December 21, 2006
Jihadis With Yarmulkes
If this story is true, Israel should strip these males (they're not men) of their Jewish identity and exile them from Israel. The "law of return" does not apply to a herd of swine. Not even swine with yarmulkes:
Miriam Shear says she was traveling to pray at the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City early on November 24 when a group of ultra-Orthodox (Haredi) men attacked her for refusing to move to the back of the Egged No. 2 bus....
Shear says that on the bus three weeks ago, she was slapped, kicked, punched and pushed by a group of men who demanded that she sit in the back of the bus with the other women. The bus driver, in response to a media inquiry, denied that violence was used against her, but Shear's account has been substantiated by an unrelated eyewitness on the bus who confirmed that she sustained an unprovoked "severe beating."
If, contrariwise, this didn't really happen, then it's the most despicable libel against Jews yet to bubble out the pens of the drive-by media (in this case, the vaguely left-libertarian Haaretz). But I believe that in this one special case, the elites are blameless, and the real villains are the animals who actually did beat that middle-aged woman, Miriam Shear.
I really like Ms. Shear:
Shear, a 50-year-old religious woman, says that on the morning of the 24th, a man got onto the bus and demanded her seat - even though there were a number of other seats available in the front of the bus.
"I said, I'm not moving and he said, 'I'm not asking you, I'm telling you.' Then he spat in my face and at that point, I was in high adrenaline mode and called him a son-of-a-bitch, which I am not proud of. Then I spat back. At that point, he pushed me down and people on the bus were screaming that I was crazy. Four men surrounded me and slapped my face, punched me in the chest, pulled at my clothes, beat me, kicked me. My snood [hair covering] came off. I was fighting back and kicked one of the men in his privates. I will never forget the look on his face."
Shear says that when she bent down in the aisle to retrieve her hair covering, "one of the men kicked me in the face. Thank God he missed my eye. I got up and punched him. I said, 'I want my hair covering back' but he wouldn't give it to me, so I took his black hat and threw it in the aisle."
Really, what is the difference between these particular Jews and the jihadis and radical Shia in Iraq, Iran, Saudia Arabia -- or Great Britain and France? Israelis must not allow animals like these to become the face of Judaism. These ultra-Orthodox (not all ultra-Orthodox; I refer only to those who commit unprovoked and fathomless acts of violence) are living just as much in a pre-modern world as are the Ayatollahs, the Taliban, and al-Qaeda.
Worse than a crime, such reprehensible behavior is a terrible blunder. It gives jihadis leave to argue, "what is the big deal with the way we treat women? You Jews are just as bad as we!"
It's not strictly true; there is no equivalent to "honor killings" among Jews, not even among the ultra-Orthodox sects. But how long before there is? How long until the transformation of Judaism into a strange sect of Salafism is complete?
To me, these criminals have fallen out of the worship of God and into the worship of graven images: the sterile rituals they practice, devoid of the underlying humanist ethic of Judaism, so lucidly espoused by Moses Maimonides and Rabbi Gershon. In this, they are every inch as apostate as Osama bin Laden or Grand Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
To elevate "righteousness" so far above "the right" that they truly believe God commands them to kick and punch a 50 year old woman for not groveling when they bark brings tears to the eyes of God. What next -- will some ultra-Orthodox Jew on the Egged No. 2 bus throw acid in Miriam Shear's face?
May as well go whole hog: prate on about the Twelfth Imam to their forty wives and sacrifice their middle-school daughter to Moloch for holding hands with a boy. They're on the road to Hell already, so why do things by half measures?
Israelis should rise up and take back their public places and public buses from the jihadis with yarmulkes, before there is no Israel worth defending.
Hatched by Dafydd on this day, December 21, 2006, at the time of 10:49 PM
TrackBack URL for this hissing: http://biglizards.net/mt3.36/earendiltrack.cgi/1585
The following hissed in response by: hunter
Don't forget that the only political assisination of an Israeli leader was by an ultraorthodox believer as well.
