Does The Torah Require Us To Publicize Names Of Sexual Abusers? | Reconstructing Judaism

Does The Torah Require Us To Publicize Names Of Sexual Abusers?

News

What does Judaism teach us about how to respond to accusations of harassment or assault? Are we to regard the reputation of the accused as the highest priority even if that means silencing those speaking up against abuse? If so, how can the Jewish community address the problem?

Within the Jewish community, the #MeToo moment has not yet given rise to the kind of public reckoning that has occurred in other segments of American life. An avalanche of stories testify to abuse and humiliations that women and other victims have endured at the hands of rabbis, donors, and supervisors, but still, the names of the accused remain well-guarded secrets.

Since the start of #MeToo, not a single perpetrator from within the world of American Jewish institutional life has been publicly brought to account, and no one has stepped forward to offer a public apology. For us, the big disclosure of the past months has not been to publicize the names and actions of particular perpetrators, but rather to first acknowledge that the problem of sexual harassment and gender bias exists within Jewish organizations, and that it might be pervasive.

The full article is available here: Does The Torah Require Us To Publicize Names Of Sexual Abusers?

Director of Center for Jewish Ethics, Assistant Professor of Rabbinic Literature, RRC