Dec 20, 2009

misused insults - Women of the Wall

On Friday morning the Women of the Wall (WOW) held another prayer service somewhere in the area of the Kotel (I think they do it in the plaza area), as they do every Rosh Chodesh.

It had a big crowd this month, I think the reports said 200 women participated, probably because of the fighting it caused last month.

One of the great things about Twitter is you get to meet and talk with people whose paths you would not normally cross.

On Friday afternoon a woman, a female Rabbi if I remember correctly, tweeted that she had been part of the prayer service and had been called a Nazi by Haredi protesters.

The term "Nazi" does not seem appropriate, and I have no idea why it would be used in this case. Nazis tried to kill Jews. They shipped them out to Concentration Camps. They put Jews in work camps. They shot Jews indiscriminately in synagogues. They mass murdered them.

They did not promote women praying, in or without prayer shawls.

I think anybody who throws around the term "Nazi" in cases like this, or even at the police during protests, is pretty ignorant.

The woman who I had a brief conversation with suggested that perhaps the term had been used because they are trying to destroy the Jewish people, by holding womens prayers at the Kotel, similarly to the Nazis who tried to destroy the Jewish people.

I am unsure if an insult that is misused and misapplied is one that the insultee need get insulted by. It is still inappropriate for people to be throwing around the term Nazi as if it is a krembo. It is demeaning to holocaust survivors that the term Nazi is being used for women daveners and policeman in Israel. It is demeaning to anybody to be called a Nazi - animals who shot babies, women, elderly, gassed anybody they saw no use for, etc. no need for me to describe what the Nazis did. But using it as an insult like really just shows the ignorance, and stupidity, of the insulter.

That is irregardless of the fact that I do not support the Women of the Wall and their mission. I still do not support calling them Nazis.


  1. even though you don't support them, are you against them or ambivalent?

  2. I think the provocation is wrong. I am mostly ambivalent because they have the right, and technically nothing they are doing is wrong. But they are being provocative. Especially when there has been a court decision allocating them certain space on the southern side, and they have recently started to ignore that decision and go off to provoke.

    true, the court decision might have been acceptable once and now they find it less so, so go back to the courts and fight for a new decision.


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