Nov 21, 2018
Chabad House to Be Demolished

Shocking: A judge in Maryland has ruled that a newly-built, $1 million Chabad Center be torn down in the next 30 days.

By Chabad of Towson

The story that you are about to read is unprecedented. At no time in America has a US court ordered a Jewish community center or synagogue demolished—until now.

A court in Baltimore County, Maryland, is trying to do just that. The court has ordered that the Chabad Center of Towson be bulldozed. It's time for us to stand up. We cannot let this heartless injustice occur. Not now. Not ever.

The Story of Chabad on Campus is a story of a house that becomes a home. In every Chabad house, this story of mesiras nefesh (self-sacrifice) and ahavas yisroel (love for a fellow Jew) comes to life. It is a story that repeats itself in hundreds of universities around the world. Far from home both spiritually and physically and searching for warmth and belonging, assimilated and disengaged Jewish students, are welcomed into the open homes of the campus Rabbis and their families. These homes become their home, these families become their family, and these experiences lead a wary Jew to discover a newfound beauty in and a love for Judaism.

In Towson, Maryland this story began in 2008 when a young couple, Rabbi Mendy and Sheiny Rivkin, moved to a house on 14 Aighburth Rd. The Rivkins saw the empty rooms and bare walls as an edifice of future glory; a house that could surely turn around the lives of those around them. Sure enough, this house became home to thousands of Jewish students at Towson University. With Friday night dinners, social BBQs, Yeshiva night, Sinai Scholars, and Challah bakes, this home is bustling—bursting!—with Jewish life on campus.

With time, the house was outdoing itself in its capacity to hold so much. In desperate need of additional space, both for their family and for their extended family of Jewish students, plans were drawn and funds were raised to expand this incredible house of kindness. Rabbi and Mrs. Rivkin worked closely with the local council and with neighbors. Plans were tweaked and public hearings were attended to ensure that everything and everyone was toeing the line. Chabad went above and beyond the legal requirements in order to make certain that everyone was satisfied.

But unfortunately, our history has shown that, tragically for some, satisfaction is not possible when there is a Jewish presence. As construction progressed on the new Chabad House, a neighbors’ association focused their efforts on preventing Jewish students from having a home on Aighburth Rd. Not having any legal recourse, the neighbors and their attorneys, seemingly fueled by prejudice, combed through old documents until a covenant that neither side had been aware of was unearthed. It stated that the house on 14 Aighburth Rd. had to be set back 115 feet from the street.

The neighbors and their attorneys brought the offending documents to court and demanded that the judge issue a stop work order on Chabad’s construction. The judge refused, arguing that no irreparable harm would be caused to the neighbors through this construction. Chabad’s legal counsel, too, advised that construction move forward, as in cases such as these, the worst-case scenario is a financial settlement that is mediated between the parties.

When the matter did finally come to court, the judge ruled against Chabad, citing $17,000 of damage to the property value of the neighbor. Shockingly, the judge then said that the entire $1,000,000 building must be torn down to compensate for the $17,000 damage! To make matters even worse, Chabad’s request to spend $250,000 to move the building back 62 feet in order to comply with the covenant was also refused. To quote the neighbor, “Though moving the building would technically satisfy setback requirements, only tearing it down entirely would solve all its legal issues.”

All its issues? To which issues does she refer? Is it an issue to invite Jewish students to eat Shabbat dinner in your private home? Is it illegal for Jews to live and thrive in Towson, Maryland? Is it an issue to spread light, love and kindness?

80 years after Kristallnacht, a Rabbi’s home and a home for Jewish students is slated for destruction. For a ruling like this to be administered in the 21st century, in modern times, is horrific and chilling. Legal discrimination is still discrimination and must be opposed.

We hope that the Jewish world and all people of good conscience will come together and protest to prevent this terrible destruction from taking place. America is better than this.

Learn more about this story and support the efforts to fight this travesty, here: www.towsoncrisis.com

For a more in-depth legal outline of the case, Click here.


