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Thursday, January 31, 2008

New mobile red light ticket cameras 

Cops are leaving unmarked cars with cameras on their roof parked at hidden corners to give red light tickets.

9 comments

Recall drive gets 4,000 signatures to oust anti-Semitic Selectwoman 

Members of a Randolph citizens group trying to oust Selectwoman Maureen Kenney over anti-Semitic remarks she made last fall turned in 4,000 signatures by Monday's 5 p.m. deadline for petitions demanding a recall election.
more stories like this

They say their drive was successful, regardless of whether Town Clerk Brian Howard determines that the group has the necessary 3,638 signatures - 20 percent of total registered voters - to force the election.

"I think the whole process woke people up," said Jack Smolokoff, a member of the Committee to Recall Maureen Kenney. "It got the attention of a lot of people who were uninvolved before. If nothing else, the lasting effect should be they are now more politically aware."

Under a local bylaw, Howard has 14 days to certify the names.

If the process moves forward, Kenney will be given the opportunity to resign. If she refuses, a recall election will be scheduled for late April or early May. It will be the town's first since the recall bylaw was enacted in 1993.

The remarks that prompted the recall effort were made during contract negotiations with Schools Superintendent Richard Silverman. Kenney, also a School Committee member, objected to Silverman's request for five days' bereavement leave, saying, "Don't you Jews plant them in 24 hours?" She reportedly added, "I don't see any side curls on your head, so what the hell do you need five days of bereavement leave for?" Her reference was to the traditional hairstyle of male Hasidic Jews.

Kenney apologized publicly, but has said the remarks were no more than attempts at humor. She resigned from her seat on the School Committee in November, but has remained on the Board of Selectmen. Her term does not expire until spring of 2010.

http://www.boston.com/news/local/articles/2008/01/31/recall_drive_gets_4000_signatures/

1 comments

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Dicci break-in UPDATE - Break-in most probably the work of zealots 

New information about the break-in at the Dicci store, which is owned by the same people as G&G Clothing, seems to point to the fact that it was not a burglary. Nothing was stolen from the store, only the glass door was shattered and a mannequin was knocked over. The break-in seems to rather be the work of Kanoyim who want to dictate to everyone how to live their life whether or not it is a true Torah matter. The irony of it all is that most of the Dicci clientele are Chasidishe women. Now if their husbands feel that it is wrong to have such a store on the avenue, rather than shatter the store's windows, why don't they just tell their wives not to shop there, that will force the store to close down. I guess it just goes to show how much influence Chasidim have over their wives' and families' Hashkafa and how much influence Rebbes have over their Chasidim, yet they want to control everyone else.


25 comments

BREAKING NEWS - Burglary at Dicci in Boro-Park 

Dicci, the brand new Fifth-Avenue boutique on Thirteenth Avenue in Boro-Park was broken into overnight. Sources say that the break-in was the work of smash-and-grab burglars and not Kanoyim.


26 comments

Out of the Inbox - Newspaper-reading Kollel guys 


NOTE: To submit a letter for an 'Out of the Inbox' posting simply post it as a comment.

Sent in by a Chaptzem reader

I thought a lot about my motives for writing this letter to make sure that they were pure and not selfish. Still after thinking about it for a while I am not sure if they are. My reason for writing this letter is probably more due to jealousy than anything else. But anyway, maybe something can be changed for the better by writing it out.

I am a working man in my forties. I have a 9-5 job, a family and a daily shiur. I actually live for the latter two more than anything else. But anyway, I have to get up very early to get my things done and be at work on time. I grab my coffee, my Artscroll and my Times and I'm on the train off to the city.

Now here is where my jealousy comes in. In the event that I have a day off or when I go into work a little late and I pass by the groceries or newspaper stands I see packs of chasidishe young men huddled around the newspapers fervently pouring over every page. Sometimes even as late as ten o'clock I will see these young men with their wet peyos from the mikvah, their tallis bag in their hand and all still before shachris as if in another dimension of newspaper bliss.

I am extremely jealous of this. I wish that I had the time and the calmness to be able to indulge myself in blissful newspaper reading, but alas I cannot. I have a job to be at and can not be the kollel guy that I would want to be. I know my motives and I am trying to bring myself to a spiritual place where I won't feel jealous of these people, but until then could you guys please tone it down a bit so that people like me who support your kollel don't have to feel this way.

Thank you,
D. F.

26 comments

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The Moshiach Mobile in action 

A video clip from the previously posted Moshiach Mobile in action.

