Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Grossman and the Jewish community...

"With all due respect I think it is about time public finds out that Jews will stick for each other."

It's a funny thing about that. When we are talking about sticking together in a way that's easy, you know, huffing and puffing on the internet and maybe at Shabbos tables, of course Jews stick up for each other. Nevertheless, how many times to people stick up for converts? We're Jews. No, they want put us on to the death penalty, so to speak. Very rarely do members of the community do favors for me. Perhaps, they don't help an FFB with the little things so much, either. My point is that it's easy talk about being for Jews when it's a situation where you perceive a Jew as being threatened. The reality is that when it becomes two Jews, our little caste system goes back into play and we pick and choose who we'll back. What if he had killed a Jewish woman, would we still be upset? I doubt it. What if he wasn't Jewish, would people rally around and call this unfair? I doubt.

Here we go with the double standards again.


  1. I could care less about Grossman. In truth, he deserves the punishment.

    As far as I am concerned however, this is not about Grossman. This is about us.

    I don't care that Grossman is a Jew. I wouldn't care if he was a Hindu. What I do care about is that imposing the death penalty says a lot more about us than it does about him.

    Hashomer achi anochi isn't only applicable when it is easy. It is also applicable, perhaps even more so, when it is hard. Being our brother's keeper isn't a cafeteria style mitzva. We don't get to pick and choose who is worthy and who isn't.

    From a moral perspective, I have no issue with the death penalty. I can understand the need for such punishment. Nuremberg causes me no loss of sleep. There are times (mass murder, etc.) when the death penalty is warranted.

    Those who talk about new evidence in the case or his difficult childhood don't care about justice or the community at large. They care only about being perceived as 'righteous' or as a 'defender of the downtrodden' and being more pious and moral than everyone else. This is about them and them only. They don't give a damn about Grossman. If they did, they'd put their efforts into preventing new Grossmans from an early age. They would be teachers or mentors. Of course that won't get you on TV or in the newspapers.

    Sparing Grossman and others on death row isn't about them. It is about us, as a society. In sparing him and others, we define ourselves. There really isn't much difference between a Saudi beheading and lethal injection. I'd like to think we are a little better than the Saudis.

    Religious and communal organizations would better serve their communities if they focused on the real issues and the ethical and moral breakdowns found within their own communities. They would do better to clean their own houses before intervening in the affairs of others.

    Of course, that won't get them on TV or in the newspapers.

  2. There is a double standard as far as whether or not people would care if he wasn't Jewish. But...what does this have to do with converts??

  3. I'm ffb, and frum people really do help each other out. It's part of what kept me from leaving for so long - having the support of other frum people, the rebbes, everything, is very hard to ignore. When someone lost their job, food started showing up at their house, they paid for fish for Shabbos and got chicken, children's tuition was "taken care of"... Anyway, sorry you don't have that.

  4. Yehudit-

    None of what you say makes up for Mondrowitz, Lanner, Kolko, Rubashkin, and legions of others.

    In truth, YOU don't have 'that' either.

  5. Mystery Woman-

    This blog is about one frum person's journey, life, opinions and beliefs.

    Where she started from really isn't germane to what is being discussed

  6. People: Get the Facts Straight before you Judge Martin Grossman and Before you Judge Others:

    They say that he committed a murder of a wild-life Police Officer some 25 years ago in 1984.

    Some Facts: There was another guy named "Thane" who acted as an accomplice to the crime, however, "Thane" only received a sentence for 2 and a half year prison!!! And Martin ended up with the death Penalty.

    Fact: According to the law in order to receive the death penalty you have to have either premeditation and or have committed a heinous crime against humanity. Martin Grossman did not commit either offenses. He had an IQ of 77 which meant that he never knew right from wrong and could not premeditate murder. This should have been brought out in the trial however the courts wanted a conviction, and he had bad legal representation.

    Fact: Prosecution witnesses lied and admit that they have done so till today.

    Fact: Most of the appeals that Martin Grossman brought before courts were not even heard [meaning a lack of due process]

  7. Juan Roberto Melendez spent nearly 18 years on Florida's deathrow before being exonerated in 2001. His conviction rested on the testimony of two witnesses; no physical evidence linked him tothe crime.Later, new evidence challenged the credibility of thewitnesses, and it was discovered that prosecutors withheld a tapedconfession by the real killer during the original trial.

  8. I'm not disputing that he was wrongly processed. I hadn't looked into it that much. I did think though that it was a poor argument that he wears tefillin now. The secular courts don't care. Someone else said you are not allowed to kill another Jew. What Jew killed another Jew? It seems to me he is the only Jew involved. As usual, you have good arguments. However, most of what I've seen here and there has been emotional arguments from Jews who probably haven't given a crap about any other politics lately.

  9. Dear "Growing Up" -

    I didn't say it "made up" for anything, it was just one particular part of the post that I responded to, and furthermore, I COULD "have that" if I chose to; I believe that's a point that Michal makes in many of the posts (at least the ones that I've read) - that there is a part of the frum community that is rarely accessible to converts.

  10. Although this may be true for some... the fact of the matter is that it was also a political move by Gov. Crist in killing Martin Grossman. How so? Because it showed that he will stand firm on crime and he also felt that when his re-election comes around in a year or two, the law enforcement agencies will remember his stance on Martin Grossman and he will have them where he wants them.

    The other main point is that Martin Grossman was 19 when he committed the crime. Everyone knows that people change when they are in their teen years to when they are in their twenties to when there in their thirties etc etc. He languished in prison in solitary confinement for 25 years He paid his debt to society. Its stupid to think that his death 25 years after the fact and now that hes a grown man who [does think and act very differently] should be killed!

  11. You're right, needs to get the facts straight.

    Grossman (of the 77 IQ) knew so little about right from wrong that he -- after murdering Officer Parks -- stole her handgun, took back his van keys and license from her dead body, and drove home. He then buried her handgun, tried to burn his clothes and shoes (since they were covered with her blood), eventually threw them in the river, changed his car's tires (to avoid the tracks leading back to him)....

    Your commment indicates some pretty basic misunderstandings of the criminal justice system, and what rights are given to those already convicted of a crime. If anything comes out of this issue, it should be that people should educate themselves, even a little, before they jump into the fray.


  12. Thank you Daniel!
    He killed an officer of the law. This is automatically Murder One.
    He killed her because he was on probation for burglary, and she was about to report him for firing a stolen handgun (thus landing him back in jail.)
    If he were black, would the Jewish community have the same issues with his IQ or the credibility of the witnesses against him?

  13. I happen to be against the death penalty across the board, but I don't think it is relevant in comparing the two issues addressed in the original post.

    I think that people are looking at this issue incorrectly. The questions of "why now", "why in this instance", and others may be correct in and of themselves, but not when looking at our actions and decisions as a whole. the question shouldn't be, "Why did the Jewish community do this and that," but instead "Why does the Jewish community fail so badly at other things?"