Most Read Most Comments


Opinions and Comments
1
What is the money raised going to be used for?
(11/21/2018 3:47:46 PM)
2
I DONT UNDERSTAND
if they got permits how can the judge rules to demolish.
if the building no good the city should know it before hand
(11/21/2018 3:49:14 PM)
3
A suggestion :
Consult with Alan Dershowitz or Nat Lewin ASAP
(11/21/2018 3:58:28 PM)
4
Crazy...
This can't be happening!!!
I know the Rivkins personally.
They are such amazing, inspiring Shluchim!

Whoever can, please join me in supporting them!
(11/21/2018 4:05:38 PM)
5
Oish
This is crazy
What can we do?
Get trump involved?
(11/21/2018 4:08:41 PM)
6
Yeah...
At the end of the day, do things legally and this won't happen!
(11/21/2018 4:12:55 PM)
7
Unbelievable
Hatzlacha rabba.
We are all davening for you.
Besuros tovos
(11/21/2018 4:14:14 PM)
8
with the Help of Hashem it wont happen
How can we get involved besides monetarily ??
(11/21/2018 4:16:01 PM)
9
Chabad Influence????
You mean to tell me that among the Shluchim and Head Shluchim and all the other Head offices, they dont have Lawyers that will protect this Shaliach from a moronic Judge??? Come on now? Where is everyone???
(11/21/2018 4:27:43 PM)
10
I was there .
Beautiful chabad house, very friendly rabbi and rebbetzin.
I'll be saying some tehillim for you.
(11/21/2018 4:28:19 PM)
11
Crazy
Write to the Rebbe asap!
(11/21/2018 4:36:56 PM)
12
Answers
To number 1:Campaign Purpose and Usage of Funds:

Help Chabad of Towson fight the unprecedented destruction of a Jewish home for students, just because it is a Jewish home! Please help them continue their sacred work in the face of incredible adversity.



The funds are currently being used to pay for an important Federal discrimination case that is being brought by renowned attorney Nat Lewin.



