web analytics
December 18, 2014 / 26 Kislev, 5775
 
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
8000 meals Celebrate Eight Days of Chanukah – With 8,000 Free Meals Daily to Israel’s Poor

Join Meir Panim’s campaign to “light up” Chanukah for families in need.



Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

It’s One A.M. Do You Know Where Your Children Are?


This past Sunday evening I received a frantic call from a close friend, a 52-year-old father and grandfather who has spent the past 27 summers in the Monticello area. He pleaded with me to inform the frum public of what his eyes had seen – and his heart simply did not want to believe.

These are his words:

This past Motzoei Shabbos, July 28, I received a phone call from a Brooklyn Rav asking me to gather some friends and their wives and go to Broadway (the main street) in Monticello in order to provide some adult supervision and responsible sets of eyes to the “scene” in front of a pool hall situated there.

      I got there at about 12:45 a.m. – at least fifteen minutes before any of our friends arrived. As I was the only Orthodox adult present at the time, I got an unvarnished look at the proceedings. What I saw was beyond my wildest nightmares. Inside the pool hall and spilling out into the street were hundreds of frum boys and girls hanging out, cavorting, drinking, and snorting drugs.

      The kids ran the full range of Orthodox Jewry – children from very chassidish to Modern Orthodox homes. The behavior of the boys and the dress code of the girls were simply beyond belief. In fact, it was hard to believe that these were frum kids – until you spoke to them.

      Please don’t think for a moment that this was a gathering of only “at-risk kids.” Dozens of cars stopped by, and what you would call mainstream boys and girls got out to see what was going on. Many of them joined the party, at least as observers. A few of the kids told us that they and their friends rented bungalows in non-Jewish colonies or rooms in hotels throughout the Catskills where they party from Thursday night until Monday morning – including Shabbos.

We circulated among the kids and tried talking to them, begging them to come home with us. We offered them a place to stay and some food to eat – for the night, or perhaps an invitation for the coming Shabbos. It was most painful to see that underneath the bravado and in-your-face mannerisms were scared kids and tortured Yiddishe neshamos.

      Rabbi Horowitz, please beg each and every parent of unmarried children who are in the Catskills and not in a structured, supervised camp setting to make 110 percent certain of their whereabouts, particularly on Motzoei Shabbasos – even if their kids say they are going for a slice of pizza or bowling with some friends. What might begin as an innocent night of fun may turn tragic – physically and spiritually.

      Over the past generation, the number of our sons and daughters achieving success in our community has grown exponentially. However, our teens-at-risk population has been growing at least as rapidly. And along with their swelling ranks comes a sense of camaraderie and boldness.

Thirty years ago, mischief for the vast majority of our kids was a camp prank or raid. Ten years ago, kids were hanging out and experimenting with the boundaries that our community would tolerate. Today, our disenfranchised children are forming their own community.

Do you know where your children are?

About the Author: Rabbi Yakov Horowitz is founder and dean of Yeshiva Darchei Noam and founder and director of Agudath Israel's Project Y.E.S.


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.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “It’s One A.M. Do You Know Where Your Children Are?”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Sydney has banned the  Chabad menorah from being lit this year because of the murders in the Lindt cafe.
Sydney Darkens Hanukkah by Banning Chabad Menorah Lighting
Latest Indepth Stories

No one would deny that the program subjected detainees to less than pleasant treatment, but the salient point is, for what purpose?

For the past six years President Obama has consistently deplored all Palestinian efforts to end-run negotiations in search of a UN-imposed agreement on Israel.

Joseph Berger 
(Photo: James Estrin)

It’s not an admiration. It is simply a kind of journalist fascination. It stands out, it’s different from more traditional Orthodoxy.

For Am Yisrael, the sun’s movements are subservient to the purpose of our existence.

Israelis now know Arab terrorism isn’t caused by Israeli occupation but by ending Israeli occupation

Anti-Semitism is a social toxin that destroys the things that people most cherish and enjoy.

Amb. Cooper highlighted the impact of the Chanukah/Maccabee spirit on America’s Founding Fathers

Zealousness has its place and time in Judaism; Thank G-d for heroic actions of the Maccabees!

Israel and the strengthening of the Jewish people in faith and numbers has brought a growing light

“Can you hear what the dead are whispering? Leave Galut, escape to Eretz Israel-Lech lecha!”

3 main messages emerged from this conference: Communications, Community, and Collaboration.

In his short time with the shul, he has managed to activate a Hebrew school with now over 50 children and five teachers.

Recent headlines show escalation of the same attitudes and actions as existed during the Holocaust

The Mid-East conflict is a unidirectional campaign of Arabs murdering Jews, not the inverse.

More Articles from Rabbi Yakov Horowitz
jewish psyciatrist

Those of us familiar with the do’s and don’ts of accepted practice in the mental health profession saw similar blaring warning lights in our minds, as should have occurred when the facts were made public regarding the accusations against Nehemia Weberman. This case may very well be our community’s most important abuse trial during our lifetimes. It is imperative that we have a huge turnout in support of the victim, a courageous young lady who, may she be gezunt andge’bentched, is determined to see this through to the end so others won’t suffer like she did.

Rabbi Yakov Horowitz

In part the altered lives victims of abuse and molestation live are a result of the abuse itself. But it is in part also because of the unfortunate negative reaction to the victims by their own community.

These lines are written in loving memory of our dear father, Reb Shlomo Zev ben Reb Baruch Yehudah Nutovic, a”h, whose first yahrzeit is 7 Menachem Av. May the positive lessons learned from this essay be a zechus for his neshamah.

All responsible leaders in our community have roundly condemned the recent violence in Beit Shemesh and Meah Shearim.

A surefire way to gauge the generation in which a person was raised is to have him or her fill in the following sentence: Where were you when ?”

Baby Boomers would ask, “When President Kennedy was shot?” Thirtysomethings would respond, “When the space shuttle exploded?” Today’s teenagers would reply, “On 9/11?”

One week ago on my website I announced my intention to attend the next court appearance of a man who was arrested last year and is now standing trial on 10 felony charges of child abuse.

Dear Rabbi Horowitz:

We were taken aback when our 18-year-old son just called us from Eretz Yisrael (we live in Europe) and told us that he was coming home and wants to immediately go to work. He said that he is wasting his time in yeshiva, and just can’t take it anymore. He said that he will “run away from home” if we don’t allow him to go to work.

Digital images of the profoundly disturbing computer-smashing ceremony conducted by Rabbi Aaron Feinhandler have been viewed by countless thousands of Jews worldwide over the past few weeks.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/its-one-a-m-do-you-know-where-your-children-are/2007/08/01/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: