Young Bochurim Hitching?

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  • #587888

    yoshi
    Member

    I’m not sure if this has been discussed yet on the coffee room, so forgive me if this topic is a repeat.

    I see boys as young as 11 and 12 hitchhiking on the sides of the roads all the time in my community. I can’t understand how this is happening. Is this actually accepted in town? Do their parents tell them it’s OK?

    For anyone who thinks “it’s no big deal,” here are some things for you to ponder:

    -Some of these children are getting in the car with strangers, how are you to know this person is even jewish and if he is, you don’t know what he is capable of doing.

    -These kids and bochurim are sometimes standing in dangerous roadways at night without any reflectors sticking their hands out, (may i remind you, that many of them are wearing their suits and are hardly noticeable to the drivers).

    -You have the people who go ahead to pick them up STOP in the middle of the road to pull over, no signaling or anything, while the cars behind them have to swerve to avoid a crash.

    Please be careful, and arrange a carpool, it’s not worth the risk of all the horrible things that can happen.

    Your Thoughts?

    #619614

    mdlevine
    Member

    yoshi – great post.

    – how about the boys that try to open your doors when you stop at stop signs or red lights — one boy kept knocking on my window, finally, I rolled the window down and asked whose lap would he like to sit on.

    – how come older men (with gray in their beards) and ladies/girls of all ages have the strength to walk the distance but the boys are all to weak to walk

    – once in a store this young man (late teens early 20’s) was being persistent that I give him a ride to the other side of town – even though I explained to him that I can not go there. Finally, I said to him that I have other obligations and cannot assist him at this time to which he replied “who says that your obligations have priority over mine” – I wished him a speedy and complete refuah.

    – another episode: years ago I am driving down the street and a woman is waving her hands in a frantic manner, naturally I stopped to see if I could be of assistance. she wanted to send her little boy, maybe 7 or 8 years old with me to his tutor. She didn’t know me, yet it didn’t stop her from putting her kid in my car.

    #619615

    mdlevine
    Member

    OK – another classic. for those that are familiar with 306 and maple, you will appreciate this one

    a car 2 vehicles in front of my car went over 306 straight on maple passing YSV. at phylis he moved toward the center of the road and signaled to turn left. mid-turn he cut back to the right and pulled into the bus lane in front of northern metropolitan. dropped off his passanger and proceeded to make a u-turn back towards 306.

    OK not a full hitchhiker story but…

    #619616

    jphone
    Member

    It is even legal to stand on the side of the road and hitch?

    #619618

    boruch hashem
    Participant

    thank you yoshi for bringing up this important subject………..

    i think all parents should be made aware of how irresponsible it is for their kids to hitch-..

    personally i feel bad for these boys so sometimes give them rides(interesting when i pull up by the house there are sometimes 2 cars in the driveway!! why couldnt someone pick them up???)

    i shudder to think of what can happen if c”v someone we dont want these boys to go with offers them a ride!!

    #619619

    WolfishMusings
    Participant

    personally i feel bad for these boys so sometimes give them rides

    And you are thereby encouraging them to do it again.

    My personal rule is that in the city where public transportation is available, I don’t pick up anyone whom I (or a member of my family) doesn’t know personally.

    The Wolf

    #619620

    basmelech
    Participant

    I heard about the hitchers in Monsey. They are downright rude, and consider ityour obligation to give them free and private taxi service. Someone tried to put a baby into my friend’s car to take home, without a car seat! A Chasidic man once jumped into my friend’s car for a ride, not realizing the driver was a woman at first! I can go on and on about the chasidic chutzpadik hitch hikers in Monsey!

    #619621

    theyenta
    Member

    So here’s my dilema:

    I’ve often picked up the most appreciative and polite chasidishe yidden who were hitchhiking, and I mean they were of the finest people. How do you say no to people like that. I suspect that more often then not they’re just poor innocent people(Chassidish or Yeshiva Bochurim) looking for a bit of extra help. I think I would always do anything to help them anyway – so why not give them a ride?

