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Author Topic:   hush that fuss, everybody move to the back of the bus
macaroniandcheese 
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Posts: 4258
Joined: 05-24-2004


Message 1 of 35 (384587)
02-12-2007 10:33 AM


the developing "jewish taliban" and religious and societal freedom
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=7361060

Jerusalem's 'Rosa Parks' Fights 'Modesty Patrols'

Morning Edition, February 12, 2007 · A group of Israeli women are fighting back against what one called "Taliban-like" Jewish fundamentalists who order women to sit in the back of the bus and to abstain from wearing "immodest" clothing on public bus lines used primarily by ultra-Orthodox Jews. The women have filed a lawsuit in Israel's High Court aimed at reforming the bus lines. Some of the women see the bus dispute as part of a larger struggle against the growing influence and radicalization of the ultra-Orthodox in Israel.

Writer Naomi Ragen says she didn not want to start a revolution from her bus seat or become the Jewish Rosa Parks. She just wanted to get home. An observant, Orthodox Jew, Ragen was on the No. 40 bus line, headed to her house near Jerusalem, when an ultra-Orthodox — or Haredi — man told her to move to the back.

"I was astonished," Ragen recalled. "And I said 'I'm not bothering anyone, you don't have to look at me, sit next to me — but as long as this is a public bus, I will sit where I please, thank you very much.'"

But the harassment grew worse, Ragen says, at every stop: Soon an even more aggressive, bearded ultra-Orthodox man got on and commanded her to move. He was about 300 pounds and hovered over her like a sumo wrestler, she says, his long black frock and wide hat in her face.

"And he started screaming and yelling," she said, telling her "in no uncertain terms" to "move to the back of the bus — or else."

"My reaction to that was I looked him in the eye and said 'Look, you show me in the code of Jewish law where it's written that I'm not allowed to sit in this seat and I'll move,'" Ragen said. "'Until then, get out of my face!'"

Naomi Ragen may have been the Haredi's worst target: The feisty 57-year-old New York-born novelist and feminist has signed on to a new legal challenge to the de facto gender-segregation on more than 30 public bus lines in Israel and the restrictions randomly enforced by men and self-styled "modesty patrols."

"I call this the Taliban lines," Ragen said. "They can call them whatever they want, to me it's the Taliban lines and there's no reason we should not have them in Israel. I think it's important women have taken a stand and gone to the Supreme Court and said 'we're angry and not going to take it anymore.'"

Ten years ago, as part of a pilot project, two bus lines dedicated to the ultra-Orthodox community were launched.

Today — unofficially — there are more than 30 gender-segregated Haredi bus routes. In many cases these buses are half the price and the only lines running between some cities and neighborhoods. They look like every other public bus: there are no signs telegraphing that they're aimed at the ultra Orthodox.

There are no written or overtly stated "rules" about gender segregation, either. It's just the way it is, says one rider who asked not to be named during a recent ride on the No. 40 bus in Jerusalem.

As the bus approached a Haredi neighborhood, four school girls got up from their seats and moved to the back of the bus. None wanted to talk to a reporter.

The lawsuit before Israel's high court alleges that several women have been harassed, humiliated, taunted and even physically assaulted on the buses. In December a Canadian Orthodox Jew was on a non-Haredi bus line en route to the Western Wall, Judaism's holiest site, when she was assaulted by an ultra-Orthodox man for refusing to move to the back of the bus. She has signed on to the suit.

"She was physically hurt, beaten very hard," said Orly Erez-Likhowski, an attorney with the Israel Movement for Progressive Judaism, who is leading the legal fight against the Ministry of Transportation and the Egged bus company, a quasi-private line heavily subsidized by the state.

The Ministry refused to comment on tape. A spokesman said only that while the ministry approves new lines, the seating arrangements are left to the bus company.

The bus company released a statement saying they let the ultra Orthodox enforce their own rules. The company says its own surveys show that the general public wants "to respect the Haredi-religious sector that uses public transportation and to let them behave in a way that is convenient to them."

Erez-Likhowski said the suit doesn't aim to shut the bus lines down, but to have them regulated and reformed or to have an equal number of non-Haredi lines added.

