An Ongoing, Angry Battle in Jackson Township

Statehouse

JACKSON TOWNSHIP – Lakewood and its large orthodox Jewish population lies just east of this sprawling Ocean County town.

Litigation filed six years ago alleged that Jackson officials tried to make sure orthodox Jewish families stayed where they were – in Lakewood.

The Jackson Township Council approved settling the suit Tuesday night, thereby removing a huge burden on a community of about 60,000. But whether this calms some of the angry feelings in town is an open question.

Some of the signs at a five hour-plus council meeting were not encouraging. One man said this:

“We are witness to the hostile takeover of Jackson Township. Just as we were witness to the hostile takeover of Lakewood Township in 2017.” By now he was screaming.

” And it has got to stop!”

There was yet another moment when a resident said that an orthodox member of the council should not be allowed to vote on this matter because he has a conflict of interest.

Gregory McGuckin, the town attorney, reacted quickly, saying:

“Any resident of Jackson Township has the right to serve on a governing body regardless of their religion.” He added that such comments got Jackson in trouble in the first place.

What did he mean by that?

Here’s the background.

The suit came about after township zoning prevented the construction of a private school in Jackson for orthodox Jewish students. That prompted a discriminatory suit by the developer and state and federal officials.

Broadly speaking, land use suits of this kind are pretty common.

But what made this one different – and what prompted the discriminatory aspect of things – was something very contemporary: online comments.

Negative comments about the possibility of orthodox Jewish schools and families coming to Jackson were posted on various social media outlets, some of which were read at the meeting.

There were messages like “get rid of them like Hitler did” and “bulldoze” their homes.

McGuckin and Brent Pohlman, a special counsel, explained during the lengthy meeting that such comments triggered a suit on discriminatory grounds.

At one point, it was acknowledged that these comments may not have been representative of Jackson residents. In fact, the senders may not have even been local residents. But as far as encouraging legal action, that was irrelevant.

So, as is just about always the case, the council settled as opposed to going to trial and facing an uncertain outcome. The township will pay $2.2 million, but what was more relevant to those in attendance, the council also adopted two zoning ordinances to specifically allow for schools, dormitories and houses of worship throughout the township.

This is not a blanket sanction. Every such project must be individually approved by the relevant planning or zoning board.

Moreover, the ordinances do not – in fact, they cannot – cater to any one group. For example, all religious entities are free to propose a school.

Naturally, the public was skeptical. All faiths may be permitted to build a school, but it’s possible in this case that the orthodox Jewish community would be more apt to do so.

One ordinance was approved in a 3-2 vote with the “no” votes coming from Councilmembers Nino Borrelli and Stephen Chisholm Jr. On the other ordinance, Borrelli also voted no, but Chisholm abstained.

Borrelli said he was concerned the township was being overbuilt and overdeveloped.

There were many comments referring to a “takeover” and the “character” of Jackson being permanently altered.

More than one resident spoke of relocating to Ocean County from urban areas and enjoying a lifestyle that includes observing the moon and stars on dark, peaceful nights. They said more schools, dorms and related activities can make that impossible.

One also heard allegations that some council members were in conflict because of real estate deals and/or political activity.

Politics, of course, is always around and state conflict laws only get involved when an official has a direct financial interest in an issue.

It’s the nature of just about any settlement to leave both sides unhappy, and on this night, there was much unhappiness among residents.

The meeting ended with council members offering a perfunctory “Happy Holidays,” but judging from the mood, that seemed a stretch.

 

 

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44 responses to “An Ongoing, Angry Battle in Jackson Township”

  1. What a farce! If 5,000 people had shown up to dispute this subjugation to the Orthodox, the current Mayor Mike committee would have approved 3-2. Now, that the Orthodox have completely free reign to do as they wish throughout the Township, let us see how the people in power benefit…and talk about “bias”…ok..

