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Editorial Note

Originally published January 19th, 2014 –

This past week an editorial appeared on the website of the Five Towns Jewish Times urging the religious Jewish community to fight a bill that this author felt infringed upon the religious freedoms and rights of therapists to deal with and make recommendation to clients struggling with issues of sexual identity in a halachically appropriate way.

In writing the editorial, this author incorporated a fifth group of people in an acronym that is used to refer to  Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender people.  The fifth group that was appended to the acronym was Pedophiles.

This author deeply regrets the use of this  acronym.  The author well understands that it is highly offensive to lump any group of people together with pedophiles, those who prey upon the young and innocent.

While this author firmly believes that it is wrong to inappropriately sexualize any relationship or friendship, there is a very clear difference between those who do so with children and one who does so with a consenting adult above the age of minority.  All people are created in the image of G-d and must be treated with kindness and respect, especially those among us who feel verbal and other forms of abuse the most.  I regret any pain I may have caused those who identify themselves in this category, as well as their family members.

The author still believes that the bill represents unwarranted government intrusion into the medical decisions of therapists, personal mental and health care choices of parents and their children, and is based on ideology.

Yair Hoffman

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Posted by on January 21, 2014. Filed under In This Week's Edition. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

7 Responses to Editorial Note

  1. David Cheifetz

    January 19, 2014 at 3:59 pm

    Dear Rabbi Hoffmann

    Thank you for issuing your apology on the Five Towns Jewish Times website for your terrible lumping together of the LGBT community with Pedophiles.

    However, your original offensive article still appears on the Yeshiva World News website:

    And why is your apology not being run on the home page of the 5TJT, rather than being buried somewhere on the website?

    How sincere is your apology? Do you in fact understand the pain you have caused to members of the LGBT community, as well as to victims of childhood sexual abuse in the Orthodox community like me?

    David Cheifetz

  2. Tim Lieder

    January 19, 2014 at 8:52 pm

    More like the author regrets that he got called out for the ignorant little creep that he is. It’s so much easier making these sweeping generalizations and putting when the audience is full of ignorant bigots.

    Hopefully the author will die soon – alone and un-mourned as his his lot in life.

  3. Randy

    January 20, 2014 at 5:41 pm

    Rabbi Hoffman,

    I think it’s time for you to call it a day and take a step back from writing articles. It’s one thing to write stupid articles about women wearing leggings. But this time it’s different. We can handle you writing stupidity. But spewing hatred and destructive rants is a whole other story.

    I have no doubt that somewhere in the Five Towns there’s a kid who read your article and felt his body shake– he’s having homosexual desires and is frum, and is no doubt having a terribly painful secret struggle. He just read your article and is thinking to himself that:
    1) homosexual thoughts make him as disgusting as a pedophile
    2) It’s inevitable that he will become a pedophile one day.

    He’s already struggling with suicidal feelings, and thanks to your words it has only become worse.

    See, you can apologize like you did, and write up some half-a**ed patronizing response, “this author regrets bla bla bla….” (which by the way, get off your high horse about being this author, can ya just say ‘Im SORRY”?????), but you can never take back the irreversible pain you have caused.

    I think it’s time for you to take a step back and stop writing articles. And if you think you need to keep writing them because you think they’re a chesed to the community, don’t worry, we’ll manage without you.

  4. Ron Weiss

    January 20, 2014 at 8:13 pm

    I’m sorry but this editorial note does not go far enough. Firstly, it should be posted on the site’s front page and secondly, the editor must apologize as well. I still do not understand how the editor of a news publication could ever allow the term LGBTPed (with its despicable implication) onto this website, and he must apologize for his gross negligence. This article was seen by thousands of people, and presumably some were members of the LGBT community (or even just young kids confused about their sexual identities) and I could only imagine how that made them feel.
    Unfortunately, tremendous damage has already been done by this article, particularly as it was picked up by several blogs (Jewish and non-Jewish alike), and a more serious apology would go a long way towards making up for that.

  5. David Cheifetz

    January 21, 2014 at 6:24 am

    Dear Rabbi Hoffmann,

    Thank you for ensuring the removal of your offensive article from the Yeshiva World News web site. It is very much appreciated.

    Dear Editor,

    Given that the original offensive article was placed on the home page of your online publication, it would be only fitting that this apology and retraction also be placed on your home page. That would be a true expression of contrition on the part of your newspaper.

    David Cheifetz

  6. RAM

    January 22, 2014 at 8:15 am

    Nothing short of an outright endorsement of deviant lifestyles will satisfy some people so that they’re not offended anymore. Meanwhile, the immoral strike a moral pose at every opportunity.

  7. Larry

    January 22, 2014 at 5:53 pm

    Dear Rabbi Hoffman,

    You’ve actually done the LGBT community and all of mankind a great service.

    The editorial’s title exposed the moral obtuseness of your views, and thereby hastened their demise.

    Keep up the good work!