The following hissed in response by: nk
When I first saw the article, I assumed from the headline that it was talking about Palestinians. When I read into the article and realized these were Jews I fell off my chair. My first reaction was outrage as I commented on the Warty Justice thread. I am still outraged but it is tempered by the realization that it is so very outrageous because we do not expect such behavior from Jews. If this had been a story about feral teenagers beating up a woman in a subway in Chicago for the three dollars in her purse ...?
The above hissed in response by: nk at December 22, 2006 5:53 AM
The following hissed in response by: FredTownWard
I completely agree that, if this story is true, these males who are certainly not "men" are scum who would be a disgrace to every group they are a member of, but I'm afraid I have to draw the line at this:
"Really, what is the difference between these particular Jews and the jihadis and radical Shia in Iraq, Iran, Saudia Arabia -- or Great Britain and France?"
Um, maybe the fact that they only beat her and didn't kill her?
IMHO there is still some difference between being a MSP of a brute and being a murderer.
The following hissed in response by: nk
There are a lot more differences than that, even, Fred. As Dafydd pointed out, this lady fought back. And pretty darn well, too. She was not raised in a culture where women are animals without souls (literally -- Muslim men go to Paradise, Muslim women become their houris) who must submissively allow herself to be every man's punching bag. She, herself, is ultra-Orthodox and her father, mother, uncles, aunts, brothers and sisters taught her that she is a human being with worth. I do not see this post as a blanket condemnation of all ultra-Orthodox Jews. Just these particular jerks.
The above hissed in response by: nk at December 22, 2006 12:38 PM
The following hissed in response by: MegaTroopX
My question to the rest of the bus:
(Ermey) WHY ARE YOU NOT STOMPING THOSE ASSHOLES' GUTS OUT?!?!
GET IN THERE AND HELP THAT WOMAN, YOU GUTLESS PUKES!! (/Ermey)
The following hissed in response by: nk
The above hissed in response by: nk at December 22, 2006 8:45 PM
The following hissed in response by: Cowgirl
Notice that Miriam did not go quietly into the night. Such behavior is atypical of Jewish men who generally dote upon their wife and children.
I agree with MegaTroopX above in wondering why everyone else on the bus didn't beat the crap out of those guys.
The above hissed in response by: Cowgirl at December 23, 2006 4:21 AM
The following hissed in response by: MikeR
Goodness, Dafydd, you usually seem like such a reasonable person. You really got carried away! It's a terrible story, but what are you thinking? Because a bunch of creeps did something bad, all of (us) ultra-orthodox Jews are like Al Qaeda?
'Uh-oh', you're thinking. I thought I made it clear that I meant
- not all ultra-Orthodox; I refer only to those who commit unprovoked and fathomless acts of violence).
You did. But then you drifted, in your outrage, into
- To me, these criminals have fallen out of the worship of God and into the worship of graven images: the sterile rituals they practice
The same ones the rest of us ultra-Orthodox practice. And
- To elevate "righteousness" so far above "the right" that they truly believe God commands them to kick and punch a 50 year old woman for not groveling when they bark
Are these people part of a special sect, in which behavior like this is commanded? No, as far as I know, they are part of the same group as mine (in which case I probably believe it too)!
- Israelis should rise up and take back their public places and public buses from the jihadis with yarmulkes, before there is no Israel worth defending
Got it? There are the decent secular Israelis, maybe a few silent decent "moderate" ultra-Orthodox, and the jihadists, who really represent that part of the religion. And they are taking over. Just like the Taliban.
Crikies. Do you know that there are signs up in Jerusalem now, from our religious leaders, telling us that no one has the right to take the law into their own hands in such a terrible way? These guys are not part of a new sect - they know as well as I do that you don't beat up women, but they're angry jerks who lost their temper. Most charedi (I'm tired of saying ultra-Orthodox) are sweet and kind and filled with love. How can you compare them to radical Islam? The problem with radical Islam is not that there are some hotheads who get carried away. It's that a large part of the system, indeed many of the leaders, are behind the violence and the destruction. It's that even many of the "moderates" are just moderate enough not to actually kill anyone, but they don't mind if someone else does it.