  2. I attended the meeting and spoke last night and it seems that the APP only share parcels of statements made by residents of Jackson. The former Council members whether they made comments or not I do not know. What I do know is the Council has a Responsibility to be fiscally responsible about Jackson’s future. Lakewood school system is over $200,000,000 in debt to the state. The minority population that goes to public schools is not taken care of at the same level as the private schools in Lakewood. The same is coming to Jackson. People can hide behind religion and claim they want to live in Peace with others but the Truth is? The agenda is different. The new neighbors aren’t satisfied with living that way as they continually tell their neighbors how much they can sell their house for, because they truly don’t want diversity? They want others who think the same, pray the same, and believe the same. The ignorance to the real Truth as it stares everyone in the Face is the real shame here. Council members who will benefit because of the Businesses they are involved in? It’s called Hiding in plain Sight. The Town as a whole was not represented and hasn’t been represented here. What happens to the children here who attend public schools here? Drive through Jackson now. Especially if you haven’t in awhile. The traffic is truly unbelievable. There are many shuls operating in the town violating even the most basic ordinances that weren’t changed, and have been doing it for months with nobody being held to any standard because of Fear of being labeled or sued as an Antisemite. Imagine not being able to truly do your job correctly for Fear of being fired, sued etc? It’s real.

  3. Lakewood
    $200,000,000 in Debt in the school system. Why? Jackson Township Council Board members have a responsibility to look to the Future and what has happened in the past. This isn’t about Religion, it is about saving the Town from becoming Bankrupt to appease one group of people.

  4. There will be no land left no rural areas of jackson will be left over developing and traffic will be common place. Lakewood is ruined by this I have watched this town destroyed and it will happen no if a nd or but about it. It’s all gonna happen fast and jackson will be unrecognizable.

  5. The segregated bussing is a want, not a need. In isreal the busses have curtains down the middle. On the buck bus men women and children all take that bus. Granted different schools so a bus goes to two schools,so what. Calvery and Holy family did it for years. This truly changes the way of life in Jackson. From light pollution to water, the clear cutting of large pieces of land to traffic. Usually when you move somewhere its because you like what it offers. This is different. People want to change the whole town and overbuild. Will developers now want 15 story buildings?

  6. You can not make a school that is only for Jewish people. So what the people from Jackson should do is make themselves present. Is a Jewish school is built is should be open for allll residents of Jackson. Blacks, whites, Hispanics, and Indians. The same should go for any synagogues built. Every person of Jackson should be allowed to worship at their synagogue even Jackson Muslims. If they are not open to this option that is discrimination. Just like in Lakewood when the Jewish community would not allow for white non Jewish children to attend their schools. This is discrimination and should not be allowed.

  7. You can make ordinances against overbuilding without preventing schools and synagogues.

    If the Jackson community would not have started out with a belligerent attitude, they would have found that the Orthodox community that moved to Jackson are not the developers of Lakewood. They too don’t want overbuilding, they too don’t want three family houses in an area zoned for one family ranches, they too don’t want apartment buildings with no parking. They could have worked together with the actual community against the developers to find a mutually satisfying agreement.
    But they picked a fight, preventing basic services such as synagogues from being built. The average homebuyer was desperate for a synagogue, but could not fight on their own. Leaving them in the hands of the developers.

  8. I beleave its nothing less than invasion no one has that right. Leave our familys alone and let us dwell in PEace

  9. The person who was appointed to the vacant seat in the council is the same person who sued Jackson for discrimination. This is clearly a conflict of interest.

  10. I have lived in Jackson, I have a stepdaughter who has twins. Her family loves it there. I live in the Pine Lake Park development in Manchester Township I love it here and have acquired some wonderful new neighbors and they are Orthodox Jews. I feel the Orthodox get a bad rap, they peaceful people and are certainly not sue happy. I do understand no one even them wants over development. I think a lot of people forget all religions at one point in history have been persecuted. This is America we have churches and catholic schools everywhere, I don’t see having a Synagogue or Jewish school as any different.