Possible expenditures connected with the future of the building include: (I) paying for a settlement with the neighbors, (ii) paying to move the house (if it it is permitted by the court to do so), or (iii) paying the fees the court is imposing on Chabad of Towson to destroy its own building. In either scenario, Chabad of Towson will use all funds to continue to serve as a home away from home for the Jewish students of Towson University and Goucher College.
(11/21/2018 4:38:21 PM)
13
Answer to numbers 2 and 6
Everything was done legally. After the building was halfway built the neighbor dug up a covenant that neither party was aware of and brought suit. Read more here. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1JzADOk9IPXYk8FSaLc7u8hTZ7CGJZvBMZ9iVoORJib8/edit
(11/21/2018 4:40:25 PM)
14
In answer to comment #3
From the web page towsoncrisis.com
" The funds are currently being used to pay for an important Federal discrimination case that is being brought by renowned attorney Nat Lewin."
(11/21/2018 4:43:16 PM)
15
In answer to comment #8
Tefillos of course and you can reach out via email to info@towsoncrisis.com for further involvement.
(11/21/2018 4:45:23 PM)
16
To #6
You clearly didnt pay attention to what was said in the video... They didnt EVERYTHING legally and some neighbor brought them trouble
Next time watch what you say before saying it.
Much hatzlacha
(11/21/2018 4:53:40 PM)
17
The Rebbe was Once Asked...
Someone once asked the rebbe if the Holocaust could ever happen again and the rebbe's response was this afternoon meaning it could happen immediately given everything that has been in the news lately this recent piece of news really tops the list and community and organizational leaders need to stand up and we need to go on the offencive to prevent something terrible from happening
(11/21/2018 5:03:26 PM)
18
Chabad Should Demolish & Sue
I work in Real Estate, but not in MD. If - ***IF*** - this Restrictive Covenant was not discovered and disclosed, the Title Company is most likely on the hook for the cost of all this fiasco. The million-dollar building, the legal costs, EVERYTHING is likely on the Title Insurance Policy.
Secondarily, the City and/or County are also likely responsible, as they generally have a duty to ensure that permits are not issued that violate Restrictive Covenants (a/k/a 'Deed Restrictions').
(11/21/2018 5:07:25 PM)
19
To numb 6
Watch the video. It was done legally.
The convenent was found after they had all the permits and were halfway though.
They asked for the building to stop, the judge said no.
(11/21/2018 5:26:46 PM)
20
Heartbreaking
They are the real deal! Going to donate.
(11/21/2018 5:58:52 PM)
21
To those who believe the ruling must be justified
Well, a judge was able to make an unprecedented and unjustified ruling against Rubashkin using a modicom of actual law and a great deal of irrational bias- and got away with it for 9 years. Different judge, just more of the same.
(11/21/2018 6:07:29 PM)
22
Shoshanna Down Under
And all this is about around 59 feet from the street? Anti-Semitism strikes again!
(11/21/2018 6:22:36 PM)
23
PETITION THE JUDGE
PLEASE PROVIDE INFORMATION AS TO WHERE PEOPLE CAN ADDRESS THEIR PROTESTATIONS TO THE JUDGE. KEEP IN MIND THAT ANY LETTERS MUST BE WRITTEN IN A RESPECTFUL MANNER. I WOULD ASSUME THAT STEPS ARE BEING TAKEN TO APPEAL THIS RULING AND PUT A HOLD ON ANY ACTIONS ORDERED BY THE JUDGE. PLEASE PROVIDE INFORMATION AS TO WHERE DONATIONS SHOULD BE SENT.
(11/21/2018 7:30:55 PM)
24
Proof, this is pure antisemitism;
If this was a Mosque, tis judge would not dare make such a ruling, and the rabble rousers among the neighbors, would not say one word against it.
(11/21/2018 7:47:17 PM)
25
to number 17
In 1964, author Harvey Swados asked the Rebbe if Germany could repeat its actions; the Rebbe replied “Morgen in der frei” tomorrow morning and explained Germany’s socio-historic past.
Swados wrote an article “He could melt a blizzard “ which was published in the NY Times after gimmel tammuz. I believe the article is available on Chabad.org
(11/21/2018 7:48:32 PM)
26
Ruth hoffman
Please advise judge’s name and how and where to send protest
(11/21/2018 7:49:19 PM)
27
ive heard
there are a number of shluchim who have had similar issues with a DEED or COVENANT and neighbors trying to use that against them, i think that consultation with them would be the best idea on how to fight.
there is also RLUPA which shluchim have used to fight and won with
(11/21/2018 8:48:53 PM)
28
Steven katz
Counter suit should be bright against the neighbor for discrimination. To wit, the neighbor declined the offer to move the building.
This is, imho, an indication that our time in America is ending.
(11/21/2018 9:17:16 PM)
29
Gershel
Need to start building 1000 more chabad houses, right away!
(11/21/2018 9:48:38 PM)
30
Name the judge
Watch them back down then. Publicize who this is in articles
(11/21/2018 9:49:08 PM)
31
Personally know them and the nicest people ever
They are amazing shluchim that always have their house packed! The money donated is to help pay really famous expensive lawyers they hired to fight the case. Please help!
(11/21/2018 9:55:31 PM)
32
Upzee on your shoulder
Looks like the jew haters are testing the waters to see how far they can go, exploiting grey areas in the law.
I mean come on, I couldn't care less if my neighbor extends his house backward or forward.
And if he really felt like paying me, because he thought i was upset, then I would gladly take the money!
In this case, since they dont even want the money, its obvious that it is an antisemitic wave that is fuelling their hatred.
P.s. Boycott the contractor who was assigned the demolition and vote everyone who supported this travesty to come this far, out of office.
(11/21/2018 10:03:36 PM)
33
To no 18
The title insurance is on the hook only for what they paid at the time of purchase. Not for the present value of the property.
(11/21/2018 10:11:07 PM)
34
Trump supporter
Write a letter to President Trump!! He will put his opinion out there!! This should not be happening!!
(11/21/2018 10:19:25 PM)
35
HELLO?!!!
The story with the guy and the Torah elicited hundreds of comments and yet here we have a story that is truly an attack against the Rebbe and the Jewish people as a whole...everyone should comment and show we will not stand for this so that its noise reaches all those that need to hear it
(11/21/2018 10:33:44 PM)
36
mendy and sheiny
you guys are amazing!! we are with you all the way!!
(11/21/2018 10:55:48 PM)
37
Larry
To #19 You’re saying the neighbor found whatever it was To show that it wasnot legal to build that close to the street So the question is who should be responsible being that they did get permits and The neighbors tried to stop the building and the judge said to carry-on so the question now is who should carry the responsibility ? May Hashem blessed them with loads of blessings .
(11/21/2018 10:58:44 PM)
38
U offered money..now pray, and prepare for war,
We need a real miracle, let's show some achdus and go down their with 10 full busses from ch. And make a shtorem!!
And would be a good idea to first stop at the ohel. Also let's send this neighbor some mail..
(11/21/2018 11:21:13 PM)
39
to #9 and others
The local shluchim and the regional director are totally behind the Rivkins and doing all in their power to assist. This is a anti-Semitic neighbor who found a sympathetic judge who is making up the laws as they are going along. LOcal lawyers can't figure out a justification for these rulings. The judge wrote the judgments in a manner that it can't be repealed.
(11/21/2018 11:59:13 PM)
40
Disgusting
I am actually reeling. How?!?!?!?? Anti semites. And I mean it. You can’t just tear down a chabad house like that it’s not ok. Someone has to do something.
(11/22/2018 1:25:00 AM)
41
Trump comment
At first I thought of it as a joke, but maybe it’s not - maybe contact the DC Chabad in Leroy Pl - that is where Jared and Ivanka go.
(11/22/2018 2:00:50 AM)
42
Amazing shluchim
I have been at the Rovkin's many times. They are everything a Shliach and Shlucha should be. This whole situation is unbelivably disruptive to their shlichus. Lets help them get back to the work they are most needed for. Please daven and donate. SR Baltimore
(11/22/2018 2:38:57 AM)
43
appeal wrong decision by court
Contact ACLU--religious discrimination and harassment.
(11/22/2018 3:06:57 AM)
44
ENGINEER AND ARCHITECT
WAS THERE NIO ENGINEER OR ARCHITECT?
THEY SHOULD SHOULDER PART OF THE PROBLEM. IF PUTTING IT BACK WOULD RECTIFY THIS WHY ISN'T IT BEING ARBITRATED? TAKE IT TO SUPREME COURT AS PREJUDICE. GET THE PRESIDENT INVOLVED IN THIS ANTI-SEMITIC ACT.
(11/22/2018 6:29:02 AM)
45
HERE IS HOW YOU CAN GET INVOLVED
In addition to any other help, please message Councilman David Marks, who is very influential in the neighborhood, at dmarks@baltimorecountymd.gov or via his webpage councilmandavidmarks.com.