For what it's worth, the story looks complicated (though still repulsive). Israel isn't America; people there get more excited about things. The charedi are more extreme there, and the secularists are really extreme too. They have actual political parties (Shinui, for instance) there whose only platform is "We hate the religious!"
Seems the charedi had a setup with the Egged bus company that certain buses running through the charedi neighborhoods would have separate seating for men and women. We do that here in America, too; for example, on the daily commuter bus from Brooklyn to Monsey. We-all prefer it that way, hope no one is offended. But, as is common in Israel, the setup there is very clumsy. You can't tell one of those buses from the regular buses. And the bus driver doesn't have any responsibility for the setup. It was explicitly left in the hands of the passengers to enforce the separate seating.
Now that's asking for trouble, especially in Israel. Add to it a few particularly obnoxious guys who think they're in charge, and a lady with a chip on her shoulder - don't scream at me; I'm not at all saying she deserved it. I'm just describing what happened. And she does have a chip on her shoulder; read her account here, and her further accounts elsewhere on the Internet - and you get a big argument, and maybe a fight (the bus driver denied that part of the story, but maybe he was busy driving?).
Anyhow, Dafydd, you've kind of hurt my feelings, which is why I'm writing. It seems to me that deep down you really don't like us , and this incident was just a trigger for you to tar us all with the same brush, as pre-modern savages. We're not secular, we do like to have separate seating (where possible and reasonable) and we do avoid many of the negative aspects of Western society, like internet blogs - of course I'm still a fan of this site. But I have always found charedim to be the kindest, most decent people I've ever known, not just to each other, but to other people as well. That's one of the reasons I joined them.
The following hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh
Anyhow, Dafydd, you've kind of hurt my feelings, which is why I'm writing. It seems to me that deep down you really don't like us , and this incident was just a trigger for you to tar us all with the same brush, as pre-modern savages.
Really? Let's run through it.
What makes a ritual "sterile?"
I happen to love ritual; my wife and have a number of rituals that helps cement our relationship.
But a ritual becomes sterile when the ritual is all, when the deeper meaning is completely lost -- so long as one runs through the motions.
For example, suppose you're a doctor, and you're hurrying home Friday afternoon to be there before sundown. But along the way, you see a terrible accident.
- Rush over to help, because you may save a life and certainly can save much suffering... even though you will be working after sunset;
- Turn your head and hurry on home, because it's the Sabbath. Let 'em die; it's in God's hands.
Number 2 is what I would call a "sterile ritual" -- for that doctor, what matters is obeying the letter of the law, and hang the spirit of the thing. Jews are also taught to revere life, the greatest gift of God... and saving a life is far more important than being home a minute before sundown instead of an hour after.
I am utterly certain that you would be doctor type 1, not type 2; you would stop and help the people... and you wouldn't even apologize to God for it later, because you would know that's the decision He wants you to make.
Back to the beasts of the bus. They have nothing in common with you and your co-religionists, least of all religion.
Are you familiar with what Rabbi Joseph Telushkin and talk-show host Dennis Prager call "ethical monotheism?" That is the belief that not only is there only one God, omniscient and omnipotent, but also that God's most important concern is how human treat each other and themselves... not that specific rituals be performed for their own sake.
The rituals have reasons; they're not just games. Each is meant to remind Jews of some element of Jewishness, of holiness, and of decency.
But animals like the men on this bus have completely forgotten that: they would be like doctor number 2... the particular dance of ritual is the important thing, and they could not care less about the "why."
Do you agree that God commands us to treat each other with decency and respect? Then aren't these sub-men violating God's commandment when they beat, kick, and spit upon a woman because she dared to sit in the front of a bus, whether or not it was sex-segregated? That is indecent and disrespectful.