  11. I agree with voice of reason… now ppl are changing their tones like the class bully being told off by the teacher… ” umm we don’t hate others bc they are different, at hate the overcrowding…”

  12. The problem with Lakewood is that it is run by a bunch of avaricious hics.

    I am the teacher that won in the Appellate Division, after ten years of unthanked litigation, in the Lakewood school funding case.

    I was the first Orthodox Jewish teacher in the public schools after I grew up in Houston and came to Lakewood in 1985 to go to the famous Yeshiva for 16 years.

    I saw the problems in the pubic schools and knew how to fix them. Unfortunately, no one wants innovation. As unique as Lakewood is, to that extent you have to think out of the box. The same will apply to Jackson. Jackson needs to get ahead on this issue.

    I got my supervisor, principal, and superintendent license but was never promoted in Lakewood. I filed suit to fix the funding formula. I won. The state now has been order to properly fund Lakewood. The BOE opposed me and tried to get the case dismissed, effectively saying that local taxpayers should pay and their district, (and homes) should remain encumbered.

    I want out of Lakewood. I want to teach in Jackson. There is no place for me in such a hillbilly, backwards, Bizzaro World (Superman comics) like Lakewood. Had I not filed, and won, Lakewood home prices would have certainly collapsed and your neighbor would have been a ghost-town.

    Shame that all the residents of Lakewood have to suffer the folly of their BOE, private school bosses that run the BOE, and the Vaad. However, they take their marching orders to the polls even when it is so blatantly against their own interests.

    It is not fair that my taxes as a resident will go up from $15,000 this year, to $45,000 when the state says to pony up on the debt and no more loans. They won’t if I can help it.

    I will come to Jackson, teach as I always have, if the administration will have me. There is now and opening. Maybe I will have some support and collegiality there, will be ready to litigate, and have the support of my organization, before I retire, so that Jackson does not collapse. It all depends on getting a job as one has just opened in one of the high schools. Lakewood can continue to operate opposite the public interest.

    I will try to save Jackson if the people and administration give me a crack at it. All I need is a teaching job and I will seize the moment if the opportunity when it comes. At any rate, I am licensed in mathematics and in history. I can teach any subject. I also know how to deal with students and make learning meaningful to them. And I am worth tens of millions to the stakeholder but no one in the Lakewood administration or BOE seems to care about that in Lakewood.

  13. Stop injecting religion into zoning laws. The zoning laws in Jackson are clear and everyone should abide. No matter who they are.

    Organized religion is the bane of humanity.

  14. With the the new residence from lakewood a a far purchasing homes in Jackwood . I know the places of worship do not pay taxes how about the bath houses for the Jewish woman which from what ihear are open 24/7 . Will taxes be paid on these places how about the single family homes are they taxed exempt… so far I have not had any problems with any that have moved into the neighborhood. I know if someone in town that owes the house he grew up in . This summer his Jewish neighbor wanted to know when he was going to fill in his pool .and said he wanted not walk around his property without a shirt on . Are these the ki d if neighbors we want in town . Dictating how we sould be on our own property.. I guess they do not know what a back yard is for. They leave all there kids toys in there from yard 247 . If they want to live in a getting then do so. . It is not right that one religion can take over an entire town which is what is going to happen. I will strike up a conversation with the. Ask questions about there religous ways . Some will answer my questions othere will snub you and just walk by.. I know not different then otheres .. when a house is sold to them . Then in a few weeks both homes on each side is for sale. Tell me this is not a take over . I’m done ranting. People stop leaving the town if you don’t give in then they can not take over.

