I urge all my readers to become part of this demonstration in front of the Boro Park beis medrish of the Novominsker Rebbe, head of Agudath Israel of America’s Council of Sages (aka Moetzes), @ 1644 48th St., Brooklyn, NY at 3 pm, Sunday July 23.
The target of this demonstration, Rabbi Yaakov Perlow, the Noveminsker Rebbe, and head of Agudath Israel of America, is personally culpable for protecting abusers from criminal prosecutions. He even helped keep “Rabbi” Yehuda Kolko on as a teacher in spite of his known record of abusing yeshiva boys for 30 years. He did it in spite of pleas for involvement by the late Rabbi Avigdor Miller, an extremely important Haredi leader.
At present Agudah and its head, the Novominsker Rebbe discourage reporting sex abusers to the police, and lobby the New York State legislature (successfully) to not reform the statute of limitations. All sorts of attempts have been made to persuade the Rebbe to change his stance, all to no avail. He is more interested in protecting yeshivas from embarrassment and from having to pay former students for the terrible damage caused by abuse.
We need to drive home the message that this is unacceptable. We need to educate the community by bringing the issue up for discussion. Awareness is growing, but now we need to take the next step of increasing the numbers who demand change.
These demonstrations influence others in the community but they require bodies to show up. If you at all can, make it your business to be in Boro Park this coming Sunday. The event is being organized Zaakah, a group formed to fight sex abuse some years ago. The lead organizer is Asher Lovy, who also has a blog, Hareini.
BONUS POINTS FOR THIS MITZVAH- Don’t just commit to attend. Recruit at least one or two others to come with you. Organizers will provide you with signs and literature.