Earlier this week, the Israeli Supreme Court made a firm ruling on the ongoing turmoil of women wanting equal access to the Kotel, the Western Wall. The situation has recently reached a boiling point, including a failed plan to compromise last year. This court decision is firmly on the side of organizations like Women of the Wall, that argue that current policies discriminate against liberal or egalitarian religious practices.
In case you missed it, the ruling essentially says:
- Access to Robinson’s Arch (around the corner from the main part of the Wall) does not count as access to the Western Wall.
- It is illegal to search women’s bodies for “contraband,” as in Jewish ritual objects.
- Women may wear tallitot and tefillin at the Kotel. Most of all, they may read from the Torah (yes, out loud,) there.
But it’s not over, yet! The government has thirty days (less now) to present “good cause” to protest this ruling.
Wow, that seems like a toughie. We feel bad for the government and Western Wall administrators (particularly one Rabbi Shmuel Rabinowitz), who have to come up with something in only a month. And so, we here at Jewcy have decided to lend a helping hand, and help them brainstorm.
Feel free to use any of these as ways to articulate why the court’s decision was wrong:
- The women’s side of the Wall is simply too small to handle that level of activity. It’s a shame that no one can expand the section of the wall that is about 20% of the space for 50% of the population.
- In fact, because of manspreading, men need at least 90% of the Wall.
- Women have cooties. Praying out loud makes them spread faster. Have you seen World War Z? It’ll be like the scene where the zombies pour over their mechitza.
- Allowing women to read from the Torah at the Kotel violates the way worship originally occurred at the Temple of which the Wall was once a part. Only animal sacrifices should be permitted. And most people should really only go there three times a year.
- If women can bring religious artifacts into the religious site, what’s next? Bringing copies of The Red Tent? Birth control? There’d be no space in their purses to keep extra garments to cover up their bodies, in accordance with Kotel dress codes.
- Letting liberal Jewish groups have religious autonomy is a zero sum game, and the slightest change weakens the ultra-Orthodox stranglehold on standards of religious life in Israel.
- Furthermore, some men will feel Sad and Scared if they can hear women pray in a way they don’t like. And if men feel a way, you should let them make rules about it.
You’re welcome! See you at the Kotel!
Photo Credit: Wikipedia