Friday, June 25, 2010

Yoav Lalom Interview in "Maariv"


Yoav Lalom, the Sephardi haredi who started taking the Ashkenazi Beit Yaakov girl's school of the Emmanuel settlement to court, is giving an interview in today's Israeli daily "Maariv". How his father, as a Baal Teshuva, went with him to an Ashkenazi school and wanted him to be signed in. The principle refused and thus Lalom's father began to cry.

So far, I have only read parts of the interview but what Lalom does is praising himself. That his wife is dressed modestly and blablabla. However, when you look at the Lalom photos, he is one of those very modern haredi dressed men. The fashion one's and I assume that his entire plot is taking place because he has political ambitions. Always attacking the Sephardi SHASS party and how they still depend on Ashkenazi society. No doubt, Lalom wants more but obviously doesn't realize that he has even caused more hatred between the two groups. Can anyone seriously imagine how it would be if the Ashkenazi and Sephardi girls from Beit Yaakov were sitting together in ONE classroom ? After all what is happening. When parents go to jail and a Chassidut Slonim letting the Supreme Court decide what to do. Soon the Supreme may run the entire haredi school system. Once letting secular judges decide about haredi matters, even the school separation of boys and girls may seen as rassism. Chassidut Slonim always stresses that there hasn't been any kind of rassism and that all demonstrations take place in order to protest a secular court trying to rule over Haredim.

I just wonder how the girls from Emmanuel must look at each other. I wouldn't put them together  into any kind of classroom, as they may kill each other. Lalom, on the other hand, moved to a hotel in the center of Israel because he has received death threats. If he thinks he can change society, he is missing the point. First of all, and here comes the "rassism", he is a son of a Baal Teshuva and this won't make him too accepted. Sometimes Baalei Teshuva really get on my nerves when they fanatically and constantly try to belong to a society where they are not really accepted. I was / am a Baalat Teshuva myself but try keeping a certain kind of mentality and especially dignity. I am not forcing myself into a society of born Chassidim and I do understand Chassidut Slonim when they only accept girls from their own group. Why should I or any outsider want to study with the Slonim ?

The Tel Aviv part of today's Maariv is gossiping that any Beit Yaakov school in the country is making these separations. This is right but one has to see the whole picture of different mentalities and that Baalei Teshuva from today are unable of entering a class with born Haredim. This would just be a joke ! How can a newly Baal Teshuva quote any Mishnayiot ? No matter if Ashkenazi or Sepharadi. On the other hand, look at all the posh Israeli secular schools in the country. Do they accept Ethiopians or Sephardi kids ? NO ! Many schools only accept pupils fitting them. Students are being chosen - this is nothing new at all.

To me, Yoav Lalom looks like an extreme arrogant guy who is still trying to hide his real purposes.


  1. So how can the children of BT's ever catch up? Will the have to wait until the next generation? Aren't first graders capable of learning mishnayot, even if their children are BTs? Remember, this is about the children, not the parents.

    I'm surprised you are judging Lalom based on his style of dress.

  2. B"H

    When you are very much involved in haredi society, you learn exactly how to differentiate people. And Lalom's clothing style tells a lot about him when you know the litvishe world.

    Children of BT's catch up because there are extra schools for them. But it is not only the missing knowledge. Lets say that the parents just made Teshuva a month ago but are not sure, how frum they are and what they keep and what they want to achieve in the long run.

    In other words, the whole Teshuva process is not that easy and can also cause problems within the family. The father wants to be so frum, the mother not, etc.
    Do you then think that their children who may be pulled to each side should enter a class with born Haredim ? I see many difficulties coming up and in Jerusalem you have a whole bunch of teens whose parents are Baalei Teshuva running away from home. There is a special department from the municipality taking care of those runaways.

  3. I do know the charedi system somewhat, even though I am an outsider. But what you're saying is that you have to understand how things work in the haredi world to understand why it's okay to reject little girls from a school because her parents don't dress exactly like you. And that's very hard to swallow.
    I know plenty of haredi kids with problems. The haredi world is too quick to blame their problems on outside influences.

  4. B"H

    Why are you only pointing at haredi schools ? Do you think the national religious or the secular are much better and more tolerant ? The truth is that there are the same separations as in the haredi world. Just look at the Shidduch system of the national religious society.

  5. B"H
    your are absoulute wrong miriam!!!!
    one one side yes it is true that somebody who just got a bt wants to the top but i dont think that we are talking about parents wich are bt for one month i for my side never saw bt who takes his kids after two months bt too a tt or beis yaakov
    it is moer complex then we know and we dont know nothing waht really happend there
    so im am not sure waht happend there and waht is the true and not
    but u are also writing very anti spharadi an bt
    why thet so when u write like thet than lets think aboutit how the papers will write also one sided!!!
    for me it also always seems that u write also like the spaharadim are general less charedi and orthodox then the ashkenazim why so???????
    ich hoffe du laesst meinen kommentar durch miriam !!!!
    best regards
    ytzchak(normalerweise in deutsch

  6. B"H

    The intention of most Sephardi girls who want to join an Ashkenazi Beit Yaakov is the strive for prestige (reputation). It gives you better job opportunities as well as better Shidduch offers.

    Haredi society has its prestige education. Just look at Ponibezh in Bnei Brak or Yeshivat Hebron. Whoever studies there, has a little higher standard within society.

    As I said to the Mother in Israel, it is extremely easy to recognize a litvishe Haredi by his clothing style. Modern, posh, even the hat says a lot. Bnei Brak Rabbi Akivah Street posh wealthy clothing. More modern and just look at their wives. Long wigs, modern blouses and a skirt hardly reaching the knees. Even Chassidut Gur in Bnei Brak has this problem; also Chabad, by the way.

    You would be surprised how many parents do Teshuva today and tomorrow their kids jump around Talmud Torah or Beit Yaakov. Teshuva parents do that in order to push themselves and, at the same time, get more accepted in society. Many kids run away because they want anything but joining the Teshuva process of their parents. As I mentioned before, Jerusalem's municiplaity has extra social workers for such cases. Otherwise those kids hang around at the Independence Park ro, at night, in front of the munipality building.

    Israel's press (including the haredi press) were discussing for hours what happened in Emmanuel. But - it is not only Emmanuel, as every Beit Yaakov has a separation !!!

    If I decided to go to Beit Yaakov (if I was younger:-)))), the regular Beit Yaakov wouldn't take me despite I am Ashkenazi !
    Not only Ashkenazi and Sephardi girls are separated but also those Ashkenazi girls from BTs. There are quite a few divisions within the Beit Yaakov system and the Slonim, Belz, Vishnitz or Gur have their own Beit Yaakov where they teach their mentality and their customs.

    However, the problem is solved for the time being:

    The EMmanuel girls learn together for two or three days and then enter the summer vacation. Afterwards, Chassidut Slonim will have its own system and the Sephardi girls are alone again.