Mar 15, 2017

Eida upset about female police officers

I always love the brazenness, if that's the right word, of the Eida Hachareidis. It makes for interesting, and often humorous, situations.

Recently the Eida has renewed its protests in Jerusalem on Shabbos to protest against what they describe as the increasing levels of chilul shabbos in the city.

No problem there. Every person has the basic human right to protest. I have no idea if they apply for police permits for their protests, but that is really irrelevant to the discussion.

The Eida people protesting in the streets of Jerusalem means the police have to send out the forces to secure the protest and to ensure it does not get violent, something that has historically been prone to happen at Eida protests. There is also irony in protesting chilul shabbos on shabbos itself thereby causing additional chilul shabbos by the Jewish security forces, but that too is irrelevant to this discussion.

The Eida is upset that the police send female police officers among the forces to deal with the protests, and when putting down the violence or keeping them in order, they get physically involved and speak to them not nicely. And, the Eida is unable to photograph and video these incidents because it is Shabbos.

To that end, the Eida has drafted and sent a letter to the police demanding that they not send female police to these protests and saying that it raises the level of conflict unnecessarily.
source: Behadrei

1. the problem of no cameras available can be solved multiple ways using creative thinking. For example, they can hire a "Shabbos Goy" to photograph these events. Or, they can move their protests to a weekday.

2. the brazenness mentioned above is in holding protests and getting violent (as historically has been known to happen) and then demanding which type of police should be sent and how they should respond and act. They want to control the protests and the police.

3. Another solution, knowing in advance that the police are going to be sending violent women to quell their peaceful protest, is cancel the protest. Is a person allowed to put himself in a situation that he knows in advance will violate his halachic sensitivities? There is definitely a discussion about that worth having, but if one does put himself in such a situation he should surely not then complain about the results of it...

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  1. This is why I do not trust the Eida Charedit, and try to avoid their hechsher.

    If the organization forces police officers to be machalel Shabbat for an demonstration that claims to be in order to protect Shabbat, the Eida is no different from any other business that operates on Shabbat.

    The only difference is, that if a movie theater of car park is open on Shabbat, people have a choice whether to go there or not, they are not forcing Chillul Shabbat, just providing a service to people who have no interest in Shabbat K'Halacha.

    The Eida on the other hand is forcing Police Officers, many of whom are religious or traditional, to leave their families and their Shabbat table, and Violate Shabbat for a Pikuach nefesh situation that was completely avoidable.

    For a Beit Din to care so little about Shabbat shows that there is something very wrong about the entire institution.

  2. The police should allow female officers to dress in miniskirts and crop tops when responding to Eidah protests. Or allow them to use their guns to avoid direct physical contact.

  3. Respect is a two way street, have the police respect the protestors & the protestors respect the police.

  4. Have women demonstrate. (Yes, set up mechitzah, etc.


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