Sunday, October 31, 2010

He's not afraid. Let's take him up on that.

Not one penny.

I will not send one more penny to any chereidi organization in Israel (or anywhere else for that matter), and I urge you to do the same. And if the government lets this law pass, then not one penny, period, for anything.
Bill granting Rabbinate monopoly on conversions sparks fiery debate
Reform and Conservative leaders lash out, calling proposed law 'unfair'.
By Raphael Ahren
[hat tip: Failed Messiah]

The author of a controversial bill that would grant the Chief Rabbinate sole authority over the conversion process in Israel said this week that he has little regard for non-Orthodox streams of Judaism. He also said that he won't be intimidated by threats that world Jewry would withdraw its support for Israel if his legislation passed, provoking hefty protests from opponents of the bill...

..."The only way we can [improve the current conversion system] is if conversion is done according to Orthodox halakha and not according to Reform or Conservative halakha, if there is such a thing," Rotem said, speaking in English. "If you are telling somebody that he can convert in a Reform or Conservative way and then to come to Israel and be a part of the Jewish nation you are cheating him," he added, referring to the fact that the Rabbinate will not serve those converts in the areas of weddings and divorce, and might not recognize a convert's children as Jewish. Conversions conducted by non-Orthodox movements are recognized by Israel's secular authorities but not by the Rabbinate, which is in charge of life cycle events in Israel...

..."I think it was quite clear that [Rotem's] presentation offended many, including Modern Orthodox representatives that were there," Azari told Anglo File after the meeting. "I got so many remarks from North American people sitting in the committee that feel bad about his attitude toward Reform rabbis. This meeting instilled more hate, and the only benefit that I can see is that more Jewish leaders from around the world saw the real face of Rotem's intention."

...Jerry Silverman, president and CEO of the Jewish Federations of North America, questioned whether the committee members understood Rotem's true intentions. "I think it was very unnerving and very uncomfortable for people to hear that from somebody who leads such an important committee in the Knesset," he told Anglo File. "It created a sense of disappointment. It's really the first time that many of those people had a live exposure to this issue, and to MK Rotem...

...His bill "has turned significant numbers of people away from the state of Israel," added Davids, who immigrated to Israel in 2004. Rotem fought back that the hostile reactions to his proposal by the Reform and Conservative movements have caused that about-face. "I was held at gunpoint in the United States when I met with leaders of the Reform and Conservative movements, and [one person] told me: 'If you go on with this law, we will not support the state of Israel,'" Rotem said. "Don't threaten me with 'We are not going to support the state of Israel if you are going on with this law.' I am not afraid."

Got that, class? Either you conform to the Chereidi standards of the Chief Rabbinate or you're not Jewish, and non-Orthodox converts are still goyim. They will not be allowed to marry or be buried or have any status as Jews in Israel.

So, basically, if this law passes, then Israel is saying that it believes non-orthodox Jews are not Jewish. (And by "orthodox" the Chief Rabbinate is referring to standards that even most "modern" orthodox cannot meet. Recall, this same group said that any Rabbi that believes the world is older than 6000 years old is not fit to be a dayan on a bet din.) If Israel's Knesset allows this law to pass then they are saying "up yours" to all non-orthodox Jews, but especially American Jews.

So why are we supporting the state of Israel with bonds and investments, if the State of Israel agrees that most American Jews are not Jews?

Why do we tell our congresspersons to support Israel, if the State of Israel agrees that most American Jews are not Jews?

Why are we supporting charities and aliyah programs in Israel, if the State of Israel agrees that if we use them, most Americans are relegated to second class status and denied status as Jews?

Contact the Israeli Consulate in DC and make your position clear:

The Embassy of Israel in Washington DC
Address: 3514 International Drive, NW,
Washington, D.C. 20008.
Telephone: 202-364-5500.
Fax: 202-364-5423.

Contact the Knesset and make your position clear:

Their English Webpage

Current Knesset Members (click on each to email)

Physical Address:
Kiryat Ben Gurion, Jerusalem 91950

Telephone: 02-6753333

Committee for Immigration, Absorption and Diaspora Affairs

Telephone (Area Code 02): 6408819 / 6408822
Fax (Area Code 02): 6753173
Email Address:

Committee Chairperson: Lia Shemtov

Committee Members:
Daniel Ben Simon Danny Danon Zeev Elkin Avraham Michaeli Yulia Shamalov Berkovich
Marina Solodkin Robert Tiviaev

Committee Staff:
Director: Dana Gordon
Senior Coordinator: Tzipi Giladi
Coordinator: Dolly Shimoni
Spokesperson: Yigal Amitai
Legal Advisor: Nira Lamay

Find other committes

If this bill passes, sell your Israel Bonds and then let the Knesset know about it - and that you are no longer willing to invest in an Israel that denies freedom of religious practice to Jews in Israel and denies Jewish status to non-orthodox Jews. and so on and so forth.

You cannot sit by and let these chereidi fanatics expel most American Jews from Judaism for refusing to live in the middle ages. That is exactly the intent of this bill - to "establish" that Reform, Conservative, Secular, Reconstructionist, and Athiest Jews are not Jews at all. It has no other purpose, and if you ignore it, you are agreeing with their objective to delegitimize all non-chereidi Jews.

It's that simple. Fight, or lose your status as a Jews. They aren't playing here, they are deadly serious. You need to make it clear that you're not going down without a fight, class. MK Rotem is not afraid to lose your money or your support.

Show him he should be.

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