Saturday, May 18, 2013

Toronto Board of Rabbis stepped on a hornets nest.

Rochelle Wilner
Dear Rabbis,
I join many others in expressing my profound disappointment and deep sense of sadness at your, at best, misguided, but far more likely, misinformed, repugnant statement regarding Pamela Geller’s speaking engagement here in Toronto, which I attended. For an illustrious group, as you portray yourselves to be, you have committed the unforgivable sin of speaking lashen hora of an individual you neither know nor care to know. You accuse Ms. Geller of being known for her “extreme criticism of Muslims in language that is intended to shock and ridicule” but you offer NO examples of her words to support your claim. You claim, with certainty, that the result of her speaking engagement will be “increasing tensions within the Jewish community and between Jews and Muslims in Toronto.”  For rabbinic clergy to even level such a charge against Ms. Geller is beyond the pale – with your words you have given credibility and legitimacy to all those who hate us, including the Muslim Brotherhood. You might be proud but, many of us whom you purport to represent, are ashamed of what you have said. You might find Ms. Geller’s words “distasteful” but I find your words, accusations and actions despicable.

And as for friendship, there can only be friendship with those in the Muslim community who respect our right to be proud Jews in our wonderful diverse Canadian community. And there are many of them. But, sadly, not all of them. While you are quick to point out the “radical fringe” in our own community I have been unsuccessful in finding your pointed criticism of the “radical fringe’ in the Muslim community. Or is it that you fear that if you do acknowledge and speak out against the Muslim Radicals or Jihadis, you risk them not liking you and, by extension, the entire Jewish community?  Are you being naive or ignorant? The fact is, they don’t like you now and will respect you less for wanting to sing kumbaya with them.
Where are your voices when Jewish students are accosted on Canadian campuses on a regular basis? Where is your derision when virulent antisemites speak out at Islamic conferences and call for hatred, if not death, towards our people? Where are your press releases when young Muslim girls are honour-killed because they want to dress like their Canadian friends? Where is your outrage when Imams preach hate and antisemitism in their weekly sermons in Canadian mosques and schools?  And where are your voices in response to the 1300+ reported antisemitic incidents (statistical analysis assumes that only 10% are, in fact, reported) in Canada just last year?
You have every right to criticize whomever you wish – that is a privilege afforded to all Canadians but, as Rabbis, you have an honour-bound duty to speak the truth and to bear witness to the truth. In this case, you did neither. Your absence at the event was glaring; your prejudgement of the outcome unfair and unwarranted, and your accusations regarding Ms. Geller’s words a blatant lie. I have never been so ashamed to be a member of one of your associate synagogues. Were there any doubt where the current incarnation of “Court Jews” resides, now we know.
I am attaching some reading material for your edification.Rochelle Wilner<

Toronto Rabbis Receive Muslim Brotherhood Approval – Well Done!

My night with Pam Geller
“A group with the grandiose-sounding name of the Toronto Board of Rabbis, which actually only represents a handful of reform and nominally conservative Jewish congregations, publicly condemned Geller. Referring to her “extreme criticism of Muslims” they say they find her views “distasteful.” They are unable to specify any of those distasteful views since they evidently haven’t bothered to do investigate what she actually has said or written and issued a condemnation based on rumor and reputation.
It is tragic that a group of people with the pretense of being “learned” and “community leaders” behave like small-minded, sanctimonious ignoramuses who are an embarrassment to the biblical teachings they claim to uphold.
Tragic, but not surprising.”
Talk about your interfaith outreach success story, it’s not every day that the Muslim Brotherhood‘s premier North American front group grants its seal of approval.
Dear Board of Rabbis:
With all due respect, I certainly realize and appreciate that we in the Jewish community have a right to our own, individual opinions. I read your condemnation of Pamela Geller and of those groups (JDL and Toronto Zionist Center) who sponsored her speaking engagement last night in Toronto. Now I think it’s only fair that you listen to my thoughts.
