Chicago Tribune

Call Meeting at Hebrew Institute to "Drive Vice from West Side District; May Oust Frank.
Dr. Tobias Schanfarber Blames Congested City Conditions for Many Evils; Race Forced from Land

Seventy presidents and fourteen rabbis of Jewish congregations in Chicago will meet at the Hebrew institute, 1258 Taylor street, this afternoon to fire the first gun in the war on white slavery begun by the Order Bínai Bírith, the Commercial club, and various other church and lay organizations.

This same vicious trade was attacked yesterday by Rabbi Tobias Schanfarber, who, in a sermon in K.A.M. temple, suggested the return of Jews to agricultural life as a solution of the white slave and other problems.

The meeting at the Hebrew institute, a call for which had been issued by the president and vice-president of the Institute, promises to be the most important even in the civic life of the Jews in Chicago in years. According to those in charge of arrangements the Frank brothers will only come in for minor consideration, as it is practically assured that Julius Frank will be deposed from the presidency of the Anshe Calvaria congregation.

A severe grilling, however, is in store for the police of Chicago and especially the force of the Desplaines street district. Another and equally sever reprimand it is expected will be directed against the Yiddish press of Chicago.

Blames Police for Leveeís Inroads.

"The west side today is infested with the most degrading vices," said Dr. David Blaustein, president of the Hebrew Institute, "but it is so by virtue of the police of that district. They have dumped this vice upon a respectable community. They have dumped it upon the district because the people of the district are timid, broken down, and do not think they have a right to complain.

"Eight years ago there was a similar situation on the East side of New York. Vice was rampant, and it was considered the worst district in New York. A committee of fifteen was chosen, and I was one of that committee. Upon our investigation we found that the vice was forced upon those districts by the divekeepers, who knew the inoffensive nature of the Jew — who knew that he would not protest and could be intimidated easily. We began a campaign of education and agitation. We went among the Jews and told them they didnít have to have these dives among them if they didnít want to. We told them they could protest and that their protests would be heard.

New York District Cleaned Out.

"In a short time we stirred up public sentiment to such a degree that the district which but a few months previous was considered a plague spot upon the community was

( 6) cleaned out. The divekeepers and the police saw that the Jews would not stand for having vice crowded upon them and they withdrew.

"The same thing is now repeating itself in Chicago. And we are going to pursue the same methods and tactics which we pursued in New York. On Sunday we are going to acquaint the presidents and rabbis with the situation. We are going to tell them that we donít have to have vice flaunted before our eyes, in the face of our boys and girls. We are going to build up a public opinion and public sentiment which will sweep the vice district out of our vicinity.

"Besides the police, however, who have deliberately fostered the segregated vice on the west side, there is another agency which shares responsibility for this state of affairs. I mean the Yiddish press of Chicago, which has been hopelessly negligent in warning the people about the plague which is spreading all about them. By inactivity and indifference the Yiddish press has virtually brought on the present disgraceful situation."

Problem for All Humanity

Dr. Fishkin of the Institute said that while it will do everything to awaken and crystallize public opinion against the white slave business, the white slave problem must not be considered as a Jewish problem only.

"The fact that there are Jewish women victims and Jewish men criminals in this horrible trade does not make it a specific Jewish problem," he said. "We cannot say wipe out the Jews in the trade and leave it for someone else. The problem is human and we are moved to action by human interests.

"The Hebrew institute has neither the means nor the machinery to fight the evil or the men involved in it. The forces at our disposal are moral or religious, and it is for the purpose of the bringing of these moral forces to the foreground that the meeting was called."

In the meantime, the district is agog with speculations as to the action of the Anshe Calvaria congregation. Rumors are heard that the congregation is on the verge of a split over Julius Frank. The Forward, in its Wednesdayís issues, prints the picture of M. Oppenheim, one of the prime movers for the adopting of a resolution in favore of Julius Frank, under the headline, "The Man Who Disgraced the Anshe Calvaria Congregation." In the same issue of the Forward, in a two column editorial, urges the Jews to "unite their strength and clean out the filth from their district."

Rabbi Urges Return to Farms

In his sermon Rabbi Schanfarber said:

"At this season of the year, when we celebrate our harvest home festival it is well to think of the day when we Jews were an agricultural people and to impress upon the Jews found in the congested quarter of our large cities the necessity of again going back to the soil. Not a few of the new distressing social and moral problems confronting the Jew today have been brought about by the cramped and constricted quarters into which our people have been crowded together.

"Get them out of these tumbledowns, ram-shackle tenement houses, where there is all lack of privacy, and put them in the free, open air on farms, and we will no longer hear of white slave traffic and the other nameless evils that have been so flagrantly discussed in recent days.

"It is a great mistake to believe the Jew cannot be made to a farmer. This would be his occupation today if the Christian world had not prohibited him from owning property and refused to allow him to engage in this kind of work. This week a convention of Jewish farmers is in session in the city of New York to discuss problems of farm life. A Jewish monthly publication call the Jewish Farmer is an evidence that there are already sufficient number of farmers to warrant such a paper.

"There are various estimates as to the number of Jewish farmers in the United States today, one estimate being as high as 10,000, aggregating in all 50,000 souls.

"We must down the foul slander that the Jew is a mere consumer and not a producer. By depopulating the congested districts and placing the Jews on farms we will help to kill off the white plague that is making such dreaded inroads into the health and life of our people. ĎBack to the soilí must be our shibboleth.


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