7 comments

One heck of a typo - or maybe not 

That is some kind of an advertising strategy

Sent in by a Chaptzem reader from the Luach HaTzibur

12 comments

Monday, January 28, 2008

Accident on 50th Street and 13th Avenue in Boro-Park 


5 comments

If you bought diamond jewelry between 1994 and 2006 you can be part of a $295 M class action lawsuit 

De Beers is the largest supplier of rough diamonds in the world. Beginning in 2001, Plaintiffs in several states filed lawsuits against De Beers in state and federal courts alleging that De Beers unlawfully monopolized the supply of diamonds, conspired to fix, raise, and control diamond prices, and issued false and misleading advertising. De Beers denies it violated the law or did anything wrong.

The Settlement Agreement provides that $22.5 Million be distributed to the Direct Purchaser Class, and that $272.5 Million will be distributed to the Indirect Purchaser Class. De Beers also agrees to refrain from engaging in certain conduct that violates federal and state antitrust laws and submit to the jurisdiction of the Court to enforce the Settlement.

Site to file for the suit online

2 comments

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Former high school phenom Tamir Goodman is back in the U.S. 

 
People are looking down at Tamir Goodman. The fans seated in the court-level seats of Reading, Pennsylvania’s Sovereign Center are confused by the once-heralded “Jewish Jordan’s” appearance. Even a tiny redheaded preschooler has a hard giggle when his dad points out Goodman’s odd attire. However, no one is staring at the yarmulke on his head; rather, they are dumbfounded to see that he is wearing two different shoes.

“It’s not any superstition or cool style,” says the 25-year-old Goodman, now a married father of two and a seasoned professional. “I have a bruise on my foot, and it’s for comfort until it gets better.”

There is very little about Goodman that is “typical.” The former Baltimore prep star earned notice as the first major Orthodox Jewish basketball player on the modern American high school hoops scene. He says the attention around his game began after the 10th grade. After attending the Eastern Invitational Basketball camp, he earned a reputation as a player to watch on the high school camp circuit. At Eastern Invitational, Goodman was asked to play in the All-Star Game, but it was to be held on Saturday, a day when Orthodox Jews observe Sabbath, or “a day of rest or inactivity.” While his religious beliefs kept him out of that game, Goodman wasn’t discouraged and carried on with his hoop dreams.

However, Goodman never played a game at Maryland. While it isn’t crystal clear how the commitment, which seemed like a lock, was broken, speculation has it that Maryland found it impossible to rearrange their schedule to free Goodman of having to play on the Sabbath. Although he didn’t make it to the A.C.C. and never got the chance to be a Terrapin, Goodman says he was never bitter about the outcome.

“I have absolutely nothing against Maryland; I still root for them like crazy, especially Coach Williams,” said Goodman, who plays in a Jewish garment under his jersey known as tzitzit. Essentially, strings hang from a shirt that, when knotted, symbolize the 613 commandments of the Torah. Jewish people wear tzitzis as a reminder to obey the commandments and have been since the time of Moses. “It really had nothing to do with them. It was from above, and the whole situation just made me a better and stronger person and a better player. I could never say anything bad about the University of Maryland, because they do so much good in the community I grew up in.”

http://slamonline.com/online/2008/01/sacred-hoops/

2 comments

Yeshivah of Flatbush threatened to have funds cut off for not allowing gay couples to attend ten year reunion 



Tensions are high among alumni at the Yeshivah of Flatbush after the administration barred alumni from bringing same-sex partners to a high school reunion in December.

Before the 10-year reunion for the class of 1997, the high school division of the Modern Orthodox yeshivah – located at 1609 Avenue J – sent a letter to former students it suspected would bring same-sex partners back to the reunion.

Posted on the blog Jvoices, the letter read, in part:

“As previously stated to you, we welcome your attendance and look forward to your participation. However, your partner cannot attend.”

The stance did not sit well with many alumni of the prestigious private Yeshivah, who believe the policy to be an intolerant and selective interpretation of Jewish law.

Opponents hope that the school realizes that it is risking its respected name because of the policy. If the policy persists, they hope, many alumni will threaten to withhold financial contributions.

“We’re hoping that it makes enough of a financial impact that it might make sense [for the Yeshivah to chance its policy.] Part of the name of the school is how it’s represented outside of the school,” Rothstein said.

Rothstein said that one of the reasons for the school might have taken such a strong stance against same-sex couples is because its student body has a more conservative bent than it has in the past.

“Nowadays, the large majority of the student body is members of the Syrian-American Jewish community living in Brooklyn. When it comes to homosexuality, they’re very clear on not accepting it whatsoever. That’s certainly an influence,” he said.

