Friday, May 16, 2008

Letter From Crown Heights

Another Jewish boy in Crown Heights was beaten and robbed of his bicycle and cell phone. Although he could not remember the attack at all, the police have already concluded that no bias was involved. It is hoped that the District Attorney Charles Hynes will give this attack the attention it deserves.
When a Black young man was allegedly beaten by Jews, it is automatically assumed first that his Jewish assailants were motivated by racial hatred. A Jewish boy is beaten, reportedly by African Americans and suffers so severe a concussion that he has no memory of the attack. It is immediately assumed that it was not a hate crime, and the level of public interest drops accordingly. It is quite likely that the violence of the attack was fueled by an anti-Jewish animus. Unfortunately, this is of no interest to the Brooklyn District attorney. The trickle down effect on police in Brooklyn comes at the cost of the Jewish community, that attempts to defend itself with guardians of political correctness policing its every move. It is ironic that this racial pandering is diverting valuable police resources from bringing murderers of African Americans to justice. Police often will work harder to solve a crime when there is a public outcry. There were eleven murders in the 71st precinct in 2007. There were children who went missing. They need to be spoken for in a forceful manner. Not only is the pain of Jewish residents of Crown Heights ignored, but also the fear and pain of our neighbours. Posturing as a crusader against bigotry before all the facts are in is a cheap way to manipulate and pander to African American voters. It is painfully clear that prioritisation in law enforcement is highly political.
As divided as our Jewish community is, there is an underlying feeling that we are all family, that we are all responsible for one another. In the current political climate, this solidarity is an absolute necessity, when number crunchers downtown decide that we cast too few votes to matter.
I believe that we should have an organisation like Amnesty International to lobby for crime victims. Amnesty International has thousands of individual chapters all around the world, each of which adopts a political detainee. They write their adoptive prisoner, and petition his government for his freedom. This often results in the prisoner being treated better, because of fear of bad publicity and other repercussions. Many such prisoners have credited their eventual release to Amnesty International.
We should use the same tactics to lobby for victims of unsolved murders and other serious crimes. This group should attend the trials of suspects if and when they are apprehended Efraim Klein was one of eleven murder victims in the 71st precinct in 2007. His was not the only unsolved murder that year. There should be a multiracial group divided into chapters that will lobby for Mr. Klein and others like him whose murderers remain among us. I call upon the communal leadership in Crown Heights of all ethnicities to assist us in this endeavour.
There is much anger among my neighbours in Crown Heights about rising crime . It is magnified by a perception of governmental complacency and indifference. I want to conclude this article by mentioning four individuals, the memory of whose violent deaths stokes the fires of collective indignation.
Bela Meyerfeld Murdered 1983 Crime Unsolved

Shlome Fishman Murdered 1986 Crime Unsolved

Israel Rosen Murdered 1986 Crime Unsolved

Yankel Rosenbaum Murdered 1991 Crime "Unsolved"

Efraim Klein Murdered 2007 Crime Unsolved

Pessa Leah LaPine Murdered 1992 Perpetrator Apprehended

I call upon my African American neighbours to join us in speaking and praying for their silenced loved ones together with us . Do not let them be nameless. Do not forget them . May their memory be a blessing . May G-d avenge their blood.
Copyright 2008 by Rudi Stettner of and Sphere: Related Content


Anonymous said...

You are so right it is very sad to see the double standard coming from DA Hynes and the most corrupt, Police Department in the country. we need to stand up to these thugs hiding behind a suit and a shield, and take em down in court.

Anonymous said...

what about the Jewish Boy who got Murdered 20 Years ago in Crown Heights near Oholei Torah Mesivta, I think his last name is Goldman.