Your message should begin with the following:
“I am joining thousands of Chabad supporters from Maryland and across America to urge you: Stop the injustice now.”

Additionally, while your message should convey your thoughts, we ask that you consider writing in your own words a message that conveys the following “thought starters.”

1. At no time in America has a US court ordered a Jewish community center or synagogue demolished. Until now! A court in Baltimore County Maryland is trying to do that. The court has ordered that the Chabad Center of Towson be bulldozed. Your message should say this loud. Should say this clear. This can’t happen in America. Not now. Not ever.

2: One injustice leads to more injustice. For 10 years Chabad of Towson has kindled Hanukkah lights for Towson students and Baltimore County citizens. Thousands have said “Thank you Chabad.” Now a Baltimore County Court order threatens those Hanukkah lights for years to come. This injustice will lead to more injustice. Speak out. Stop the injustice. Pass the word on.
(11/22/2018 7:42:15 AM)
46
Jay from LI - speak to a Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Attorney
1) Chapter 11 Bankruptcy has an automatic stay which stops everything, and gives you more time to appeal in state court - which should balance the equities
2) Tone down the anti-Semitism angle, since you want this decided legally in Court, not politically - the balance of the equities favors you, ( You can get a political solution - see my later comment )
3) When you speak to local counsel, ask about how you can avoid being classified as a single-asset Chapter 11 debor - this will allow you a longer period of time to get the automatic stay, to appeal in state court
4) Political solution - can you get a zoning change by going to the local zoning committee and doing a spot zoning change like they can do here in NYC - this would need the entire "city council" or whatever committee to do it, but there seems to be an equitable basis

