Skip to comments.Abuse Whistleblower Battling Both Haredi Community, DA
Posted on 07/05/2013 6:12:41 AM PDT by Hacksaw
Sam Kellner, who says his son was abused, helped the Brooklyn DA in his fight against child sexual abuse. Now, Kellner himself is himself facing accusations of extortion. Is he being set up?
For Jews, Chanukah is a season of light and miracles. It wasnt like that last month for Sam Kellner, a chasidic resident of Brooklyns Borough Park.
Unemployed and facing mounting debt from his lonely fight against both the powers that be in his community and the Brooklyn district attorney, Kellner, 50, was contemplating a Chanukah in darkness: he had pawned the family silver, and the menorah along with it, to free up some cash to pay his attorney.
When his wife found out, she was upset, so Kellner trudged back to the silver shop on 13th Avenue to retrieve the menorah.
If anyone could use a miracle, its Sam Kellner.
They took everything from me, Kellner says. Theyve killed me on the street, kicked me out of my shul. I have no job, no money, no friends. And the DA is going after me. All because I committed the sin of fighting for my son.
In 2008, when Kellner reported his teenage sons alleged molester to the authorities, he knew he would make enemies in his chasidic community, despite having secured permission to do so from rabbis. What he never expected was that one of the people turning against him would be the Brooklyn district attorney.
This bizarre case, with the intense back-stabbing, bribery, lying, treachery, threats, ad nauseam, is behavior typical of members of a tribe and the clans within that tribe. The Jews of Brooklyn are a tribe and the war is between the clans within that tribe.
It became part of a larger fight when one clan member went to an authority outside of the tribe and a powerful clan leader and his clan objected.
Seeing their clan power structure being overturned by the larger outside authority, the tribe attacked the offending member who had caused the power change within the tribe and the loss of “face” to the larger nation within which the tribe was located.
Jews take the Torah and Talmud seriously, and when a fellow Jew raised the issue of sexual predation of a “Heblew”, the tribe retaliated.
Alas, their response was more primitive tribal than Moses would have approved of.
Tribalism is a nasty way to live, be the tribe in Brooklyn, the Muslim part of Detoilet, Michigan, or any Muslim community.
Note that I purposely have made no comment on tribes other than tribes of Semites.
One thing at a time.
I saw little evidence of true tribal authority. Instead, there is a tension between secular authority and a community with lots of internal and competing hierarchies, but without leadership having any power. Where were the rebbinim?
Were there true authority, Mr. Kellner would have been willing to trust a rabbinic court. Instead he sought the outside authority. That said authority wields true power (prison time), is the key distinction. The wraparound is money for politicians.
It is that disconnect in the wraparound between secular and religious authority that makes these cases so complex, with yet another source of authority (media and reputation) adding to the brew. Note also that the media are both secular and internally cultural.
Hence, to call this tribal or clannish is to underestimate the degree to which an easily corruptable secular authority plays into internal community conflict.
Non-Jews are also supposed to establish courts in order to enforce the G-d-given Noachide Laws. With the transformation of secular government into an even bigger monster than it's always been, this may be a way to circumvent it . . . by building a parallel Theocratic structure based on G-d's Laws as opposed to Obama's.
Eventually (after the coming of Mashiach) the entire world will be gradually converted to a Judaism Theocracy--a literal Kingdom of G-d on earth, as it was always meant to be. Why would any "conservative" object to that?
“Eventually (after the coming of Mashiach) the entire world will be gradually converted to a Judaism Theocracy—a literal Kingdom of G-d on earth, as it was always meant to be. Why would any “conservative” object to that?”
An interesting question, to which I shall attempt to give the considered response it deserves.
I am concerned with now, not when the Mashiach comes.
As for a theocracy, G*d spare me such, as the nasty events in Brooklyn demonstrate.
I will agree that Man is a fool to attempt to viiolate “Natural Law”, assuming that he actually knows and understands how and why things are as they are - and I suspect that those loudest for a particular ‘understanding of the universe’ know little except their own version. But, I admit to having a streak of skeptic.
As an American, I am a sovereign citizen of a Republic, not a subject of some religious kingdom. What was a good and needed improvement on kingdoms was a wonderful event when Moses came down from Mt. Saini. WHat is needed for AMerica is teaching the Founding Documents concepts to all, once again.
Remember “You shall teach them diligently unto your children.”? As Jews, we were tasked to be an example. Likewise, as AMericans, we have developed a better government and therefore have the obligation to teach it to those willing to listen.
“Willing to listen” is not to be overlooked, as all efforts to reason with/educate Muslims have always failed. So doing is akin to teaching an ape to write. It frustrates the teacher and ape, but eventually, the student goes ‘full ape’ and sticks the pencil in the teacher’s eye.
Back to the original issue under discussion - I prefer being a citizen of the American Republic to being a subject of any theocracy.
After reading of Brooklyn, and having experienced the joys of having South Florida Jews/educators go “Full Tribal” I must note here my rejection of ANY theocracy, even a Jewish one.
“Hence, to call this tribal or clannish is to underestimate the degree to which an easily corruptable secular authority plays into internal community conflict.”
I would note that the degree of threats, bribery, influence peddling, back stabbing, political deal making, ad nauseam - all are examples of why “Byzantine” is used before “complexity” in cases such as this.
The injured father and the tribe members both used any and all methods in their struggle. The resulting botch is no credit to the Jews of Brooklyn.
What I can’t understand is why the father ever considered being allowed to live in the community whose coverup of homosexual scandal said community tried to cover up. After all, he is the Jewish equivalent of those Catholic priests who exposed the “Purple Priests” and their homosexual predations.
The Brooklyn Jews left the Mideast (and the ghettos of Europe) but brought the age old many layered Middle Eastern Semitic political patterns to Brooklyn.
My assumption was that those who wish to live under law other than American law do so at their own risk when their “law” conflicts with the Constitution to which they must agree to support/defend as citizens.
Well, once the above was a given .........
Or the secular government of the State of New York.
What I cant understand is why the father ever considered being allowed to live in the community whose coverup of homosexual scandal said community tried to cover up.
What's to understand? He is commanded by G_d to cleave to his people and submit to the elders of the tribe, which he did in that he submitted every contact with secular authority to rabbinic approval. I do note that there were more than one rabbi involved in approving these various contacts, so I guess it is possible he may have been "rabbi shopping." :-) Who knows?
My assumption was that those who wish to live under law other than American law do so at their own risk when their law conflicts with the Constitution to which they must agree to support/defend as citizens.
Jews have no choice but to live under secular law, even in Israel. When it comes right down to it, "law" is a matter of who's got the guns. Thus, the religious community has no law. Muzzies are an interesting though partial exception, in that they tend to ignore secular law and enforce their religious judgments anyway.
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