This is the kind of stuff you expect from Muslims, not necessarily the Jews, who come off most of the time as generally harmless, but not this time. In New York, five ultra-orthodox Haredi Jews were arrested for what was described as a “vigilante-style” attack on a 22-year old gay black man named Taj Patterson.
Aharon Hollender, 28, Abraham Winkler, 39, Mayer Herskovic, 21, Pinchas Braver, 19, and Joseph Fried, 25 were arrested and charged with gang violence and other charges following the early morning assault. They were among more than 20 Jewish youths who attacked and physically assaulted Patterson because he was gay. They claim that they were looking for someone who had been vandalizing cars in the area, but as they attacked him, they repeatedly called out anti-gay slurs, showing their story is nonsense.
Patterson suffered a broken eye socket, a torn retina, blood clotting, and cuts and bruises to his knee and ankles. The Jewish gang only stopped when a passing bus driver stopped his bus and challenged them, at which time they fled. In fact, they fled all the way to Israel where they hoped they’d get special treatment and be refused extradition because they were Jewish. It didn’t work out that way.
The five who were arrested refuse to turn on the rest of the gang and if convicted, can be imprisoned for up to 25 years in prison. This can possibly go higher if prosecutors decide to impose hate crime penalties as well. The gay community is up in arms, but something you might not expect, although you probably should, the Jewish community is mad too, but not at their errant members, they’re claiming religious discrimination against the Jews! Oh brother!
Joseph Pollack, of the Williamsburg Shomrim Safety Patrol, with whom the Jewish youths were members, issued a statement. “For over three decades the Williamsburg Shomrim Safety Patrol has acted as the eyes and ears of the community. Its members are dedicated community servants who take responsibility for protecting our neighborhood, not endangering it.” Yeah, beating up gay men is sure protecting your neighborhood, isn’t it? Oh, but you only care about Jews, that’s right, you couldn’t care less about people who fall outside of your community.
I have no idea where people get the idea that using one’s religious beliefs to cause harm to another ought to be acceptable, any more than any other reason to cause harm. It doesn’t matter if it’s Judaism, Christianity or Islam, when your beliefs lead to harm, they need to be punished and it isn’t religious intolerance or discrimination when it’s done. It’s just common sense. So here’s another of a small pool of Jewish entries into the halls of Horror Show Sunday.