Another factor, many believe, is the recent controversy surrounding the school’s former principal, Rabbi Alan Stadtmauer, who resigned in 2005 after coming out as a gay man. Stadtmauer said he no longer considered himself Orthodox. He recently signed the petition.

“I personally think [the Stadtmauer incident] is why they took such a strong stand against homosexuality. They don’t want to be labeled as the gay Yeshivah,” Rothstein said.

Rothstein said that in addition to being a selective interpretation of Jewish law, the school’s position on gay couples contradicts the primary tenets of Judaism.

“We learned important values in our education,” he said.

“If you embarrass someone, it’s as if you’ve shed their blood. And it’s important to welcome guests. These values go back to Abraham – his tent was open on all sides.”

http://www.zwire.com/site/tab1.cfm?newsid=19230810&BRD=2384&PAG=461&dept_id=552847&rfi=6

23 comments

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Special Motzei Shabbos performance 


10 comments

Friday, January 25, 2008

UPDATE - Ruchama Aliza 

Original post

Sent in by a Chaptzem reader;

Update on Friday, January 25, 2007



Ruchma Aliza has been at home for the last 3 months, (with all of her equipment, machines & ventilator) after the hospital threatened to pull the plug due to Florida law which considers her dead. She is still on a ventilator but is in stable condition. May she have a Refuah.

Do a Mitzvah and send an e-mail to

Tehillimforruchamaaliza@hotmail.com

with a couple of chapters of Tehillim that you will say everyday. (More Information Below)
As a Zechus for Ruchama Aliza an e-mail address was setup that people could e-mail there questions and comments. It was mainly setup for the purpose that people could say Tehillim for her. We want to say the whole Tehillim at least once every day.
The entire Tehillim is available at this time (Chapters 1-150)-(First Come First Serve).
Anyone willing to say a couple of Chapters of Tehillim everyday is asked to e-mail Tehillimforruchamaaliza@hotmail.com.
Read the entire story from the time it happened to the present so you will have more Kavana when Davening for her.

Remember to have in mind Ruchama Aliza Sarah Chana bas Esther Leiba when Davening and saying Tehillim.

May we only hear Simchas and may she and the whole Klal Yisroel have a Refuah Shleimah! May we see Moshiach in the near future, Bemhara Veyamenu, Amen!

5 comments

President Bush the Meshichist during his visit to Israel 

 

15 comments

Thursday, January 24, 2008

The Smart Car makes it to Boro-Park 


14 comments

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

The Williamsburg - Boro-Park Bus franchise gets signed into law by Mayor Bloomberg without any opposition 

video

Link to watch the full video from the NYC Gov site
Link to press release

1 comments

Out of the Inbox - Williamsburg - Boro-Park bus - Giving sardine cans a bad name 


Sent in by a Chaptzem reader

Hey Chaptzem, why haven't you posted anything about what's going on with the Williamsburg - Boro Park bus?

As a regular daily rider of the bus line I would like to give your readers a little synopsis of what it's like. I live in BP and travel to Williamsburg every day. I can't remember the last time that I had a seat on the bus, or even more, the last time that I wasn't so squashed that I couldn't breath. The buses are old and run down, they shake and rattle the entire trip. All the buses are old and smelly and filling them over the top with people doesn't help that at all.

I come off the bus dizzy and nauseous every day. I have complained numerous times and have never gotten a reply. I can't understand how a company owned by frum yiddishe people that services frum yiddishe people could be so uncaring.

The Williamsburg bus has exclusive rights to the route between Williamsburg and BP, thus disabling any chance for competition and in actuality they have a monopoly, which helps explain the poor service.

I pay for the bus more than I would for mass transit, why do I have to be treated like a sardine in an old clunky beat up can? I am more than willing to pay the extra money if only I would get some decent service for it. I truthfully feel like I am being abused every time I ride the Williamsburg BP bus. It is my hope that this letter will help for something to be done about it.

19 comments

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Possible new Masbia campaign for poverty stricken animals 

If Masbia's previous campaign for poor Boro-Park people doesn't elicit the right amount of attention this may be the next step.
   

