Among the things that I would imagine the ganse velt appreciates most about Lubavitch is our non-judgemental attitude towards Jews, the endless Ahavas Yisroel, and the loving way we influence those with whom we come in contact. Never a harsh approach, always with love, we are meant to rebuke in accordance with those guidelines, as Chassidus explains repeatedly.
It almost seems the direct opposite of our Charedi counterparts in Mea Shearim, Williamsburg, and other “hardcore” neighborhoods.
However, here, in our own shchuna, the Rebbe’s shchuna, we are experiencing a wave of relentless, brutal, and downright disgusting attacks from yungerleit, who have the chutzpah, and dare I say, the gall, to walk the streets, self righteous and proud of their own lack of accomplishments and self control, and approaching women leaving the mikveh, eating in local eateries, and even screaming at people on the streets.
As a shliach who visits crown heights, who has and is bringing students to crown heights, I fear for my students sake, and for the future of those being rebuked sakes, that these zealots do not come in contact with them.
Do not for a second think that I do not appreciate, or agree with their cause, that tznius is above all, a very critical and important issue, because, I fully agree, and know that it is an issue very well.
And especially in our little nest of Crown Heights, it has become a true cause for concern, however, where did the love go? Why suddenly does the approach have to be so militant? When did we start acting like misnagdim? Are we going to start throwing stones at Yidden who are breaking Shabbos? Is that what is next? What happened to not embarassing? What happened to manners? What happened to common decency? Since when was such a brutal approach been encouraging? I don’t recall ever meeting someone who told me that the reason they started keeping Shabbos was because someone came along and told them they are an immoral person and that they are never going to get married if they don’t keep Shabbos.
When did we forget that sadly, many of the young people in this neighborhood go untznius in a sad and pathetic attempt to rebel? And, similarly, when did we forget that we are meant to be the place that people know, that in a rebuke it should be with love and sincerity. So, pray tell, how does calling a woman, who is coming from keeping the beautiful mitzvah of taharas mishpacha, leaving the mikvah, deserve to be called a despicable name?
How would you know if someone is a visitor? Would you approach them the same way? Call them a slut? Dare I say, yungerleit, have you checked yourself in the mirror? Im sure that your mirror at home is clean, but the question is…. are you?
Do consider it a plea, and a warning that the chances of a visitor taking to their Yiddishkeit from such an approach are slim to none. Keep fighting the good fight, and help people understand the importance and vital need for tznius both in dress, and in behavior, however, remember that far more flies are caught with honey than vinegar, and help Crown Heights get back to where it should be, a shining beacon of light, we all long to see throughout the world.