Saturday, June 19, 2010

Ashkenazi Jews Protest In Support of School Segregation...

... in Israel.

In some ways, Israeli Jews function as foils to American Jews. While American Jews almost uniformly believe "diversity is our strength," Israeli Jews do not. Not only can they not get along with the Arabs, but some can't even get along with members of other Jewish ethnic divisions.

A few days ago, thousands of ultra-Orthodox Ashkenazi Jews protested in Jerusalem against the integration of a girls' school, which forced their girls to go to school with Sephardi girls:

Parents of European, or Ashkenazi, descent at a girls' school in the West Bank settlement of Emanuel don't want their daughters to study with schoolgirls of Mideast and North African descent, known as Sephardim.

The Ashkenazi parents insist they aren't racist, but want to keep the classrooms segregated, as they have been for years, arguing that the families of the Sephardi girls aren't religious enough.

Israel's Supreme Court rejected that argument, and ruled that the 43 sets of parents who have defied the integration efforts by keeping their daughters from school were to be jailed on Thursday for two weeks.

Haaretz's article contained a revealing passage:

Thirty-five men, fathers to the Ashkenazi girls attending an illegally segregated school in the West Bank settlement of Immanuel, arrived at the Ma'asiyahu prison earlier Thursday evening to serve a two-week sentence.

But two other fathers and 22 mothers also sentenced failed to show at the Jerusalem police headquarters as ordered by the court.

Both mothers and fathers were ordered to prison, but the all of the mothers are failing to report. Part of civil disobedience is accepting your punishment, but apparently the women disagree. I wouldn't be surprised if the courts end up dropping the charges against the women. Remember, women are never responsible for their actions - men are.

Anyways, this is yet another example of the fact that diversity is not a strength. Instead, it sows discord and conflict wherever it is found.

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