"The ministry is basically saying 'this is not our business,'" Erez-Likhwoski said. His response? "Well, it's exactly your business to supervise public bus companies and this is what you've failed to do over the past years."

Supporters say the legal challenge is part of a wider religious and cultural struggle against what some see as the growing radicalism and political clout of the ultra Orthodox. Last month, senior Haredi rabbis in Jerusalem led a public burning of see-through stockings and other allegedly risque dress.

Before a gay pride march last fall, Haredi men rioted nightly for weeks, forcing organizers to hold a toned-down rally in a heavily guarded stadium instead of a public march.

The Haredi recently launched a short boycott of El Al, Israel's national airline, after the company flew on the Sabbath following a flight bottleneck prompted by a labor strike. The airline quickly caved and pledged never to fly on the Sabbath without approval from ultra-Orthodox Rabbis.

And in a major decision last month a committee of leading ultra-Orthodox rabbis here ruled that Haredi women should no longer be allowed to get academic degrees beyond high school.

It's a potentially devastating edict in a Haredi culture where many women are the main family bread winner while the men study Torah full time.

Ragen says these moves are merely more attempts to control women.

"I think it's shocking," she said. "More and more streets have signs saying 'women only with modest dress,' so our streets are being taken over. What's the next step? People want separate lines at the supermarket? Maybe we'll have separate sides of the street and right after that come the veils."

But opponents call the lawsuit an attack on Haredi religious values and culture. Israeli educator and writer Shira Leibowitz-Schmidt, of the Haredi College for Women, says the gender segregation is a natural attempt by the ultra Orthodox to combat what they see as secular Israel's growing permissiveness and the eroticization of public spaces.

"Today in Israel women go around sometimes as if they're at the beach," she said. "It's really very undignified and it's erotically stimulating and it's also just distracting. And that's a form of coercion — I call that non-religious coercion. I call that coercion of eroticism. That's a much more serious problem: the creeping degradation of the public square."

The de facto Haredi bus restrictions, she says, help men focus on their family — and their wife — and avoid distractions.

The legal challenge to the gender-segregated Haredi bus lines is scheduled to go before Israel's High Court later this year.

so, now that jews are joining the ranks of christians and muslims in being insane and irresponsible, what do you think?

it seems to me that the texts (whichever) forbid lusting. they require that people are modest in their dress or behavior to aid the path of others. however, modesty is not really defined in any of the actual scriptures. the sunnah suggests that men and women should wear loose clothing that covers from neck to ankles and that women should cover their breasts. other scholars have suggested more extreme forms of dress. but none of this is mandated in the qur'an. the torah says little about specific dress. the prophets tend to focus on other things. the new testament suggests that women shouldn't braid their hair, wear jewelry or 'dress like men'. but the latest is an aprobation of genderbending, not 'wearing pants' as women and men both wore long tunic type stuffs when it was all written.

so my stance is this. i am ordered to not lust after people, specifically not *those who are not* my spouse. i am also orderded not to present myself lustfully. riding a bus is not lustful. i do not dress lustfully, in my opinion. however, these are subjective terms. the importance of the abrahamic traditions is to take responsibility for your own thoughts and actions and to submit yourself before god's commands of purity. it's really about personal responsibility. if someone is dressed or behaving inappropriately, it is my job to control my thoughts and desires, not their job to conform to the restrictions i have placed on myself because of god's commands.

i am very concerned for the future of israel as these orthodox groups place strictures on public and private organizations. for example, they boycotted the israeli airline al-el because they flew on shabbat after a strike deadlock was cleared. al-el has since given in and said they will never fly on shabbat again without the consent of orthodox rabbis. who are these people to restrict the movements of others?

viable democracy, my ass.

Edited by brennakimi, : No reason given.

Edited by brennakimi, : oops on lusting.


Replies to this message:
 Message 3 by crashfrog, posted 02-12-2007 2:47 PM macaroniandcheese has responded
 Message 5 by kalimero, posted 02-12-2007 3:42 PM macaroniandcheese has responded
 Message 6 by subbie, posted 02-12-2007 3:46 PM macaroniandcheese has responded

  
AdminNem
Inactive Member


Message 2 of 35 (384610)
02-12-2007 12:46 PM


Thread moved here from the Proposed New Topics forum.
  
crashfrog
Inactive Member


Message 3 of 35 (384640)
02-12-2007 2:47 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by macaroniandcheese
02-12-2007 10:33 AM


Re: the developing "jewish taliban" and religious and societal freedom
I think it's absolutely no surprise that, when a religious man beats a woman on a public bus, religion's defenders assert that he was simply "behaving in a way that was convenient for him" and that his religious violence "has to be respected."