Here is a nice little article on Ch 11 Bankruptcy and the automatic stay

https://www.kirkland.com/siteFiles/kirkexp/publications/2430/Document1/Friedland%20-%20An%20Overview%20of%20the%20Automatic%20Stay.pdf
(11/22/2018 8:06:41 AM)
47
17k?!
How is this evaluated? It's impossible to know this inly time can tell. This May be a projection but how csn one judge on projection?!
(11/22/2018 8:26:38 AM)
48
Misnaged
I love the Lubavitcher Rebbe and the work of his followers. I love the Jewish people in large part because of the Rebbe's example and teachings. Which is why I am embarassed that no one commenting on this thread has bothered to read the judge's opinion or the Appellate Court's opinion affirming the judge's ruling. If they had, many errors could have been avoided as would the rush to assume anti-Semitiic motives. I read the opinions and here are the key points:

1. The restrictive covenant prohibiting the construction of the house in the front of the lot dates back to 1950 and was listed in the title report and as an exception to the coverage of the title insurance policy when the Rabbi bought the house. In all likelihood, he never read it, just like most homeowners. However, people are held responsible for whatever is in documents regardless of whether they read them or not. This undermined the Rabbi's argument that they had no idea about the covenant.

2. The judge (incorrectly, IMO) placed a lot of emphasis on the neighborhood opposition to the construction of the building. She argued that the Rabbi knew there was a lot of opposition but went ahead anyway. This has nothing to do with the effect of a restrictive covenant, which is a dispute only between the private property owners.

3. In the final analysis, the judge had to decide who would be more harmed: the Rabbi, from suffering the loss of the construction and related expenses if the building is torn down, or the neighbor, from the loss of enjoyment of the nice view they had before, replaced with a large brick wall, if not torn down. Here, the judge did something incomprehensible: she said that, because the Rabbi was vague about the source of funds used for the building, she wouldn't include ANY amount of money losses in weighing the comparative losses. This is mind-boggling. She should have only considered how much the construction cost. The source of the money is completely irrelevant. The Rabbi should have just presented proof of payments, receipts, contracts, purchase orders, etc. to show that they spent $800,000 on the construction alone.

Mind you, I don't think it is unreasonable for a neighbor to oppose the construction of a building that will have a significant impact on their quality of life, including the aesthetics of an enjoyable view, open space, light and the greater privacy if a building is not towering over your front yard. It is hard to judge that their motive is only anti-Semitism and I don't appreciate the allusions to Kristallnacht, etc.
(11/22/2018 8:35:33 AM)
49
Covenant
A covenant is supposed to apply to all the houses in the area. Are all the other homes 115 feet from the street? From google maps, it does not seem so.
This case does not seem like it is anti-Semitism. People like quiet near their homes and may be nervous with a thousand students nearby having barbeques, etc.
(11/22/2018 9:27:03 AM)
50
To comment 6, Yeah
They did everything legally. Read the article then say tehillim that they will succeed.
(11/22/2018 9:50:13 AM)
51
Permit type
So I understand that everything was approved by the planning and building dept. The question is, was it approved as a residential house or as a house of assembly? Huge difference, specifically if the house address was all over the Chabad House website and social media and/or if they had business signs outside of the home. The main argument of the court is that the main issue is not the setback but that it is an illegal house of assembly.