19 comments

Monday, January 21, 2008

Bobov 45 prepares for a Chasunah 

Pic sent in by Spunky

13 comments

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Giants NFC win attributed by some to Tefilin

Just a little while ago the New York Giants had little chance of even coming close to the NFC, let alone the Superbowl. However that has all changed, due to the Mitzvah of Tefilin, according to Rabbi Yisroel Shemtov. Rabbi Shetov, a Kapatah store owner from Crown Heights, claims that the Giants' newfound vigor and rise to victory as the NFC champions is all thanks to Tefilin. In this exclusive story, Chaptzem has learned from a source close to Rabbi Shemtov that over the past few weeks Rabbi Shemtov has been putting on Tefilin with a Jewish Giants big shot that he had been dealing with in business over the past few years. Rabbi Shemtov had originally promised the Giants big shot that if he would put on Tefilin his team would win the game. From then on each time the Giants big shot would put on Tefilin, the Giants would win the game. The Giants big shot even got all his Jewish friends in the Giants organization to put on Tefilin along with him. Now many Yidden who could barely feel their Pintele Yid are putting on Tefilin all because of the Giants and the Superbowl.

31 comments
Jewish bankruptcy and Hillel's antidote - From the New York Times Magazine

How long have such do-good laws been backfiring? Consider the ancient Jewish laws concerning the sabbatical, or seventh year. As commanded in the Bible, all Jewish-owned lands in Israel were to lie fallow every seventh year, with the needy allowed to gather whatever food continued to grow. Even more significant, all loans were to be forgiven in the sabbatical. The appeal of such unilateral debt relief cannot be overestimated, since the penalties for defaulting on a loan at the time were severe: a creditor could go so far as to take a debtor or his children into bondage.

So for a poor Jewish sandal maker having trouble with his loan payments, the sabbatical law was truly a godsend. If you were a creditor, however, you saw things differently. Why should you lend the sandal maker money if he could just tear up the loan in Year Seven? Creditors duly gamed the system, making loans in the years right after a sabbatical, when they were confident they would be repaid, but then pulling tight the purse strings in Years Five and Six. The resulting credit drought was so damaging to poor people that it fell to the great sage Hillel to fix things.

His solution, known as prosbul, allowed a lender to go to court and pre-emptively declare that a specific loan would not be subject to sabbatical debt relief, transferring the debt to the court itself and thereby empowering it to collect the loan. This left the law technically intact but allowed for lenders to once again make credit available to the poor without taking on unwarranted risk for themselves.

The fallow-land portion of the sabbatical law, meanwhile, was upheld for centuries, but it, too, finally gained a loophole, called heter mechira. This allowed for a Jew to temporarily “sell” his land to a non-Jew and to continue farming it during the sabbatical year and then “buy” it back immediately afterward — a solution that helped the modern state of Israel keep its agricultural economy humming.

The trouble is that many of the most observant Israeli Jews reject this maneuver as a sleight of hand that violates the spirit of the law. Many of these traditionalists are also extremely poor. And so this year, which happens to be a sabbatical year, the poorest Jews in Israel who wish to eat only food grown on non-Jewish land are left to buy imported goods at double or triple the regular price — all in order to uphold a law meant to help feed the poorest Jews in Israel.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/20/magazine/20wwln-freak-t.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=dubner&oref=slogin

3 comments
Is Masbia going too far with their Jewish poverty stories?



Masbia once again has put a front page story in a newspaper (this time The Jewish Press) about Jewish poverty and Frum people going through dumpsters for food. Masbia is a great organization and they help many people that need a place to eat. But are pictures such as this one was typical of the situation in the Frum community? Is garbage-groping poverty really such a persistent problem as stated in the caption? Is Boro-Park really a community defined only by affluence as stated in the caption? Is Masbia going too far with their portrayal of Frum people as dumpster divers?
Is the Boro-Park community really a community of dumpster divers?

How many Frum people have you seen lately going through the garbage for food?
There are many organizations that help people who are in need way before it comes to anything even close to this. So then the question is, why does Masbia need to embellish the truth so much? All this just for some funds?

25 comments

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Hikind to bring African-Americans to the Jewish community to talk about discrimination

At a recent gathering of Assemblyman Dov Hikind's newly formed Jewish-Black Coalition, which was held at Yeled V'Yalda in Boro-Park, Hikind announced that the only way for the two communities to fight the hate plaguing them was to band together. He also said that a lot of people had no idea what it meant to be a victim of a crime because of the color of their skin. Hikind further said that he wanted to do "real stuff" to make sure that such violence would come to an end. Hikind stated that one of the things that he thought would help would be to "bring someone from the Black community to talk about their experiences of discrimination."

8 comments

Friday, January 18, 2008

Confusing traffic light

Either it says Walk and Don't Walk at the same time, or it's a new type of traffic signal.