I was very excited to finally see Pamela Geller speak in person last night. She didn’t let us down. She was eloquent, high energy, motivational, inspirational, brave and beautiful. She mentioned the story of how York Region’s Police ‘Little Rickey’ pressured Rabbi Kaplan of the Flamingo Chabbad Synagogue to cancel her speaking engagement. A story that most of your readers by now are fully aware. But what was news to me, was that she was condemned by many Toronto Rabbis. Sadly, like many conservative or right wing political groups, if one of their members speaks too loudly and is found to be too controversial, they are often thrown under the bus. This is exactly what our heros like Ms. Geller face on a daily basis.
During the Holocaust, so too did many Jewish leaders (rabbis included), decide to keep a low profile and stifle cries by many individual Jews to intervene in Europe. Sadly, very few rabbis pleaded with government leaders to bomb the railways leading millions of Jews to various concentration camps. They didn’t want to rock the boat and heaven forbid, become controversial.
The current war against radical Islam that we are fighting is no less a threat. It demands that we speak up where ever and when ever possible. In your condemnation of Ms. Geller, you made blanket accusations without identifying even one example of her hate speech against Muslims. In fact she is a friend to moderate Muslims. She helps protect Muslim women from rape, attacks and murder by their own family and community. One shining example is how she undertook finding a burial plot for one such young muslim girl who was killed by her own family. If I was a ‘good’ Muslim, I would consider Ms. Geller a hero. As a proud Jew and defender of Israel, I am thrilled to support Ms. Geller and heroes like her. If identifying radical Muslims makes you uncomfortable, too bad. Funny, I didn’t read any comments from your board attacking Muslim terrorist groups and states like Hamas, Hizbola, Iran, Saudi Arabia, etc. On the other hand you hand you had no problem attacking the little Jewish woman from New York. Shame on You!
Kudos to the JDL and the Toronto Zionist center for stepping up to the plate and providing security and a venue for Ms. Geller to speak to Torontonians. I’m sure that many other people would have liked to see her speak last night but the venue was too small. In fact many in the audience were forced to watch her via closed circuit TV in another room. I find it very disturbing that of all the synagogues in the GTA, not one of them offered to host her event. I find it very disturbing that of the hundreds of thousands of Jews in the GTA, they were mostly quiet about the attempted silencing of Ms. Geller. I applaud all the righteous Gentiles who did attend the event last night. But if we (Jews) don’t support our own heroes, who will?
Leon Kushner, Toronto
Craven Toronto Rabbis Condemn Pamela Geller Appearance, Pay Lip Service to Our Most Precious Freedom
As far as I know there weren’t any members of Toronto’s Board of Rabbis in the packed audience last night to hear Pamela Geller detail her efforts to put a dent in the inroads being made by Islamic supremacists in the name of jihad. Instead, our esteemed clergy issued this delightfully demented message, a tiny gem of obsequiousness and inadvertent humour:
The Toronto Board of Rabbis (TBR) expresses its profound disappointment that a local Jewish organization has extended an invitation to Pamela Geller, a blogger who is known for her extreme criticism of Muslims in language that is intended to shock and ridicule.
The TBR is a strong supporter of freedom of speech for all, including Ms. Geller. Ms. Geller’s voice and message are already well known here in Canada and beyond. There was no sense in inviting her here to Toronto to speak before a Jewish audience. Sadly the only sure result of this event will be increasing tensions within the Jewish community and between Jews and Muslims in Toronto.
The TBR, which represents rabbis from all denominations of Judaism, wishes to make clear to all that it finds the invitation distasteful, just as it finds Ms. Geller’s viewsdistasteful. We dissociate ourselves from the actions of the radical fringe Jewishgroup that extended the invitation. We call for more events here in Toronto that will build up friendship and understanding between local Jews and Muslims.
