web analytics
April 19, 2014 / 19 Nisan, 5774
At a Glance
Blogs
Sponsored Post
Spa 1.2 Combining Modern Living in Traditional Jerusalem

A unique and prestigious residential project in now being built in Mekor Haim Street in Jerusalem.



When Good People Cheat

handcuffs

Photo Credit: Abir Sultan/Flash 90

Share Button

I truly hate writing about such things. The community of Satmar has many great things about it. Their Bikur Cholim Society is legendary. They visit their sick brethren and bend over backwards to see that all their needs are met. And they do not discriminate. Any Jew, Satmar or not; religious or otherwise gets the same benevolent treatment. They are also a very warm and welcoming community and are about as hospitable as can be to all guests.

Very few would ever doubt their commitment to Mitzvah observance. They go the extra mile to make sure that every ‘t’ is crossed and every ‘i’ dotted in every ritual they perform. And express great joy in doing so. They probably spend more time – and money – on Hidur Mitzvah than most any other segment of Orthodox Jewry.

And they go to great lengths to shelter themselves from all the negative influences of society. That is what being a Chasid is all about. Which is why the story in the New York Times is so sad… and why I hate writing about it.

But when a member of one segment of Orthodox Jewry messes up – it reflects poorly on all of Orthodox Jewry. So I must protest it when it happens. I do so again here.

The New York Times reports that Rabbi Leib Glanz, a prominent member of the Satmar community pleaded guilty to “stealing more than $220,000 over 15 years in housing subsidies from the Section 8 program, which is intended to assist low-income people.”

The question is the following: How is it possible that a man who is so intimately involved in Gemilas Chasodim – acts of kindness – capable of knowingly stealing from the government? People who are involved constantly in acts of kindness tend to be good people all the way around?!

The fact is that Rabbi Glanz is a Baal Chesed. He goes out of his way for the Jewish people. During his tenure as a chaplain for the New York City jails he had helped a religious inmate arrange a lavish jailhouse bar mitzvah for the inmate’s son.  I wrote about the incident at the time. I believe that the negative publicity of that excess is what led to his dismissal as a chaplain. But he saw nothing wrong with that. He saw it as helping a fellow Jew who was “Nebech” in prison.

I am not judging that particular event here. The point is that his goal was to help a fellow Jew that he saw in dire straits. And that was the goal with this fraud. He wanted to help his Yeshiva. From the New York Times:

Prosecutors had charged that the rabbi’s brother was approved for federal subsidies in the mid-1990s so that he, his wife and two children could reside in a duplex apartment at 85 Ross Street in Brooklyn. He listed his income at $6,630 and submitted annual paperwork certifying that he lived at the address, the government said.

But in fact, he lived elsewhere and Rabbi Glanz lived in the apartment, according to a criminal complaint filed last year by the office of Preet Bharara, the United States attorney in Manhattan.

The complaint said the housing subsidies were paid to the apartment’s owner, the United Talmudical Academy, where Rabbi Glanz worked and for a time was executive director.

In court, Rabbi Glanz told Judge P. Kevin Castel that in 1996 through 2000, he signed several contracts with the New York City Housing Authority, which administered the Section 8 program for the federal government, for benefits to be paid to the academy on the basis that his brother would live in the apartment.

Rabbi Glantz did this knowing full well it was illegal he admitted as much. He knew he was wrong and did it anyway.

I wish I could say that this is an anomaly. …that this is the exception that proves the rule that Chasidim from Satmar-like communities would never cheat the government so purposefully and so directly. This was not a simple tax evasion case. This was a fraud! But Rabbi Glanz is proabably not seen as a criminal in the eyes of his own community.

I’m pretty sure they will see him as a hero – who got caught. They will say that what he did was not so wrong since that money ordinarily gets spent on the ‘dregs’ of society anyway. Why shouldn’t ‘we’ get a chunk of it …by hook or by crook?! Why shouldn’t the Yeshivos of Satmar benefit from funds that would otherwise be wasted on unwed mothers, drug addicts, and other ‘low-lifes’?!

Share Button

About the Author: Harry Maryles runs the blog "Emes Ve-Emunah" which focuses on current events and issues that effect the Jewish world in general and Orthodoxy in particular. It discuses Hashkafa and news events of the day - from a Centrist perspctive and a philosphy of Torah U'Mada. He can be reached at hmaryles@yahoo.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

Leave a comment (Select your commenting platform)

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Loading Facebook Comments ...
Loading Disqus Comments ...
Binyamin and Chaya Maryles, uncle and aunt of Emes Ve-Emunah author Harry Maryles.
Current Top Story
FBI Wanted poster for Osama bin Laden
Pakistan Library Renamed to Honor bin Laden
Latest Blogs Stories
Baruch Mizrachi Funeral

When will the State of Israel decide the Palestinian Arabs are a hostile enemy and treat them as such?

Israeli troops guarding the northern border.

Like Hamas, Hezbollah also builds tunnels. Those tunnels pose a serious danger to IDF border patrols.

Firnas Hafzi, Egyptian journalist who luridly repeats Passover Blood Libel.

Visa has ads in an Egyptian magazine in which a story describes Jews as vampires. And worse.

Church of the Nativity, beseiged and desecrated by Arab Palestinian terrorists in the spring of 2002.

World Council of Churches expresses solidarity with “Palestinians” ‘languishing’ in Israeli prisons.

The Seder: We starve (during the sometimes endless recitations and discussions) and we feast.

The unique skills of people on the autistic spectrum adds great breadth to IDF intelligence work.

Passover is a road that we still travel, a long journey from slavery to freedom.

In Iran, 131 offenses are punishable by death, including blasphemy, adultery and homosexuality.

Women must eat Matzah on Pesach too but that is also a time bound positive commandment.

Pro-Israel leaders on campus are as important as the troops in the IDF and professional hasbaraniks.

The seder reminds us of our freedom now that we are home again in the land of the Nation of Israel

IDF helicopters are ready to act on a moment’s notice to defend the State of Israel.

The Samson Super Hercules aircraft ensures the IDF can safeguard Israel from far beyond her shores.

Rudoren and the Times are determined to go the extra mile to humanize Barghouti.

Gazans are among the principal victims of the terror-addicted Hamas Islamists.

More Articles from Harry Maryles
This 18th Century handwritten Passover Haggadah was discovered in a heap of rubbish.

Women must eat Matzah on Pesach too but that is also a time bound positive commandment.

Dejected student

Students most in danger of going OTD are those with damaged egos from teacher inattentiveness.

I see less unity between religious factions than between religious Jews and secular Jews

There is never an excuse to withhold a Get from a woman. NEVER!

So much for honest disagreement in the Charedi world.

Just because I have a Hashkafa that differs from them, that does not mean I do not respect them.

I could not believe what I was reading. It made me angry!

He is willing to destroy other Torah institutions – NOT to save his own – but as an act of revenge?!

    Latest Poll

    Now that Kerry's "Peace Talks" are apparently over, are you...?







    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/haemtza/when-good-people-cheat/2012/09/06/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: