Lev Tahor

2014, Religion  -   66 Comments
Ratings: 8.12/10 from 103 users.

When the ultra-orthodox Jewish sect called "Lev Tahor" fled Quebec for Ontario in November 2013 it set off a firestorm of debate. The group says it left because of a conflict over religious beliefs and education rights, but child protection workers allege something more sinister is at play. The children are being abused and neglected. The controversy since then has only grown and so the 16x9 crew decided to travel to Lev Tahor's new community in Ontario where they were granted unprecedented access.

What Tahor was leaving behind in Quebec was more than empty houses. They were moving away from disturbing allegations that they were abusing and neglecting their children and living under extreme control at the hands of their grand rabbi, a convicted felon, Shlomo Helbrans.

Child protection workers started investigating and were taking two families to court, but on Monday morning when they arrived for their final meeting they've found the community all but abandoned. Every family with children under 18 had fled. In court on Tuesday a judge ruled the children in those two families should be placed in immediate foster care, but by that point they were gone.

The leaders of this community denied the allegations of abuse and neglect. They say they left because of a conflict over education. To understand Lev Tahor one must first understand that religion is the underpinning of everything there. It dictates the way people dress, eat, work... Yes, people will admit, life there is strict but to them this is the purest form of Judaism practiced to the letter of the Torah.

Teaching that religion begins almost immediately; boys begin school at three years old learning the Yiddish alphabet. At this age there's still time to play but within two years they'll start learning Genesis. By their teenage years class begins at 7:30 in the morning, it continues until 9:30 at night. The day is spent poring over scripture and memorizing the Jewish laws. In Quebec such a curriculum wouldn't be allowed, but in Ontario private schools operate independent of the government.

Latest news: Some members of Lev Tahor apparently fled Canada.

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66 Comments / User Reviews

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  1. Richard Neva

    I was not surprised, read some of their so called holy books. This is what they do for their religion!

  2. Will

    We must remember we are getting an extremely biased and "angled" report from the media. Every question the interviewer asks is phrased as a critical statement. We are never told of the circumstances of the Rabbi's charges. Remember as well, Jesus, peace be upon him, would have been crucified by mainstream media of his day, and likely he would as well today. I will also suggest to you another thing. You take a handful of 13 year old boys from Junior High School in Canada and ask them who the Prime Minister is and I suggest you will find a host of interesting answers. Do you think we should take them away from their families for not knowing? I also suggest that if you walk into many "middle" class homes of 13 year old boys you may be hit with recreational drug abuse such as Alcohol.... Just because our government has legalized this drug does it mean that we are better teachers to our youth? I suggest that we reflect on the incidences of our "Middle Class" "University" young men and women in reference to social outlooks towards "women" and we will find as exemplified by recent Frosh Chants at Universities of Having Underage Sex with "Your Sister" that we are in no place to judge another society framework about how genders are taught. Sure it may look odd to us but what may be odd to another culture looking at us from above the clouds is that we feed our children Cola and our government makes millions of dollars of tax revenue off of selling the flesh of women, so far in books, but now even in Nova Scotia they are "wrestling" with the idea of legalized "Brothels" that our own daughters can work in and provide more tax revenue while our own sons continue to look at women as objects of desire and nothing more. If I were to walk into YOUR house, just exactly what would I FIND if I started snooping inside closets and internet histories and what is it about your own children could I find that if I wanted to marginalize you in a media expose could I find. No matter how weird this looks to us there are things in this story that can be addressed with a little caring education..... WHILE JUST HOW DO YOU PRESENT that WE ADDRESS OUR own social issues. IT IS WE THAT HAVE BECOME "Holier than thou" and it is we that as Jesus, peace be upon him, said are staring at the splinter of our brother's eye while a log sticks out of our own. By feeling good about ourselves and how wonderful our own family lives are by presenting this skewed expose we can rest comfortably and be distracted while the ship of our own families are sinking! I find it hypocritical that a state that can make revenue off selling the skin of your own daughter to your own son and has a history of damaging all sorts of authentic social expressions in the past within its own indigenous population can speak from any sort of moral high ground........ I think their is more to this than meets the eye, and in the LAND of the HARPER and his recent SINGING Engagement in ISRAEL I am thinking this has more to do about Challenging the Atrocities in the "STATE" of Israel than anything else!

    1. bringmeredwine

      I totally agree our society appears to be in a complete mess and some of us bob up and down in a sea of chaos and self-indulgence.
      But we are free to make our own choices in most cases, and to decide for ourselves what is right or wrong and to adjust our lives accordingly.
      Our children reflect what we each deem to be acceptable education or behaviour. Parents can give all the guidance and support that their child needs, outside of our government institutions.
      The children of Lev Tahor are corralled into one way of life only. Their parents must do everything according to the strict laws handed down to them by their elders, and thee all powerful Rabbi.
      The children are also taken away from their parents and given to other families in the sect to raise.
      The children are malnourished, neglected, uneducated in the ways of outsiders and not treated as individuals at all. Neither are the adults.
      Yes, all too often, neglect, abuse, drug addictions occur amongst mainstream society, but there are laws in place, and parents are allowed to use their instincts and common sense, to try and prevent these situations.
      Who else will speak for the children of Lev Tahor?
      Edit: In times of trouble or self doubt, we have access to priests, Imams, rabbis, ministers, social workers, teachers, police, psychologists, psychiatrists, doctors, nurses, friends, neighbours! And sadly, lawyers.
      Who do these people have? Thee Rabbi. No man should have that much power and control over an entire group of people. Not in my opinion.

    2. Will

      No man should have that much power over an entire group of people..... I agree. I will take that issue up with Mylie Cyrus and Justin Beiber. Do you know that these children have likely not seen one incident of pornography in their lives, nor have they witnessed rapes and murders and tortures.... I argue that our children are less free then we may like to think of being able to take an escape route from our sickness we force feed them. But we come from the culture of POWER so everything outside our norm becomes EVIL and STRANGE. "Uneducated in the ways of outsiders".... If you see our own sicknesses, why is it such a sin to not want this destruction upon your own house? I am not saying everything is right on their side and everything is wrong on ours, I am just saying that the ripping a part of a child from its mother is an act we seem to be applauding like spectators in a amphitheater. We are far from knowing the whole story here and the expose is angled powerfully to one side. I am also saying that there are many ways in which to damage a child and some of them are quite legal today in the state. I would argue for instance to forcefully place your child in front of two people re-enacting a rape and murder is child neglect yet this happens every night in front of the eyes of thousands upon thousands of 10 year olds. As far as choice goes for these 10 year olds subjected to these horrendous visual re-enactments of violence I would argue that they have little choice in the matter. I am addressing this from a normative cultural perspective. If their indeed is abuse going on than for ure it needs to be stopped however I am also challenging our own ethnocentric position and asking us what we view as abuse and why we do not critically analyze our own cultural norms as damaging and quite abusive to the innocence of the child?

    3. bringmeredwine

      How do you know the children of Lev Tahor have never seen a woman raped? Have their folks ever invited you into their homes?
      And here, in the real world, who in their right mind would let their kids watch a rape on tv?
      There are parent advisory warnings given before such programs, because broadcasters are regulated.
      Most school age children can go to a teacher, a relative or a neighbour for help.
      Or they can call 911 or a kid's helpline.
      It is very rare for a child to be completely cut off from the societal safety nets that we have created for them.

    4. Will

      We separated thousands upon thousands of first nations children from their families based under similar philosophies. We had their children put our ties on and train in our educational systems for work within our framework where they would neither receive acceptance from our own employment nor love from a family anymore.

      We are a culture that always seems to know what is best and we are a culture that compares the rest of the world to our cultural norms. We are a culture that demands adherence to our outward appearance and what we consider important to us; and we are a culture that espouses love and freedom from the tongue albeit our actions really say, freedom on our terms and conditions.

    5. bringmeredwine

      Most Canadians had no freakin' clue that aboriginal children were ripped away from their parents. No idea the government did this to them! And now that we know, I can assure you that we are truly appalled. And the Catholic church supported and hid the priests who abused these children. Now they are being brought to justice.
      The people in my community are as entrepreneurial, intelligent and hard working as the next guy. They employ whites!
      They are healing themselves, listening to their elders and relearning the traditions and ceremonies that were once lost to them.
      Yes, other aboriginal communities are in dire straits but slowly with education and support networks these people can carry on and try to make a better place in the world for themselves. Give them time!
      The last residential school only closed a short while ago.
      Here our government will send aboriginals to college or university for free, and they are learning to be teachers, doctors, lawyers, social workers. Then they can undo the mess the white man made.
      Then they will also be armed with the knowledge and know how to fight the demon of addiction, apathy, neglect; and for their land claims.