    Bottom line: whether it becomes a kndnapping R”L incident or a car accident issue, how do we get the Rabbonim and Rebbeim to stop it?

    I suspect that it’s truly a sakonoh and at some point it’s going to blow up, but only once someone has died as a result.

    Can we stop it before something nasty happens?

    #619622

    WolfishMusings
    Participant

    How do you say no to people like that.

    Very simple… you tell them no. If it’s illegal in your jurisdiction, you can tell them that too. If you have a cell phone, you can offer to call them a cab.

    I suspect that more often then not they’re just poor innocent people(Chassidish or Yeshiva Bochurim) looking for a bit of extra help.

    You’re right, probably the vast majority are fine, upstanding people. So, by all means offer them help. Give them money for the bus, offer to call them a cab, etc. But don’t let them in your car unless you know who they are. The risks are, IMHO, just too great.

    The Wolf

    #619623

    I don’t mean to criticize yidden, but I was very hurt by experience I had.

    On motzei yom tov- my husband & I were dropped off from the Monroe bus in Williamsburg- @ the last bus stop for the Boro Park & Williamsburg bus. Being that we had no cell to call a car & the last bus had alaready left, my husband stuck his hand out & was hithcing.

    The 20 minutes that we waited, after 12:00, many, many yidden passed with empty vans/cars & didn’t even look at our direction.

    Finally= a car did stop for us- A Car Service & we were on our way home.

    I don’t mean to say that you have to stop & take in people in your car , but on the other hand – you will get only schar from above- did you think about that?

    #619624

    WolfishMusings
    Participant

    I don’t mean to say that you have to stop & take in people in your car , but on the other hand – you will get only schar from above- did you think about that?

    That’s why I said:

    So, by all means offer them help. Give them money for the bus, offer to call them a cab, etc.

    The Wolf

    #619625

    jphone
    Member

    someoneinthisworld: Think of it from the perspective of the driver. It is after 12 (I assume midnight), people have every right to be wary.

    #619626

    jphone
    Member

    You also have to consider that a bad experience sometimes makes people wary about doing something.

    I was a passenger in a car going from South Fallsburg back to the city. A young couple was waiting, with who I assumed correctly were their parents at a popular hitching area. I stopped. the father asked if I was going to Brooklyn. I replied I was, to Flatbush. I was asked if I could take the youg couple to Boro Park. I said yes. The father told me that they are from WilliB, but didnt want to take me to far out of the way and they would catch a bus from BP back to WilliB. I didnt argue, especially since neither I, or the driver knew our way around WilliB and we would arrive well after midnight.

    Of course, it was time for the young couple to climb in. Not going into details, the wife couldnt sit next to her husband (this was in a minivan that had 2 separate seats in the middle row, but to each their own), so I had to move to the middle row next to the husband and the wife climbed into the passenger seat in front.

    The conversation in the van was non-existent, neither I nor the drive speak much yiddish. The wife who spoke english, wouldnt speak with men. The driver and I conversed in english and the couple conversed in Yiddish. We basicly ignored each other. It was quite uncomfortable.

    Of course, there was a lot of traffic and we didnt get to the GWB until close to 1AM. At that point, we didnt feel comfortable leaving this couple in BP to search for a car service and told them we would take them to WilliB. Due to the language barrier directions to their apartment was not easy. We spent 30 minutes driving around until we happened to find the right street. It was now 2am and we had to figure out how to get out of WilliB and over to flatbush. We finally found a copy who gave us directions.

    Now, dont get me wrong, I do not regret the chesed at all. But at the same time, it is in the back of my mind anytime I see someone looking for a ride.

    It is very easy to say “did you think about that?” to someone who doesnt stop to pick someone up. To those who are standing with their thumbs out, did you ever think about what I just wrote and why someone is hesitant to stop?