12 comments

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Hashovas Aveidah - UPDATE - MetroCard owner has been located

An update to our previous post about a student MetroCard that was found by one of our readers. The owner of the card contacted us with their full name. The information was verified through the finder, ensuring them to be the rightful owner of the card. We then forwarded the mailing information to the finder, who as a Chesed, promptly shipped it out to the person for free. The student will now be able to continue going to school every day without any commuting problems.

"Together we can make a difference!"

3 comments
School bus with a padlock on its emergency exit

This school bus has a padlock on its emergency exit, thereby endangering the lives of its young passengers in the event of an accident or fire.


Note: Some of the numbers on the license plate were changed and blurred.

18 comments

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Does Kosher Mean Healthier? - Kosher food gains popularity

Is kosher food more healthy? Food marketers and consumers evidently believe so. Only 20% of people buying foods marked kosher are Jewish, and “kosher” has become the most popular claim on food products, according to a recent survey by Mintel, a Chicago-based market research firm, beating out “organic,” “no additives or preservatives,” and “all natural.”

The kosher certification process does bring consumers some health benefits, says Deborah Kotz in U.S. News & World Report. Ingredients’ sources are closely tracked, allowing for a quicker recall if a problem is uncovered. Food is thoroughly cleaned to make sure no bugs remain on it. Kosher beef is also less likely to contain the misshapen proteins that cause mad cow disease, possibly because the animals are slaughtered young.

But a lot of bacteria, including salmonella and E. coli, can survive the kosher process. So kosher bagged spinach wouldn’t necessarily be less likely to cause food poisoning than a non-kosher variety.

http://blogs.wsj.com/informedreader/2008/01/13/does-kosher-mean-healthier/

1 comments
Out of the Inbox - Developmentally delayed people at the workplace


Note: Due to the sheer volume of submissions, we have been unable to post all letters we have received.
Please be patient as your letter will be posted very soon.


Sent in by a Chaptzem reader

I know I am taking a chance by writing this, so please bear with me on this one. I am B"H lucky enough to have a job that I enjoy and look forward to every day. I work with developmentally delayed children and their families. The work is tough, but very rewarding. There is nothing like being able to see such a child smile and feel special.

There is however one thing that has been bothering me about my job. The place that I work for hires MR/DD (mentally retarded / developmentally delayed) teens and adults to work at our place. While I think it's an unbelievable idea to integrate these people and to give them work to do, at times this can end up being a hindrance to the workers at the place. Many times there will be meltdowns, papers will be improperly filed and phone calls will be misdirected.

Sometimes this can cause a lot of chaos and confusion and even lost or misplaced documents, thus adding many extra hours to everyone else's workload. I try to keep things calm and in order, but sometimes it is just very difficult to handle what is taking place.

I thought that I was the only one that was bothered by this and felt a little guilty and embarrassed that I was making such a big deal about it. I was surprised when my coworkers brought this issue up once at lunch. I couldn't believe that they had been feeling this way as well. I don't want to sound insensitive as I do believe that it is a great idea that these people can contribute. I just wish there was some way that we could work this out so that it did not impinge on the workers so much.

I would love to know if anyone has had such a work situation too and how their agency deals with this issue.

23 comments

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

A Polar Bear with Tzitzis

A Frum member of the Brooklyn Polar Bear Club takes a winter dip in the freezing ocean.


From the Bay News

12 comments
Behind the scenes - Country Yossi interviews random people on Thirteenth Avenue in Boro-Park for the HASC Concert

 

1 comments

Monday, January 14, 2008

Letter distributed over the weekend to the Los Angeles community

Sent in by a Los Angeles Chaptzem reader

Dear Los Angeles Kehilla member:

In reference to self proclaimed Jewish leader Rabbi Meyer May's public comments regarding the unfortunate Spinka arrest.

In your first public statement, regarding the arrest, you announce that none of the people arrested are representatives of the Orthodox or Chassidic community.

You are not our representative either!

For you to ride on any possible suffering of the Jewish people, whether it's the Holocaust, or an unfortunate scandal, is as disgusting as what you accuse others of. You say that the "they should be allowed to have a fair trial, as everyone is innocent until proven guilty", but then take the initiative to take them down a notch to by saying they should be "one stage less than normal" to show children "that it's not business as usual."

Your position of power is a mirage. You were NEVER appointed and or recognized by bonafide Gedolim. Your achievements are very impressive (including representing the Simon Weisenthal Center and its tolerance movement, which conducts interfaith tolerance conferences), however, amongst the larger Orthodox and Chassidish communities, we neither benefit nor approve any of your public shenanigans.

How do you explain your position of "people should beware of lashon hara, or gossip, of discussing this case, and to keep in mind that there are wives and children and family members who might also be hurt.", and then hypocritically use any chance to voice your opinion and walk out of a Shul with your counsel Benzion J. Westreich, Esq.

