Opinion- Do Better by Yeshiva Students

Do better by yeshiva students

City and state officials must do more to protect the civil rights of these children and ensure that they are properly educated.

By Shlomo Noskow


I am perpetually astonished by how Hasidic community leaders in New York have managed to convince thousands on the logic of keeping young Jewish boys uneducated. And state and city education officials who have the duty and authority to ensure that students are educated have not done so.

Private and religious schools are obligated to provide students with an education that is at least “substantially equivalent” to that of public schools. This is to ensure that in addition to religious curricula, students are offered at least a basic education in topics such as reading and writing of English, math and history.

I recall as a teenager spending 12 or so hours a day in my Hasidic high school in Brooklyn. Some of the time included daily prayers, but the day consisted mostly of studying and rehearsing portions of Talmud and its commentaries. There were no secular studies. No English, no math. Outside of school, there was no time for extracurricular activities. More than 20 years later, the school still operates and, unfortunately, like many other Hasidic boys schools, it still does not provide students with a secular education.

My parents had my best interest in mind, but they acted like cogs in a system, following community norms. Hasidic Rabbis and community leaders set the norms, including school curricula. But the developing mind of a child shouldn’t be restricted to religious studies, regardless of religion.

It is perplexing that wonderful parents who deeply care about their children, allow the educational neglect of their education. Why are Rabbis, who incidentally are well provided for, allowed to deny these children a basic education? Shouldn’t we instead do everything possible to expand their options and better prepare them for the future? Why not have the schools incorporate a few hours a day for secular subjects? Would teaching students how to properly communicate in English and about basic history, science and finance be so detrimental?

Proponents of the status quo say Hasidic boys seem to thrive. That ignores the fact that a large percentage of Hasidic families are dependent on government aid. We are essentially dooming generations to lives of poverty. Why? And shouldn’t government programs, including Section-8, food stamps and Medicaid, be reserved for people experiencing unforeseen events? The programs are not meant to be used as a way of life, the way they are being used by many in the Hasidic community.

City and state officials must do more to protect the civil rights of these children and ensure that they are properly educated, as guaranteed by our Constitution. For years, we’ve watched politicians place politics ahead of the education and welfare of children. It’s time educational guidelines are enforced.

Speaking out in the Hasidic community is not well-tolerated. Anyone who does risks being ostracized or having their children expelled from school. But if enough Hasidic parents make their voices heard, perhaps politicians and school officials would take note. Then we’d be able to compel yeshivas to properly educate children.

Shlomo Noskow, who grew up Hasidic in Brooklyn, is an emergency medical physician in New York City.


Hate Crime Beating, Hasidic Thugs, Politically Connected Shomrim and 4 Years – NO JUSTICE!



Hasidic man gets four years for role in group beating of gay black man in Brooklyn

It’s four years for an eye.

A Brooklyn judge sentenced a Hasidic Jewish man to four years in prison for participating in a vicious beatdown that left a gay black man blind in one eye.

Mayer Herskovic was not the only person who assaulted Taj Patterson on Flushing Ave. in December 2013. But he’s the only attacker getting prison time.

“Those who stomped and chased (Patterson) did try to injure him. The defendant was involved, he participated and was found guilty for that,” said Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Danny Chun.

Cop: We used trick to get video of Hasidic men beating victim

Patterson, 25, did not attend the court proceedings in Brooklyn Supreme Court on Thursday — he previously said he wants to move on with his life.

Nonetheless, the lasting effects of the senseless attack will remain with him.

“Mr. Patterson asked himself why all this happened to him and he concluded it’s because he was a young black male in a predominately Orthodox neighborhood,” Assistant District Attorney Timothy Gough said on behalf of the victim.

According to trial testimony, Patterson was walking to his Fort Greene home when men — some belonging to the Williamsburg Shomrim, a Jewish patrol group — began chasing after him. The attackers mistook him for the suspect in a car vandalism streak, prosecutors previously said.

EXCLUSIVE: Gay, black man who was brutally attacked sues city

“This defendant, that group and the community couldn’t see him as an individual, but as a criminal,” said Gough, who recommended Herskovic receive five years in prison.

Video surveillance showed men chasing Patterson for blocks. One person with a walkie-talkie was identified at trial as Yoelli (Joel) Itzkowitz, but he was not questioned for his role in the attack.

One of Patterson’s lawyers has urged the Brooklyn DA’s office to indict Itzkowitz, alleging prosecutors have overlooked Itzkowitz because his brother is the politically connected coordinator of the Williamsburg Shomrim.

