Yerushalayim: How Far Can Sinas Chinam Take Us?

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Once upon a time morality and what we are willing to expose our children to was not exclusive to the frum community, but in modern day Israel it appears a portion of the secular community has lost sight of acceptable and unacceptable behavior.

The latest round of dispute between the frum and secular activists brings us to Jerusalem’s Kiryat Yovel neighborhood, where frum residents have already endured more than their fair share of abuse, including verbal and physical assaults, downing the eruv and dragging residents into court for using a home for a Shabbos minyan.

For some, the fear of an area becoming chareidi is justification to launch an all-out war, no matter how tasteless such a battle can be. In this last provocation by secularists, posters displaying nude females were posted around the community, on Shabbos, realizing the frum residents will not be able to tear them down. The caption on the posters of an Italian painting was “HaAdarat Nashim”, the slogan of the secularists nationwide in the battle against segregated buses and other ‘discrimination’ against women by the chareidi sector.

Officials who stand at the helm of the battle against the growing chareidi presence in that neighborhood insist this was not their initiative, but they also did not condemn the move, which seems to have elicited a smile from the secular camp.

Needless to say the presence of the posters on Shabbos led to much pain and anguish among the frum families, begging the question why the non religious did not find this tasteless and objectionable as well.

Ynet quotes one frum community resident explaining “it is clear as day that this was not in any way an artistic effort, but simply an assault against the religious community. I myself am chareidi, and my husband wears a kippa sruga. We are not taking over anyone’s neighborhood. We live alongside our neighbors in harmony, including the non frum neighbors. We are open minded and liberal and have internet in our home, but this last action is undoubtedly an anti-chareidi incident”.

According to Ronit Gilboa, who heads the neighborhood battle against the chareidim, she too saw the posters but does not know where they came from, denying any connection.

She did add however that from her perspective, there was a positive side to the posters, referring to them as “a positive décor to the community, an artistic work by Gauguin and Botitzli which is preferable to the pashkavilim of the chareidim. Perhaps this is an  act of provocation by chilonim but that is exactly what the chareidim in the community do daily, hour by hour, trying to take over, shouting Shabbes Shabbes and Prutza, turning homes into shuls that operate clandestinely thrice daily and batei medrash for the masses that create a disturbance from 5:00am to midnight. The chareidim have yet to get it. Kiryat Yovel will not capitulate”.

(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)




11 COMMENTS

  1. Maybe if we did not complain when there were ads of women completely covered, which never made any sense anyway, they would not hit us back with picture of completely naked women!

  2. “shouting Shabbes Shabbes and Prutza”
    While not excusing the secularists’ actions,
    at least this shouting must stop. Some of our Chareidim do not realize we are in golus in Eretz Yisroel too. Kiryas Yovel is a mixed neighborhood, and we are not Hashem’s police.
    In any case, this is not the way to increase Shemiras Shabbos and Tzenius.

  3. “Officials who stand at the helm of the battle against the growing chareidi presence in that neighborhood insist this was not their initiative, but they also did not condemn the move, which seems to have elicited a smile from the secular camp.”

    Unfortunately this is not different than “officials”/Rabbanim in Bet Shemesh who do not codemn crazy behavior either.

  4. While I unreservedly can condemn these posters, from a secular perspective, is this more offensive than yelling or spitting at women, or throwing sacks of human waste and fish entrails into a school? After seeing what happens in places where Chareidim move in – AFTER the original residents – and try to impose their standards (such as in Beit Shemesh), it is not a “chidush” that non-Chareidi groups try to keep Chareidim out of their neighborhoods. This is not to say that all Chareidim cause issues, but this is the backlash caused by those acting in the name of Chareidim seeking to impose their views on others.

    an Israeli Yid

  5. It seems to me that many of the commentators are basing their comments on bits and pieces of sporadic news that they are puzzling together as if they go together.

    Kiryas Yovel is not Beit Shemesh and as far as I am aware of they do not have radicals in the frum community there. The radicals there are from the secular side, those that don’t want Chareidim there no matter what. Pure Sinat Chinam.

    As far as I am aware, no one there that is frum is spitting, calling names, trying to separate genders on the streets, etc. What I do know is that the secular activist there have deliberately (and illegally) torn down the Eruv on Shabbos many times and continually harass the frum. To my knowledge, the frum people that move there are from more open-minded frum Jews that are not confrontational. This is purely a case of Snat Chinum from secular Jews that live there. Jews that would hate us no matter what. (Note: I’m sure the majority of the secular Jews there are not in opposition to the religious Jews that live there.)

    If anyone know otherwise please bring me proof.

  6. Softwords:

    Did the Frum Yiden shout Shabbes or Pritza at the Chilonim? If yes, that is counterproductive even if they didn’t spit, call names, or try to separate genders.

    We have to learn that aside from totally Chareidi neighborhoods, we cannot impose our way of life by force. The only way to increase Shemiras Torah Umitvohs is by showing the beauty and truth of our holy religion.

  7. First spiting and calling names is a non starter, but the
    people who hung up pictures of nude women show no respect for women and even if you are secular do you want this in
    your neighbor. Is that what they want their 6, 7, 8, and 9
    years exposed to. Is that what they want to their sons to relate to women like this. The teenagers boys in the area is that how they should look at woman; just poster material.
    It is totally sick

  8. “Sinas Chinam” means hated without reason,

    for example, Brooklyn Dodgers fans vs New York Yankee fans, Hasidim vs Litvaks, Streimels vs Fedoras vs Kippah Serugah, etc.

    The Hiloni vs Frum dispute is not “Chinam”. There are fundamental differences that can not be resolved, since if one side is right, the other must be wrong. If Torah is Emes, Hiloniyus is sheker. And If Hiloniyus is right, than Torah is a waste of time.

  9. #6 is right. The chareidim in Kiryat Yovel bear no resemblance to the makeup of the community in Ramat Beit Shemesh (although the community there is not as monochromatic as the media make it seem). The Kiryat Yovel community is very typical yeshivish – Chevron/Ateres, for those familiar with the Israeli yeshiva scene – and I find it very hard to believe that they are shouting Shabbos and yelling prutzah in the streets.

    Chareidim have been living in Kiryat Yovel for a while already, way before the Beit Shemesh incidents and the bus hysteria. And they have been treated this way from the very beginning.

  10. Kiryat Yovel is not because anyone is spitting or shouting. Any Israeli knows the issue; the frum are moving in and the Chilonim are afraid. Beit HaKerem is next up. Keep tuned!