Wednesday, June 23, 2010


Here in hippie-town, in my liberal Jewish shul, I occasionally forget that there are venomous attitudes out there being propped up by willful misinterpretations of halacha.

Or maybe that's unfair. Maybe the people spouting this nonsense are simply unthinking sheep who really never questioned what their bigoted rabbis told them.

(Can you tell I'm spitting mad?)

In a discussion on DovBear's blog about double standards among the Orthodox (how quick OJs were to criticize Obama for his association with Rev. Wright, while their own rabbis spew racism and worse from the bima), I came across this comment:

"I imagine most people in the world at large feel somewhat differently about racism and sexism and see sexism as being at least ignorable if not justifiable."

This (male) OJ commenter unfortunately represents a common viewpoint in Orthodoxy, that sex differences are not only natural, but Godly, and that all the cultural crap that's been added on to halacha (such as not allowing female rabbis or even shul presidents) is justified. Even holy.

I am proud to belong to a Jewish community that cares more about how you treat your fellows than how long your sleeves are.

Thank you, Mr. Bigot, for renewing my commitment to fostering strong, healthy, intelligent, and compassionate leadership among Jewish girls. That's just the inspiration I need as I prepare to lead a group of Jewish teenage girls here through the Rosh Hodesh: It's a Girl Thing curriculum this fall.


Blogger The back of the hill said...

You should know that a strange person in the Bay Area has linked to your post:


It's disturbing, to say the least. Beware of small people - they bite.

6/24/2010 4:20 PM  
Blogger A Muppet said...

I happen to have stumbled on this from Dov Bear's links and was surprised to find myself being beashed for views I don't have.

I responded to this over there, but to be clear, I do not give the slightest damn about your sleeve length and certainly do not believe that sex differences are natural. I made no statement about the holiness or lack thereof, of "the cultural crap" that you feel has been added on to halacha, and in fact, think I was clear in the post that I put up at Dov Bear, that I think that anyone who feels that such cultural crap places Orthodox Judaism as it is widely practice beyond the pale of acceptible religious practice, is entitled to feel that way.

My point was limited to two things: 1. Such cultural crap (I do like that term for this) exists. 2. It is widely not seen to be beyong the pale by people who would find identical forms of racism to be beyond the pale. I think neither of those things are debatable. I also don't think you disagree, and as such would just ask that you stop announcing views that I do not have in public forums. I'm anonymous, but it's still really annoying.

Mr Bigot

P.S. I spend quite a bit of time trolling YWN etc. reading people who assume they know absolutely everything about anyone who posts something that they refuse to read even the slightest bit charitably. I expect that from them, but it's disappointing to see from someone who I imgaine (knowing nothing about you) is probably one of my own.

6/25/2010 3:22 PM  

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