Victim of Vicious Attack Issues Call to Crown Heights Community

Oped by Crown Heights activist Yosef Hershkop: “The time has come. We cannot sit on the sidelines any longer. After years of attritional fire directed at us by haters of our community, in recent weeks it’s become a full frontal war.

By Yosef Hershkop

Hillel says, “If I am not for myself, who will be for me? But if I am only for myself, what am I? If not now, when?” Pirkei Avos, 1:14

The time has come. We cannot sit on the sidelines any longer. After years of attritional fire directed at us by haters of our community, in recent weeks it’s become a full-frontal war.

While at one time we were allowed to live our quiet lives, that is no longer the case. The haters have pushed us into a corner where they are pummeling us with physical blows and even more dangerously spiritual blows.

We now know that our advocacy of both the quiet hishtadlus and the more public petitioning (over 300K in favor of Yeshivos) unfortunately isn’t enough. The government will be putting our most basic mesorahs on trial and they’ll be encouraged by the NY Times and prominent social media personalities. 

More personally, as some of you may know I was the victim of a vicious crime several months ago. Because of this, I unfortunately became very experienced in how despicably crime victims are treated and how unlikely it is for violent thugs to face any sort of consequences. (Only 1 out of the 4 perps were arrested).

The root of that is definitely the lack of leadership coming from the top. This lack of leadership also impacts our overcrowded hospitals, inability to get proper mental healthcare for those in need, and the disgraceful way our special needs children have been treated since March of 2020.

Kathy Hochul isn’t even pretending to fix any of this; in fact, she’s actually really proud of how things are going and will double down on the worst policies. 

Some are calling for us to move out of the state on a mass scale. Others are calling to prepare to live underground just like the Chassidim did in the Soviet union.

The Aibishter has given us a third option, though: we have the right to vote, something Yidden almost never had historically. Not only can we vote, we actually have the rare opportunity to vote for someone who truly respects our community and has shown a willingness to publicly stand with us. 

On Tuesday, November 8th (14 Cheshvan) we must vote like our lives depend on it. Nobody–and I mean nobody–has the right to stay home.

Let us all take a stand for our community and our way of life, and proudly vote for our friend Congressman Lee Zeldin for Governor.

The above is an op-ed article. The opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own. 

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  1. Firstly, I want to Thank you for pushing to get the vote out, which is in our best interests, and is incredibly important to our community.
    That being said, I have two comments to make on your article:

    1. Kathey hochul helped our communities with a lot of funding, and regarding the egregious infringement of the board of regents on our chinuch, she deserves credit for not attacking us as so many others had, especially considering the tremendous pressure she had from the nyt as well as from others in government who put a lot of pressure on her.

    we would obviously like it if she condemned the attack on our communities, but we can not take lightly the fact that she didn’t join the haters in smearing us. It is therefore not wise or correct -in my opinion- to condemn her so strongly.

    2. In all of his visits with Jewish communities (in ch , bp, Williamsburg, and more) I haven’t heard lee zeldin say that he will take action to reverse/stop the board of regents decision. He says that it’s wrong and that he’s against it, but will he do something about it? Or is he just sympathizing with us with empty words?

    That being said, I will be going to early voting and vote for lee zeldin and encourage everyone else to do the same

    1. Your entire message here is discouraging voting for Lee
      Your disclaimer at the end doesn’t help
      If you are writing up a long comment, make sure your priorities are straight

      1. So you believe that the only way to get the vote out is by hiding/obscuring facts? That we should manipulate people through lying to them?
        Maybe we can face the truth and give credit where it’s due, and simultaneously understand that it is a must to vote. Voting is not an option, it’s a must. But we have to tell this to people like adults, explaining that even if the other candidate isn’t a yemach shemoinik we still must vote.

        Feelings aside, do we have your vote?

        1. I actually appreciate your comment @770bochur. And yes I’m still going for Lee zeldin. But regardless it’s good to calm down some fanatical feelings regarding a בשר ודם.

          But if you’re takke a 770 bochur you need to koch less in politics…

          1. Thanks for your compliment! Also I accept your mussar.
            As an aside -and I understand that this isn’t what you meant- I heard that the rebbe encouraged to vote, outside of the times of sedarim. Can’t vouch that it’s true, just repeating a shmu’a

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