This is another must read.
But even if altruistic reasons do not motivate us to improve our public image, as it should, we had better do so immediately for very selfish ones. Why? Because in the “Wal-Mart” world of a 24-hour news cycle, Internet and emails, these awful scenes in the aggregate present what I feel is an existential threat to the perpetuation of Torah values to our children and grandchildren. I say this because I strongly feel that moving forward, our younger generations – even in the most sheltered communities – will increasingly and inevitably see and judge the Torah world not only through our eyes, but also through the lenses of CNN, Internet blogs and emails. And many of those images are not pretty.
We know that all forms of media tend to gravitate to news that is negative in nature, and that many reporters are biased against members of our community. But let’s not kid ourselves. Perhaps one or two of these incidents could be explained away as an aberration or the distorted view of individual members of the media. Collectively, however, they represent a troubling trend – one that must be squarely addressed.
I have lost track of the many formerly frum people who list these incidents of chilul Hashem as primary or secondary reasons for leaving Yiddishkeit. This is also taking a terrible toll on visibly frum people who regularly interact with secular Jews and non-Jews, as we are perpetually bombarded with questions, when members of our community appear in the media for the wrong reasons. Our souls are shamed and our arms are heavy from having to defend the indefensible and explain the inexplicable.
Read the entire article here.