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Apr 26, 2017

MK Eichler dismisses the chilul shabbos for Lag bOmer

MK Eichler (UTJ) spoke about the issue of Lag bOmer/Meron/chilul-shabbos and had something interesting to say.

Eichler doesn't agree with the accusations against the Haredi community for making the police desecrate the shabbos. According to Eichler, the police always desecrate Shabbos, so why suddenly now is it a problem?

Eichler said, "It has happened many times before that Lag bOmer came out on Motzei Shabbos - and what happened then? Every Shabbos you can go out to the street and see police desecrating the Shabbos. Anything to do with police and security is  a qestion for the rabbonim to decide what to do on Shabbos. No policeman who wants to keep Shabbos will have to desecrate it. It is demagoguery and hypocrisy at a level we have not seen in a long time.. are there no policemen at the Kotel on Shavuos? Suddenly the police keep Shabbos?"

Interesting how when official State bodies don't keep shabbos he gets upset, but when they want to he dismisses them.

And the issue is not that the police want to keep Shabbos. The police will do whatever they need to do to secure any event, especially an event so massive like the bonfires in Meron. If it requires chilul shabbos, they will be mechalel shabbos. The police aren't demanding the right to keep Shabbos. The public is raising the outcry how the Haredi community, a community that holds Shabbos so dearly and is regularly upset around the country when chilul shabbos happens, can be the cause of chilul shabbos for a celebration that is not a mitzva.

Shavuos at the Kotel is different. It is not such a mass event, with hundreds of thousand sof people. It does not bring thousands of security forces from other cities. Shavuos is a commandment, and Lag bOmer is not - though going to the Kotel is not part of the Shavuos commandments. The only people going to the Kotel are people in Jerusalem, walking - not traveling from around the country.

Again, it is not the police that suddenly want to keep Shabbos. It is the Haredim who are suddenly ok with being the cause of chilul shabbos.

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  1. I think all the policeman should send a requst to Eichler stating they want to keep Shabbosfor that Shabbos, and then let's see what happens. This is hypocrisy at its best.

  2. There should be no publicly-funded security at all. Issue a travel advisory for those who need to travel around the area, and leave the Charedim to trample each other or start uncontrolled fires, or whatever it is they do that requires security.

  3. I was in the middle of writing a comment about what I thought of certain individuals, and then I remembered that theme of Lag B'Omer should be Re Rabbi Akiva and ואהבת לרעך כמוך, so writing a snarky comment about politicians or religious leaders would be inappropriate. So I am busy biting my tongue instead.

  4. "Interesting how when official State bodies don't keep shabbos he gets upset, but when they want to he dismisses them."
    Who wants to keep Shabbat?? The police? Ha! Does the police have an issue guarding soccer games on Shabbat? Did I as a soldier complain about guarding the Eilat beach or the Hermon ski resort on Shabbat?
    In order to prevent this alledged chillul forced Shabbat, Lag B'omer would have to be held only on Wed night and Thursday.
    The event has already gotten out of control. Tens of thousands of people are coming no matter what anyone will tell them and definitely, if someone decided to stop it, more would come in spite of that.
    The army has long ago managed to make it's own rules to prevent unnecessary chillul, in order to respect the religious soldiers, but non-religious will continue to do what they want anyway.

    1. 1) There are officers who are Shomer Shabbat.
      2) Rafi's other point is far more significant: this is essentially a case of Charedim forcing other Jews to be Michalel Shabbos because they want to have a wild party.

      That's why I will repeatedly state that the police shouldn't show up at all. Let the Charedim hurt themselves if that's what they want.

    2. You see, the people at the soccer game or the beach in Eilat don't care about Shabbat. It's when people who *do* demand the protection that it's called "hypocrisy."

      The Kotel always has guards, and there's not much chillul chag involved in guarding it.


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