Monday, July 8, 2013

What did I sign up for--To tell or not to tell

OK, just so we're clear, I DID NOT leave Builder because of homeschooling.  What he did to me was far worse.  In fact, it was criminal.  (Builder, if you or any of your allies are reading this--and since you brought up my blog in court, I know you are--I did not leave over homeschooling, religion, advice from my allies or anything else.)
This puts me in a quandary.  What do I do with Builder?
The truth is, I could possibly prosecute him for his actions.  But what would I gain?  And more importantly, what would I lose?
I have seen what happens in this community.  Just look at the Weberman case.  The entire community held public rallies to support him.  Meanwhile, his victim was publicly shamed.  Her family was shunned.  Her siblings were kicked out of school.  Her husband and father both had their businesses affected.  She was harassed, intimidated, photographed in court.  Her name appeared on posters all over Williamsburg.  Or look at poor Aron Rottenberg.  For the simple crime of changing the venue in which he davened, his house was almost bombed.
All of this could happen to me.  (Except for the bombing part--I think Builder wants his house back eventually, with or without me in it.)
With my daughters starting school in the fall, I have to be very careful.  I can't afford to let myself become a pariah to such an extent that it affects them.  Unless I get permission to relocate (and that's not easy), I'm stuck here.  And, yes, while it would be empowering to report Builder for his actions, and it might ensure that he could never do anything like this to anyone else, I have to worry about the backlash.
And that's disturbing. 
As I've said before, this community could give the Mafia lessons on omerta.  Mesirah, or ratting out your fellow Jew to the secular authorities, is an evil on par with murder, idolatry, or leaving the house bareheaded.  This is despite the fact that the United States government is not the Grand Inquisitor, the SS, or the Cossacks.  Meanwhile, the perpetrator, is treated like a victim, and funds are raised for pidyon shevuyim (redeeming a captive).  Um, whatever happened to dina malchutah dina?  Or establishing courts, which is not only a mitzvah but a Noahide law?    Or that wonderful line in Pirkei Avos about praying for the welfare of the government, because without it, a man would swallow his fellow alive?  Judaism is more than the minutae of Shabbos.  It's more than using an electron microscope to check for bugs in the lettuce.  It's about loving justice.  It's about not doing what is hateful to your fellow man.  It's about being a light unto the nations.  Unfortunately, every single crime we perpetuate against our fellow man is a choking layer of grime over our light.

1 comment:

  1. I'm so sorry you're in this situation. :( Stay strong.


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