Yeshiva University is the latest all-male religious institution that has been exposed as covering up the sexual abuse of students by religious leaders. The newspaper The Forward reports, in a long article that details the abuses, that many but not all of the offenses occurred at an all-male high school run by the university and then, when the crimes were brought to the attention of the school authorities, they covered them up and quietly transferred the perpetrators to other institutions where they could continue to prey on students. Two of the accused, both rabbis one of whom taught the Talmud, now live in Israel. Once again, we see families of the violated young people being reluctant to go to the police because of fears that they would be seen as damaging the religious institutions to which they belonged.
Now that the Yeshive University story is out in the open Norman Lamm, the chancellor of the university and supposedly a revered member of the Orthodox Jewish community, has resigned and given a half-hearted apology for his lack of action. His responses to questions posed by The Forward provide a disgusting display of blame shifting and evasion of responsibility.
It is incredible how closely this pattern follows that of the Catholic church, exposing once again the corruption that lies at the core of religious institutions. For example, today we learn from newly released documents that the Catholic diocese of Milwaukee had covered up abuses by pedophile priests for eight decades.
These are the people who are considered religious leaders.