Allow me to express my profound disappointment that a local body of Jewish rabbis has, in a shocking dereliction of duty to the community it serves, chosen the smoke and mirrors–the fraud–of interfaith pieties over freedom. The freedom to condemn the Jew-hate embedded in core Islamic texts. The freedom to criticize grotesque and gruesome Islamic practices–honour killings, the obliteration of female sexual organs, Medieval punishments for apostasy and other “crimes.” And above all–and I would suggest that this is what sets the West apart from lands where Islam calls the shots–the freedom to shock and ridicule, to be saucy and rude, to poke fun at tyrants both petty and great, to “blaspheme,” to blow a big fat, wet raspberry at those dhimmified mice who would silence us in the name of inter-cultural amity and at the false friends they are so desperate to mollycoddle and mollify.
In the war that’s raging between freedom and dhimmitude, I, like Ms. Geller, and like all those who were there last night to hear her, choose freedom. That the Toronto Board of Rabbis has decided that groveling and pusillanimity are the way to go tells you everything you need to know about the “sha shtill” mentality that yet pervades and perverts mainstream Jewish leadership in Canada.
Update: BCF taped the speech that the spineless Toronto Board of Rabbis pre-condemned. There is not an iota of hate in it, but as Geller herself observed, in our time, Hashem help us, “the truth is hate speech,” and those with the chutzpah to speak it are branded “haters” and “kooks.”
Update: The spineless rabbis do know that Jew-hate is all the rage in Toronto, don’t they? Do they really believe they can wish it away via interfaith bromides and sucking up to their Muslim “friends”? If so, they are as stupid as they are supine.
Update: Funny how the spineless rabbis slam Geller but have nothing much to say about the Zionhass on display with depressing regularity at Toronto’s zany Beit Zatoun. (Question: who’s funding this bastion of Zion-loathing? Marxists? Islamists? Both?)
Posted by at 6:50 AM 
To: Toronto Board of Rabbis
Hillel said: If I am not for myself, who is for me?
And if I am only for myself, what am I? And if not now, when?
Ethics of the Fathers 1:14
These are the opening words of your homepage and it is appropriate at this time to ask you why these words do not apply to Pamela Geller’s campaign to defend the Jewish people (and all people) from sharia and jihad and protect Muslims from their own barbarous acts against their own people, especially young women whose plight Ms. Geller has highlighted (she has actually helped many young women in distress).
Last night at the Toronto Zionist Center I witnessed a spectacular event in which Jews were unified in support of a woman of courage, a woman whose erudition, compassion and knowledge had the audience spellbound as she revealed the truth about Islamic extremism in a concise and factual way, backing each and every claim and assertion with common sense and an understanding that comes from having read and studied and lived through the problems that others have so arrogantly sloughed off because they are unprepared to accept, consider and act upon the truth.
Some at this time are still blaming others for the violence and killing in the name of jihad, as if ignoring the truth or presenting it as a problem that can be curtailed if we just give more to the terrorists and respect their way of life and their worldview. Jews, of all people, should know that when people say that they want to do us harm, whether they are commanded to do so in Hitler’s Mein Kampf or the Islamic Haddiths, the executioners must be taken seriously. Some Jews in America did not take the lead up to the Holocaust seriously; some Jews, and even some rabbis wanted to appease the leaders of the day, not upset their positions in American society, and counseled other Jews and those in power to ignore the pleas of other Jews in America who had the moral fortitude and courage to speak out against Nazism and were sensitive to the horrific calls of distress from their brothers and sisters in Europe.
Pamela Geller is one of the brave ones who is willing to put her career on the line and throw all her energy into an endeavor that other Jewish leaders have failed to understand/support and, most disturbingly, these Jewish leaders often reveal a disdainful and twisted reaction when people like Ms. Geller speak out – it is beyond sha-shtil and has entered the realm of condemning people who are for us while sympathizing with those who are against us.
