Yesterday, the child molesters won.
As many blogs have pointed out, Rabbi Benzion Twerski, noted psychologist and rabbi, was threatened into leaving Dov Hikind's special task for on sexual abuse in the Jewish community. In short, his family was threatened with complete ostracization (and perhaps worse) if he participated. While I can say that I'm disappointed that Rabbi Twerski backed down, and I can't really condemn him, as he has a responsibility to his family first and the community only afterwards. His decision may show a lack of leadership on his part, but, in the end, I can't really condemn him.
That being said, I don't know who it was specifically that threatened him, but whoever you are, I hope you're feeling happy. You allowed the child molesters to win one yesterday.
I could understand trying to force Rabbi Twerski off the committee if they felt that he was going to be unfair. I could understand it if they felt that he would start throwing around baseless accusations. I could understand pressuring him to quit if they thought he was unqualified to be working on the committee. None of these apply with regard to Rabbi Twerski. No one has accused him of being unfair. No one has even suggested that he would begin accusing people baselessly. Lastly, he is extremely qualified to be on a committee regarding this matter.
So, what does that leave? It leaves people who, for whatever reasons, want to protect the molesters. It leaves people who think that our track record of dealing with child molesters internally over the past thirty years has been highly successful; when, in reality, our record in this matter has been a dismal failure. It leaves people who think that sweeping problems under the rug is a real solution; that if we ignore the problem then it doesn't exist. It leaves people who think that reputation is more important than deeds, but are so deluded as to think that our reputation is still unblemished; when, in reality, it is soiled beyond repair.
So, congratulations to them all. They won one yesterday. They aided and abetted the molesters and allowed them greater freedom to continue their activities. I don't wish evil on anyone, but I hope that if, God forbid, one of them or their friends or relatives falls victim to one of the molesters, they will realize that in some small manner, they helped perpetuate the problem; that by taking a different course of action, they might have prevented it from happening.
Congratulations. You helped the molesters win yesterday.
P.S. I don't normally do link dumps. But this is an important matter and I think we need as many voices as we can get. So here are others who have spoken up on the matter. Do you have a post about it too? Let me know and I will link to it.
Rabbi Horowitz again
Life Of Rubin
Back of the Hill
Rabbi Harry Maryles
Lion of Zion
Life (Concerned Jewgirl)