutions of equivalent kind or approximate value in the event of the unavailability of any prize or component of the prize for any reason whatsoever. This contest is subject to all federal, provincial and municipal laws. CJFL reserves the right to withdraw or terminate this raffle at any time without prior notice. One entry per person.

Play by the Rules
by Rabbi Yakov Horowitz

  Rated by 16 users   |   Viewed 26565 times since 1/25/13   |   16 Comments
Decrease Font Size Increase Font Size    [ Change Font Size ] Email This Article to a Friend


Play by the Rules

"Ka'bel Es Haemes Mi'mi She'amro -- Accept the Truth From Whomever Says It" Rambam (Maimonedes)

The attitude of European, Chassidic emigrees to the "New Country" can be divided into two distinct groups -- those who arrived prior to World War Two and those who came afterwards.

Both sets of my grandparents were part of the former group. They raised their children as proud, observant American Jews, all the while embracing their new host country and all the opportunities it offered their families.

On the other hand, many of the Chassidic Jews who arrived on these shores after the horrific trauma of the Shoah strived mightily to recreate the shtetel and the protective wall that surrounded it. The Satmar Rebbe, Reb Yoel Teitelbaum zt"l, whom I was privileged to spend many Shabasos with in Belle Harbor in my teen years, led this charge and succeeded beyond his wildest dreams.

Incredible as it may sound, several weeks before his first Pesach in America, the Rebbe zt"l reached out to our uncle Reb Yecheskel Landau zt"l, the Veretsky Rebbe of Flatbush, asking him to find a child who could ask him the Four Questions at the Seder! There were simply and tragically no kids to be found in Williamsburg. (My uncle Dr. Duddy Horowitz actually traveled from Scranton to be with the Rebbe for Pesach.)

Ironically, the miracle of Satmar's rebirth as a stand-alone community generated challenging and potentially dangerous side effects which are reverberating to this very day -- and which exploded into public view during the Weberman trial.

Four generations of children have been raised in isolated Chassidic enclaves -- each of them requiring less interaction with the general population than their parents did. They were raised to trust members of their community and view those outside it -- even observant Jews -- as having a dramatically different set of values and culture.

However, as I pointed out in "The Monster Inside" in a 2007 Mishpacha essay, the twin messages that 1) people outside our community are viewed with distrust, and 2) folks inside are (all) "good" and trustworthy, are toxic when it comes to dealing with the messy issue of child molestation.

How can it be that someone raised in our "protected" community is doing horrible things to children and how in the world can we rely on someone outside our community (professionally trained therapists and/or the authorities) to protect our kids, treat our victims, and train us how to avoid these problems in the future?

That's why the message coming from Weberman's defenders and widely promoted in Charedi publications that he was convicted because visibly observant Jews cannot get a fair trial is so harmful and dangerous. (see here for comprehensive treatment of why Weberman was convicted on all 59 counts.)

This notion is precisely what got us in this mess and continuing to promote it will only set the stage for more abused kids and destroyed lives.

What our children desperately need to hear from us is that Weberman was convicted because he behaved inappropriately and invaded the personal space of children. Because he violated the halachos of yichud and the norms of general society.

We need to tell our children that American laws and the officials who enforce them were made to protect us and keep us safe.

We need to teach our kids to play by the rules, not that those rules are stacked against us.

To sign up for Rabbi Horowitz’s weekly emails, please click here.

Reader's Comments:      Rating & Comments Policy      Rate & Write a Comment!
 Average Rating:              Rated by 16 users    (16 comments)
Subscribe to this Article
(by subscribing you will receive email notification
when new comments are posted)
There are no comments yet. Click above to write the first comment.
Dear Readers:

Please visit our Parenting Resource listing to learn about agencies and services that you can make use of. If you know of an agency that can be of assistance to others, kindly drop an email to our site administrator at and pass along the information to him.

I ask that you please consider supporting the work we are doing to improve the lives of our children. Click on these links to learn more about our teen and parent mentoring program that serves hundreds of teens and their families, or our KESHER program, now in 20 schools in 4 states. Your financial support can allow us to expand these services and help more children.

If you believe in the governing principles of this website – to help effect positive change through the candid discussions of the real issues we collectively face, please consider becoming a daily, weekly or monthly sponsor of this website and help defray the costs of it’s maintenance.

Working with Families and Educators on Behalf of our Children

This site is managed by The Center for Jewish Family Life, Inc., 56 Briarcliff Drive, Monsey, NY 10952
Project Y.E.S. was founded by Agudath Israel of America
The Center for Jewish Family Life/Project YES - 56 Briarcliff Drive, Monsey, NY 10952 (845) 352-7100 ext. 114 Fax: (845) 352-9593