I heard last night that the Toronto Board of Rabbis has spoken against Pamela Geller and support the York Region Police who strong-armed a rabbi into giving up his right to offer Ms. Geller the stage in his Chabad to publically air her knowledge and facts – and that is a shameful immoral act of betrayal by rabbis – and an act of aggression against a woman of valor.
I am ashamed of the Toronto Board of Rabbis (and others see last letter) for being so willfully blind, unwilling to listen to what Ms.Geller has to say, unwilling to allow others the opportunity to hear her warnings and the impactful story she has to tell. It is shameful that as Canadians are being targeted by those who want to behead our Prime Minister, poison our water and blow up our passenger railways, while the Toronto Board of Rabbis are speaking out against a woman who speaks to these issues with strength, courage and knowledge.
I work each and every day on the problems of antisemitism and defending Israel against those who have been molesting our rights to speak up in defense of our homeland and in defense of our rights to live without the terrorism that comes mainly from one source – jihadists – whatever form that terrorism takes, wherever the terrorists happen to live. The Toronto Board of Rabbis are endangering their community and especially Jews when they condemn that which ought to be praised and supported but instead back those who are killing our people as we speak and have vowed to kill many more in the future.
Please rescind your uninformed decision now and make your statement as public as your initial condemnation of Ms. Geller.
Gary Gerofsky
From Richard Klagsbrun -
……..,  the west is in a war against those who intentionally target civilians for murder, who kill Gays, treat women as little more than property, and who believe free speech is subservient to their dictates. That we should support a liberal democracy fighting to defend its citizens against them is something anyone resembling a modicum of a moral compass should support.
Which raises the question of why Geller’s reputation is so rancid.
The answer falls into two categories, one is that there are Islamist organizations whose purposes it serves to suppress her message. Those include Muslim Brotherhood-affiliated groups like the Islamic Society of North America, who portray themselves as mainstream, but have links to the most reprehensible practices and ideologies of hate.
The other are the useful idiots of Jihadism who are primarily concerned with maintaining their image as “community leaders” who promote tolerance, even if it means tolerating a doctrine that calls for suppression of free speech, illiberal treatment of minorities and outright murderous acts.
Unfortunately, some among the so-called leadership of the Jewish community are behaving like self-serving moral pygmies in order to bolster their own image, at what to them must be only the minor cost of truth and integrity.
A group with the grandiose-sounding name of the Toronto Board of Rabbis, which in reality only represents a handful of reform and nominally conservative Jewish congregations, publicly condemned Geller.  Referring to her “extreme criticism of Muslims”  they say they find her views “distasteful.” They are unable to specify any of those distasteful views since they evidently haven’t bothered to investigate what she actually has said or written and issued a condemnation based on rumor and reputation.
It is tragic that a group of people with the pretense of being “learned” and “community leaders”  behave like small-minded, sanctimonious ignoramuses who are an embarrassment to the biblical teachings they claim to uphold.
Tragic, but not surprising.
It’s no secret that there is an implicit understanding among some of the heads of Jewish congregations and organizations. They go out and raise money as “community leaders” and make very good salaries in the process. They are called upon as “official Jews” when the CBC or Toronto Star wants a quote. And all they have to do to maintain that is to play ball and periodically  issue worthless platitudes about diversity and cooperation with people who hold them in complete contempt.
Meanwhile the people who actually stand up to those who want to destroy the Jewish State or speak out forcefully against terrorism and for free speech get portrayed by these “official Jews” as a “radical fringe.”
But make no mistake about it. Many official Jews profess, albeit very, very quietly, to the radical fringe that they share their concerns. But not too loudly of course, because that might entail a cut in pay and prestige.
But far too many are no better than the appeasers who, in the 1930′s  felt it would be better to remain quiet and not rock the boat as the Nazis came to power in Germany and went about their work of genocide.
In fact, they are even worse. Because now with the lessons of history, the “official Jews” should know what horrors their appeasement of evil can bring.

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