Four men in addition to Herskovic were charged in the beating. Two of the cases were dismissed and two of the attackers took plea deals sentencing them to 150 hours of community service each.

“Amongst all participants who stomped and beat Mr. Patterson, this defendant wasn’t the most culpable,” Chun said of Herskovic. “Mr. Patterson was chased for blocks, but not by the defendant before me.”

Prosecutors placed Herskovic at the scene thanks to DNA found on one of Patterson’s sneakers that was thrown to the roof of a nearby building.

The “deeply scarred” Patterson asked the judge to sentence Herskovic to the maximum of 15 years in prison for the second-degree gang assault and unlawful imprisonment charges.

“When Patterson woke up in the hospital, he didn’t know where he was. He was upset, frightened and alone,” said Gough.

The victim has had surgery three times, but he’ll never regain eyesight in his right eye.

“I wish I can take back what happened to Mr. Patterson all those years ago … I hope he finds peace for all he has suffered and endured,” Herskovic told the judge as he pleaded for a lenient sentence.

“I’m 24, my life is about family, helping people,” he added. “I work as a construction worker. I work with all kinds of people, black, white, Hispanic, gay and not gay.”

Nevertheless, his lawyer Stuart Slotnick asserted outside of court that “the DNA evidence was completely and totally flawed.”


Joseph Zupnik, Canni Care CEO, 386 Airmont

Joseph Zupnik Has His Hands in the Many Pockets of Healthcare, Medical Marijuana is Apparently No Exception…..

by LostMessiah, March 18, 2016 (spelling corrected for Touro College)

The high and…mighty king of the healthcare and rehabilitation business, Joseph Zupnik, one of many who had entities with offices raided at 386 Route 59 in Airmont, apparently likes the idea of adding medical marijuana to his portfolio of healthcare related businesses. Perhaps instead of sedating the elderly on antipsychotics, he has plans to get them high on Marijuana. Perhaps the endeavor is just plain stimulating…. Likely…. not. The cannabis business in NY is, in our opinion, most certainly going to be very, very profitable in a state that is entertaining the idea of significant limitations on medical marijuana distribution and use applications.

We are not sure whether or not Mr. Zupnik realizes that the “munchies” can be very expensive for those for whom cannabis is helpful. Whether or not CanniCare plans also to be a distributor of Cheese Doodles and Pringles, Jelly Bellies and mini hot dogs, remains to be seen.

And Touro College?…. Well, we can’t make heads or tails of that….

On July 29, 2015, in an article on PR Newswire, entitled: “Touro College Announces Support for CanniCare’s Medical Cannabis License Application” we learn that:

“If CanniCare is selected, Touro would provide the company with research into medical cannabis.

“Our college is supportive of medicinal development and research,” said Alan H. Kadish, president of the Touro College System. “There is still a great deal of research to be conducted on the medical application of cannabis and we are excited by the opportunity to contribute in a meaningful way. We will also offer CanniCare advice on the clinical use of the medicine along the way.”

Some of the research – to be funded from CanniCare profits – will be designed to ensure that the benefits of using medical marijuana are fully understood and that the risks are carefully considered.

“The State of New York is already working on a policy for when and how to prescribe medical cannabis, but there are always post-market refinements based on outcomes and protocols, and that’s an element of the research we would conduct,” Dr. Kadish said.

Mr. Zupnik, if you haven’t thought of it yet, it might be worthwhile to purchase a little food mart next to your distribution… or whatever… locations. Another thing to add to your financial empire…


From FailedMessiah, July 29, 2015

Haredi University Backs Haredi Company’s Bid For Medical Marijuana License

“Our college is supportive of medicinal development and research,” said Alan H. Kadish, president of the Touro College System. “There is still a great deal of research to be conducted on the medical application of cannabis and we are excited by the opportunity to contribute in a meaningful way. We will also offer CanniCare advice on the clinical use of the medicine along the way.”   

Touro College is essentially a lower quality haredi or haredi-lite version of Yeshiva University. It is to medical and scientific research what your local junior college is to Harvard, Yale or even SUNY Buffalo.

The potential medical marijuana company, CanniCare, is, FailedMessiah.com was told, haredi-owned.

The fact that Touro does not have much background in doing serious medical or scientific research and what it does have is primarily from its Osteopathic school of medicine should be a red flags for the State of New York – but likely won’t be, because the process of awarding these five licenses is by almost every report corrupt, and the one thing that can be said about New York’s governance in general is that corruption plays an outsized role in it.

