Beis Moshiach
  • Ask the Rav: Author Accused of Misbehavior; What do I do with his Books?

    The following question was submitted to AsktheRav.com: There were recently accusations regarding a specific author of children’s books that he acted inappropriately. I saw different statements going around about how to treat his books. I want to know what the right thing to do is in the eyes of the Beis Din • Get the Answer

    Question:

    There were recently accusations regarding a specific author of children’s books that he acted inappropriately. I saw different statements going around about how to treat his books. I want to know what the right thing to do is in the eyes of the Beis Din.

     

    Answer:

    There is no halachic objection to reading books of an author who was accused of misbehavior.

    This is purely an educational decision. Since no one can be presumed guilty till proven, you might wish to wait with your decision until more details emerge. However, one might consider the fact that they don’t want their children to be exposed to the writings of such an individual, either because it might be traumatic for them if and when they discover that someone who they considered a celebrity was involved in wrongdoing, or because it might give them the idea to make contact with the author. Additionally, though the accusations were not yet proven, keeping such books around and having children read them can make him a legitimate character in the eyes of the reader and might send a wrong message to children that such behavior can be condoned chas vsholom.

     

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