You have miserably failed in your position at any attempt to keep possible shame to the Frum community out of the public, by both allowing and participating in its publicity with the most recent article in The Jewish Journal.

Would you like it if any of us "little people" decided that you are to be sanctioned and taken down a few notches from your honorary status? We do not seek your guidance nor appreciate it, and if you feel this is a wakeup call, keep it to yourself, for we will seek guidance from whom we decide is worthy.

Additionally, let he without sin cast the first stone! You must have forgotten that age old adage.

But you have chosen to embark on this route. You (and your family) will have to answer for it in the days and months ahead!

Sincerely,
The Rabbonim of the RCLA

The (real) Rabbinical Council of Los Angeles

27 comments

Sunday, January 13, 2008

HaShovas Aveidah - Student MetroCard found in Boro-Park

A student MetroCard with a name on it was found in Boro-Park by a Chaptzem reader. The initials of the name on the card are Y. W. If you are the owner of this MetroCard and would like to have it returned, post your full name (so that we know that it's yours) and your e-mail or home address, (it will not be posted for the public). The MetroCard will be mailed back to you free of charge and your personal information will be kept confidential.

0 comments
Chabad of Argentina visits Mendelsohn's Pizza again

Pictures of the third, and final, consecutive week in which the group of Chabad of Argentina swarmed Mendelsohn's Pizza in Boro Park.

The group was extremely pleasant, the Shliach made Havdalah, after which they ordered 25 pies and were treated to free ice cream. The group responded to the free ice cream with cheers and shouts.

Pictures and story sent in by TWL




11 comments

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Rav shmuel Berenebaum having an argument in Torah with Rav leibel Bakst


4 comments
Chaim Mozes, proud father of the first child born at Maimonides Medical Center in 2008


From the Bay News

4 comments

Friday, January 11, 2008

Legality versus morality - The imbalance of the two

A huge number of newspapers, commentators and blogs have hopped onto the Spinka story and are using the opportunity as a firing squad of all Chasidim. The venom and vitriol spewed by these media outlets is quite apparent and extremely transparent. Not a day goes by without some non-religious Jewish reporter looking for a Rabbi that may have thrown down a bubble-gum wrapper on the street.

As religious Jews we are held to a higher standard by the world. And we should be. After all we have the Torah and know the true way to live our life. So we should be better people. It is true, sometimes Frum people mess up and do things that they shouldn't. This is a transgression and a betrayal both to the Torah and to their people.

However, there is something that seems very hypocritical about the media reports.

The same people that report on how wrong money laundering is see no problem with bankruptcy. If one launders a million dollars, thus cheating the government and ultimately tax paying citizens out of a million bucks, the media says lock up that lying, stealing, cheating Hasid. However, when that same reporter is a million dollars in debt and files for bankruptcy, thus cheating all his debtors out of their money, we say that he is making a wise financial move. Not only does this reporter not get charged with a crime, but he can open a new business tomorrow and start the same cycle again.

Why is it that stealing someone's money is defined only by a mere legality, rather than morality? Is it ok to take someone's hard earned money just because you can get away with it? Is it less of a crime just because there is a law that says it's ok? Doesn't anyone feel that morals are just as important as laws?

The fact is both are dead wrong. And the fact is most Chasidim do not lie, cheat or steal. As a matter of fact Chasidim are more likely than anyone else to pay their debts off even after bankrupting.

If we are going to call laundering a crime and crucify the people that do it, we should do the same for people that file for bankruptcy, for people that create offshore tax shelters and for people that conduct shady business while hiding behind a corporation.

It is time for a single legal and moral standard for everyone!

19 comments
Jewish Journal article salivates and spews hate over Spinka story

The first snow flutters hesitantly in Brooklyn. Men wearing fur streimel hats and women wearing sheitls walk briskly past the corner of 15th Avenue and 58th Street in Boro Park as if nothing extraordinary has happened here.

And why not? The kosher shops of this self-contained ultra-Orthodox neighborhood -- practically a city onto itself -- are still a few blocks down, and here on this bleak corner, there are only three orange school buses parked in front of a four-story, dark-red brick building, which sits on a residential street, where tall, narrow houses nearly overlap. The structure is rather nondescript and unimposing -- garbage bags are piled haphazardly by a front gate, bars protect the windows, young boys can be heard chanting from behind the locked door and a white sign with sky blue Hebrew lettering reads: "Yeshiva Imrei Yosef Spinka."

