Monday, December 26, 2011

ISRAEL: The Role of the Gender Separation


It is Chanukkah and we are supposed to commemorate and celebrate the miracle of the oil as well as the Maccabim beating the evil Greeks. Instead, Israel's secular press decided to lead a war against haredi society as a whole. No difference is being made between Haredim, Sikarikim, Neturei Karta or "Taliban" women. A Haredi is a Haredi and this is it ! They are all fanatics, hate women and yell at little girls. The Toldot Aharon Rebbe David Kahn compared the present media war against Haredim to the time of the Maccabim and their evil counterpart. Not the Greeks but the Hellenists (Jews would adopted Greek culture and religion). As a matter of fact, I have already had the same thought as the Rebbe. 

A Haredi commentating at a haredi forum wrote that the secular press obviously forgets that even the national religious girl Na’ama Margolis goes to a religious girl's school where no boys are allowed. The press needs headlines and haredi society sells well. Especially these days where the left - wing paper "Yediot Acharonot" needs more readers, as the free paper "Israel Hayom" has become a more than serious competitor. 

The female role is in danger because there is a gender separation in Jewish Orthodoxy. However, why do Orthodox men demand a gender separation ? In a Synagogue, for instance ? The reason seems to be of hardly any meaning but, as a matter of fact, there is a meaning. To me, it sometimes does seem a bit awkward and exaggerated. I have nothing against any separation at a Synagogue but, for me, it is enough when two men or women sit together on a bus. It doesn't mean that the entire bus has to undergo a separation process. 

It is known that men apparently cannot control themselves as well as women and thus, women have to behave in order not to arise the male negative side (Yetzer HaRah). This is why women need do be separated. That men don't start starring at them and get immodest thoughts. 

Regarding the present chaos in Beit Shemesh: A few years ago I was invited at friend's for a Shabbat. Chassidim and they explained me how seculars as well as the national religious neighbours keep on provoking the haredi population. On the other hand, it is a majority of Haredim freaking out in such a negative manner. The Sikarikim are trying to gain more power and even threaten their haredi neighbours. Just look at the case of the “Or HaChaim” in Mea Shearim. 

It is impossible to say THE haredi population because haredi society is divided into more than 100 directions or groups. Who is a haredi and what kind of ideology is behind chassidic groups, the Litvish or some undefinable black hats ? 

As long as my own life is not being limited, I don't care about a gender separation in Beit Shemesh. Nevertheless, I do feel sorry for those Haredim being threatened by the Sikarikim. Another question is whether secular Israelis treat women much better than haredi society ? Reality is that women are discriminated when it comes to jobs, salaries and having a career.In case where a woman is running a company, the male business partner mostly asks for the real owner, as he is expecting a man sitting there to deal with and not a woman. 

A further thought: Has anyone ever spoken to haredi women and asked them for their opinion on the issue ? Do they all feel disciminated or is it just the worldly liberal ideology turning them into victims ?


  1. Don't confuse Charedim with Chassidim. ISraeli charedim includes Black-Hat White shirt Yeshivish people, and the ones who make noise dress Chassidish. Some of them look like Breslovers too.

  2. The secular press is hateful towards any form of religion. Though I must wonder why they never seem to take up arms against all the xtians moving in? Israelis must realize that by fighting internally we are opening ourselves to domination by the enemy--and I have no doubt that the first thing that will happen is the "free" press will be closed and all the "women's rights" proponents will be in burkas.

  3. B"H

    Some making noise are also Litvishe and I guess that also Ba'alei Teshuva are involved.

  4. B"H

    I have been wondering the whole time why on earth the press has been picking particularly this subject ... And you know what is bothering: That many anti - haredi comments on Arutz 7 and YNET come from Christians !!!