Sunday, June 07, 2009

What is a Jewish State? One that observes Shabbat.

Perhaps not as stringently as the Chereidi would like, but frankly, I am in agreement with the idea that it should be illegal for businesses of any kind to be open on Shabbat in Israel. The United States economy worked perfectly well with it being illegal to have businesses open on Sundays for several hundred years. Saturday isn't any different.

Jerusalem Post Online
Jun 6, 2009 18:43 | Updated Jun 7, 2009 1:24
Haredim riot in Jerusalem over Shabbat

In a violent new flare-up of haredi-secular tensions in Jerusalem, thousands of haredim rioted on Saturday at the entrance to city hall over the city's decision to open a parking lot under the municipality buildings at Kikar Safra for visitors on Shabbat.

A non-Jew was used to operate the lot in accordance with Jewish religious law...

Ok, let's stop right there. My Torah says not just you get a sabbath, but also your menservants and maidservants, and your beasts of burden.

That means nobody should be allowed to work on shabbat, period. Not goyim, either - no maids, no cooks, no shabbos boys. If Israel is going to be a Jewish State, then it should act like one. Other than required emergency and medical services, no one should be working on shabbat, not even goyim. All non-essential services and private businesses should be shut down.

That doesn't mean people have to be religious, of course. All beaches, parks and historical sites should be free and open to the public. After all, they don't require anyone to work there - all the trash, etc., can be picked up on Sunday if people are too lazy to take their own trash back home. And if people choose to drive their cars, well, nobody should stop them (that's where freedom of religion comes in) - but they had better fill up with gas the day before, because no non-military gasoline stations would be open, either. As I said, Americans did it from the 1600s until just recently. Many European nations did it for over 1000 years. Secular or non-Jewish Israelis will just have to get over it, the same way Jews had to just get over it in America and Europe.

There should be massive fines and jail time for those who open businesses on shabbat, plain and simple. Shabbat is a defining part of Judaism - and a Jewish State should codify that into law. Anybody who doesn't like living in a Jewish state can certainly leave. Such a law is not discriminatory at all - it applies to everyone, regardless of sect or affiliation. There are plenty of Christian and Muslim states around with no shabbat observance for those who just can't not spend money for one single day.

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