Did I get something wrong?
(11/22/2018 10:13:35 AM)
52
Due Diligence
Just because one gets a zoning variance -- if one was applied for and approved -- that does not mean that someone can build whatever they want in a residential neighborhood.
(11/22/2018 11:29:18 AM)
53
Your neighbors are not Jew-haters. Don't turn them that way.
Your neighbors do not hate Jews. You have built a community center in a residential neighborhood, you are attracting large numbers of college students from a nearby campus onto your residential street. You did all this strictly legally, by exploiting the legal avenues available to you. Your neighbors don't hate you, they don't hate having you as neighbors, they hate your running a campus Jewish center in an off-campus residential street. That is valid. And they are exploiting the legal avenues available to them to make this stop. You won one round, they won the next. DO NOT turn this into an issue of antisemitism. It is you who are committing Chillul Hashem by making your neighbors think that Jews don't respect their rights to NOT have a highly successful Chabad shlichut on their street. It's not appropriate and you know it. Make a deal with them; sell the house and buy a property on campus or on a more commercial street where you belong. Your characterizing your student gatherings as "having dinner guests in our home" just makes you look cynical in addition to disrespectful.
(11/22/2018 12:15:43 PM)
54
þlegal advice from Alan dershowitz
Why don't you send it to Alan dershowitz to see if he can help you solve the situation I know it happened once in New York on 96th Street because of zoning regulations they had to tell down about 10 to 15 floors
(11/22/2018 12:58:23 PM)
55
Why no federal court action?
Clearly violation of.. Happened in Toms River chabad, Jackson, NJ https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religious_Land_Use_and_Institutionalized_Persons_Act
(11/22/2018 1:02:29 PM)
56
To 48, 49, 51 and 52
Of course one needs to due their due diligence. Sometimes despite due diligence mistakes can be made. The point is not whether a mistake was made, but what the reaction to that mistake is. They should have to pay for the 17K damage, not tear down the whole building.

Also, putting their address on a website is beside the point. This Chabad house, like mane others, operates out of the family's personal home. What has that got to do with whether it is a synagogue (it is not, they sometimes hold services in their home) and, more importantly, with whether or not the proper remedy for the covenant is to tear it down or pay for the damages?
(11/22/2018 1:37:13 PM)
57
To 51
You're correct that the main argument was the use of the house. That in fact is the whole point, if this wasn't a covenant case, such an argument would lose in an instant. You're 100% allowed to use your house for religious purposes.

It was highly inappropriate for the judge to bring the issue of the house's use into the case and one is left to wonder what the case was really about, the covenant or the use?!
(11/22/2018 1:39:10 PM)
58
Thank you 48
Thank you for your comments and your point of view. I agree that the rush to assume anti-Semitism is not helpful. Even in Rubashkin's case all I heard for years was "anti-Semitism," "anti-Semitism" the judge in that case was a ***** but there were other issues going on besides anti-Semitism. And, I agree, the Kristalnacht reference was a bit too much.

I wish the shluchim much hatzlacha!
(11/22/2018 2:39:18 PM)
59
love thy neighbour
Give folks what they want puts you in control.
The first party's invite should have been to the neighbours, then none of this would have even entered their minds to oppose them.
(11/22/2018 3:04:17 PM)
60
To 53
Sometimes motivations are obvious from actions.
You're correct the shluchim won one round and the neighhbors one another round.
However, the Shluchim HAVE offered to settle and pay and HAVE offered to move. Note, that there is NOTHING in the covenant and the relevant law that would prohibit moving it back.
The argument that the covenant requires destruction is simply untrue. The neighbors argued (and the court) ruled that they cannot move because of the use.
As to your point that having students is not dinner guests - noone is saying (or said) that they aren't servicing students. They are and admit as much, however, they ARE doing out of their home, and absent the covenant that would be 100% legal.
Therefore, it leads one to ask, what is their issue? And while you're right that they probably also just don't want noise and busy-ness near them,ask yourself if you think they would take the same positions were this a non-Jewish organization would they do the same? Finally, ask why every legal expert is shocked and surprised that the court order is to destroy rather then to pay the damages or move.
(11/22/2018 3:30:11 PM)
61
To 58
It is also anti-Antisemitism when the response to a wrong is disproportionate.
Chabad admits it should pay (or bear the cost of moving). But why are they being denied that option.
Similarly in Rubashkin's case, what makes it anti-semitisim was the singular focus on the Jewish person doing what many others do and the completely disproportionate response.

