Women Of The Western Wall

Jerusalem has seen the light
And said that women have the right
To worship at the wall.
To Ultra-Orthodox, this slight
Can’t be condoned at all.

And so, when women came to pray
Together at the wall today,
It seemed the worst of shocks!
The men have morals to obey–
So, pelted them with rocks!

No matter what the young men tried
The women wouldn’t be denied;
The men, despairing, moaned:
“It’s quite the same as genocide,
And cannot be condoned!”

Via the LA Times, the first day of equal right to pray at the wall. Yay, more people get to pray! That’s good, isn’t it? No, no, no, cos women have cooties, thus sayeth the Lord.

Dressed in black hats and coats, mobs of young ultra-Orthodox men tossed eggs, water bottles and coffee cups at members of Women of the Wall as their leaders led a group of 100 men and women in prayer. Several women from the group wore white shawls and other religious ornaments, such as black tefillin boxes on their heads, traditionally used only by men at the site.

Oh, come on, Jews have been through much worse than this…

Police, whom the youths called “Nazis,” arrested five men for disrupting the peace, said police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld. As the women departed, some were pelted with rocks.

Well, yeah, I guess protecting women while they pray is pretty much exactly the same as committing genocide. Those Nazi cops.

Women of the Wall leader Anat Hoffman, who on Friday was being protected by the same police who once arrested her performing a similar prayer service, predicted that it was only a matter of time before women won expanded rights at the holy site.

“This train is gone,’’ said Hoffman, who has been pushing for religious equality at the Western Wall for 26 years. “Women are reading the Torah and praying out loud. This is going to happen. You are either leading it or you will be dragged by your hair.”

Nice turn of phrase there.

My question is, why on earth do these women want to be part of a religion that treats them like this? (Yes, that question terribly oversimplifies–we are not looking at one religion at all, but many that share a common ancestor.) And (conversely), if you have one group throwing stones at people who want to be part of a religion, and another group braving these stones to be part… which group loves that religion more?


  1. says

    And how are these religious fanatics different from the Christian evangelicals and Muslim jihadists? This is creepy/spooky beyond words, a galloping insanity, like a computer worm infecting their social fabric and nibbling away what’s left of their brains.

  2. steve oberski says

    On the plus (or perhaps less negative) side, this is a push back against religious control of a public space.

    No longer do ultra Orthodox males get to control what women can do in this public area.

    And the Israeli government seems to finally be distancing itself from ultra Orthodox elements as evidenced by the most recent coalition government that excludes ultra-Orthodox Jewish parties.

    And now that the police are forced to provide Jewish (religious) women equal treatment under the law in this matter, this is a further repudiation of religious incursions into Israeli public life.

    I think that what will happen next is that ultra Orthodox males will start to lose some of the privileges that they have enjoyed (exempt from draft into the armed forces, subsidized religious study via the welfare system) and be forced to assume full responsibilities as members of a secular society.

    I think those lads are in for a bit of a shock if they try to mete out that treatment to female members of the Israeli Defence Force. Not quite the same thing as spitting on “immodestly” dressed school girls.

  3. grumpyoldfart says

    And what happens when the women get equal power? Their leaders will join forces with their male counterparts – and they’ll search around for some other powerless group to beat the shit out of. Religion always attracts control freaks.

  4. says

    @1: They’re only different in one regard. They invented religious intolerance.

    “I am the lord thy god. Thou shalt have no other gods before me.”

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