    6. docoman

      What a load of rubbish. Some half truths mixed in with apologetics for this cult and its abuses, not to mention your absurd ending trying to point the finger at Israel makes for a silly post. Are you a member of Lev Tahor? Sounds like it. Another religious nutter trying to excuse and misdirect attention from their bad, illegal behavour. There is good reason child protection laws were brought in, and are enforced. That's what Canadian society did and thinks, not the other crud you try to paint them with. Israel and it's problems has nothing to do with this cult abusing their children in Canada.

      And it is quite telling how you want to talk about legal brothels and attempt to tar it with the same brush. No, legal brothels do not use children for sex, or marry off young girls to older men. This cult does. And whatever your 'one-off' case of incest is, that is one case, not all of society as you try to infer. If you want to talk incest, start with your scriptures and Lot and his daughters before you try to claim the moral high-ground.
      The leader was found guilty of kidnapping a boy in the USA. He claimed his reason was the boy was abused, quite ironic given this cult's record and ongoing child abuse. Even if his accusation is correct, its not his place to kidnap a child, he should have called in child protection. He had a fair trial, and was found guilty. The mongrel wasn't even made to serve the minimum 4 years, only 2. What that is, is one more example of him thinking he has the right to do as he wishes, regardless of the law of the country he is using.
      And yes, if your Jesus, shame be upon him, was here now, he'd likely be called exactly what he was, another cult leader, one more delusional 'messiah' with stup1d, absurd claims of being a deity. Not to mention Jesus' stance on slavery for one.
      Your efforts to excuse this cult and point the finger elsewhere only brings shame on yourself. Before you want to blame the 'STATE' of Israel, take care of your own state of affairs and bad behaviour justification.

    7. jaberwokky

      Are you Muslim by any chance? I only ask because your use of the term 'peace be upon him' is rather specific to Islam. And your support for a cult that demonstrates remarkably similar traits to fanatical Islamist groups also compounds this line of thought. Couple that with your obvious anti-Israel rhetoric (very strange given the specific context you chose to defend) and guess what, you're credibility is now a concern.

      A final question. Is your name really Will or is that a clever reference to the "will" of Allah?

      You're clever, I'll give you that.

  3. Dan Courtney

    I've studied cults, and this group is a classic example. Isolation; Information control; Shunning; Narcissistic and charismatic leader... all the signs. Sadly this type of mind control and indoctrination is not illegal. Some day we may evolve enough to deal with this type of group directly.

  4. Jack1952

    This is one of those balancing acts. Are they exercising personal freedoms or are the leaders of the group imposing their ideas onto the rest of them to the point of abuse. Many allegations were made but no real evidence was given, although, that may have to do with legal issues. Cults do exist and there have been some terrible tragedies involving intense physical and sexual abuse and mass deaths. It's not easy to know when or if, it's necessary to step in to protect the innocent. It's hard to believe that the Quebec authorities would persecute them for religious reasons but it isn't unprecedented. In the fifties Maurice Duplessis, the Quebec premier, had a personal vendetta against the Jehovah's Witnesses, and even illegally withheld a liquor licence to a Jehovah's Witness, presumably because he bailed out fellow Witness's for handing out pamphlets without a permit. It will be interesting to see how this plays out in court.

    Personally, I have my fears that this group may have some issues that the rest of us might find appalling. Lets hope not.

    1. jaberwokky

      I guess we'll never know. Condoning marriage for girls under the age of 16 is not a strange thing at all ...

    2. Jack1952

      That would be one of those issues that I'd find appalling.

    3. oQ

      (Many) girls are having sex younger that 16 these days, I hear 13 a lot. I realize we are talking about marriage but in that group of people there is no frolicking. I don't disagree with you I just thought I'd add a little something.

    4. bringmeredwine

      That whole "sleeping sack" business was so bizarre. God knows what really goes on in their bedrooms.
      My partner would see it as a challenge.

    5. oQ

      What about the sheet with the hole for entry back when.

      edit: I think my comment about my grand mother was not accurate Apparenty this is a Jewish tradition.

      second edit: apparently that is a myth

    6. jaberwokky

      Having a daughter that's gotten beyond her teen years I have a fair idea what they get up to. Which would be pretty much what I got up to at that age. Thankfully she never arrived home married at any stage.