They did not behave as men. They threw away their humanity and behaved as wild beasts. I wonder that you would stoop to identifying with these zombies, just because they follow sterile mockeries of rituals that are alive and meaningful when you do them, you who know not only the "kata" but also the deeper meaning of it.
Between the ultra-Orthodox you know and these animals, there is a Grand Canyon of comprehension. When you say your Shabbat prayers or light the menorah candles or atone for your sins on Yom Kippur, each of those rituals has a meaning. I'm certain that same meaning manifests in the rest of your life; you wouldn't listen to the Kol Nidre then walk outside and roll a drunk.
I assume the beasts of the bus perform all the rituals faithfully; but then they beat and stomp a woman who wouldn't give up her seat. Therefore, there is no deeper meaning in their hearts, and the rituals as they perform them are empty and void. In fact, they desecrate the temple and spit upon God when they ape the religion of Moses and the Patriarchs -- while mocking God's primary commandment of how we should treat each other.
Finally, there is no provision in Jewish teachings that I've ever heard that says it's all right to force gentiles to conform to Jewish ritual practices: force them to eat kosher and wear kosher clothing, to wear a yarmulke, to close all the theaters on the sabbath... or to make women sit in the back, with the bus fumes, because the Great Men want to sit up front.
(And please explain to me, even in a sex-segregated bus, why the women have to sit in back? Why can't the men sit in back and let the women sit up front? Strange how that never seems to occur to the beasts of the bus.)
Look at the Noahide Laws and riddle me this: of these seven laws -- the only Jewish laws that Jews consider binding on non-Jews -- which relates to Jewish ritual?
All right, trick question. The answer is, none of them! Every one of them is a substantive law. None of the Noahide Laws commands women to sit in the rear of the bus -- or even to segregate within the synogogue.
So where the hell do they get off beating anyone, male or female, for not obeying ritual?
Do you know what I would have done had those men started beating my wife? I would have defended her, even if that required me to kill them. So in addition to everything else, they started violence that could easily have ended in one or more deaths, both of innocents and of the criminals themselves.
In other words, they were perfectly willing to flush God's greatest gift down the toilet, so long as they were enforcing a ritual that appeals to their vanity and exaggerated sense of self-importance. How is this any different from radical Moslems beating a woman for showing her face?
Somehow, I doubt they would have beaten a woman for not giving charity to the poor.
You must understand, MikeR: you have nothing whatsoever in common with those evil ones. Neither do I, and neither do any of your friends.
They are not your religion, whatever they may call themselves, because they are not any religion: they are obviously atheists -- because nobody who truly believed in the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob could have dared do what they did, for fear of what was to come in the afterlife.
There are, however, two groups who do share commonality with the beasts of the bus: jihadis and Communists, because each believes that individual lives are of no account, and can be shed without sin for the greater good -- the glory of Allah or World Socialism.
The above hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh at December 25, 2006 5:07 PM
The following hissed in response by: MikeR
Dafydd, I think that you are misunderstanding what happened on that bus.
(Understand, I don't really know what happened. Maybe the bus driver's view of the story is
more accurate; something like, some people started yelling behind him, and not much more. But let's assume the woman's version is true, or there's not much point to this discussion.)
The creeps on the bus were not enforcing ritual. No one expects non-Jews to keep our rituals,
and anyhow this was a religious Jewish woman. And I do not believe for a minute that any of
these guys would have done a thing to her to force her to keep kosher, or the Sabbath, or
What they (thought they) were doing was defending their territory.
