My wife and I attended the Yeshiva University Alumnus Shabbaton. It was fine, well, until the Seuda Shlishit, the third meal eaten on the Shabbat.
Rabbi Meir Goldvicht spoke. Seems he's the nephew of the great Rosh Yeshiva of Kerem B'Yavneh and has left to live in the United States. About two-thirds into his talk, which was too long in any case (and by that I mean that simply he spoke longer than intended by the organizers), he began to justify the Golah (Exile) living over that in Eretz Yisrael.
At first, most of the 450 people there were puzzled as he quoted a figure of 32% of Religious-stream educated kids becoming irreligious and said that it was because we don't know who the teachers are and because since veryone is Jewish, there is no way to protect our children from influences that come from other Jews. In Chutz-LaAretz, since we know who are goyim, we are better defended against bad influences.
Then he went on to say that in Chutz LaAretz, there is "community" which isn't anymore in Israel even though Bnei Yisrael are only considered a community in Israel.
I don't want this to be too arcane for too many people but I must say it just got worse and maybe he began to realize that he was faux-pas-ing something fierce as his thoughts became slightly disjointed. In fact, when we all walked over to Maariv services, he had a bit of a silly grin on his face as he realized that he erred big time. I mean, after all, he was talking to the YU alumni who had made aliyah and specifically left the US so that they could bring up their kids Jewishly as much as possible with all the dangers that do exist, spiritually and physically.
Rabbi Reuven Aberman spoke to him harshly, quoting assimilationist figures of 70% and admittedly, generously, that maybe he (Rav Aberman) just didn't have the intelligence to comprehend what Rabbi Goldvicht was talking about. Many other people, (many? almost everbody), were disturbed, so much that Richard Joel had to get up and speak for 10 minutes just before Havdallah to try to calm things down. He was interrupted twice and was almost at the edge of an abyss.
To make it short, here anyway, I would suggest that Rav Goldvicht not speak again for the rest of the week. He could only make things worse. Joel should ask him to clarify his thoughts in an article for the Commentator. At the most, it should be fun tosee him either explain himself, apologize or simple recant.
P.S. Here's the apology that arrived Sunday evening.