  5. ffebus

    Again, you have missed my point. I am not discussing a denial of human suffering or our responsibility to alleviate it. I am discussing the agenda behind the State's intrusion into our lives on so many levels. This movie demonstrates just one avenue the State takes to legitimize its intrusion into our lives.
    What's next? The banning of Bibles, and the Koran because it contains hate speech. Hey, Mark Twain has raciest passages in his books, lets protect our children from the influence of Huckleberry Finn!
    Television is the worst thing for a young child. There is nothing innocent about t.v. Do I have to break that down for anyone? I will not form a posse or an organization to ban t.v's from any ones home. I consider t.v. a form of abuse but I can only influence my children. What ever happened to reading books? When they get older they can make their own choices. I am done. No use beating a dead horse. I have tried to appeal to a more objective world view. Thanks for the chat.

    1. Fabien L

      I assume that's a reply to me again. No problem being done with the chat. If you are going to use Disqus some more, I'd like to point to you the reply button below each post. When you use it, the person you are replying to gets a notification of your reply so the message you just typed doesn't end up being overlooked by the person you are having a discussion with.

  6. jaberwokky

    I must say I found this one truly fascinating on so many levels. I also had to rewatch it a second time just to make sure I could comment safely without being too reactionary. A very complex situation.

    I could feel Carolyn Jarvis' horror when she realised Margaret Atwood novels were off limits to this community. I certainly wouldn't want to live in a world where one was deprived of reading 'The Blind Assassin' so it's okay Carolyn, cry on my shoulder, I feel your dread.

    At the same time I can follow the logic of the Rabbi near the end who reckons his tribe are being persecuted purely for the courage of their convictions. Those outsiders with their "hobby" religions to paraphrase the good Rabbi. Because If I truly believed the Bible was the word of God then I imagine I'd have no other choice but to do what they are doing.

    But the issue is the kids. When the Grand Rabbi Schlomo condoned the marrying of kids under the age of 16, the little red flag in my mind fainted in a dramatic fashion. A female child that is not allowed to read certain things (one of which is a novel that would cause a saint ,either women or man, to question authority) is being guided to make a life long commitment to something akin to slavery. There's no situation I can possibly imagine in any universe I want to be a part of where that is acceptable on any level real or imagined. These are kids we're talking about.

    As I said, truly fascinating stuff.

    1. bringmeredwine

      The more girls there are to marry off young, and to reproduce, the more strength the leaders of this sect will have.

    2. docoman

      It seems even the Jews think it's a cult. Remember their leader claimed he'd be persecuted if he had to return to Israel, that's how he got to stay in Canada. And the rabbi they interviewed said as much about them.

    3. Jack1952

      Not a pleasant thought that Canada will give refugee status to cults and their members. If they were breaking the law in Israel, why would the powers that be think that they wouldn't break our laws. A cursory investigation into the Israeli allegations would have shown that these people posed a legal risk. I wonder who else is in Canada, claiming refugee status, for breaking laws in their country of origin that are the same or similar here.

    4. docoman

      Same here mate, I downloaded it, watched it a couple times now. Seems the leaders have made the decisions, and the rest either obey, or be rejected by their own family.
      That brought to mind the Westborough Baptist Church.
      I guess crazy is crazy, no matter the flavor. :( They're so brow beaten, even the women said it was their choice to wear those black clothes. I can't understand how being humble equates to not letting your husband see even your feet. I don't get the whole 'sleeping bag' deal. I was appalled by the young marriages. WTF. I can admire someone having the courage to live by their convictions.. but to interpret it like that doesn't make any sense to me.

    5. jaberwokky

      Indeed, the Westboro Baptists kept coming to mind while I watched. Also Scientology.

  7. ffebus

    That statement attempts to put me between a rock and a hard place. Like "have you stopped beating your wife". Just think it through. The agenda is what I am referring to not ignoring obvious abuses in life.
    Look at the pattern that the agenda produces and you will have answered your own question. You are looking for a "got you" statement to win the argument. I am only asking folks to think a little harder before the old knee jerks too fast.

    1. Fabien L

      I assume that was a reply to me. If you knew how slack the Quebec child protection agency is, you would understand that they have serious proof to remove these kids from that place.

      If to you being seriously underweight, poorly educated, having poor hygiene and fungus rot on their feet is not a sign of neglect / abuse, we can't possibly agree on what neglect / abuse is.