A buzzer sounds. The door opens. No one asks who rang the bell. Up the four steps, a reception window sits empty. Hazy yellow fluorescent lights illuminate the narrow hallways adorned with graying yellow paint and frayed industrial carpeting. If there are millions -- or even thousands -- of dollars going to the Spinka yeshiva, it certainly doesn't seem like it's coming here.

http://www.jewishjournal.com/home/preview.php?id=18767

15 comments

Thursday, January 10, 2008

The Moshiach Mobile

  

45 comments

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Delivery Yingerman gets tickets while in probationary period

A Yingerman, who does some side work as a delivery guy, was stopped by a Police Officer for passing a stop sign. When the Cop asked for his license, registration and insurance, the Yingerman could not produce a valid insurance card for the vehicle. The Police Officer then proceeded to issue the Yingerman two tickets, one for passing a stop sign and one for failure to produce a valid insurance card. The Yingerman still has twenty days left until he is out of his new-driver six-month probationary period and may lose his license because of the tickets.

32 comments

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Out of the Inbox - Chasunah and support breaking the bank


Sent in by a Chaptzem reader

Hello, I do not spend much time on the internet besides for business, so this is new for me.

I am a businessman who has married off a daughter a little while ago, officially entering me into the world of mechutanim. It is as no business that I have ever seen before. I negotiate and bargain on a daily basis and pride myself on being fair. In other words, I usually take into consideration the other person's needs and we try to reach a compromise. I have however found just the opposite to be true in the world of shidduchim.

Let me explain. As soon as my daughter was on 'the market' friends started telling me that I had to let the shadchunim know that I would help support the boy for a specific amount of years or else I could forget about ever marrying my daughter off. So I did just that. Although I knew this would put an extreme financial burden on me, nevertheless, I am machshiv Torah and promised to support the couple for three years.

However, what came next I did not expect. The mechutanim had picked out the most expensive hall, furniture, musician, photographer and badchen that money could buy. I am a very low-key person and do not like extravagance. I try to spend my money wisely and not waste it. I was completely pressured and almost forced to comply with these demands, lest someone chas veshulem make a fuss and risk potentially breaking up the shidduch.

So now I am stuck with this enormous bill from the chasunah and all the paraphernalia and have to fully support the couple for the next three years. The mechutanim don't want to hear about helping the couple at all. They say I promised so it's all my obligation and not theirs. I had no idea that by promising to support the couple I was completely absolving my mechutanim from their position as parents and agreeing to give them a complete free ride. I am broken and don't know what to do.

67 comments

Monday, January 07, 2008

Picture and video from HaRav Shmuel Berenbaum's Levaya

Sent in by Yank

13 comments
Some fifty-cent rapper bought his doors at a Boro-Park shop

According to a source, a famous rapper who had his home shown on a television show bought the doors for his home at Grand Doors, a Boro-Park door store.




The door ------ The home

14 comments

Sunday, January 06, 2008

IMPORTANT - Scam Alert

Sent in by a Chaptzem reader

I heard a most distrubing story,
especially because of how innocent the matter looked, at first.

There was a mother who was in her
last days because of the machla disease. She already arranged what
to do with her estate.

Here comes some "chassidishe" lady,
with her daughters, visiting the mother, on the pretext of Bikur Cholim, right? Who would question that?

Well, her daughters started to sing, so the son left the apartment
so as not to hear kol isha.

GET THIS! When the son returned,
the mother told him that this lady
asked her to sign a Power of Attorney form. Fortunately, the mother had enough left in her to sternly say, "LEAVE ME ALONE!..."

I mean, what an ingenious scam,
yet, legally, a big problem for the true heirs had she signed that form, CH"V!

18 comments
Chabad of Argentina storms Mendelson's Pizza Shop in Boro-Park

Chabad Shluchim from Argentina swarmed into Mendelson's Pizza Shop on Eighteenth Avenue in Boro-Park with a group of over fifty people that were on a Chabad sponsored trip from Argentina to the United States. The group was treated to free hot Motzei-Shabbbos pizza and ice-cream. While the group was waiting for their pizza a loud Havdala was recited for everyone.

11 comments

Saturday, January 05, 2008

Beware of scrap metal thieves in Boro-Park

Due to the skyrocketing prices of raw materials and specifically metal, thieves have been scouring Boro-Park for all and any scrap metal. These thieves work as a team of two to three people with a van and enter backyards in middle of the night to gather anything metal that they can find. Some of these thieves have even pulled up metal fences to take with them and cash in for some money. If you have anything that has metal parts, such as air conditioners, folding chairs or even bicycles, that you are not looking to get rid of, make sure that they are securely locked up.

