Sunday, November 19, 2006

What we did to ourselves, part I

Entry for Tuesday, 11 July, 2006

I was dismayed to find, today, that one of my suspicions about the Yeshiva communities is in fact correct. As you may recall, I pondered the fact that most of the people I met in some New York Chasidic communities weren't legally married, and wondered if they did this to improperly receive welfare benefits. Turns out this is in fact the case among many Yeshiva communities. This blurb is from a blog at called Un-Orthodox Jew:

I recently became aware of this scam: In a certain Chasidic community, a major girls high school has done away with 12th grade. Why? See if you can follow this: Many of their girls get married at 18. They marry religiously, and not civilly. When they give birth to their children, they file for welfare as unwed mothers. They recently found out that unwed mothers who did NOT graduate high school are entitled to a greater stipend than those who did graduate. To make sure their girls avoid the temptation of getting a diploma, this school did away with 12th grade.

Why are we so foolish, so "na'arish", as to believe that we frum Jews can tacitly agree that it is acceptable to file for food stamps and get section 8 housing even though we are earning too much money to qualify for it but because it's a cash business or we're getting paid off the books, and that this lack of morality would not affect our sexual morality? That when we rationalize one thing, why do we deny it will cause us to rationalize others?
When our sages said "Mitzvah goreres mitzvah, v'aveirah goreres aveirah," they didn't mean that an doing an aveirah would cause us to do the same sin again. They meant that rationalizing one sin will cause us to rationalize another sin.


So, there it is. This is from a person who grew up in the Yeshiva culture, and whose family is still there. What can I add to this? The communities that are doing this are disgraceful, dishonest, and have no integrity. God is surely ashamed. I know I am. When these people go to the welfare office, what kind of impression do they give the goyim - that all of the Haredi girls are sluts? Is this their idea of protecting God's name? The same Rabbis that have ruled you can't eat poultry (which is parve) with cheese because it might "look like" you're eating red meat and dairy - they're ok with this? How much sense does that make? Their wives and daughters look like whores with illegitimate children, but they don't care - it's all about money, class. They're exploiting these girls for money. They're parasites living off of them and off of us - the people paying the taxes, the ones who don't get benefits because we don't lie to the welfare office and say we're not married when we really are.

Lies, Lies and more Lies. That's what they are. Hypocrites all, they. This is their supposed moral superiority - their "authority" to teach the modern orthodox, the conservative, the reform, the reconstructionist, and even the messianics. Which is to say, class, they have none. This practice should be stopped by the government immediately, and every last one of these scammers should be required to pay back all the benefits they received, plus the 20% extra required by Torah. That is the only way to make up for this sin.

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