Orthodox Jewish Group Condemns New York Instances ‘Campaign’ In opposition to Hasidic Colleges Amid Bounce in Antisemitic Hate Crimes

An Orthodox Jewish group in New York Metropolis has launched a public data marketing campaign to fight what it describes as The New York Instances’ “campaign” in opposition to Hasidic Jews and their colleges, a torrent of adverse protection that comes amid an uptick in antisemitic hate crimes proven by police information.

The group, Agudath Israel of America, erected three billboards in outstanding New York Metropolis areas, together with one throughout from The New York Instances’ workplace constructing. It additionally has launched an internet site, KnowUs.org, revealed a white paper, and launched a video in regards to the challenge.

Agudath Israel factors to 12 adverse Instances articles revealed in three months in addition to town’s hate crime statistics for November, which at 45 reported incidents was greater than double the 20 incidents reported the earlier November.

Summing up the Instances’ protection, Agudath Israel states that “the Instances has engaged in nothing wanting a campaign in opposition to the Orthodox and Hasidic neighborhood.”

“Publishing inaccurate, offensive articles in opposition to a minority group is all the time improper. Churning such articles out in at present’s local weather, when Jews are being overwhelmed within the streets of Brooklyn, is like chain-smoking in a fuel station,” Avrohom Weinstock, affiliate director of training affairs at Agudath Israel, informed The Every day Sign on Thursday.

“It will not be tolerated if perpetrated in opposition to some other group or minority—accurately so—and shouldn’t be tolerated now,” Weinstock added. “As a nonprofit, Agudath Israel of America doesn’t have the megaphone that The New York Instances has, however along with the billboards, we’ve created KnowUs.org, a white paper, and movies, all supposed to offer one other perspective.”

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Agudath Israel of America’s billboard greets motorists exterior the Lincoln Tunnel in New York Metropolis. (Photograph: Agudath Israel of America/Naftoli Goldgrab/Moshe Danzger)

The New York Instances didn’t reply to The Every day Sign’s request for remark.

The newspaper’s articles in query highlighted Orthodox Jewish political organizing as if it had been adverse and condemned Orthodox Jewish colleges, referred to as yeshivas, urging extra regulation of those colleges and claiming they fail to offer a top quality training.

“I’ve no understanding into what’s motivating The New York Instances in its marketing campaign in opposition to Orthodox Jews,” Weinstock mentioned. “However whereas I can’t confirm the paper’s motives, the development is obvious: selective sourcing, defective information, excessive bias. Unrelentingly.”

The Agudath Israel official cited quite a few examples, together with “portray little one abuse and corporal punishment as a ‘common characteristic’ of Hasidic colleges based mostly on ‘greater than a dozen claims’ over a five-year interval amongst some 50,000 college students, whereas neglecting to say that there have been 16,671 such claims in New York Metropolis public colleges over the identical interval—orders of magnitude better, even accounting for the bigger pupil measurement.”

Agudath Israel’s white paper on the story notes that the Instances claimed to have interviewed greater than 275 folks, solely “dozens” of whom “are nonetheless within the Hasidic neighborhood.”

“In different phrases, whereas The New York Instances is opaque about exactly what number of ‘dozens’ had been interviewed, clearly the Instances solely spoke to a small share of the neighborhood it so closely censured,” the group’s white paper says.

Weinstock additionally faulted the Instances for a headline suggesting that yeshivas are “Flush With Public Cash,” which he mentioned was justified solely “by conjuring a large-sounding determine over 4 years, for tens of hundreds of scholars, and together with one-time stimulus funds.”

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“In reality, these colleges save taxpayers billions yearly, shouldered by hardworking dad and mom self-funding their youngsters’s training as a result of they need one thing completely different,” Weinstock informed The Every day Sign.

Agudath Israel and lots of members of the Orthodox Jewish neighborhood have requested the Instances to appropriate the report, to no avail, he mentioned.

“The Instances has ignored numerous requests by Agudath Israel, by colleges, and by a whole lot of Jewish dad and mom and college students to appropriate the inaccuracies in its reporting, and asking the Instances to report about their very own lived experiences, solely to fall on deaf ears,” Weinstock mentioned. “Their voices had been buried, besides when the Instances could not bury them.”

“After this four-month onslaught by some of the highly effective newspapers on this planet, and after dialogue, diplomacy, and fact-checking have failed, we felt compelled to talk out,” he added. “There is a matter of suppression of free speech, and now a difficulty of endangering our bodily safety.”

Agudath Israel of America’s billboard seems above New York Metropolis’s Instances Sq.. (Photograph: Agudath Israel of America/Naftoli Goldgrab/Moshe Danzger)

“The New York Instances has run over a dozen hit items in opposition to the Hasidic neighborhood up to now three months, utilizing cherry-picked, agenda-driven sources, defective metrics and unhealthy information, whereas avoiding precise specialists and people who signify the overwhelming majority,” Rabbi Yaakov Menken, managing director of the Coalition for Jewish Values, informed The Every day Sign.

“Finished to some other minority, the Instances itself would howl with outrage, however to the woke Instances, the victims of nearly all of New York’s hate crimes are privileged,” Menken added. “There’s merely no different solution to describe it than as antisemitic propaganda.”

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Though Democrats have a protracted historical past of championing the Jewish neighborhood, America’s rising ideological polarization has alienated liberals from Orthodox Jews.

Orthodox Jewish colleges have discovered themselves focused by LGBT activists for his or her Torah-based stance in opposition to gay exercise and transgender id. One left-wing group has repeatedly focused a outstanding Jewish journalist, apparently accusing him of supporting white nationalism.

In the course of the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, then-New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, blamed the Orthodox Jewish neighborhood for upticks in coronavirus instances. Agudath Israel challenged a few of Cuomo’s restrictions on the grounds that they discriminated on the premise of faith. Courts dominated within the group’s favor.

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