Rabbi Metzger: Child Abuse Not a Charedi Phenomenon

On Thursday morning, Rabbi Yona Metzger, the Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi of Israel, was interviewed on Reshet Bet (Channel Two–a government channel) for the program Inyan Acher (another matter).

As of now it is available on the IBA website. If someone knows how to link directly I would appreciate it.

The reporter asked him why the haredi press did not report about the recent horrific case of child abuse in Jerusalem. Rabbi Metzger replied that this is because the abusers were “not haredim,” and that abuse is not a haredi phenomenon. Those who grow up in haredi communities receive a quality education and don’t beat their children. As an example, he said that haredi children, as opposed to secular Israeli children, are taught not to call their teachers by their first names. He said that the abusive family were baalei teshuva (returnees to observant Judaism). Therefore the haredi press did not consider the story newsworthy.

From what I understand, both Bruria Keren and the woman from Jerusalem whose 3-year-old is in a coma were raised in observant homes and received a religious education (even though Keren later served in the army; the Jerusalem mother was American). But that’s besides the point. Clearly other issues had much more to do with their failure as parents, than the type of education they received in school. After all, millions of Israeli parents grew up in the secular school system yet do not abuse their children.

He also said that the proper way to raise children is through love, and no one should listen to the advice of any rabbi who advocates beating children.

Shabbat shalom.


  1. What nonsense. And if they WHERE charedim according to HIS definition, then what would he say?

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  3. I saw your question on failedmessiah about Chen. It looks like he is Charedi, non BT. See the following:

  4. more disturbing is the idea that BTs are NOT part of the charedi population.

  5. mominisrael says

    HH–I don’t know.
    Rachel #1, thanks. I saw the picture of those guys and they sure look charedi to me.
    Rachel #2, I agree.

  6. So a BT can’t be chareidi; it’s just a costume? Interesting. How many generations does it take to clean the BT away?
    The personality disorders exist in all relgious or non-religious observances. The other night they showed a non-religious child-beating couple.

  7. This story is most certainly newsworthy. But, it would force a population to face questions they might not want to face, so (in the eyes of the press. . . not particularly free press. . . ) it is better left unreported.

  8. I agree with SephardiLady – the problem in the Chareidi community is that no one in power is willing to take action or even talk about the abuse that occurs there (as it does in any other community around the world).
    If it’s negative, it has to be swept under the rug.
    I’m disgusted.

  9. These so called Chareidim (Quakers, I believe is the equivalent term) by living without Mitzvot Bein Adam L’Chaveiro show that they are not frum (religious) in the least and must be reprimanded or better ignored.
    It’s not the hat or sheitel that matters, it’s what lies underneath.

  10. “How many generations does it take to clean the BT away?”
    Never. Didn’t you know? ALL Ba’alei Teshuva have a permanent “Pegimah” in them, a blemish that can NEVER be erased… 🙁
    As I said elsewhere, people like Metzger and his ilk are, at best, halachic pygmies who think far too much of themselves and their “deep” “thoughts…”

  11. Danny Brothers says

    So Rabbi Hillel of Blessed Memory wasn’t quite up to snuff?