Sketching Out Blog: Sketches of art, watercolor, photos, recipes, books, interviews, Jewish topics, and Highland Park, New Jersey

Cemetery Vandalism ‘not bias’ & civil suit

From the Jewish State (local Central New Jersey newspaper):

According to a statement issued by Prosecutor Bruce Kaplan’s office the teens’ “alcohol-fueled vandalism” came from teenage boredom, not anti-Semitism. Kaplan said this means while the teens will still face vandalism charges in Family Court, they will not be prosecuted on the more serious charge of committing a hate crime.

and, on the civil suit filed against the teens:

The cost of reconstruction is currently estimated to be between $500,000 and $1 million. While adjudication of a juvenile is not a matter of public record, [Attorney Gerald] Gordon said, punitive-damage civil judgements remain in effect until they are paid. This would make it difficult, if not impossible, for the teens to get credit cards as adults and also damage their future credit reports.

Children need to learn at a young age to respect other people’s property. I believe Rabbi Bassous mentioned this in his speech on the cemetery desecration, but I will retell in my own words here:

The story in the Gemara (thank you to Olomeinu, a children’s magazine) is Mar Zutra’s goblet was stolen. He saw a man wiping his hands on someone else’s garment without permission. He then knew that that was the thief, for he saw that this man had no respect for the possessions of others (Bava Metzia 24a).

UPDATE: On the Main Line has the Olemeinu cartoon along with analysis of such cartoons. If you don’t take Olemeinu too seriously, it’s humorous.

We certainly can’t control how others raise their children. It seems like the best we can do is make it difficult for non-respecting people to get credit cards.

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