It's disgusting, and it's another example of how religion lets you get away with anything.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by macaroniandcheese, posted 02-12-2007 10:33 AM macaroniandcheese has responded

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macaroniandcheese 
Suspended Member (Idle past 2038 days)
Posts: 4258
Joined: 05-24-2004


Message 4 of 35 (384651)
02-12-2007 3:27 PM
Reply to: Message 3 by crashfrog
02-12-2007 2:47 PM


Re: the developing "jewish taliban" and religious and societal freedom
exactly. and especially that it's happening in israel, this alleged paragon of democracy. these people are getting away with creating a religious state and forcing those who dissent to live in fear.
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kalimero
Member (Idle past 554 days)
Posts: 251
From: Israel
Joined: 04-08-2006


Message 5 of 35 (384655)
02-12-2007 3:42 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by macaroniandcheese
02-12-2007 10:33 AM


Re: the developing "jewish taliban" and religious and societal freedom
so, now that jews are joining the ranks of christians and muslims in being insane and irresponsible, what do you think?

I think that you should wake up (:)) - this has been going on along time, and its not just bus seats. Try looking up Itzhak Rabin, a former Israeli PM that was murdered by the extreme right because he tried to make peace with the Palestinians - the worst part about it is that it worked.

so my stance is this. i am ordered to not lust after people, specifically not my spouse. i am also orderded not to present myself lustfully. riding a bus is not lustful. i do not dress lustfully, in my opinion. however, these are subjective terms. the importance of the abrahamic traditions is to take responsibility for your own thoughts and actions and to submit yourself before god's commands of purity. it's really about personal responsibility. if someone is dressed or behaving inappropriately, it is my job to control my thoughts and desires, not their job to conform to the restrictions i have placed on myself because of god's commands.

Thats just it - religion is DOGMA! Therefore if you "choose" to dress one way or not doesn't matter to them, they "know" whats right and so legitimize any action taken toward their goal.

i am very concerned for the future of israel as these orthodox groups place strictures on public and private organizations. for example, they boycotted the israeli airline al-el because they flew on shabbat after a strike deadlock was cleared. al-el has since given in and said they will never fly on shabbat again without the consent of orthodox rabbis. who are these people to restrict the movements of others?

The tip of a very cold and dangerous ice berg.

viable democracy, my ass.

I've been saying that since high school. Israel is defined as a " Jewish and Democratic State" - I see this as a contradiction.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by macaroniandcheese, posted 02-12-2007 10:33 AM macaroniandcheese has responded

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subbie
Member (Idle past 70 days)
Posts: 3508
Joined: 02-26-2006


Message 6 of 35 (384656)
02-12-2007 3:46 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by macaroniandcheese
02-12-2007 10:33 AM


Re: the developing "jewish taliban" and religious and societal freedom
quote:
The de facto Haredi bus restrictions, she says, help men focus on their family — and their wife — and avoid distractions.

What in the world were those shameless hussies thinking anyway? Apparently these men aren't able to keep focus on their own wives if there's another female in the same county.

brennakimi writes:

i am ordered to not lust after people, specifically not my spouse.

Well, that might explain it. If I weren't allowed to even lust after my own wife, I might get a little peevish myself if I didn't have a place to sit on a bus.

I think Naomi Ragen has it exactly right, Taliban Lines.


