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Jul 17, 2007

Harry Potter and religious Jewry were always on shaky ground...

This book will be the cause of an earthequake in Israel! The next anti-religious storm is brewing!!!

The next Harry Potter book, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, the last in the popular series, is due to be released on July 21. That falls out on shabbos.

Shas minister Eli Yishai, Minister of Industry Trade and Labor is threatening that any bookstore that will hold an opening sale on shabbos will be fined, as per the Basic Laws in Israel of the shabbos being closed for business.

I can see it now - all along, every shabbos of the year we have stores open for business, with more opening up all the time. Normally it gets ignored unless it gets close to a Haredi area. But now with the upcoming Harry Potter release, this can be expected to be a very popular and crowded event, even at 2 am as the book stores are planning. So because it is expected to be popular, the ministers are threatening it. It probably will not matter. The book stores would probably take the fines, considering how many books they can expect to sell.

The funniest though is what MK Avraham Ravitz said. Ravitz said, "Aside from the book and its poor content, which serves as education for teenagers in Israel and the world in this new age, the book chains add insult to injury with their intent to hold this celebration while massively desecrating the Shabbat, and by violating the law that prohibits employing workers on Shabbat".

Aside from the book and its poor content - <sarcasm>that would be compared to religious novels and books which are well known for their great content and quality... ..


  1. Can't they have it motzi Shabbat? Here they have the Harry Potter book release parties late in the night inside big bookstores.

  2. B"H Cross linked at: http://esseragaroth.blogspot.com/2007/07/harry-potter-and-nine-days.html (Related Harry Potter information)

  3. rebel - I would guess that after Steimetsky gets a lot of pressure from this, that will be the solution.
    I am not condoning chillul shabbos, but the law enforcing it has never successfully improved shmiras shabbos. It is a good law in the sense that an employer cannot force an employee to work on shabbos, but other than that it has not helped shabbos at all...
    And when it is applied only sometimes, to some stores and not others, that makes the religious look bad...

    ben-yehuda - thanks

  4. While I do like the Harry Potter books, the thought of eating some meat is more exciting than the anticipation of the last book.

  5. neil - I also enjoy the HP books, but not nearly as much as a good steak any time of the year. And right now even a semi-decent steak would still beat HP!

  6. Oh come on. Harry Potter is great! I've honestly never heard of the late night book releases, but I can imagine that being the solution, too.

    Wow, I don't think I've ever actually left a comment, here...Have I?

  7. Sara with no H - I think you commented once before, on a jpix issue... you are welcome to come and comment anytime you want!

    Anyway, from what I understand all bookstores worldwide were made to commit to releasing the book at the exact same time. Meaning in some places that comes out to the middle of the night.... right now it is scheduled for release in Israel Saturday at 2 am....

  8. What is silly is that Ravitz didn't read the book and has absolutely no idea what it is about. All he knows is that it is a goyish book si can't be good. I guess he forgot חכמה בגוים תאמין

  9. Why not have it after Shabbat ends? Will it harm anyone to wait a few hours for a Harry Potter book?

  10. Michael -from what I understand, Steimetsky's book store is obligated under their agreement with the publisher of Harry Potter, as the Israeli distributor, to release the book at a specific time. The publisher has worked out a worldwide simultaneous release.

    I am not justifying it, but that is what is happening..

  11. Oh yeah Jpix. Duh...

    My computer challenged self is trying to make a blogroll. If I ever figure it out, I'll add you to it so I can check more regularly. :)

  12. oops. sorry about that!! :-)


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