  8. ffebus

    We cannot seem to mind our own business. Our ethnocentric mind set has made us the busy bodies of the world. We began with the North American Indian and decided to cleans the land to the tune of approximately 11 million souls. Don't forget that we made the world safe through colonization, I mean Democracy; nation building anyone?
    We are concerned with the raising of other people's children but cannot properly raise our own.
    The Amish are a good case in point. They have withstood the pressures to conform and have flourished in spite of our intrusive ways. Who are we to judge these hardworking independent folks?
    The State cannot stand independence. Its natural propensity is control. It lures the population with these soap box scenarios of women and children being abused and the State uses this as a pretext for its intrusion. We fall for it every time, 911 anyone?

    1. Fabien L

      Ok, so if I understand your point, scratch all the children protection laws and don't impose any mandatory curriculum for teaching?

  9. oQ

    These people seem to have a lot in common with the Amish way of life.
    .The Amish are known for simple living, plain dress, and reluctance to adopt many conveniences of modern technology.
    .The rules of the church, the Ordnung, must be observed by every member and cover most aspects of day-to-day living, including prohibitions or limitations on the use of power-line electricity, telephones, and automobiles, as well as regulations on clothing.
    .Most Amish do not buy commercial insurance or participate in Social Security.
    .Members who do not conform to these community expectations and who cannot be convinced to repent are excommunicated. In addition to excommunication, members may be shunned,[9] a practice that limits social contacts to shame the wayward member into returning to the church.
    .Amish church groups seek to maintain a degree of separation from the non-Amish (English) world
    .They typically operate their own one-room schools and discontinue formal education at grade eight (age 13/14).
    In 1920 5000 members
    in 2013 281,675 members

    1. Fabien L

      The principal difference is that Amish minors are free to get out of the community. Rumspringa, which is Pennsylvania German for "running around" allows 16 years old to go in town. The minors in the documentary seemed to be held in captivity and have no knowledge of the outside world.

    2. oQ

      Of course there is always differences when it's different people. Doesn't mean it's better. It's a lot harder to impose something fully when there are 281,675 members. They possibly wish though.

  10. Fabien L

    Forcing minors to study religion or whatever else from 7:30AM to 9:30PM is illegal and shameful. Case closed for child abuse.

    1. Acierman

      Canada as a country must protect the children in situations like this ...have your religion no problem...but learn our history and our language as a priority or go back to your own country if you dont like our laws !

    2. Fabien L

      Learning history shouldn't be a required in my opinion. Many Canadians are quite illiterate of our history but don't pause any problem to society or their siblings. Language teaching definitely should be mandatory, how can you possibly obey the law if you can't read it or communicate in the language they are written in. It seems to me not teaching these kids the language is a tool of absolute control.

    3. Acierman

      ya right .. Fabien Lamour de cruising bar ..juste au Quebec que sa fait dure ..sorry but i think when it comes to education ..Canada is way ahead from the USA and most other countries also but not all ...unless you think that making your kids start at 5 am and stay in school till 10 pm 6 days a week is ok .i studied in 2 different countries ..je suis francais ,and also a bit of english..living in the USA now and i can tell you ..Canada is damn good in education ! Sauf le Quebec..sa fait dure en ostie pour les cours Danglais .Change ton nom ..cest ketaine !

    4. Fabien L

      Teaching is only as good as the teachers and the efforts the kids are willing to make. I am pretty sure the english taught in Quebec is better then the french or german taught in the USA. Whenever I go out there, everybody had these in highschool but can't even put together a sentence... I can't change my name on facebook and anyway don't want to, I don't care to be tracked under my real name.

    5. bringmeredwine

      I grew up in Montreal and received a good education. I'm very thankful that through school I was able to learn French.
      I later learned that my Canadian History lessons were very biased and full of omissions.
      I can't say if it's because of the teacher or the mandatory curriculum.
      That's my only complaint.
      My once impeccable English grammar has certainly suffered over the years.

    6. Acierman

      as a fact...somethin i didnt know but..my wife is a teacher here in the USA ..she told me the english news papers in Canada are at a 6th grade level and in the USA at a 3-4th grade level...even in Montreal...i found that funny and yes i agree wth you on language is a tool of absolute control

    7. oQ

      tell that to the millions of expats living in Thailand, China, Singapore, Costa Rica, Nairobi, Dubai, Spain...etc..