Those who would sacrifice an essential liberty for a temporary security will lose both, and deserve neither. -- Benjamin Franklin

We see monsters where science shows us windmills. -- Phat


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by macaroniandcheese, posted 02-12-2007 10:33 AM macaroniandcheese has responded

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macaroniandcheese 
Suspended Member (Idle past 2038 days)
Posts: 4258
Joined: 05-24-2004


Message 7 of 35 (384686)
02-12-2007 5:34 PM
Reply to: Message 6 by subbie
02-12-2007 3:46 PM


Re: the developing "jewish taliban" and religious and societal freedom
If I weren't allowed to even lust after my own wife, I might get a little peevish myself if I didn't have a place to sit on a bus.

haha oops. i meant those who are not my spouse. :p

but i hear this shit all the time from christians, too. that i should at the very least make sure that i spend an hour in the morning looking in the mirror from all angles to make sure that my bra strap or bra line isn't showing and that i don't have a hint of having any kind of body under my clothes and that it's my job to make sure that i am not a stumbling block to men who are incapable of controling their sexual urges. it's offensive. if i'm capable of being responsible and demonstrating restraint, then a man should be able to as well. after all, i am the weaker and flawed and sinful sex.


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Replies to this message:
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macaroniandcheese 
Suspended Member (Idle past 2038 days)
Posts: 4258
Joined: 05-24-2004


Message 8 of 35 (384687)
02-12-2007 5:38 PM
Reply to: Message 5 by kalimero
02-12-2007 3:42 PM


Re: the developing "jewish taliban" and religious and societal freedom
I think that you should wake up () - this has been going on along time, and its not just bus seats. Try looking up Itzhak Rabin, a former Israeli PM that was murdered by the extreme right because he tried to make peace with the Palestinians - the worst part about it is that it worked.

oh no, i know. and the jewish lady in my class who claims that those early israeli terrorists who bombed the brits and taught the palestinians everything they know weren't terrorists and the other crazy jewish lady who thinks the solution to the crisis is palestinian reeducation in which we teach them that they are evil and that their culture is evil and that they should pay for all eternity for daring to inhabit the jewish promised land.

i know. i also live in boca in constant fear of being lynched because i don't want my government to suck israel's circumcised dick.

Thats just it - religion is DOGMA! Therefore if you "choose" to dress one way or not doesn't matter to them, they "know" whats right and so legitimize any action taken toward their goal.

it's just these whackos who think their religion should mean anything to anyone else.


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subbie
Member (Idle past 70 days)
Posts: 3508
Joined: 02-26-2006


Message 9 of 35 (384690)
02-12-2007 5:49 PM


With apologies to The Who
(To the tune of Magic Bus)

Every day I get in the queue (too much, Talibus)
To get on the bus that subjugates you (too much, Talibus)
I’m so nervous, I just yell and scream (too much, Talibus)
I don’t want another wet dream (too much, Talibus)

Thank you, driver, for pushing her back (too much, Talibus)
Now dress her in a gunny sack (too much, Talibus)
I don’t want to cause no fuss (too much, Talibus)
But get her off my Talibus! (too much, Talibus)

Nooooooooo!

She is sitting in my seat (too much, Talibus)
She can stand on her own two feet (too much, Talibus)

I want it, I want it, I want it, I want it ... (she can’t have it!)

Thruppence and sixpence every day
Just to drive that woman away
Thruppence and sixpence each day
‘cause I gotta have my own way

Talibus, Talibus, Talibus ...

I said, now I’ve got my Talibus (too much, Talibus)
I said, now I’ve got my Talibus (too much, Talibus)

I have to have my own way (too much, Talibus)
Each time I drive that woman way (too much, Talibus)

I want it, I want it, I want it, I want it ...

Every day I’ll see her bust (too much, Talibus)
As I see that woman in my Talibus (too much, Talibus)


Those who would sacrifice an essential liberty for a temporary security will lose both, and deserve neither. -- Benjamin Franklin

We see monsters where science shows us windmills. -- Phat


Replies to this message:
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kuresu
Member (Idle past 623 days)
Posts: 2544
From: boulder, colorado
Joined: 03-24-2006


Message 10 of 35 (384692)
02-12-2007 6:10 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by subbie
02-12-2007 5:49 PM


Re: With apologies to The Who
that's great, absolutely great.

I'm not sure if the Who'd mind. after all, they have a tendency to have politically charged songs.


This message is a reply to:
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kalimero
Member (Idle past 554 days)
Posts: 251
From: Israel
Joined: 04-08-2006


Message 11 of 35 (384693)
02-12-2007 6:10 PM
Reply to: Message 7 by macaroniandcheese
02-12-2007 5:34 PM


Re: the developing "jewish taliban" and religious and societal freedom
...it's my job to make sure that i am not a stumbling block to men who are incapable of controling their sexual urges.

