Jewish leaders sparked fury recently after issuing a female driving ban because mothers who drive are breaking the â€˜laws of modesty.â€™ Book Theory Test Today shares its thoughts on the issue…
Book Theory Test Today says: â€œThe peaceful and private world of Londonâ€™s ultra-orthodox Jewish community was shattered after Jewish leaders said they would impose a female driving ban and prevent students, who are driven to school by their mothers, from attending classes because Jewish females who drive go against the laws of modesty.â€
Why a female driving ban?
â€˜Women who drive break the traditional rules of modesty in our campâ€™ according to Rabbis of the marginal Hasidic sect, Belz.
A letter issued to parents recently stated that a female driving ban would be enforced as of the summer, 2015, because too many mothers are driving their children to school and itâ€™s causing â€˜resentment among parents of pupils of Hasidic institutions.â€™
The ban comes following a recommendation from the Belzer spiritual leader in Israel, Rabbi Yissachar Dov Rokeach.
The letter sent out does say that if a mother has no option but to transport her child[ren] to school by car â€“ on medical grounds â€“ they can â€˜submit a request to the special committee citing medical reasons and the request will be considered by the committee.â€™
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the introduction of a female driving ban has sparked fury among Jewish women. UK Ambassador of the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance, Dina Brawer, said: â€œThis draconian ban simply reflects the fear of a rapidly changing social reality that threatens some of the Ultra Orthodox leaders.â€
She added: â€œThey are desperately trying to hold on to a patriarchal hierarchy that is out of step with the twenty first century. The ban has no grounding in Jewish law or practice whatsoever. It is simply about power and control.â€
She continued: â€œThe positioning of this ban is that women drivers somehow breach the values of modesty, which is absurd, as by any objective standpoint there is nothing at all immodest about a woman driving a car.â€
Book Theory Test Today says: â€œOutside of the Belz sect, Jewish women have vented their outrage over a potential female driving ban, but the story is very different from women within the sect.â€
A statement released by a local Belz womenâ€™s organisation on behalf of women within the Belz sect, said: â€œWeâ€™re extremely privileged and valued to be part of a community where the highest standards of refinement, morality and dignity are respected.â€
â€œWe believe that driving a vehicle is a high pressured activity where our values may be compromised by exposure to selfishness, road-rage, bad language and other inappropriate behaviour.â€
â€œWe do, however, understand that there are many who conduct lifestyles that are different to ours, and we do not, in any way, disrespect them or the decisions they make.â€
Board of Deputies of British Jews
Interestingly the Board of Deputies of British Jews refused to be drawn into the fracas saying that the letter has been issued by a marginal sect with whom they have no affiliation.
Ladies, whatâ€™s your take on this issue? Leave a comment.
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