Asbury Park Press Prints Anti-Semitic Letter, Attack On Lakewood Continues


The assault on the frum community of Lakewood, NJ, continues, this time in the pages of the Asbury Park Press.

A letter written by Michael Billig of Lakewood uses dry sarcasm, dripping with hate, to “set the record straight regarding what this metastasizing metropolis is all about.”

Billig writes, “‘Traffic in Lakewood is a nightmare.’ Nonsense! The term ‘traffic’ implies there is actually some vehicular movement taking place. ‘Lakewood is a closed, insular community.’ Absolutely untrue! The dominant demographic of this town is exceptionally gregarious, incessantly knocking on neighbors’ doors most any time of day.”

Billig, in a poor attempt at humor, continues: “‘Homeowners take no pride in their properties.’ Are you kidding? Where else in Ocean County can you find front lawns, yards and driveways so festively decorated with toys, papers and other rubbish? ‘Lakewood residents don’t keep their streets clean.’ Wrong again! For example, it’s not unusual to see this town’s citizens so intent on keeping sidewalks pristine they scrupulously avoid using them, opting instead to walk local roadways day and night.”

Finally, Billig says, “‘The township’s governing council routinely shirks its municipal responsibilities.’ Not at all! Ask around and folks will point out our local leaders are definitely responsible for the current state of Lakewood’s affairs.”

The Asbury Park Press has long served as a mouthpiece for those seeking to stir up hatred toward the from community, locally and beyond.

It seems that the more things change, the more they stay the same.



  1. It is not anti-semitic.Those are valid complaints.It is incumbent on our community not to make a chilul- hashem and to be more civic minded.

  2. You’re saying this was an anti-Semitic screed because he wants you to clean up your lawn? It’s dripping with hate because he’s complaining about the traffic?


    We face a lot of serious problems in the current galus, but sorry, this ain’t one of ’em. Get real.

  3. As a longtime Lakewood resident, I’m sorry to say the letter writer is correct on one point; some of us don’t keep our property neat and tidy. If I dislike these eyesores, can you imagine what the nisht fun unzerer think about them? Yes, we lead more meaningful and fulfilling lives than they do and, yes, all they have to care about is their beautiful lawns and pristine property, but that’s not a reason for us to be shlumps. While it’s true we have more children ka”h than they do and, therefore, more toys and bikes, we also have an obligation to be mikadesh sheim Shamayim by training ourselves and our children to take an extra few seconds to put things away neatly. Esav will always hate us, but we don’t need to fuel the fire.

  4. The article is problematic but the comments above is much worse.

    It has become a minag to bash Yidden b’fnei kol am. This is the greatest chilul Hashem.

    Besides the the great display of selfishness, which I won’t elaborate here.

  5. There may be some sarcasm and hate in the APP letter, but a lot of the points are more or less valid:

    Isn’t there a lot of traffic and congestion?
    Aren’t there many commercial buildings(schools, yeshivas) operating in otherwise residential neighborhoods?
    Aren’t there many people wearing dark clothing walking in the street, or running across busy streets, making it dangerous for drivers?
    Aren’t there many selfish, unsafe drivers on the road?
    Aren’t there many unkempt properties around town, that would be considered an eyesore?

    While I do not agree with everything the letter write is saying, I do think it is incumbent upon us Yidden in Lakewood(and elsewhere) to make a kiddush Hashem wherever we go, and be “A light unto the nations”. When we point the finger at others and try to place the blame elsewhere, we do ourselves a dis-service.

  6. To Can’t join them, fight them:

    I don’t bash frum people online. Ever.

    However if someone has legitimate complaints on us or if our behavior stokes anti Semitism even if the complaints are not legitimate, it is important to be aware of it and act accordingly.

    See Taanis 10B

  7. Hi, I’m a Catholic neighbor in another town. I’m sorry the author finds the letter anti-Semitic. Please let me explain something. I have lived around Lakewood for 45 years. I have many friends in the Orthodox community, though mostly in the Litfisheh community, not so much the Hassidic. I’d welcome many of my friends to move in next door, and be happy to have them. But there have been pushy tactics being used in my town, spearheaded by …..which is the same group trying to draw in the …. Makes us wonder over hear if he’s trying to buy up the homes just to bulldoze them for more high density development. I don’t want high density development. Most in my town feel the same as I do. I think the writer of the letter to the Asbury Park Press is expressing his concerns as well. Look, if the Catholics were still having 8 kids like my grandparents did, we wouldn’t be having this conversation. The Orthodox communities are the ones growing these days, the kids need places to live, and they want to do so close by, just like we did a generation ago. But everytime I turn around, there seems to more “secret plans.”
    We’re reasonable people, but we’re wary. To respond to Lakewood Bubby’s post, the Esav (?did you mean Esau?) does not hate YOU, but we certainly don’t like the behaviors that are happening