Is it a Joke?

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    The following letter was published in the latest edition of the Jewish Voice and Opinion:

    Is There a Rabbi Who Can Respond?

    I returned not long ago from voting. My wife and I went together. We live in Flatbush in a heavily Orthodox area and vote in a public school. When we got to the school, I found my self both confused and dismayed. I kept looking for the separate men?s and ladies? entrances, but could not locate them. Finally, my wife and I were forced to enter together through the same doorway! When we got inside, I was in for a bigger shock. The place was full of men and women who were standing in the same lines waiting to vote. I had assumed that there would at least be separate voting lines for men and women. We had no alternative but to stand in a mixed line while we waited to vote. We voted, but now I am wondering if what I did was actually permitted. Are we allowed to vote under circumstances in which men and women freely mingle? I think that it is time for hareidim in the US to stand up and demand separate polling places for men and women. I do hope that the Agudah and the OU will begin lobbying our government officials about this matter.

    Yitzchok Levine

    Brooklyn, NY

    I thought initially that it might be a joke, but it seems to be serious. What’s next- separate rooms in restaurants for men and women? Separate libraries? And how can we allow ourselves to shop at grocery stores where “men and women freely mingle?”

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