  15. “It’s the nature of just about any settlement to leave both sides unhappy”….if this is the case, why is it that only the residents of Jackson stand up to speak at these meetings, and nobody from the Orthodox community is standing up to complain? Clearly only one side in this conflict is unhappy. Why? Could it be that the Boards are voting all to the benefit of just one side? Seems that way. And for some of the Board members, the conflict of interest is palpable. Allowing Board members to vote on issues for which they stand to gain financial benefit is clearly COI. How is this permitted?

  16. Cracks me up. Orthodox Jews are overwhelming Trump supporters, and the majority of Jackson is part of the MAGA cult as well. Two groups of people on the same team that despise each other. 🤣

  17. No, the Orthodox community do not despise the ‘majority of Jackson’. They want to live in peace with their neighbors. That is why they don’t get up at meetings to yell. They understand that a settlement was reached, both sides compromised, and now we should look ahead.

    Some commenters here have heard half stories and misinformation, and base their opinions on that. Why would they do so? If these opinions were about unimportant topics, fine. But this is your life we are talking about, why don’t you do the minimum research?

    For example, the ritual baths that ladies use are not open 24/7. They are open about 3/7. And there aren’t many of them around, and some are in synagogue basements, which don’t pay taxes anyway, like all synagogues. If they are tax exempt (I don’t know either way), it’s because they serve a religious purpose. Are you demanding that churches pay taxes? Churches are as much use to Buddhists as these baths are to you.

    I don’t know the details of the story with the pool, but the existence of an obnoxious entitled person in a group has nothing to do with the group. It is precisely this attitude that causes all of our problems. Treat people like individuals, and you will see that things aren’t that bad.

  18. Who ‘wants’ these things for free?
    1. Schools for free – nobody even asked for a free school. No clue what this means.
    2. Sidewalk for free – every developer must build sidewalks, and in Lakewood, every new house, or even extension to a house, must come with a new sidewalk.
    3. Transportation for free – no clue what this means. If you mean school bussing, that’s a state law, not an orthodox request.
    4. Police cars park in front of there (sic) church for free – no clue what this means. Orthodox Jews don’t have churches. But no synagogue in Lakewood or Jackson has a police car parked in front of it.

    No need to be tired, you can go back to sleep calmly. All your problems were solved.

  19. Three years ago, I was at a local Jackson Fire Department fund raising event.They had a comic, constantly making antijewish Jokes concerning the orthdox jewish community. I stood up and walked out. I was asked by a senior member of the fire dept. about five minuets later why? Well she apoligized,but she did not stop the disgusting comic but would mention it to the commissioners.I laughed to myself inside. Hatred it is taught in the home.Silence is agreeing.

  20. The real issue is that the Hasidic and Orthodox community wishes to remain apart and separate from the rest. I don’t have an issue with this per se, but when you decide to locate to a place that’s already occupied by a different culture, it causes a lot of bad feelings when you then start building and growing a parallel society where you dress differently, speak a literal different language, go to your own schools, stores, etc.

    It would be one thing if this was the first generation and then the subsequent generations began to assimilate into the mainstream. That’s pretty much the story of every immigrant group in America. But this is not the case here. Lakewood has exploded in population, with the Hasidic community holding on to their culture quite strongly. Driving through it makes you feel like you are an outsider in the United States.

    Every last bit of open land is being developed in Lakewood. Just drive down New Hampshire Ave to know what I mean. To pretend this will not happen in Jackson is disingenuous.

    Frankly the community is running out of room in Lakewood and has begun to branch out to Brick, Toms River, Jackson, Howell etc. Basically every surrounding town now has certain neighborhoods being purchased. With a population that marries and begins having many children at a very young age, the growth has been and will continue to be exponential.

    Imagine what the shore will look like in 20, 50, 100 years? Very different from the quiet retreat it was 50 years ago I assure you.

    I’m not saying it’s a bad thing that the Hasidic community behaves in this way. I understand it. In fact, I wish I was part of a community that valued tradition and culture so much that they wanted to protect it like that.

