Moti Steinmentz Backs Out Of Concert After Court Rules That It’s ILLEGAL To Have Separate Seating

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Chasidic singer Moti Steinmetz backed out of a major concert by the Afula Municipality after the Nazareth District Court District Court’s Decision to refuse the allowance of separate seating at the show. The concert was to be held at a park in Afula.

Steinmetz told Kikar Shabbos: “This is a time of religious persecution and this is the chosen time for us to be Mekadesh Shem Shamayim. The High Court will not decide what is appropriate for us nor what we will do.”

Steinmetz has in the past canceled his participation in many large concerts and performances that had mixed seating added: “There is no way that I will perform to a mixed audience or in a hall without a Mechiza. This goes against all of my ideals.”

The District Court in Nazareth decided on Sunday, Tisha B’Av, that the appeal by the Women’s Lobby group against the city of Afula for enforcing the separate seating at the planned concert is illegal.

Degel Hatorah MK Moshe Gafni described the ruling as “evil” and “appropriate for Tisha Be’av, the day of the destruction, and will cause many people and youth not to participate in the event.” He also called on anyone going to the event to voluntarily separate along gender lines.

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Justice Yonatan Avraham wrote in the court’s decision: “I prohibit the enforcement of separate seating during the event. Each person who attends the event will be allowed, based on their own decision, where they will be during the event. It is also prohibited for the ushers or security personnel involved in organizing the event, or any other interested party involved in planning the event, to perform any action that will cause a forced separation based on gender during the event. I hereby instruct the organizers, ushers, security personnel and those seating participants, to prevent any attempt to enforce gender separation and to thwart and attempt to put up signs instructing gender separation or any type of blockage or mechiza, or any announcement stating that separation should take place. I hereby instruct them to involve the police who will be stationed at the event should any such instance arise.”

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)




22 COMMENTS

  1. amazing what a kidush hashem
    FYI This Is A Better example of a kidush hashem then just doing a good deed for a gentile
    and the biggest kidush hashem is the people learning torah

  2. Only in the Zionist state, folks…
    Yet, even after all the myriad other evils the Zionists have perpetrated (not to mention the halachic impossibility), people still call Israel a “Jewish” state…

    The singer’s words in lashon haKodesh have not been accurately rendered in English. This is much more than a “time of religious persecution”. It is a “sha’as haShmad”, under an ideology (Zionism) and ruler-ship of shmad.

    Unlike Rabbi Gafne’s reason, the reason this is appropriate for 9 Av, the day of destruction is that the Zionist invasion of E”Y and, more importantly, its attempted transformation of the Jewish people into a nationalist goy nation, is a tremendous and unprecedented destruction.

  3. Truly it is befitting that we proclaim Justice Yonatan Avraham the Years Masterful Segregationist, by adding to his name the letters YM”S. He shall hence forward be titled
    Justice Yonatan Avraham YM”S. If it’s easier just read it as Yemach Shmo. Sure hope the Israeli kelev reads this comment and finds it enjoyable.

  4. Rabbonim have always advised people in Eretz yisroel not to attend concerts regardless of them being mixed or separated. They felt it was chukas hagoyim and indulging in kalus rosh. As soon as posters advertising concerts appeared, so did the admonishment of rabbonim appear on posters urging people not to attend. So in the end, they are doing us a favour by making sure we adhere to the advice of our leaders!

  5. The High Court WILL decide what is right & wrong. But the High Court I follow is not in Olam Hazeh. Even incurring financial losses, Motty Steinmetz does what’s right.

  6. How is separate seating in a concert an issue? Since when has it been a chiyuv to separate men and women in anything other than davening and dancing? This isn’t some old minhag either, concerts have only been exclusively separate for the past 20 years or so.

  7. The municipality was correct in not imposing seating restrictions in a public space.
    The artist was correct in withdrawing from the event if it doesn’t meet his needs.
    He’s more than welcome to perform in a private venue where he is free to impose the conditions he wants, and those purchasing a ticket agree to same.

  8. whatever, Israel does present themselves to the world as the “country for/of the Jews” so they should accommodate Jews who follow the Jewish law of no mixing of the genders in all circumstances.

  9. Whateva is correct. Both sides acted appropriately in accordance with their values and legal obligations. Hopefully, the residents of Afulah will have the opportunity to hear this great artist in a privately-owned venue where the separate seating is not an issue. As you recall, some have inquired in the past how big events here in the U.S. at major stadiums and auditoriums are allowed to exclude women or provide for separate seating.. Simple answer. They are NOT owned by a public agency and they can set their own rules.

  10. Motty did the right thing, and whateva has a strong point. Much better than calling fellow Jews yemach shemom, Chas vesholom. It is very not befitting the day of tisha bav. We are one nation, and even when others are wrong we try to remain right and true to our values. Instead of cursing others let us pray for their return to yiddishkeit

  11. Most commentators or confusing American and Israel:

    Whether its right or wrong is not really the issue in concern, rather, it is the implication of the Anti-Religious judges (i.e. who were NOT voted in by the people) who constantly impose their views on the public!

    If the Organizers felt there is significant amount of Haredim attending and organized it based on that, it is their religious right as well.

    There is really no separation of Religion and State in Israel.

  12. The Bituach Leumi offices in East Jerusalem serving the Arab population (which I pass sometimes on the way to the kever of Shimon HaTzaddik) has clearly marked separate entrances for men and women that were obviously built into the designed structure of the building. Has that ever been challenged in court?

  13. Gaon: This issue is not “separation of state and religion”….in EY there are civil laws against gender discrimination in public facilities and that is the legal basis for the Judge’s order. They just as easily could have held the concert in a private venue. The rules on this are well know and its a bit surprising they now claim the court over=reached its authority

  14. Yserbius, Since when has it not been a chiyuv to separate men and women in anything other than davening and dancing? Can you name even one posek who holds that separation is required only for davening and dancing? Poskim differ on which kind of events require it, but none are that lenient.

    Indeed the whole concept of segregating the sexes is derived from a pasuk requiring it at public hespedim. The gemara reasons that if it’s required even at such an event, where people are not at all prone to frivolity so you’d think it would be unnecessary, then how much more so is it required at events where something might conceivably actually happen.

  15. “Ask me now why all Jews don’t move to Israel”

    There are dozens of concerts for chareidim in Israel every and this was the only one that wasn’t allowed to be gender segregated. No worries, someone will make another concert with separate seating.

    The government does not have any religious exemptions. Even with the army, no yeshiva boy is being pulled out of beis medrash and being forced to go to the army. The boys who are getting arrested 1) were usually caught doing something else like holding up traffic during a protest or trying to leave the country 2) didn’t get a deferral by filling out forms to assure the government that they are chareidi.

    Btw secular draft dodgers also go to jail

  16. > Gadolhadorah

    And other sites point out that the Israeli law explicitly allow exemptions for public events to accommodate the sensibilities of special interest attendees. And that the the judge never bothered to even reference those exemptions, treating them as if they don’t exist.

    And as other posters have pointed out here, anyone with open eyes sees the Arabs are allowed anything they want even in regards to government run offices, so all this is highly discriminatory against religious Jews specifically and solely.