Controlling male sexual urges (not acting upon them) is one thing, but forbidding the urges themselves, as a "sin", is something completely different. This is exactly what is forbidden in judaism.

it's offensive. if i'm capable of being responsible and demonstrating restraint, then a man should be able to as well.

Not exactly, there is a difference between individuals and especially between sexes.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 7 by macaroniandcheese, posted 02-12-2007 5:34 PM macaroniandcheese has responded

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 Message 12 by macaroniandcheese, posted 02-12-2007 6:29 PM kalimero has responded

    
macaroniandcheese 
Suspended Member (Idle past 2038 days)
Posts: 4258
Joined: 05-24-2004


Message 12 of 35 (384696)
02-12-2007 6:29 PM
Reply to: Message 11 by kalimero
02-12-2007 6:10 PM


Re: the developing "jewish taliban" and religious and societal freedom
Controlling male sexual urges (not acting upon them) is one thing, but forbidding the urges themselves, as a "sin", is something completely different. This is exactly what is forbidden in judaism.

i think it's more than just not acting on them and it's not about not having them at all. the way i was raised, you can't help the occasional urge, but you don't dwell on it. you look away. you "renew your mind". you think about baseball. you take control of your thoughts and your urges, not just by not acting on them, but banishing them when they threaten your space. i don't have any problems with this because i don't think of people as sexual objects, but as vessels for minds. i don't even think of myself as a sexual being, really. but the problem is that people refuse to raise their children to respect people as people and not as genitals with mouths and legs.

Not exactly, there is a difference between individuals and especially between sexes.

clearly. i guess my vagina makes me a rational and reasonable member of society. thank god.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 11 by kalimero, posted 02-12-2007 6:10 PM kalimero has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 13 by Nighttrain, posted 02-12-2007 7:04 PM macaroniandcheese has not yet responded
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Nighttrain
Member (Idle past 2103 days)
Posts: 1512
From: brisbane,australia
Joined: 06-08-2004


Message 13 of 35 (384702)
02-12-2007 7:04 PM
Reply to: Message 12 by macaroniandcheese
02-12-2007 6:29 PM


Re: the developing "jewish taliban" and religious and societal freedom
Since the fundies of all religions live in the Stone Age, what the hell do the Haredi want with evil modern buses? Get out and walk.
This message is a reply to:
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kalimero
Member (Idle past 554 days)
Posts: 251
From: Israel
Joined: 04-08-2006


Message 14 of 35 (384841)
02-13-2007 9:41 AM
Reply to: Message 12 by macaroniandcheese
02-12-2007 6:29 PM


Re: the developing "jewish taliban" and religious and societal freedom
i think it's more than just not acting on them and it's not about not having them at all. the way i was raised, you can't help the occasional urge, but you don't dwell on it. you look away. you "renew your mind". you think about baseball. you take control of your thoughts and your urges, not just by not acting on them, but banishing them when they threaten your space. i don't have any problems with this because i don't think of people as sexual objects, but as vessels for minds.

Just because you have urges doesn't mean that you think of people as sexual objects, you can be both sexually attracted to a person and be interested in their minds at the same time - they are not contradictory.

i don't even think of myself as a sexual being, really.

We are sexual beings whether you like it or not. Its like saying you don't see yourself as made up of atoms - that doesn't mean it's not true.

but the problem is that people refuse to raise their children to respect people as people and not as genitals with mouths and legs.

Agreed.

clearly. i guess my vagina makes me a rational and reasonable member of society. thank god.

Cynicism will get us nowhere. If you think that a man can't be "a rational and reasonable member of society" - just say so and we can then debate it.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 12 by macaroniandcheese, posted 02-12-2007 6:29 PM macaroniandcheese has responded

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nator
Member (Idle past 280 days)
Posts: 12961
From: Ann Arbor
Joined: 12-09-2001


Message 15 of 35 (384846)
02-13-2007 9:52 AM
Reply to: Message 10 by kuresu
02-12-2007 6:10 PM


Re: With apologies to The Who
quote:
I'm not sure if the Who'd mind. after all, they have a tendency to have politically charged songs.

Nobody cares what a bunch of average joe's think, since they don't have an agenda.

;)


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