Nov 14, 2011

Eida Putting End To Burqa Cult

The story that won't go away is the Eida trying to use its influence to quash the growing influence of the kat ha'shalim, the burqa ladies "cult".

More and more stories are coming out about how they behave, things they do differently than commonly accepted practice, and many are finding it disconcerting. Reports had come in to the Eida, from a social worker, that some of these women are choosing to not give birth in hospitals for reasons of tzniyus. Another case reported to them was of a family in the cult whose daughter had gotten burned. After being taken to the hospital, they refused to allow the doctor to treat her, insisting on only having a female doctor. After a delay and refusal to accommodate, they abandoned the hospital and went to get private treatment. (source: Behadrei)

As an aside, I am not quite sure exactly what the problem is in these two reports. Women choose to have home births with private midwives all the time. And in the second incident, while a delay in treatment was caused and they specifically put their daughter in danger by causing such a delay for non-medical reasons, in theory I see nothing wrong with them insisting on a specific doctor - people do that all the time - or preferring private treatment.

Regardless of my points, these reports were brought to the Eida to show how these women and families are dangerous and involved in dangerous behavior.

Other cases involved husbands birthing their wives at home, not via private midwife. One such case caused the child to be born premature as they refused to call medical assistance. Only after they could tell the baby was in serious danger did they call a local hatzala volunteer. The volunteer took the baby to the hospital against the wishes of the parents. The child was deposited in the hospital without information being given as to who the parents are, so as not to incriminate them. The parents still have not stepped forward to identify themselves, so as to avoid arrest, and the hospital is treating the baby but refuses to release it until the parents step forward. (source: Kikar)

At the same time, the group is going on a campaign to convince more women to "join". While their material has generally been rejected by husbands who come across it, who obviously don't want their wives to join this group, and they dispose of it when they come across it, the group has found ways to get their material out. they now use envelopes and stationery with logos from real estate agents and kablanim as a way of sneaking the material past the opposing spouse. (source: Kikar)

The Eida decided to have a high-level meeting to discuss how to out an end to the phenomenon. The Badatz met yesterday to discuss the matter, and as a result decided to publish a sharp letter rejecting this behavior. They write that they heard about the antics of this group of women who have uprooted daas torah and on their own choose to not send their children to school and do not provide them with necessary medical attention to the point of putting their lives into danger, and other unmentionable acts. They then warn the public to stay away from these people. They condemn the making changes to the wedding ceremony...  and they say they will take harsh action against families that put their kids in danger. The Eida is putting together a committee to gather information, and they say they will work with the authorities and social workers to remove affected children from the homes of such families. (source: Behadrei and Kikar)

10 comments:

  1. I am a homebirth supporter and I've birthed at home, but as any qualified midwife will tell you, in certain cases it is contraindicated and a hospital birth is sometimes necessary for the health and safety of mother or baby or both. Each case has to be evaluated individually, but from the sound of things I would highly doubt that the burka people are concerned with health and safety.

    As far as the burn treatment, yes people sometimes insist on waiting for a specific doctor for certain treatments but this was emergency treatment that they delayed, not because another doctor was better qualified to provide better medical treatment and an improved outcome but for totally unrelated reasons that certainly could have caused physical harm, a decidedly worse outcome.

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  2. Having said the above, if the hospital could have accommodated them and didn't I'd hold them just as culpable.

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  3. XYZ, hospitals are not shopping malls. When a patient comes into emergency it is an admission that they need urgent medical attention and are therefore willing to accept the first doctor and nurse available. If they want to be picky about who helps them then either
    a) the problem is not urgent and therefore they should not be there or
    b) they are mentally unsound because normal people confronted with urgent medical problems seek any help as soon as possible regardless of the gender or background of the competent provider available.
    As for the Eida, this is a lost cause. For years the Eida and folks like them have been shouting "chumra! chumra! chumra!". Longer skirts, more shapeless shirts, stricter head coverings, etc. These nutbars have simply taken that to its logical conclusion. If covering one's forearms is minimally modest, then covering one's hands is ever more modest. If shapeless clothes are modest, then a burka is even more modest and don't we all want to be a strict as possible?

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  4. POT, KETTLE, HELP!!! I can't tell which is which.......

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  5. How can it be preferable for a woman's husband to deliver her baby? I haven't heard of any authority that lets him watch the birth

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  6. anon - it is clear, even in halacha, that if he is needed for the delivery he can do what is needed to be done. if they dont call any doctor or midwife to deliver, it is pikuach nefesh and then he can deliver.

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  7. or maybe they read the Egyptian version of birthing in Egypt, and assumed she'd just pop the baby out!

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  8. This post (http://goo.gl/rYk8v) should clear up a lot of the confusion:
    1. The birth was healthy and fine
    2. Giving birth at home didnt - and never dose - cause a child to be born prematurely!
    3. There was a slight issue and the Baby AND Mother went to the hospital, at the behest of the MOTHER
    4. The Mother and baby were admitted just like ANY OTHER new birth - down to name tags on the baby's legs

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  9. Baruch Hashem they are ok! (though I dont see it in the article. it just says the [uncertified] midwife called hatzalah and left before they got there..

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  10. This is a PR campaign by the burqa babes, shal cult. It is called damage control. Shape the story, now that everyone is giving them bad press.

    Do you really think the Yediot Achronot and Kikar Shabbos could just go to a burqa lady and ask for an interview and get a positive response? Isnt there whole self-defined purpose to stay out of the public eye? They even say they take abuse silently and ignore it. Suddenly it is too much and they talk to the public? I don't buy it. I think they called Yediot and Kikar Shabbos and offered the interview so they could try to fight back, get their word out.

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