MAILBAG: A Woman On U.S., Currency! What Will Yated, Hamodia And Company Do Now?

(Wednesday, April 20th, 2016 07:45 PM)

20First Hillary Clinton, and now Harriet Tubman.

This week the Treasury Department announced that they will be replacing the image of Andrew Jackson on the twenty dollar bill with that of Harriet Tubman, the abolitionist freedom fighter, presenting a challenge to those newspapers and publications that avoid pictures of women.

The issue first came up last year when the plan was to scrap the picture of Alexander Hamilton on the ten dollar bill and replace it with a woman. There was a he backlash of Hamilton supporters who managed to get those plans scrapped.

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The challenge now is much greater because the twenty dollar bill is a much more popular denomination than the ten dollar bill. According to the Federal Reserve there are only 1.9 billion ten dollar bills in circulation, while there are a whopping 8.6 billion twenty dollar bills in circulation.

In regard to the earlier challenge of reporting about a female running for president, HaModia and other newspapers have cleverly met with the issue by publishing photos of Bill Clinton instead of Hillary. This cannot be done in the case of Harriet Tubman, because there are no known extant pictures of her first husband, John Tubman, nor her second husband, Nelson Davis.

Inside media sources say that this idea would not work anyhow, because here the challenge is in the monetary denominations that the newspaper publishers use, and not the photos that they print.

There are two alternatives left, if they continue to hold to this controversial halachic position of no photos of women. They can begin using more ten and fifty dollar bills, or begin using credit and debits cards more.

Of course, the third alternative is that Harriet Tubman’s appearance on the twenty dollar bill could be embraced. She believed in G-d, helped 71 people go free, and dressed modestly.

By the way….so does Hillary Clinton. Check the photos. It’s sad to say, but Hillary Clinton is dressed more Tzniyus then most Frum women walking our streets. He neck is covered, wears long skirts and has her sleeves covered – with chumros! And besides…..didn’t the Skverer Rebbe pay her a visit at the Whitehouse to secure the pardon of one of his Chassidim?

What will they do if she becomes president? They might just photoshop her out of the photos like the Satmar newspapers did…..and then endorsed her for president…..

Pesach Benzmanim – Brooklyn

NOTE: The views expressed here are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of YWN.

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22 Comments

  1. Eli Willner says:

    Pesach, the perfect time to make fun of the minhagim of others!

  2. Climbing says:

    I understand that you waited for the opportunity to write for the highly respected YWN mailbag, but I’m sorry, what exactly does A women on a $20 have to do with Hamodia, Yated newspaper, I don’t recall ever seeing pictures of dollar bills there.

    And you’r right she is dressed Tzniusdig,
    so what are you suggesting, that Hamodia,Yated E.T.C, should start examining every picture to see if it’s appropriate or not? You can not start making differences.

    Once you start putting pictures, you will obviously not stop at Clinton.

    That partially explains why the Torah true newspapers and magazines have not printed them at all.

    Thank You

  3. screwdriverdelight says:

    Wow, the things you deem prudent to post.

  4. TheGoq says:

    Maybe with a woman on the $20 women will show more respect to their bills as a cashier i can tell you when a customer hands you a ball of crumpled bills most often the offenders are women.

  5. Yeshivishrockstar says:

    Wow. What stupidity. Pesach beinhazmanim, don’t you have any Pesach cleaning to do?

  6. mugsisme says:

    I’ve never seen her in a skirt. Only those stupid 70′s pantsuits. Which is totally unflattering up her. She always looks frumpy.

  7. 😺 says:

    It is perceived as disrespectful to women when the pictures are deliberately left out of the newspaper. It is actually very offensive when a picture of the husband is published instead of the woman. Maybe newspapers and magazines shouldn’t publish pictures of people at all.

  8. HolyMoe says:

    We will no longer be able to print our own dollars.

  9. american_yerushalmi says:

    It’s difficult to understand what motivated YWN to publish this totally unnecessary article. The author clearly has some sort of axe to grind. What’s not clear is why YWN thought to go along with it. When did he or anyone else see a $20 bill reproduced in the newspaper? A larger issue would be if (chas ve’shalom) Hillary wins the election. So, they’ll either publish pics of her or they won’t. Author Benhazmanim (?) clearly views this development as amusing and worthy of poking fun at. As if to say, “waddaya gonna’ do now frummmies….?! This childish drivel is something you would expect in some anti-religious newspaper or website, not in YWN. Your readers deserve better than this.

  10. ocho sinco says:

    Ywn i want the three minutes of my life back that it took to read this

  11. tzddadim says:

    #1 : the point Ben Hazmanim is making is that, for those who are machmir not to print or buy newspapers with images of any women, what will they do when presented with the new $20 bill? Refuse change? Ask for a different birthday present? Or just put it in there wallet and move on.

  12. Softwords says:

    It’s sad that someone wasted the time to rant about his(or her) disdain of Frum newspapers’ policies to not show pictures of women. I’m sure their policy is based on guidance from Gedolim. However, I question whether this author ever discussed the topic with a Gadol (or whether he/she even knows a Gadol).

    Whether a news outlet is “required” to prevent posting pictures of women is debatable. I’m sure their are different opinions among the poskim and Eilu V’eilu Divrei Elokim Chaim (that means, BTW, that all opinions must be respected).