    8. Fabien L

      Tell them what? That they should learn the language of the country they moved to?

    9. oQ

      Right, English speaking people are notorious for not learning the language of any country they travel to for long periods of time or live in. On the other hand they expect (demand) it from every one else who travel or live in north America.

    10. Fabien L

      Well that is the problem of these countries, once they stop accommodating them, they will learn, leave or pay an interpreter.

      French is my main language and if I don't want to answer to someone in English here in Quebec, it's my choice. We have 2 official languages in Canada so I expect to be able to get service in both. I don't expect my government to provide service in Spanish, Croatian or Yiddish though.

      How will these poor kids be able to pass their driver license if they can't read french or english? In the rural setting they seemed to be living in, they will need it, if only to go buy food at some point. These gurus set up perfect rules to dominate and control these kids in the name of religion.

    11. docoman

      G'day oQ, that wasn't my experience when I lived overseas. There were some people like that, (I found the Danes were probably the most slack at learning Arabic). I made an effort to learn enough to get by, even though I knew I was only there temporarily. I viewed it as not only useful, but a good learning experience, as well as being rude not to. So did my sister. Although admittedly I have forgotten most of it in the 20 plus years since, I've rarely spoken or heard it other than on TV. For a few months my best teacher was a mate I made there, an American (USA) who spoke it very fluently, even dreamed in Arabic. A British guy I knew there also spoke French, Arabic, and some Danish. (possibly more, I heard him speak those) My Texan brother-in-law spoke Arabic quite well, as well as Spanish and Bahasa Indonesian.

      I don't think it's too much to ask anyone spending time in another country to try to learn at least some basics of the national language. Although I have seen it, not all English speaking people are like that, and weren't the worst for it I found. The 'more intelligent' people I've met all learn, regardless of their birthplace.

      lol, I spun my doctor out one day a few years ago, during an appointment he took a call and spoke in Arabic. (He is darker skinned and still has a bit of an accent, not sure exactly where he was born, never bothered to ask him.) I caught a few words, enough to vaguely get the drift of his half of the conversation, when he hung up I asked him in Arabic is everything OK. He didn't expect that and spun out for a bit. :)

    12. Jack1952

      I think most nationalities have individuals who won't or can't pick up the language of a new country they move to. My relatives from the Netherlands, laugh hilariously, at my attempts at Dutch. Here in Canada, we think that rude.

      Maybe it's our preconceptions. The English in Canada accuse the French of being stubborn about speaking English and point to the Quebec language laws as evidence where the Quebecois insist that French and not English is used. I've never had any problem in Quebec but one always hears the stories.

    13. bringmeredwine

      Wherever I've travelled, and Quebec included, people were very nice while I stumbled over my French. I am very out of practise speaking it now.
      My brother will fall to the ground laughing when he hears me. He's more French now, than English. He's lived in Montreal since we were born. I left in1981.
      I was wondering why the children of Lev Tahor didn't speak French.
      I thought it was mandatory for immigrant school children in Quebec.
      May haps being "home schooled" is a way around it.

    14. a_no_n

      It shames me to say you could be talking about the English too.

    15. docoman

      It was 'English speaking people' ...which obviously includes the poms mate.

  11. bringmeredwine

    The older girls and preschoolers, who appeared in the doc looked bright eyed and bushy tailed to me.
    The school aged boys looked too subdued during their studies, and unsure of themselves when asked a question.
    The mothers appeared eerily calm upon hearing the authorities in Ontario could continue the child abuse investigations and possibly remove some of the children.
    The raking in of Child Tax Credits, got my knickers in an uproar. This practice reminded me of the FLDS community in Bountiful, BC.
    In Ontario, a family of one child, who claims zero income, can claim 405.32 (CD) monthly. So this community of say, 100 children could potentially collect 40,520.00(CD) a month.
    The woman in the doc who had 13 children can collect 5,016.91(CD)
    I did the calculations based on the Revenue Canada Website.
    Someone please tell me I'm wrong.