    #619627

    yoshi
    Member

    I don’t mean to say that you have to stop & take in people in your car , but on the other hand – you will get only schar from above- did you think about that?

    They are thinking how they don’t want to break the Law.

    Especially as adults we should be prepared when traveling to have a ride, or call a taxi, not to depend on others to come to our rescue.

    #619628

    Joseph
    Participant

    jphone – The reward you’ll get for that one ride is immeasurable!

    BTW afaik, in most areas it is NOT illegal to hitchike.

    #619629

    yoshi
    Member

    It is illegal in New Jersey & New York State. Don’t believe me? Firstly i worked in a municipal court, and talked about this as well as other safety/law topics with the cops and judge. Look it up, ask you local law enforcement, they will tell you the same. That and the whole safety issue should be enough for people to not take risks, and plan ahead.

    #619630

    Joseph
    Participant

    Laws relating to hitchhiking or pedestrian travel on highways in New York are similar to the Uniform Vehicle Code (UVC), except where it comes to the New York State Thruway.

    What this means is: It is technically legal to hitchhike from the shoulder of a road or an on-ramp if no sign is posted prohibiting pedestrians. When it comes to the Thruway- which includes the major highways of I-87, I-90 and I-95- it is not only illegal to hitchhike the shoulder, but also near the entrance to these highways. A hitchhiker must stand outside of the Thruway property.

    Read the exact wording of related laws below…

    New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law:

    Sec. 1156. Pedestrians on roadways.

    (a) Where sidewalks are provided and they may be used with safety it shall be unlawful for any pedestrian to walk along and upon an adjacent roadway.

    (b) Where sidewalks are not provided any pedestrian walking along and upon a highway shall when practicable walk only on the left side of the roadway or its shoulder facing traffic which may approach from the opposite direction. Upon the approach of any vehicle from the opposite direction, such pedestrian shall move as far to the left as is practicable.

    Sec. 1157. Pedestrians soliciting rides, or business.

    (a) No person shall stand in a roadway for the purpose of soliciting a ride, or to solicit from or sell to an occupant of any vehicle.

    (c) No person shall occupy any part of a state highway, except in a city or village, in any manner for the purpose of selling or soliciting.

    (Legal definition of roadway below)

    Part 102. LIMITATIONS ON USE OF THRUWAY SYSTEM

    The solicitation of a ride, commonly known as hitchhiking, or stopping any vehicle for the purpose of picking up or discharging a hitchhiker, on any portion of the Thruway system, including toll plazas, is prohibited. Loitering in or about the toll plazas or any other portion of the Thruway system, for the purpose of hitchhiking or for any other purpose, is prohibited.

    #619631

    jphone
    Member

    Lifum Tzara Agra. I agree. Nevertheless, it is not fair to PLAN to come on to someone else and then give them a dirty look as they drive by and do not stop. There are many reasons people do not stop.

    #619632

    jphone
    Member

    Back to the subject of this thread. YOUNG BACHURIM hitching rides.

    I assume young bachurim refers to bouys 14-20 years old (although I have NO idea what the original poster meant).

    Should teenage bouys be hitching ANYWHERE? If they re going to, or coming from yeshiva, dont their parents have an obligation to make sure they have a way to do so? If it is Bein Hazmanim, shouldnt their parents know where they are, what they are doing and how thye plan on getting their?

    #619633

    jphone
    Member

    This past weekend in the mountains I encountered 2 situations that many people here discussed regarding hitching in general and YOUNG BACHURIM in particular.