    Putting all aside, this persons reasoning is clearly arrogant.
    1) How often does a media source need to post pictures of a bill?
    2) They can always blur the woman’s face or post a pic of the old bill.
    3) Hilary Clinton wears slacks most of the time, so I don’t know how this person can claim that she dresses more tzniyus than Frum woman.
    4) He/she states, “It’s sad to say, but Hillary Clinton is dressed more Tzniyus then most Frum women walking our streets.” —- I don’t know where you live, but where I live MOST Frum women where I live are the epitome of tznius; not just in dress, but in action as well.

    Perhaps you should pack your bags, move to Israel, and sit in Yeshivah for a couple of years until you elevate yourself enough to see Bnos Yisrael in a positive light instead.

  13. yekke2 says:

    Rebitzen Kanievsky a”h dressed much more tzniusdik than any Presidential candidate, and she wasn’t ‘zoiche’ to a photo in the Hamodia.

    I think you’ve missed the point as to why we don’t put photographs of women in the public eye.

  14. avreimi says:

    Hamodia, Yated etc. will not have any problem. Money talks but it doesn’t sing there is no issue of kol isha either.

  15. TGIShabbos says:

    I think this is an exceptionally well written article! #2 Climbing, I’d love to further learn your thoughts regarding the subject matter. Through the years I always questioned why certain frum newspapers and magazines (some especially made by women and for women) omit all pictures of women. Regardless if the women are tzniousdik rebbetzins or blurring pictures of dressed women’s faces in the concentration camps. Now getting to the $20 bill, how did they choose Ms. Tubman out of all women? Perhaps there are other influential historical women to consider too? I can think of Eleanor Roosevelt on the top of my head.

  16. apushatayid says:

    Is it still Adar?

  17. TGIShabbos says:

    #12… Softwords… softwords…. oy where to even begin…? A number of questions on your comment. 1. How sure are you that these papers have the guidance of Gedolim? 2. What different does it make if a Gadol agreed with the paper’s standpoint, there are other Gedolim who would opine very differently. It’s not a ‘black & white’ halachic issue. 3. Blurring out the faces of the images of women is not new for those papers. There was some strong disagreement and distaste when dressed women in the concentration camps were blurred of their faces and their identity. I too find it disgraceful and perhaps a chillul Hashem. 4. Non Jews are not required or expected to follow our forms of dress. If Hillary is wearing loose fitting pants, then there is little of a tznious concern. 5. Let’s take a married man for example. If he is starting to attain inappropriate excitement over a picture of a picture of an elderly righteous rebbetzin in a frum magazine; then there are bigger problems that exist and he should seek a rav and a therapist immediately (no joke or sarcasm). 6. I may never understand why a particular frum magazine BY women, ABOUT women, and FOR women won’t show a picture of ANY frum women. 7. I give YWN credit, as I find them to be a reputable and fair news site. There are pictures of men and women, but I never really noticed. Lastly, my Rav permits me to read the Jewish Press, 5 Towns Jewish Times and various other papers.

  18. chatzkal says:

    #11 : “what will they do when presented with the new $20 bill? Refuse change? Ask for a different birthday present? Or just put it in there wallet and move on” This whole thing is ridiculous but to answer this question, they’ll do the same thing Israelis did when Golda Meir was on a bill. No one is sitting and staring at their money and if they do there are doctors that can deal with that. But to go ahead and print pictures in a frum newspaper that many people would be uncomfortable with and not buy their paper; why should they? It’s a business like any other, supply and demand rules. This has nothing to do with the owners of Hamodia, Yated, or any other publication, it has to do with the clientele, and hey, it’s a free country. Don’t like it? buy another paper.

  19. Yitzy B says:

    You are all a bunch of (ok no name calling). If you would all stop looking at women the you would not have to deal with the OTD problems. For more see the Ohr Hachayim Hakadosh at the end of Parshas Achrei

  20. american_yerushalmi says:

    It’s difficult to understand what motivated YWN to publish this totally unnecessary article. The author clearly has some sort of axe to grind. What’s not clear is why YWN thought to go along with it. When did he or anyone else see a $20 bill reproduced in the newspaper? A larger issue would be if (chas ve’shalom) Hillary wins the election. So, they’ll either publish pics of her or they won’t. Author Benhazmanim (?) clearly views this development as amusing and worthy of poking fun at. As if to say, “waddaya gonna’ do now frummmies….?! This childish drivel is something you would expect in some anti-religious newspaper or website, not in YWN. Your readers deserve better than this.

  21. Softwords says:

    #17 TGIShabbos – you completely missed my point. The funny thing is that you stated exactly my point when you stated, “It’s not a ‘black & white’ halachic issue.”

    That was exactly my point, but you didn’t realize it. The point is that their is more than one opinion on this subject and NO-ONE has the rights to denigrate the other. This is what the author was doing and that is what I was protesting. (As a side issue I took him/her to task for denigrating frum women)

  22. Softwords says:

    Just to bring out some clarification for our brethren in America.

    There is a concept of “shmiras einiyim” (not to look at women) that chazal praise. This level of observance is not as common in America as it is in Israel. In fact, it’s possible that you’ve never met anyone in your community that is accustom to be shomer his eyes. This concept is much more common in Israel and taught (and encouraged) in numerous Yeshivas, both Chassidish and Litvish. In societies where Shomer Einiyim is commonly observed it is very accepted not to place pictures of women in their papers.

    In America where Shomer Einiyim is not commonly practiced they are not accustomed as much to keeping pictures of women out of papers.

    It goes hand in hand. Hope this helped.

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