The past few days have seen attacks and accusations on drivers who happen to be members of Hasidic sects in Brooklyn and Montreal.
The Montreal Gazette reported thatnine residents of the Outremont neighborhood in Montreal outrageously – and to the shock of the mayor and council members – wore yellow badges on their clothing to protest the use of school buses by a Hasidic school in the neighborhood. They tried to distribute more badges to those attending a council meeting. Last Fall, the council struck down a desired plan to build more synagogues in the area.
Ginette Chartre said that the badges were yellow because the school buses are yellow. YEAH RIGHT! I call bullshit.
Rabbi Reuben Poupko of Montreal’s Beth Israel Beth Aaron Congregationr ecommended that Montrealers should embrace tactics that engender communication and dialogue and try to enhance the possibilities for resolution and not provocation.
South of the Quebec-U.S. border, an actress tweeted that she and her daughter were nearly rundown by a driver in Brooklyn; she described him as Hasidic. This was just days before two children were killed by a reckless driver in an adjacent neighborhood in Brooklyn.
Amber Tamblyn reported that a “grey van” tried to hit her as she and her one year old infant crossed Atlantic Avenue at Washington Ave. in Prospect Heights (where it meets Clinton Hill). She tweeted the she and the stroller were in the crosswalk and the car’s bumper hit the stroller. She described the driver as “Hasidic” since she was seeking witnesses to the altercation. Tamblyn, 34, is the wife of actor and comedian David Cross.
In response to her tweets, Tamblyn received an outpouring of concern and support, but also attacks that she was being anti-Semitic. She refuted these attacks, and tweeted that she would not be “silenced or bullied or intimidated by anyone who wants to twist my words into anything other than what it is.”
Is there a REAL ISSUE with DWH: Driving While Hasidic?
Frida Vizel, writing in The Forward asked why so many hasidic men are perceived as aggressive drivers. She recounted her own experience last year with a Hasidic hit and run, and tells how only men – some who are arrogant and entitled – in the community drive, and women ride or walk.
I, personally, would like to see some actual NYPD data before pronouncing judgement. Are there more NYPD moving volations ticketed or reported in the areas of Hasidic concentration, compared to the rest of Brooklyn and New York City?