Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Fight for your civil rights - oppose the marriage blacklist!

From today's HaAretz:

MK Pines-Paz slams rabbinical 'blacklists' condition for civil marriage plan
By Anshel Pfeffer, Jewish Affairs Correspondent

MK Ophir Pines-Paz, chair of the Knesset Internal Affairs and Environment Committee, on Wednesday blasted a plan agreed upon by Justice Minister Daniel Friedmann and Chief Rabbi Shlomo Amar to reinstate the "marriage blacklist." ...The proposed legislation would permit non-Jewish citizens to marry in civil ceremonies, but may legalize the formation of a database of people the rabbinate suspects are barred from marrying under Jewish law...

...The draft clarifies that "the marriageability registry," would be under the direction of the rabbinical courtsand would include "information regarding eligibility, lack of eligibility or restrictions on the eligibility of a person to marry in accordance with Jewish law." It does not contain any regulations obliging the rabbinate to inform individuals entered in the database of their status...

..A report in 2004, submitted to the Bar-On Committee tasked with sorting out the civil marriage issue, found that rabbinical court lists contained 100 mamzers, the Jewish legal term for a person born of forbidden relations between two Jews, and for that person's offspring; some 200 "questionable mamzers"; and nearly a thousand citizens who are considered Jews but for various reasons have been classified ineligible for Jewish marriage...

...Over the years, various politicians and organizations have tried but to no avail to eliminate the lists, or alternatively, compel the rabbinate to institute procedures for informing people placed on the list and enabling them to appeal...

...The main complaint over the lists is that they violate the basic rights of those listed, discriminating against them by withholding their right to marry - and all unbeknown to them until they apply for a marriage license, and without being given a right to appeal...

...Dr. Aviad Hacohen, lecturer on constitutional law and Jewish law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and at the Sha'arei Mishpat Academic College, and head of the Mosaica Institute for the Study of Religion, Society and State, says that these lists are wrongful on all levels. "The existence of such a list without those harmed by it knowing about it and able to put forward their claims is contrary both to basic democratic values and constitutional rights, and to Jewish values relating to safeguarding a person's good reputation, his dignity and his right to marry," he said. "In effect, we are talking about the existence of pedigree books that affixes a status of first-class Jews and second-class Jews."...

..."So long as they remain under the rabbinate's control, citizens' basic rights will be violated, and so long as the rabbinate has a monopoly on marriage, generations of citizens will be added to the lists that casts them out of the Jewish people and brands them with the mark of Cain."...

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Of all the shameful and racist powermongering that the Orthodox Rabbinate has inflicted on the helpless Jewish people, this is by far one of the most egregious and disgusting examples.

This may be hard for outsiders to understand, but even in the American orthodox world, the Rabbis get to decide who can get married and who is supposed to be exiled from marriage and child-rearing because of some supposed question about their status or conversion. Supposedly, by enforcing these barbaric "rules" of who is allowed to get married, the race is kept "pure."

The main problem with having the Rabbis in charge in Israel (or anywhere else for that matter) is that they have no RIGHT to tell non-orthodox people that they can't get married - and that is exactly what they are wanting to do in Israel. They intend to shove Rabbinic orthodoxy down everyone's throats by judicial fiat, to make everyone adhere to their interpretations whether the victims of their barbarism agree or not.

They have every right to decide within their own sect who will be allowed to marry and whose contaminated heritage should be killed off with enforced abstinence - but there is absolutely no way that these nutcases should be allowed to prevent non-orthodox people from exercising their basic human right to be married if they choose to be so. And if someone should decide that a marriage is more important to them than Rabbinic orthodoxy, then that person should have every right to leave the orthodox sect and do as they please.

Modern civil rights can and should trump any fundamentalist religious beliefs - especially among those who don't even hold those beliefs. Every Jew should have Freedon of Religion, which is a basic human right, and should not have some Rabbi of some sect they don't even belong to trying to ruin their life in a quest for an entirely mythical racial purity.

This type of racist elitism and powermongering is absolutely not acceptable in the modern world. In this day and age we are not slaves whose lives are run by masters who own even our private lives and can decide whether or not we are "acceptable breeding stock."

It is time to stop pandering to these mafia-esque thugs and insist on our right to a non-religious civil marriage that is legally binding and entirely bypasses the Rabbinate. A democratic country has no business whatsoever forcing one sect's interpretations on everyone else. A democracy is supposed to be majority rule, and the majority of people clearly neither benefit from nor support having the facist Rabbinate in control of marriages.

It wouldn't be so bad if we thought they were really doing this for religious reasons, but that's a fairy tale. A person who is rich and connected enough will get to bribe their way off the list, and we all know it. If you have enough money, your divorce, your remarriage, your questionable status or your race will be completely ignored - just as it always has been. This isn't about religion - it's about power and money. This is nothing but a move to force people who don't want to play their game to be under their power, and it's disgusting.

I feel absolute loathing for the Rabbinate right now, and I cannot be the only person who feels this way after reading this - and after reading the numerous other scandals, lies, frauds, and control ploys the Rabbinate coughs up every single day from the darkness of their delusions of grandeur. It's time to stop this mentally defective reasoning and restore democracy and civil rights to the people of Israel.

Vote with your pocketbook, class, and with your ballot. Contact the government officials who represent you and let them know in no uncertain terms that this barbaric agreement is not going to be tolerated. If you believe in basic human rights then you cannot sit back and let this barbarism go unchallenged.

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