4 comments

Friday, January 04, 2008

Spinka Rebbe Court Order modified

ORDER MODIFYING CONDITIONS OF PRE-TRIAL RELEASE

Pursuant to the Stipulation entered into between the parties,
IT IS SO ORDERED that the December 21, 2007 order setting conditions of
bail for Rabbi Naftali Weisz be modified as follows:

The conditions relating to travel are deleted and replaced with the following:
Rabbi Weisz may travel to and within the states of New York, New Jersey and
California; Rabbi Weisz may travel to other states only upon prior notice to and
approval by the pretrial services office. Rabbi Weisz may enter the premises of
airports, railroads, and bus terminals to conduct such travel.
The condition requiring Rabbi Weisz to participate in residential drug and/or
alcohol testing is hereby deleted.

The conditions of home confinement are modified to delete the condition of
electronic monitoring and instead require Rabbi Weisz to report by telephone to the
pretrial services office every day except for the Jewish Sabbath and other Jewish
holidays. Rabbi Weisz may leave the home to perform his work and religious
responsibilities as a rabbi including, for example, attending funerals, weddings,
religious communal meals, circumcision ceremonies, hospital visits, tutoring, inhome
counseling, lectures at schools and places of worship, bar mitzvahs, and
memorial services. For purposes of this order, home confinement shall mean
confinement to the structures at 1462 and 1466 56th Street, Brooklyn, New York.
Abraham Lesser is a satisfactory Surety.

37 comments
Tears and pleas of help from babies - Have Heimishe Tzedakah ad campaigns gone too far?

Heimishe Tzedakah ad campaigns have already met the level in marketing and money spent as many mainstream business ad campaigns. However, now a new level of heart-rending ads are coming up, each more extreme than the next. Are these ads going too far?

9 comments

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Anti-Semitism by member of Board of Selectmen

Organizers of an effort to remove Maureen Kenney from her seat on the Board of Selectmen say they are ready to collect the thousands of signatures needed to put a recall question on the ballot.

At the Oct. 23 meeting, Kenney said that she believed that Silverman's request for up to five days of paid leave after the death of a close family member was excessive and unnecessary.

“It's not the standard in industry,” Kenney is quoted by Silverman as saying in a letter recounting the incident. “Besides, don't you Jews plant them within 24 hours.”

After Silverman objected to Kenney's remarks, he then quoted her as saying: “I don't see any side curls on your head, so what the hell do you need five days of bereavement leave for.” Side curls are traditionally worn by male Hasidic Jews.

A copy of Silverman's two-page letter to school committee members and lawyers was obtained by The Patriot Ledger.

Elected a selectman in March, Kenney has said she doesn't intend to give up that seat. She could not be reached for comment.

http://enterprise.southofboston.com/articles/2008/01/03/news/news/news12.txt

0 comments
Hitler Medaber Mitoich Groinoy


19 comments

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Out of the Inbox - Too much homework


Sent in by a Chaptzem reader

To Chaptzem, please post this as I am beyond frustrated already,

I am a mother of BI"H five children, four girls and one boy, all under the age of ten. I am very proud to be a stay-at-home mother, which doesn't mean that I don't work, it just means that I don't get paid - at least not monetarily. I have no qualms. I get up early, have a coffee with my husband before he goes to learn and then to work. Then I wake my kids, feed them, clothe them, send them off, shop for them, cook for them, feed them again and then - here it comes - spend over two hours doing homework with them.

Yes, that's right, after my long day of housework and their very long day of school work, there is still over two solid hours of homework between the five of them.

I happily help them with every kriah sheet, math example and reading page that they have, but I just can't understand why all this extra work is necessary. I agree, homework is an important part of the learning process. There are only that many school hours in the day. But is it really necessary for each child to have two math pages, two spelling pages, a science page, a history page, a book to read and one more page to review what was done in class? Is it really necessary for each child to have to do all this work every single night of the week? If each child had one or two nights homework-free every week, that would mean about five to ten homeworks less for me - a savings of about four hours a week.

Yeshivah of Prospect Park has already instituted such an idea, why can't the Bais Yakov's do so as well?

If there is anyone from the heimishe schools reading this, please take the plea of an exhausted mother and her overworked children into consideration and tone down the homework a bit.

Thank you,
A real devoted mom

40 comments

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

It's 2 PM - Do you know where your recyclable garbage is?



13 comments
Get your Bobov caps here

Regardless of which team you're on, we've got a cap for you!




48 Street Caps ----------- 45 Street Caps

12 comments

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