    All I’m saying is that if you want to set up a radically different cultural center in the USA, it’s probably better to found a new town in some area that doesn’t already have a very long-standing entrenched population. Systematically taking over a town through real estate transactions, city council meetings, and lawsuits is a recipe for unnecessary conflict.

    Believe it or not, it’s quite difficult to live amongst a population that wants nothing to do with you. They will speak with you if there is business to be done or if there is some information you may have that they need, but other than that, you don’t even get looked at in the eye.

    It’s quite sad and I think it will cause more and more unnecessary unrest at the shore in the years to come. But at this point it seems unavoidable.

  21. Johnny S – you mentioned that every piece of land in Lakewood is being developed, a point that was totally irrelevant to the rest of your complaint.

    But it is the only one that has to be addressed.

    Developers that wish to make money, built up Lakewood. That is not a bad thing, in and of itself. But historically, the Orthodox community met much opposition as it grew in Lakewood, and as soon as they controlled the town, they mistakenly opened the floodgates. Most people in Lakewood appreciate that a mistake was made, most people are not happy with the overbuilding and most people wish they could stop any future overbuilding. But the developers are quite rich, and as is their nature, wish to get richer.

    When people began to move to Jackson, their stated goal was to get away from this overbuilding and crowded lifestyle. Not one application from the community in Jackson has been to increase density. They wanted synagogues and schools, that’s it. If you wish to ensure that Jackson not become Lakewood, sit down with community representatives, not the Agudah, not the developers, not BMG, but ordinary rank and file members of the Jackson community. Ask any neighborhood to send a representative. And hash out a mutually acceptable zoning system. Not a compromise for a fight, because there is no real fight. Synagogues don’t destroy communities, Yeshivos with dormitories in non-residential streets do not destroy communities. We can live together in mutual harmony, but only as long as there is good will.

    When the issue became a fight, and an us vs. them mentality arose, there is no way to put the genie back in the bottle. This attitude is the most corrosive for any town, community, country, or club. We are not adversaries, if the Orthodox community is happy, that does not mean that their happiness was wrested away from the general community. When people can appreciate this point, their lives are more pleasant and calm. You can see someone else’s success without a pang.

  22. Everyone here is pretty much proving why Jackson lost. Y’all are a bunch of anti semites. Chill out and maybe, just maybe, try to stop looking at this through a lense of hate and actually become open minded.

  23. The Haredi/Ultra Orthodox have only one and only agenda : to advance themselves at any cost without any regards to any other member of humanity. I have read some of the Orthodox publications in NYC, NY State and NJ and they reak of exclusivity, bigotry and utter disregard for us “goyim”. The following piece from Jackson Pulse, an Orthodox publication, says it all about what the future holds for Jackson. And it does not include “us goyim” :

    “With a steady growth of 600 new families moving in each year and new construction slated to house 5,000 families, Jackson is poised to match Lakewood in size within the next decade.

    “Do the math. In ten years, there will be 11,000 new frum families living here plus the 2,000 that are here now,” Tzvi asserts. “Lakewood is 20 square miles and Jackson measures 100. While it might sound outrageous to some, those with an eye to the future can agree that now that much of the groundwork has been laid, Jackson’s growth is set to skyrocket.”

    https://thevoiceoflakewood.com/the-jackson-pulse/

  24. HowellNJNeighbor – I don’t think I will change your mind. But there are others who read the comments here too, and they deserve an answer.

    Yes, people have an ‘agenda’ to advance themselves. If that is a bad thing, we would not have a country or any of the inventions that we take for granted. The Founding Fathers wished to pursue happiness with freedom and liberty. How dare they?! This is advancing themselves, which is somehow wrong?!

    There is nothing wrong with people helping themselves out, as longas they keep to the rules. We can work out the rules together, with mutual goodwill and understanding. But when people see others’ gain as their loss, they will never reach that mutual goodwill.

