Tuesday, July 29, 2008

From the mailbag...

E. forwards a link to an article about a 'new' approach to Kol Isha.

מרת שאקאלאד writes about "Shelo Asani Goy":
I heard this song, or part of it, for the forst time last week. Maybe this is just a reflection of my own prejudices, but my impression was that it was at least partly ironic, aiming less ridicule at goyim than at Jews who wallow excessively in atu-bokhartuni.
Psachya writes:
Re J-post article on Israeli bands singing English lyrics - I liked the quote about English-lyrics Israeli bands "doing for Israel what Bjork did for Iceland". All together now - how many Icelandic rock acts has anyone heard of? Uh - that would be - Bjork? Anyone else?? Didn't think so.

And as regards "Baby I love you" - I personally prefer "Aba nibi obo ebev obo tabach." But that's just me.
A. writes:
I posted a comment making the following point in a Vos Iz Neias comment thread. It went through, but was then was removed within minutes.

“A.M. has young children, a wife, parents, etc. They are also innocent victims of this tragedy and this blog is smart not to print his full name for their protection...

Huh? This was the lead story on 1010 WINS last week and was reported in the local papers. The quoted article itself says that the frum school where he was coach (and where he took advantage of their students) mailed a letter about A.M.’s arrest out to its parent body.

Withholding his identity will not help his family, but will help prevent this from occurring again. It’s time for the frum community to address these issues instead of covering them up.
The notion that Vos Iz Neias is accomplishing anything by using initials instead of a name is silly. It might make the blog owner feel good about themselves for "avoiding Lashon Hara", but it's pointless. Firstly, because it's easy to find the name either by entering the source link into your browser, or by Googling part of the article. Anyone who didn't already know, can easily find it out through VIN's post. As well, the idea that mentioning the alleged perp's name in a situation like this, where it has already been widely publicized, will cause "harm" to innocent family members strains credulity. On the other hand, covering it up only sends a message to the victims that we will do everything in our power as a community to ignore this. So does censoring fair comments like the one A. submitted.

Fortunately, the school and local community appear to be handling these allegations properly. The fact that JM in the AM and Yeshiva Ohr Yerusholayim removed Melzer from their websites immediately is a positive step. It's also the exact opposite of VIN's approach. It is one that puts the victims and potential future victims first. It represents progress compared to the way similar scandals were handled in the past.

Melzer is of course entitled to a presumption of innocence and his day in court. However, the shame and damage to Adam and his family is done already. That is not at all repairable unless he is acquitted. Now is the time for the community and its leaders to send a powerful message to all would-be abusers that they will not allow these things to pass any longer. Enough is enough.