Rabbis Fear Media, Study Finds

The Jerusalem Post reports:

Only a quarter of haredi rabbis favor publicizing scandals involving their peers, but three-quarters admit muckraking is an effective deterrent, according to a survey funded by the Lipshitz Religious Education College.

Rabbis said they were concerned that investigative reports on the misdoings of rabbis would desecrate God’s name, said Dr. Yoel Cohen, of the Holon Institute of Technology, who conducted the study.

“Generally speaking, religious people misunderstand the media. They think media has an ideological agenda when in reality it is driven by commercial concerns.” Over the past several months Cohen surveyed 300 haredi, national religious and non-Orthodox rabbis. Those surveyed were asked to express their opinions on freedom of the press, the public’s right to know, and the impact of the media on people of faith.

In his survey, Cohen differentiated between “mainstream” national religious rabbis and “hardalim”, a hybrid term that combines haredi and “leumi,” or nationalist. The term refers to the more conservative, mostly younger, settlement rabbis who combine a very strict interpretation of Jewish law with religious Zionism.

“I found huge differences between mainstream rabbis and hardalim. Hardal rabbis are very similar to haredim in their outlook,” said Cohen.

“They tend to be more suspicious of a free press and less liberal.” Cohen found that rabbis born in Arabic countries were the most conservative on issues such as freedom of the press, the impact of the media on religious values, and the conflict between media and religion.

For instance, only 17 percent of rabbis born in Arabic countries said they agreed with the Western principle protecting the public’s right to know.

In contrast, 61% of Israelis and 83% of Anglo-Saxons from all streams of Judaism said they favored the principle.

No surprise here. It seems the fear of the media grows exponentially as a sector’s crimes multiply. In other words, it isn’t just cultural–the closer a rabbi is to crime, the more he fears the press.

Does that mean haredim commit more crime? Sure. Tax fraud, money laundering, draft dodging, welfare fraud and any number of frauds and scams, not to mention general thuggery aimed at opponents. And most of these crimes are institutional, not carried out by and for individuals but by institutions for their communities.

The settlers are next in line–remember the behavior surrounding Disengagement? The MO after that. I suspect they commit fewer crimes than the other sectors in large part because they’re too busy working to get involved with cheap scams or riots.

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6 Comments

Filed under Crime, Haredim, Israel, Jewish Leadership, Modern Orthodoxy

6 responses to “Rabbis Fear Media, Study Finds

  1. B”H
    Shmaryah did you conduct a statistical study that shows what % of charedim commit crimes versus modern orthodox and others?
    If there is such a study quote it if not why do you have to wear satan’s garments a week before Rosh Hashana?
    Also when you saw that there was a man in need of kidney you raised money to get him one so come up with some practical solution for this problem if indeed it exists and organize it’s implementation don’t just talk.
    Ktiva uHtima Tova!

  2. avrohom

    shmarya,

    the satan’s secretary the wicked garb of the sitro achro.

    Your hubris is almost irrepairable. You keep mentioing the settlers before the disengagement. YOU ARE A CRIMINAL! you support expulsion of jews from their homes…YOU AND YOYUR FRIENDS ARE MURDERERS…YOU CAUSED THE WAR IN LEBANON WHERE SO MANY HAVE DIED…YOUR CRIMES ARE WORSE THAN YOUR FABRICATED MYTHS… AND THEY ARE ALSO DIFFICULT TO REPIAR BECAUSE THEY CONTAIN NO “G-D” IN YOU, IN YOUR MESSAGE, AND IS IMBUED WITH HATRED FOR G-D’S CHILDREN. YOU WISH TO EDUCATE THE MASSES TO DISASSOICATE THEMSELVES FROM JUDAISM AS PRACTICED BY THOUSANDS OF YEARS SO IT JOIN THE FALSE IDOLS OF THE SECULAR WORLD, THE COLD G-D’LESS WORLD THAT IS FILLED WITH MURDER, ADULTERY, LISCENTIOUSSNESS AND HEDONISIM THAT IS DEVOID OF ANY G-D. YOU CANNOT FATHOM HOW JEWS WHO LIVE BY THE DICATES OF 3,000 YEARS DO NOT MURDER, HAve much less violent crimes than their non religious counterparts, many of them despise the hedonisitic live, sacrifice their whjole life to try to connect with G-D (something that does NOT exist in your dictionary) so you clinge to their weakness and show their imperfections.

    true there is a lot to repair in that world, and many from within and without are begining to deal with that, but rest assured: THEY LIVE A LIFE THAT IS FAR NOBLER AND REMOVED FROM THEPROMISCUITY THATPREVAILS IN YOUR WORLD,

    But let us not forget that YOU are the crimilnal, no SHAME FOR EXPULSION OF 9,000 PEOPLE WHO MANY STILL ARE HOMELESS *(TYOU WILL ABOUT GOYISHE HOMELESS BUT YIDISHE HOMELES YOUR PIGGY SOUL FINDS NO MERCY FOR THEM) are unemployed and after all THEY protected the Israelis ALL OF THEM After this stupid war where all the false gods have been crushed and “kochi veotzem yodi” of g-dless life wasproven to empty you should take heed and stop endorsing CRIMINALS AND ASK FORGIVENESS FROM THE SETTLERS THAT YOU CRITICIZE BECAUSE YOU ARE PIECE OF NOTHING, ACCOMPLSHED NOTHING PRACTICAL WITH ALL YOUR BASHING OF YOUR BROTHERS BUT THEY PROTECT AND PROTECTED ALL THE ISRAELIS OF ERETS YISROEL…

    DO TESHUVA…

  3. avrohom

    But let us not forget that YOU are the crimilnal, no SHAME FOR EXPULSION OF 9,000 PEOPLE WHO MANY STILL ARE HOMELESS *(TYOU WILL ABOUT GOYISHE HOMELESS BUT YIDISHE HOMELES YOUR PIGGY SOUL FINDS NO MERCY FOR THEM) are unemployed and after all THEY protected the Israelis ALL OF THEM After this stupid war where all the false gods have been crushed and “kochi veotzem yodi” of g-dless life wasproven to empty you should take heed and stop endorsing CRIMINALS AND ASK FORGIVENESS FROM THE SETTLERS THAT YOU CRITICIZE BECAUSE YOU ARE PIECE OF NOTHING, ACCOMPLSHED NOTHING PRACTICAL WITH ALL YOUR BASHING OF YOUR BROTHERS BUT THEY PROTECT AND PROTECTED ALL THE ISRAELIS OF ERETS YISROEL…

    DO TESHUVA…

  4. Wow. One doesn’t need to look very far to see the institutional thuggery.

  5. C-G

    Avrohom,

    That’s one of the finest rants I’ve read in a while. I especially liked the “PIGGY SOUL” part. What’s your inspiration? Genious. And your spelling has really improved over time, although you do tend to add unnecessary letters to words (ie “LISCENTIOUSSNESS”). The only critique I could offer is that you might want to break up the long strings of capital letters. After a few sentences, it begins to lose its impact. Otherwise, a fine effort.

  6. C-G

    Oops, I meant “ingenious”, not “genious”- the latter isn’t a real word. I was kinda swept away.

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