    Jackson’s growth is not a bad thing. It brings industry, business, and income. For everyone. Go to West Virginia and see what happens to entire towns that do not have an income base. As long as the town is sustainable, we can all live together.

    So come, let’s make zoning rules that work for all of us. Let’s set up reasonable limitations on building that do not cause gridlock. Let’s organize a system in which public buildings are available for the public, yet don’t disturb those who don’t use them.

    Let us not drop to the lowest level of discourse. Let us all live in peace.

  25. “Jackson’s growth is not a bad thing. It brings industry, business, and income. For everyone. Go to West Virginia and see what happens to entire towns that do not have an income base. As long as the town is sustainable, we can all live together”

    Voice of Reason, please read my reply to this :

    – Have you seen the state of Orthodox majority towns all over Rockland and Orange County and Lakewood? They all have been designed to be exclusively and only for the Orthodox. My question for you : why are all the Orthodox majority towns having fiscal, ecological and infrastructural unsustainability/irresponsible overdevelopment, roads falling apart, eroding tax payer base, sewer systems stretched to capacity, public schools in Lakewood and East Ramapo going bankrupt and many more issues? Kiryas Joel has become so overpopulated Orange County needs 200 million to expand its sewer system. Ramapo has fiscal deficits since there are so many tax exempts synagogues and yeshivas.

    -Why do all Orthodox majority towns have anywhere from 30-40% poverty rate? And why are a significant portion of Orthodox communities on government assistance lifelong? Some Orthodox majority towns including Lakewood, KJ and a number of them in Rockland are among the poorest in the country.

    Not sure of your reasoning, but I am not convinced. The public knows the Orthodox agenda both here and in Israel. There lifestyle is unsustainable.

  26. Voice of Reason, perhaps you can explain the following
    as well. It is one thing for a community to be insular and not assimilate. If the Satmar sect of Haredi Judaism feels they are not American, why the separatist mindset and why such heavy reliance on our government services? :

    “We live in exile in America, in a decadent land, and we need to be sealed away from our surroundings, so as to remember that we do not reside in America; we are only in America at present,” Teitelbaum said.

    https://www.shtetl.org/article/rabbi-aaron-teitelbaum-gives-jewish-names-to-neighborhoods-surrounding-kiryas-joel

  27. I grew up in Lakewood until i was an adolescent and then moved to Jackson. When we played on the streets we played with orthodox kids and non orthodox kids, it was a great childhood. Lakewood schools still had a lot to offer and if you wanted to make something of yourself, you could. Fast forward to today, I have many friends that teach in Lakewood and it is very different. No sports, no money and no freedom for the faculty to really help the kids that do attend. I wondered how could that be? Most towns in low income neighborhoods get tons of state funding. Did my research and the truth is that Lakewood gets a lot of help but the BOE directs the majority of those funds to the orthodox schools. You may say, how does a “private” school get state money? I ask the same.

  28. That’s what I truly feel bad for as far as Jackson and all future towns the Orthodox are targeting for take over. Not only looking like Lakewood – which they do intentionally – but more school districts will go bankrupt as the Orthodox takeover BOEs. I don’t see how any of this is sustainable for NJ long term. But the politicians of NY and NJ pander to them. Screaming anti Semitism and victim hood is the calling card of the Orthodox.

  29. A little late, but:
    1. Why am I responsible for Satmar? What does one have to do with the other? I don’t know what takes place in KJ, I don’t believe media reports on their own, and I am not interested in taking the time to investigate something that doesn’t affect my life.
    Here in Lakewood, it is developers that must be controlled. We can get together to make rules that benefit all of us, or compromise between our needs. But once one side sees the other as a threat, and its success as coming on their expense, the waters are muddied.
    2. The BOE in Lakewood has not diverted one penny that isn’t mandated by State law. Your complaints are misdirected. The only money private schools receive is for bussing, mandated by law, and textbooks, again. Some special ed is included, also mandated by law. The reason Lakewood receives so little from the state is due to an obscure part of the law that affects Jackson and Howell too. But things are about to change, thanks to Alcantara et. al. v. Hespe et. al. and its successes. But if things bother you, work to change the laws. Change the fair share rules, and all of us will benefit.

