Retired President of Israel’s Supreme Court, Prof. Aharon Barak, in his remarks to The First Israel Congress for Judaism and Democracy explained the chareidi tzibur in Israel must be prepared to make painful compromise.
“Religious legislation based solely on the power of the majority in the Knesset is an expression of the tyranny of the majority, democracy is not only about a majority rule, and democracy is not only the preservation of human rights,” Barak said in an attack on chareidi Members of Knesset.
“We must oppose any approach that sees one of these values being more important than the other”, acknowledging the growing tensions in Israel today between the chareidi and secular communities, which is manifest in broad areas of life in Israel, such as the judges’ jurisdiction, the laws of marriage and divorce, the laws of conversion, conscription to the army, observing Shabbos, kashrus, tefilla at the Kotel and the authority of rabbonim.
“We must find a proper solution to this tension. This solution should assume that the public can remain in its basic belief without having to give it up. Both the secular public and the chareidi public must internalize the need to be willing to recognize the other, to appreciate their approach, and to be prepared for painful compromises.
The next speaker was Knesset Finance Committee Chairman MK (Yahadut Hatorah) Moshe Gafne, who responded to Barak’s viewpoint.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)