Who do our kids look up to? By Jodi Samuels, Manhattan, NY


I often think about the fact that modern children don't have role models. We have past presidents of the most powerful nations and future Kings of England accused of adultery. Headlines scream out the failings of politicians, business men and superstars. When Ben Gurion imagined that Israel would be a real country with bureaucracy and prison service, I am sure he never imagined that the "inmate population" would include a past president, past prime minister and past chief rabbi all at the same time. Sadly, too often many kids have to come to terms that their local rebbe or rabbi is under investigation for various offenses.

This week though, I was further shocked by the headlines of a hacking scandal on the site Ashleigh Madison. A site for married people to have discreet affairs. Their slogan: Have An Affair – Guaranteed – At Ashley Madison. Life Is Short.

I had heard about this site and was always shocked that the main stream media would advertise a site that encourages affairs. What really freaked me out this week, was learning that the site has 37 million people registered. This is not a niche site existing to fulfill some sub-culture. 37 million people is main stream. According to the information on the site they get 35,000 new signs up a day and 120 million communications a month. 

And then you hear the tragic story of a 30 year old girl who leapt to her death. She left the Hassidic faith and in a recent email to friends she shared her pain of living in a closed community. 

My head is spinning. I really question how can we bring up our children to be righteous, moral, giving and normal in our crazy world. There is only one conclusion. We, the parents, have to be the light and the example. There is no other way. PERIOD.

In the Torah it speaks about Joseph, and in one of his most challenging moments the image of his father comes to his mind and gives him the strength to step back.

Moms, may we all learn Torah values and be blessed to guide our children so that our image keeps them on track in an increasingly crazy world.

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