Israel has a history of these things, both from the religious and the non-religious, and while it
has (almost) always been non-violent, it is serious. Its secular founders were people who
understood the importance of some religious involvement in a Jewish state, and set things up so that the religious had certain areas under their control. Marriages, the Sabbath in certain cities, kosher food in many government and military institutions, exemption from the army for rabbinical students, and a few other things. Other areas are secular. You and I might not agree on what should be on which side; those from the Shinui party thought there shouldn't be two sides. But I think most Israelis understand, or used to, that the religious Jews play an important role in defining the character of the nation, and that therefore part of the country should be designed to reflect the Jewish religion.
This may have been a good idea, but it carries with it problems. Every since then, there has
been jockeying for position between the religious groups and secular groups. Each of them often
feels oppressed by the other. Each of them tries to defend what they feel is "theirs".
As you know, in America we Jews don't feel that way. Aside from a few crazed liberals, most
Jews and certainly the religous ones understand that there should be a Christmas tree at the
White House and there doesn't need to be a menorah. If the President wants to put a menorah
there, that's his business and it's nice of him, but it would never occur to us that we have a right to it. But in Israel it's different, and it's not just the secular who are afraid of being 'put out of business'. There are many incidents on the other side, where secular Israelis or governments tried to make things more difficult for the religious. Both sides feel aggrieved, both sides actually feel endangered, and I think it's a terrible problem.
None of this in any way justifies what they did, if they did it. It's horrible. I just think you've got the idea wrong. Please don't scream: These guys may actually be very fine people in many arenas. I wouldn't be at all surprised if these same people volunteered to take in people who were displaced in the recent war; very many charedim gave their money, their time, and
their homes to help others, secular or not. I know of one who mortgaged his house to
buy food for mostly secular refugees, and he wasn't unique. These same people might be great
guys, much of the time. I don't believe for a second this nonsense about their sterile rituals, the emptiness of what they do and that they don't care about people. It's just that when people think they're defending their territory, they start to think like soldiers, and can end up doing terribly wrong things thinking they're doing right. It's awful, and it has to be stopped, but there you are. As I mentioned, the g'dolim (leaders) of their communities have currently and in the past cried out very strongly against this kind of vigilantiism.
On a couple of details you mentioned:
It makes sense for the women to sit in the back, and it's not a put-down. There is no requirement in Jewish law anyhow for men and women to be separated on a bus, as there is, for instance, in a synagogue. And even in a synagogue, there's no rule that they can't see one another. But men being what they are (any ladies reading this, ask a man for a translation), there's a preference in Jewish law for men to avoid looking at women. That's why so many synagogues are set up so that the women can look through the barrier to the men's side, but the men can't see them. So anyhow, the men shouldn't be in the back, even if all the fumes were in the front. Actually, on the Monsey bus, the men sit on one side and the women on the other, and that's also the norm at Orthodox weddings in America.
I'm familiar with Prager's Ethical Monotheism, but I don't really believe in it. As Prager says
often, he cares more about how people behave than in what they believe. So while I respect him
a lot, I think he created his G-d in his image. The G-d of the Bible does not care more about how
people behave than what they believe. He cares about how people behave as much as in
what they believe; both are aspects of being close to him. The prophets of the Bible screamed
about people abusing one another. They screamed about people bringing defective sacrifices to
the Temple. They screamed about people breaking the Sabbath, and about worshipping idols.
I'm glad Mr. Prager practices what he preaches, and I hope a lot of people are nice to one
another, but really what he's got is a good religion for agnostics. (That's probably why you
approve of it). "Let's all pretend it's true; we'll make a better society that way". He doesn't say that's what he's doing, he calls it "faith", and presumably he really believes in it, but that's how it really is. I doubt too many are going to buy in - one can pick a diet based on what works well, but no one can really build his life around it. I expect almost all religious people, including Christians, would agree with me.
The following hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh
These same people might be great guys, much of the time. I don't believe for a second this nonsense about their sterile rituals, the emptiness of what they do and that they don't care about people. It's just that when people think they're defending their territory, they start to think like soldiers, and can end up doing terribly wrong things thinking they're doing right.