I don't think people are comparing to Kristalnacht in the seriousness, but rather to illustrate how shocking it is that a shul would be torn down, which, bottom line, hasn't happened before now.
(11/22/2018 3:33:36 PM)
62
Call these guys...
Up here in Monsey, NY there are many Chasidic and other orthodox buildings which have been fought over by patrons and municipalities, and won . If you consult with any builder up here, you'll find the best, experienced lawyers in this particular legal type of battle. For sure.
(11/22/2018 4:14:54 PM)
63
The issue is the neighbor doesnt wamt a public meeting house on the street---for Jews yet.
Lobby the city and start a petition to change the street, moving it 60 feet further away from the building. Offer to pay for it. This should be simplest most cost effective way. Add something to sweeten the pot for the city. New street lights? A dog park?
(11/22/2018 4:26:03 PM)
64
51 to 57
Your point is not 100% accurate. You are correct that a home can be used for religious purposes. However, a house of assembly is a completely different category. In other words, once you start officially marketing your address as a place of assembly it requires a conditional use permit which will require neighbors approval. What it does seems out of proportion here is the fact that the Chabad House is not given the choise to sell and move or stop running the programs from that address.
(11/22/2018 4:36:43 PM)
65
Alan Zed
This is what I think they are not telling anyone ,
The street is proberbly one made up just of residential houses .Im willing to bet ,that covernent proberbly ,strictly forbids the erecting of ,or using any house in the street as a place of worship .
This I can understand .The new house looks much larger than the rest on the street and let's be honest ,it won't just be the rabbis house.It will obviosly be used as a Jewish community Center as well as doubling up as a shul.
Now I'm playing devils advocate here ,a residential street has unwritten rules.
No noisy parties ,no parking and revving of engines in the early hours and no house to be used as a religious community Center .
I'm thinking Shabbat ,
It comes in ,late in summer and 50 -70 people singing around the table with the windows open.?Then u have Sulkot and the Sukkah.
I believe that's exactly what that covenant was written for and
I blame the rabbis lawyer for not doing his homework.
(11/22/2018 4:44:38 PM)
66
51 To 60
The main issue is that the Shliach admitted that they are a house of assembly and they plan on staying as such after moving back. They can't operate as a house of assembly unless they have a conditional use permit which will require neighbors approval.

Probably if the Rabbi would have assured the court that from now on the property will be exclusively used as the Rabbi's residence, the outcome would have been different.

The attorneys might be able to push for this so the Rabbi can keep his house and find a different venue for the Chabad House or inviring students as his personal guest.