  12. ffebus

    Unfortunately, children are used as a pretext for whenever the government wants to do its thing. Sandy Hook is a good example. Abuses of every kind can be found everywhere. Does that mean that we must relinquish our freedoms because some cannot handle liberty?
    We are gradually becoming a nation guided by hysteria and not Constitutional principles.I believe in total freedom for all. What we do with that freedom should be tempered with the consequences for those actions.
    Many people in these situations (ultra conservative Christians or Jews in this case ) have outlived these situations to be "normal" citizens.
    Harry Houdini was one of many Jews that came out of an ultra orthodox background. In the case of television...give me a break. are they really deprived not to have been brainwashed by the dream machine?
    As far as I am concerned, pick your poison. Why are we pressing the values of a degenerate society on this cult? Are we much better?

    1. a_no_n

      i'm sorry but what are you suggesting in reguards to Sandy Hook?
      are you you prescribing to the ridiculous theory that Obama did it to push through gun control laws?

  13. elizabeth wesley

    Some people make it a life goal to take as much joy out of life as possible. This is a good example

  14. ffebus

    I am not Jewish nor do I ascribe to the way this group raises its children. The glaring point that I come away with is that the State can determine how we raise our children.If they do so on this level, they will set a standard to legitimize these actions for other groups also. If we protect the rights of these people to live the way they do we will also protect protect the rights of all.

    There were no allegations of sexual impropriety or anything over the top. Yes, they are strict, but then again it is their choice. These types of groups were what settled the New World. Pilgrims, Huguenots, Ana Baptists etc. They were independent communities with their own laws.We survived these groups and have become American. We need to allow freedom to reign or we will end up with the dreaded knock on our front doors because we have not bowed to the tyrants of government.

    1. oQ

      Your comment shows me a different side I had not thought of. Imagine if the law went after people raising their children into being obese, a pandemic according to one of the latest doc.

    2. bringmeredwine

      Your comment peaked my interest.
      I surfed the Web.
      5 States in 2008 decided to add morbid obesity as a form of medical neglect.

    3. silvy

      To some extent I believe in personal freedom for everyone to live the way they want without interference from the government. But when there are children involved, children who are not given the choice of their own to make, then it becomes a more difficult question. These children are not allowed to listen to radio, watch television or be aware of the outside world at all. If they are not even aware of another way to live how can they be expected to make a proper judgement of HOW they want to live. Is raising children this way any different to kidnapped people who suffer from stockholm syndrome?

    4. bringmeredwine

      Young children are never free to leave unless an adult is advocating for them. Poor little things.

    5. a_no_n

      It's interesting how the social evolution from pilgrims to Americans is ok, but the social evolution from religious extremes into a moderate mainstream isn't.

      another example is that there are some people out there who refuse to give their children modern medicine on religious grounds, even when those religious grounds lead to the child dying...should they be allowed to do this, or is stopping them from doing this more tyranny knocking at the door?

    6. 1concept1

      That's a hard call - and the verdict is still out with me - my first call is to let the State step in - i the strictest guide lines proof - still a hard call?!

    7. a_no_n

      not saying it isn't...that's exactly the reason why we get twelve people and a judge to decide.

    8. 1concept1

      You have made strong points -

      On the other hand when one contemplates what these sects are doing to our children -

      Its an emotion call overruled by common sense -

      your right the "State must step down"

      (my opinion of how these various sects/cults are treating our children could be wrong and who am i to intrude and by no means thru "govt")

    9. bringmeredwine

      The laws meant to define what exactly constitutes abuse and neglect are inadequate when child rearing is in my opinion fraught with gray areas
      I'm trying to say that children's lives should be protected but each situation can become a complicated legal quagmire.

    10. docoman

      Here it is illegal to smack your child. I think the law makers here have lost the distinction between abuse and discipline.

      Most of the smacks I got as a kid I earned and deserved. It taught me there is consequences for my actions, an important life lesson I believe.
      I agree, there are many grey areas, there's more then one way to skin a cat.

    11. bringmeredwine

      That's exactly what I was referring to. Here in Canada, you're considered a monster by younger parents for even considering spanking. I think one smack on the bum is legally allowed, as long as you only use your hand, Not positive though
      Canadian parents don't like to say the word "NO!", either.

    12. docoman

      And then when they become teenagers, the parents are blamed for them running amuck. Damned if you do, damned if you don't.

    13. docoman

      While I mostly agree with you, I also think there has to be a line drawn somewhere. A serial killer probably gets their 'happiness' from killing others. Is it wrong to impede their right to 'pursue their own happiness' by locking them up?
      As long as freedom doesn't come at the expense of other peoples, sure. But not when it requires taking away other peoples rights.
      The distinction between abuse and discipline is the question here I think.