Well, here we're at an impasse... because I don't believe this for one second. I suspect what you're experiencing is wishful thinking: you so want to believe that your brand of ultra-Orthodix Judaism is so transformative that nobody could believe it and still be a thug; thus you cling to that belief in despite of all evidence to the contrary.
Alas, to quote another great sage (Larry Niven), "there is no cause so noble that it will not attract fuggheads." There are some people so thuggish by nature that they will remain thugs no matter what community they join. (That is, no belief system is 100% transformative.)
People who beat women in public, especially women they don't even know, for the "crime" of not deferring to their majesties, do not open their homes to refugees or practice any charity in private (they may in public, to show how magnificent they are).
And they certainly do not "think like soldiers." They think like jihadi thugs.
The IDF does not do what these men did; the IDF does not beat, kick, and spit upon some Palestinian woman because she didn't show them the proper respect. (And those soldiers who do so have disgraced their uniforms and no longer deserve to wear them.)
In fact, the IDF's biggest problem right now is that they respect Palestinians too much: they tend to give them the benefit of the doubt over and over, even to those who prove they do not deserve it (like Mahmoud Abbas).
I have no doubt that the leaders of that particular ultra-Orthodox community have cried out against such vigilantism; it's because they recognize (even if you don't appear to do so) that it discredits everything the rest of that community believes and practices... thus must be stomped out and the criminals expelled.
In the same way, there are moderate Moslems -- albeit a far smaller percentage than among world Jewry, where moderates are the vast majority -- who decry not just the terroristic but also the thuggish behavior of the extremists, because they understand it makes the whole world believe the ummah is the realm of strife, when the religion claims it's the realm of peace.
(What Islam really needs is its own Reformation, where the mass of Moslems start reinterpreting troublous suras of the Koran to more benign meanings, no matter how much a stretch it is; they need to care more about ethics than ritual.)
As Prager says often, he cares more about how people behave than in what they believe. So while I respect him a lot, I think he created his G-d in his image.
As Prager should, because he is a human, not God. Being a mere human, Dennis Prager cannot know what people believe in their minds; he can only know what they say and do.
In fact, I know as well as one can know anything (because I asked him) that Prager believes that Jews must not only behave as if God exists, they must believe God exists; in this, he differs from me: the God that I don't yet believe in is not a mystic who demands belief; the God that I don't yet believe in is an ethicist who cares more than anything else how we treat each other.
But I certainly don't require you to believe this, nor does it bother me in the least that the secular state of Israel (I don't see any messiah lurking about) enforces some areas of Jewish law... I wouldn't want to live there, but I'm very pleased that so many others do, and that they're willing to fight for Israel's survival: we need a just and decent democratic state in the Middle East.
(In fact, we need many; we need the entire region democratized -- which is why I wholeheartedly support President Bush's democratization plans for Iraq and other Arab-Moslem states.)
I'm glad Mr. Prager practices what he preaches, and I hope a lot of people are nice to one another, but really what he's got is a good religion for agnostics.
You inadvertently malign Dennis by implying that his religion is a "happy happy, joy joy" affair without rules -- "a good religion for agnostics." (And you also misunderstand me, by the way.) Prager believes that the primary duty of individuals is to be decent to one another -- but the primary duty of society is to enforce justice.
Thus, he believes very strongly in laws and rules, and he believes that this grows out of God's command that we enforce justice... that is, follow rules of ethical behavior and spiritual practice.
(I'm quite sure he does not believe that a secular state should enforce laws against blasphemy and idolatry; but he believes they are terribly destructive behaviors that society should not tolerate, though the method of enforcement should be verbal -- chastising violators -- and associational -- shunning malefactors.)
I, too, believe that the primary duty of society is to enforce justice; but I also believe that the primary duty of the individual is to behave in a just manner, decency running a strong but definite second. Dennis and I differ in this respect.
But in this case, the beasts of the bus were not only indecent, they were also unjust, for Ms. Shear had done nothing to warrant that punishment.