  30. Jackson is finished. Look at the west bank and you can imagine how they treat the Palestinians. They are turning Jackson into a new colony.

    Now you all can understand why the Palestinians are so passed off. Imagine what tactics they use there? They bulldoze homes, violent seize homes, and just take over. Like in Jackson lol.

  31. The irony is, there was a problem with developers, so you went after synagogues.
    The developers are getting what they want in Jackson, because you went after the wrong people.

    Synagogues and schools are not your problem. Developers are yours, and our, problem. We can work together instead of being busy with Ramapo, Gaza, or Ukraine.

  32. Ruth kiszka I agree. The Orthodox have always had one agenda in this country and that is to advance their own interests. And Orthodox community members, Agudath Israel and even AIPAC will always gaslight us.
    The Israel and Jewish lobby is too powerful. And that is why the Orthodox get whatever they want at the expense of average citizens. If you speak to them about sustainability, it is anti-Semitism. They are not interested at all in co-existence. It is THERE WAY and they want the voice of average citizens of Ocean County, Rockland and Orange County to be silenced. Kiryas Joel, Monsey, Lakewood are all based on the same model of takeover.

  33. I’m glad so many people are speaking out against the orthodox takeover. We all need to stand up and fight. Anyone who buys into the grift of antisemitism is truly naive. Nobody gives a crap about your religion we care about our quality of life. We need to defend our communities.

  34. Sure you can’t run away from us jews you can only persecute them and feel hurt because you can’t come together in community and if it was Catholic Churches and Christians community you’d have no problem with it but the fact is jews are everywhere get over it. Sorry that jews know how to build a community and that you jusy like judgments

  35. Ocean County is FCUKED. They are advertising in Isreal since the war for the orthodox community to move to Ocean County and establish roots and make it the new ISREAL. Ohh boy THERE GOES THE NEIGHBORHOOD. No stopping then unless you bring back Hitler

  36. I live in Virginia and have been trying to buy a house in NJ for some time now to get closer to the grand kids. Every realtor I come in contact with says the same thing, “what ever you do, do not buy in Jackson”.
    After reading all of this I see why now. Looks like to me that Jackson is about to implode on itself. Good Luck.

  37. I can definitely see how comments by Hitler worshippers like Roy Lopez do not help. I live in Jackson – 60 Acres. I don’t like that Hasidics stroll through our neighborhood when it is for residents. And I don’t like that they blatantly use the facilities. I don’t want to see the happy beautiful area my kids grew up in become like Lakewood either. I recently drove thorough there with my father (who lives by the shore) and he was really turned off at the filth. The home are not cared for, garbage on the street, children unsupervised running rampant in the streets. No I don’t want that. But there are 8 million jews in the United States. That’s not Haridim that is anyone who identifies as Jewish. So the idea that “Jews are taking over,” is of course moronic and I can see how that is anti-semitism. I can also see how bringing up Gaza is anti-semitism. Don’t ever compare a culture of homicidal maniacs to the either the Jews in Israel or over here. Jew over there and here are not kidnapping people, cutting babies heads off and putting bombs on busses. And the IDF bulldozes Jewish settler homes as well. Moreso than Palestinian homes. Go to google maps and pan out to get a full view of the East Coast. We are in the trick-state area and still very close and affected by NYC. You should expect to live with Orthodox Jews for sure. I agree that we have to work together. But I hope Voice of Reason is genuine. I don’t have reason to believe so yet. It is just words. My kids attended Holy Family and guess what happened to that. So reject hateful people and anti-semitic lunatics. But also reject liars and two-faced opportunists. I say to the Orthodox community – Prove Your Critics Wrong.

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