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Tuesday, December 12, 2006

What's wrong with Israel

What's wrong with Israel is that with all of our legitimate security concerns, with a government that ought to be ousted, we have legislators like Ophir Paz-Pines who look for every opportunity possible to persecute religious Jews.

Paz-Pines introduced a bill in the Knesset today that would "prevent adults from placing pressure on anyone under the age of 18 to increase or decrease their religious involvement." Of course, Paz-Pines has purely altruistic motives:
According to Paz-Pines, too much pressure is placed on youths to alter their religious traditions. Pressing youths to observe or discard religious practices can "cause the break-up of a family and cause damage to minors," he said.
And what's the real motivation for this piece of 'legislation'? The Chabadniks who stand out in the streets asking people whether they have put on Tefillin today:
Menachem Brod, a spokesman for Chabad in Israel, said Paz-Pines's bill was absurd, and was intended to undermine religious Jewish life.

"Are they telling me that if someone is lacking a 10th member for their minyan, and they go out on the street and find a 17-year-old boy, they can't invite that bar-mitzvaed boy in to complete the minyan? This is evil," he said. "Why do we insist on treating teenagers as though they don't have the ability to make decisions?"

Ephraim Shore, a director of Jerusalem's Aish Hatorah Yeshiva, disagreed with Paz-Pines's reasoning, saying: "There are so many reasons for schisms in the family... We have a heritage that has lasted over 3,000 years and we believe in teaching it to people. This heritage has not traditionally caused schism in the family."

Shore rejected the assertion that some teenagers might be brainwashed into adopting religious practices.

"If you teach a Jew the beauty of Shabbat and he lights candles on Friday night, that is his choice, not some brainwashing," he said. "It's a free country. We have a popular Web site that 2 million people visit a month. Should we change it to an 'adult only' Web site just so that teens won't be exposed to the dangerous material we post there about Jewish life and traditions?"

Shore said there were dozens of programs in the US to encourage Jewish high school students to adopt Jewish traditions. He said most of Aish Hatorah's programs were geared for young adults over the age of 18, while other organizations, such as Chabad, encouraged teenagers to get involved and participate in their programs.
Under this 'law,' I suppose that NCSY - the youth group in which I grew up - would be illegal.


At 5:13 AM, Blogger naftali said...

This is unenforceable.I am a Chabadnik and we are inculcated with an awe for the self sacrifice of our forbearers
in communist russia.We ALMOST yearn for the chance to express like heroism.Chabad will not stop.It will sure be a lebadiker jail.


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