They were not "defending their territory," though they may have told themselves they were: if so, it was due to willfully disordered thinking, and their "territory" consists of their vision of themselves as morally superior to females and gentiles, where "gentile" is defined as anyone who isn't a member of their particular sect. I doubt like hell that they consider Ms. Shear, or indeed 99% of all Jews on planet Earth, to be "religious."
And everything you have said about them could equally be said about the roving bands of Moslem-extremist thugs who attack women for showing too much of their faces, for not being accompanied by males, or for otherwise being uppity. And it's just the same as whites in the 1930s-1950s who would violently attack blacks for dating white women, for learning to read -- or for refusing to sit at the back of the bus.
I know you have a strong desire to defend your community from outside attack; but what you have here are men who are not really members of your community, whatever they may claim. They are a cancer; and your community is best served by surgically removing them from the body.
You really ought to cast them out. Tell them to go away, you don't want their kind. Tell them to go live with the Palestinians; they'd probably get along swimmingly.
When they scream and bellow at you (as they would; it's their only language), turn your head and have the ears of an adder. They are indecent, unjust, despicable people who, if left festering in the body of Jewry, will metastisize, convert others to their thuggishness, and eat away at Judaism from within.
The above hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh at December 26, 2006 1:49 PM
The following hissed in response by: MikeR
I'm not doing too well, but I'll try and respond. I am not indulging in wishful thinking. I probably know this community's attitudes better
than you do, even when trying to guess the feelings of some of its worst elements. These people were not beating the lady for "the
crime of not deferring to their majesties," or because they "didn't show them the proper respect". They don't go around attacking
people who offend them, they're not trying to "conquer territory" for their jihad. And these same people do do kindness for others.
They were doing exactly what I said: defending what they perceived in their twisted way to be their territory. Given the deal set up
with Egged Buses to grant them certain separated buses, given that the job of enforcing this was left up to the passengers, that was
what they were doing. You said that Israeli soldiers don't do these kinds of things. Of course they do, when they think they're in the
middle of a battle. And the ones who get carried away indeed deserve to be disgraced, as these people deserve to be disgraced. Do
you imagine that I'm defending them? That I don't know how they have defamed G-d's name? That I don't think they should be stopped by whatever means necessary? I get so tired of having to throw in my obligatory protests that I'm not on their side. All I'm doing is pointing out that you don't understand them, and that's why you're making a totally wrong comparison to jihadists.
The same thing happens with the occasional rock-throwers on the Sabbath. Do you imagine that I think that they are allowed to throw
stones? A Jew is not even allowed to handle a stone on the Sabbath, much less throw it, much less throw it at a car! But they see
people driving cars through an area that traditionally had been set aside for Sabbath observance, and a few react wrongly. They don't
walk through Tel-Aviv and throw stones; they do it in what they think are their neighborhoods. And Jewish men are not allowed to
grab strange women, even if they think they're protecting their precious bus.
Please don't bring me comparisons to the "youths" in France and elsewhere who are trying to take over someone else's country.
We're talking about a historical deal worked out between the different parts of Israeli society, and some crazy people's reactions to
I'd like to apologize if I said anything incorrect or inappropriate about you. I shouldn't have made a guess about your religious
attitudes. And about Dennis Prager, I want you to know that I owe him a great debt of gratitude. I wasn't clear in my words, though, if
you think that I said he thinks religion is a "happy happy, joy joy" affair. It's really off the topic, but what I meant to say is that I don't
think his view of religion comes from the Bible, though I know he thinks so. He is projecting it there to justify his system which he
believes is so necessary to society. I listened to him talk once on his radio show about how a person should "pick his religion": Start
trying with the one you know best, find people you like and respect, what can you believe in without too much conflict... He really did
sound like he was describing a diet, and I recall that some of the callers were as bewildered as I was.
The following hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh
Okay; I stand on my previous arguments.
The above hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh at December 28, 2006 3:06 AM
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