(11/22/2018 5:22:13 PM)
67
51 to 55
You are 100% wrong. This act protects the rights of religious entities to use their land for such purposes as long a the general zoning is planned for houses of assembly. In other words, if a particular zone allows the use of land for cinemas and museums, the city also needs to allow in that zone a religious house of assembly.
(11/22/2018 5:49:19 PM)
68
Go after the neighbor
Publicize the neighbor's name and occupation. Drag his name through the mud and boycott his place of employment... place the employer in the situation where they need to fire the neighbor. Once this individual has been fired and his professional reputation irreparably tarnished, the neighbor will presumably run out of funds to pay off their mortgage. This will result in the bank repossessing the neighbor's property and the neighbor will lose their legal claim. If anti-semites want to play hardball, lets play hardball!
(11/22/2018 11:37:50 PM)
69
Bring In The Big Guns
Have they notified Jared Kushner and his father-in-law of this mishegas? Jared is involved with and donates generously to Chabad and his father-in-law knows a thing or two about getting buildings completed.
(11/23/2018 12:38:39 PM)
70
What is the real reason for this horrible decision ?
Chabad student programs are always so positive, not only for the Jewish community but also for the whole community surrounding the the area of the house. This judge must either not have a heart or he is not getting the big picture. The repercussions of tearing down an establishment that give nothing but love and support to these students will be in the history books as a shameful act.
(11/23/2018 4:34:31 PM)
71
similar covenants
check the neighborhood properties for similar covenants.
(11/23/2018 11:14:22 PM)
72
NOT the policy of America.
The majority of Americans do not agree with such actions as this judge has taken. While anti-Jewish Bias is in the nation IT DEFINITELY IS NOT THE POLICY OF THIS NATION. As an individual Christian I am committed to standing with the Jewish people any time they face this kind of INJUSTICE..They are the children of God by their birth and I am a child of God
(11/24/2018 8:58:52 AM)
73
Never Again
It’s Happening because of The many Jews who are appeasing Socialists / Islamists/ Anti- Senites from Radical Left ! Look at who is in WDC ?!? People like Schumer and his ilk ?!? It’s Horrible ! ...1938 comes to mind ...
(11/24/2018 11:55:46 AM)
74
Help please
Why the judge is so prejudice? Let those students have a home that cares about them!!!!
(11/24/2018 2:57:24 PM)
75
Simple
Call Trump, Call the Gov, Call Dershowitz and call in a press release. The press will love this case and it will be picked up nationally. Get Towsend involved as well. This what has to be done asap. If needed chain youselved to the house and do not move an inch and have the 17K on hand if questions are asked. The press will love this and no Chabad house is going to be torn down.
(11/24/2018 9:29:22 PM)
76
Thist cannot be allowed
So very wrong on the every level of justice
(11/25/2018 12:04:46 AM)
77
Contact ACLJ Jay Sekulow
You must get in touch with ACLJ , Jay Sekulow . He is Jewish/American and represent Christians and Jews being persecuted/discriminated against. He has also represented a coach in WA state against the school. They would not allow him and his team to pray before games. Please go to ACLJ.ORG or Google Jay Sekulow. He and his team worked very hard to have Turkey release Pastor Andrew Brunson from prison. Pastor Andrew Brunson was reunited with his family here in the USA. Please contact ACLJ (American Center for Law and Justice) Jay Sekulow. I truly believe his organization would take your case in a heart beat. They do not charge to take a case. It is paid for my view and listeners donations to his organization ACLJ.
(11/25/2018 2:17:37 AM)
78
Land Use and Environmental Planning Mentor
Immediately file an appeal within the approximately 10 day appeal period, interview some land use attorneys and seek supportive city counsel members to speak on your behalf at the appeal.
(11/25/2018 8:38:34 AM)
79
AJ Godwin
It was all easily avoidable had the Attorneys for Chabad simply checked with the recorder of deeds and see if any restrictions exist. The covenant was RECORDED. The lawyers must have errors and ommissions legal malpractice insurance that could cover any loss to Chabad.
(11/25/2018 7:03:32 PM)
80
You could stop it by protesting but Jew won't do that.
If you really want to make a difference, then we need to attack on all fronts. First file some motion, any motion to stall. And get an appeal going. Second, get 5000 people in front of the house immediately and continuously until you force a compromise. But Jews would never do that.
(11/26/2018 3:51:55 AM)
81
Money Talks
offer the neighbor $100k cash? next.
(11/27/2018 1:12:49 PM)
82
Persecution still exists
Who is this judge, name please.
(11/27/2018 9:30:01 PM)
83
Mrs. Natana Pesya Bitton
I'm with # 68 and #79. We need to try EVERYTHING listed here and pray HARD!
(11/28/2018 3:27:52 PM)
84
Ignore whats really going on and scream Antisemitism
Maybe the bs flies in NY but not in Baltimore. The issue is not the setback. The other part conveniently left out is the usage. The street is for RESIDENCES only. A "House" with a dining room that seats over 100 is not a residence. And again maybe in the NY hock it works but not here. In Balt you cant just claim you have a super large family. Also the shul and other stuff. Lets be honest as Jews should be. This is Not a single family house, its a Chabad House used to serve as an institution to serve hundred of students.
As to protesting outside homes and trying to get them fired and ruin thier lives. Please dont bring your garbage to Baltimore.
Overall, we have a very good relationship with our non-jewish neighbors. Please dont bring your false claims of antisemitism (which only causes real antisemitism) to Baltimore.
Theres also 2 churches dealing with zoning issues so its not "we hate the jews"
(11/28/2018 5:55:22 PM)
85
yedidask
OK... So if it must be torn down - then a big crew needs to be put together to *disassemble* it, preserving as much of the building supplies as possible. Then show the court that the building has been demolished, so the legal requirement is satisfied.
Then re-build it within the proper location, and add on as well, making it as conspicuous [to the neighbor] as possible, but within legal boundaries.
In the meantime, they need to file an appeal with a higher court, and get a temporary injunction.
(11/30/2018 3:16:24 PM)
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