    On Thursday night, I was traveling from Woodridge to South Fallsburg at 11:30pm. At the “Four Corners” while waiting for a light to change green, I was approached by 3 young boys, who did not look a day over 17 looking for a ride to the Wal Mart in Monticello. When I told them I was only going as far as SF, they replied that would be fine, I should let them out in SF and they would look for a ride the reaminder of the way. I agreed on one condition, that I be able to call their mother and ask if they had any problems with me picking up their sons at 11:30PM in Woodridge and leaving them on the side of the road in SF. If their mother says yes, I would do it. Of course they all declined and I told them I couldnt take the responsibility of leaving them on the side of the road in SF so late at night (I wouldnt do it in broad daylight either). These boys were “off duty” from a local camp. Where was the camp supervision of these boys? Do their parents know where they are off to late at night? How did they plan on getting BACK to Woodridge from Monticello when they were done shopping? This is hefkeirus. Normally we think of hefkeirus where pritzus is involived, but I think this type of hefkeirus needs to be addressed. These were not “kids at risk”, they were 3 bachurim, in their black pants, white shirts along with their hatds and jackets.

    The second encounter occured on my way back to the city early in the morning (before 5AM) while it was still dark outside AND raining pretty heavily with a little fog to boot. Someone standing in the rain, practically in the middle of the road looking for a ride back to the city, was nearly run over by the car 2 cars in front of me. He was dressed wearing all black, except for his white shirt, which was hardly visible anyway. Was it so important for him to get back to the city that he had to risk his life and serious injury to a motorist and hitch in such a manner, especially in such weather? When will people who do this start to wear reflective strips on their clothing? Does an accident R’L have to happen?

    #619634

    mom18
    Member

    Speaking of legalities, we know that klal yisroel have gutte neshamas.

    However, do you know that if you give a ride to someone and you get into an accident, that ‘favor’ that you did can sue you for damages? that if you are carrying a minor who is not buckled, YOU get a ticket? that there are plenty of goyim who know that when they put on a ‘beanie cap’ many other men with ‘beanie caps’ come to their assistance? would you lent this stranger 10 bucks? 100 bucks? how much do you trust this person to be around you — and sitting next to your children?!

    chayecha kodmim!

    #619635

    ZeitBsimcha
    Participant

    Anyone driving around Lakewood knows what it is to just miss running over someone hitching. As much as reflectors are talked about, many people are just NOT wearing them! Of course everyone feels bad for the teenagers that are trying to get home or to Yeshiva. But the amount of boys with their thumbs out on the side of the road all hours of the day & night is just ridiculous! Why aren’t the boys taking the transportation provided? Why aren’t they being transported safely by their parents if they don’t have transportation? The hitchhikers are a danger to themselves, other drivers & a Chillul Hashem too to boot roaming around in middle of the road.

    On a lighter side, here’s an interesting thing my family has noticed about hitchhikers. Boys from certain Yeshivos always give a courteous thank you & good morning. Boys from other Yeshivos have absolutely no concept of saying hello, good morning or thank you! It’s been proven over and over again!! I would say that most people who have rachmanus and pick up hitchhikers can tell u the same thing. So, are u wondering which Yeshivos are actually teaching and stressing an atmosphere of middos and hakaras hatov? Are u wondering which boy might be worth the exorbitant price tag they’ll want in a couple of years? Pick up the hitchhikers and pay attention!!!

    #619636

    bobby57
    Participant

    some of them are “omed b’prashas d’rachim u’melastem es habriyos”

    #619637

    oomis
    Participant

    yoshi – great post.

    – how about the boys that try to open your doors when you stop at stop signs or red lights — one boy kept knocking on my window, finally, I rolled the window down and asked whose lap would he like to sit on.

    It was a great post. I had a similar experience recently. A teenage boy clearly frum, knocked on my window as I was stopped at a light. He asked me for a ride into town. The ride totally was on my way and if it were an emergency I would have driven out of my way as well, and he looked familiar to me from the neighborhood, though I didn’t know him. I gave him the ride to a store five minutes or so away, but on the way I said to him that I thought he had taken a very big chance stopping a stranger and asking for a ride (I had, too, for that matter). He replied that he picks his rides very carefully. I told him ax murderers come in all sizes and appearances. Just ask the girl who survived Ted Bundy.

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