Here is the CanniCare press release touting its relationship with Touro:

For the remainder of the FailedMessiah article, click here.



Blockbusting, LAUNCHING an American Shtetl…

LostMessiah, March 11, 2016
Blockbusting has been an issue of concern in towns and counties up the Eastern seaboard, more recently focused on throughout the Tri-State region. It has been going on for years. Despite community and political efforts by towns, counties, legislators and Senators to curb its use, efforts seem to get lost in the abyss of corrupt politics.  Blockbusting is a process whereby real-estate agents badger sellers into selling their homes either through  intimidation or through lies and deceit, convincing sellers that failure to sell will result in a diminution of home values.

It has been a topic of discussion recently as towns and counties within the tri-state region fight the influx of Hasidic and ultra-Orthodox residents, who characteristically send their children to private Yeshivas, thereby taking money from public schools; and it would appear engage in shady zoning practices.

In an interesting article entitled, “How to build an American shtetl — See: Bloomingburg, N.Y.”  by Uriel Helman, dated May 22, 2015 published in the Jewish Telegraphic Agency and on their website JTA.org, Helman outlines the Hasidic playbook:

“This is how you launch a Hasidic shtetl in 21st-century America.

  1. Step 1. Find a place within reasonable distance of Brooklyn where the land is cheap and underdeveloped.
  2. Step 2. Buy as much property as you can in your target area – if possible, without tipping off locals that you plan to turn it into a Hasidic enclave.
  3. Step 3. Ensure the zoning is suited to Hasidic living: densely clustered homes big enough for large families and within walking distance of the community’s vital infrastructure.
  4. Step 4. Build the infrastructure: Houses, a synagogue and beit midrash study hall, kosher establishments, a mikvah ritual bath. Lay the groundwork for a school. Launch a shuttle service so Hasidim who don’t drive or don’t own cars can get from the new shtetl to shopping outlets and other Hasidic communities in the region.
  5. Step 5. Market to the Hasidic community and turn on the lights.”

According the Helman, “That, essentially, is the playbook developer Shalom Lamm is following for what is shaping up to be America’s newest Hasidic shtetl — the town of Bloomingburg in upstate New York.”

Helman continues:

“Lamm didn’t stop there. He bought a group of farms on 200 acres of unincorporated land about half a mile from the stoplight and in 2006 got the village to annex it and rezone it for residential development in exchange for building a new $5 million sewage treatment plant for the area. He bought the airport in the nearby village of Wurtsboro. He bought 635 acres five miles away. He also bought a house for himself in Bloomingburg and moved in (Lamm also lives in West Hempstead, on Long Island).

Soon, changes started happening in the village.”

The article continues:

If Lamm’s vision comes to fruition, there soon will be hundreds more Hasidic families in Bloomingburg – maybe thousands.

At Chestnut Ridge, the newly built 2,800-square-foot attached townhomes look like they’re straight out of a brochure for the American dream, with identical facades, fresh white garages and bright green lawns. Inside, the décor is bright, modern and spacious, with 9-foot ceilings, an upstairs laundry room, and kitchens with granite countertops and stainless-steel appliances.

The houses also have all the accoutrements Hasidim, with their large families and Orthodox practices, might desire. The kitchens feature two stoves, sinks, ovens and microwaves – one each for dairy and meat. There’s an outdoor sukkah deck just off the dining room. Special sinks are located outside the bathrooms for ritual hand-washing, and a small room near the front is designed for a miniature library or study.

The five bedrooms upstairs have sleeping space for up to a dozen. The master bedroom easily fits two full-sized beds – Hasidic couples do not share beds during women’s menstrual periods and for a week afterward – and the walk-in closet in the master bedroom is big enough for a crib, which Lamm doesn’t doubt Hasidic parents will notice when their babies are born.

The homes are priced between $299,000 and $334,000. Once the remaining 350 or so houses are built, there will also be four playgrounds for the kids.

To read the article in the entirety click, here.

This process is playing out in communities up and down the 87 Corridor and we recommend you continue reading.
“Blockbusting” – Rockland County, Monroe Woodbury, Jackson Township, Lakewood …,  LostMessiah, March 11, 2016
“Cease and Desist” as a Means of Protecting Homeowners Against Blockbusting, LostMessiah, March 11, 2016
In Rockland County, non-Orthodox try to create alternative to Hasidic dominance, jta.org, February 19, 2015