Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

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Re: How can I express logical arguments?

Postby Azrael » Tue May 05, 2015 12:26 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Capital Crime~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
When the 'Supreme Court of Israel' is not in existence, capital punishment may not be executed by any court. 'Supreme Court of Israel' refers to the court as established by the Torah, meaning that no modern court of the State of Israel qualifies. Without you understanding the procedures of the 'Supreme Court of Israel' regarding how cases are decided and how 'stoning' is carried out, we cannot talk about the morality of the system. Once again, there is no way for me to explain the Torah's judicial system. Some rabbis dedicate their whole careers to the Torah's judicial system and how it compares to modern judicial systems.

This is you playing games to avoid answering a hard question. Stop it, it's transparent. Were there such a court, would you support the sentence of stoning? Given your repeated assertions, I expect you would say yes. Actually, I expect you to dodge the question. But hey, it still brings us back to the point: modern society won't let you practice all your laws.

Also, to entirely belabor the point, you've conveniently skipped the bit about the torah being just fine with slavery.

This is a super, super small detail that in no way affect anything else on this tread; Jews believe that Shabbat is on Saturdays.

Which is why I said Sabbath when referring to the thing that Christianity considers to fall on a Sunday.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~My Decision puts an Unfair Burden on Society~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
The current code of ethics that American society uses in sexual matter was created by the Sexual Revolution. The Sexual Revolution had one axiom at its center: Anything sexual that all immediately effected parties consent to is moral. This was used to argue that the restrictions of the past should not be followed; but this is a two way street. Just as the Sexual Revolution says that society should respect the decision of people who choose to experience certain forms of sexuality, society must also respect the decision of people who choose not to experience certain forms of sexuality. The motivation for the decision is irrelevant; societies that follow the morals set by the Sexual Revolution must respect the decisions of people who take opposite approaches to sexuality. That is why I am allowed to putting an burden on society; society has already said that it will accept such burdens.

Those last two sentences don't follow from each other, and the last clause isn't an accurate description of the social contract. You've misunderstood what it means to substantially burden the practice of someone's religious beliefs. Tolerating (no one says to you have to accept or practice) premarital relations or homosexuality (as examples) isn't a substantial burden on you practicing your religious beliefs. Requiring you to get a license for your yarmulke would be. To burden your practice is to limit your expression. Sometimes society does place substantial burdens on the expression of religion, typically when that practice conflicts with the rights of another.

While society is expected to accept the practice of religious beliefs, it is not required to participate in the execution of those beliefs, nor accommodate you when your restrictions fall upon other people to execute. You can decline to touch women under this arraignment, but you can't make them switch seats, or hold up an aircraft's departure because you want them to. It's also important to note that this isn't quid pro quo. Society adds burdens to the otherwise protected free expression of religion in various ways, but that doesn't not give license to the participants of any one faith to burden another specific person (i.e. you don't get to tell Sally she can't sit in her chosen and paid for seat). The airline could, within this structure, tell you to take your seat or leave. They are under no obligation to accommodate you when you require someone else to comply with your religious practices.

Overall, if you can do it yourself, all is good. If you need me to change my otherwise non-intrusive behavior, you're out of luck. Need an example? No one minds if you don't eat pork, but you can't come into a restaurant and tell me that I can't eat pork at the table next to you.

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Re: How can I express logical arguments?

Postby krogoth » Tue May 05, 2015 12:32 pm UTC

Azrael wrote:
This is a super, super small detail that in no way affect anything else on this tread; Jews believe that Shabbat is on Saturdays.

Which is why I said Sabbath when referring to the thing that Christianity considers to fall on a Sunday.


to be fair I thought this was me about the stoning the stick collector, still he is dodging the question
R3sistance - I don't care at all for the ignorance spreading done by many and to the best of my abilities I try to correct this as much as I can, but I know and understand that even I can not be completely honest, truthful and factual all of the time.

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Re: How can I express logical arguments?

Postby Azrael » Tue May 05, 2015 12:34 pm UTC

krogoth wrote:
Azrael wrote:Which is why I said Sabbath when referring to the thing that Christianity considers to fall on a Sunday.
to be fair I thought this was me about the stoning the stick collector, still he is dodging the question
Perhaps he will start using the quote function and we could know for sure.

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Re: How can I express logical arguments?

Postby krogoth » Tue May 05, 2015 12:48 pm UTC

I will note I like it when jewish_scientist points out what he think's is unimportant but think he should explain where to look or better yet why it's unimportant. before moving on.
R3sistance - I don't care at all for the ignorance spreading done by many and to the best of my abilities I try to correct this as much as I can, but I know and understand that even I can not be completely honest, truthful and factual all of the time.

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby jewish_scientist » Tue May 05, 2015 1:30 pm UTC

I am going to make a brief post so that everyone understands why I cannot debate some things with you.

Azrael wrote:
jewish_scientist wrote:~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Capital Crime~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
When the 'Supreme Court of Israel' is not in existence, capital punishment may not be executed by any court. 'Supreme Court of Israel' refers to the court as established by the Torah, meaning that no modern court of the State of Israel qualifies. Without you understanding the procedures of the 'Supreme Court of Israel' regarding how cases are decided and how 'stoning' is carried out, we cannot talk about the morality of the system. Once again, there is no way for me to explain the Torah's judicial system. Some rabbis dedicate their whole careers to the Torah's judicial system and how it compares to modern judicial systems.

This is you playing games to avoid answering a hard question. Stop it, it's transparent. Were there such a court, would you support the sentence of stoning? Given your repeated assertions, I expect you would say yes. Actually, I expect you to dodge the question. But hey, it still brings us back to the point: modern society won't let you practice all your laws.

Also, to entirely belabor the point, you've conveniently skipped the bit about the torah being just fine with slavery.


What do you want to do?! Do you want to debate the morality of a judicial system you do not understand?! Do you think that is going to help anyone?! All that is going to happen is I that I will say something, and then have to explain all the principles and logic behind it. Then you will use your very elementary understanding a very complex topic to try, and make a counter argument to what I said. NOTHING good can come from debating like this.

Imagine Adam and Ben are debating about the political sciences, but Ben does not know anything about the political sciences. So whenever Adam says a term like 'social contract' he needs to digress and explain the complex idea in a couple sentences. Now, every time Ben makes an argument, he is basing it on complex, multidimensional issues that he has received a 5 minute summery of. When the debate ends, Adam is angry because he could never say his opinion because he had to try and teach Ben about everything that was brought up. Ben is angry because he thinks that when Adam explains why his understanding of a subject is wrong, Adam is actually redefining it. The are both angry for legitimate reasons. The end result being that Adam and Ben have created negative opinions about the other person and their ideas.

You cannot talk about Einsteinian physics to someone who has never learned Newtonian physics. It simple does not work.
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby jewish_scientist » Tue May 05, 2015 1:31 pm UTC

I am going to make a brief post so that everyone understands why I cannot debate some things with you.

Azrael wrote:
jewish_scientist wrote:~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Capital Crime~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
When the 'Supreme Court of Israel' is not in existence, capital punishment may not be executed by any court. 'Supreme Court of Israel' refers to the court as established by the Torah, meaning that no modern court of the State of Israel qualifies. Without you understanding the procedures of the 'Supreme Court of Israel' regarding how cases are decided and how 'stoning' is carried out, we cannot talk about the morality of the system. Once again, there is no way for me to explain the Torah's judicial system. Some rabbis dedicate their whole careers to the Torah's judicial system and how it compares to modern judicial systems.

This is you playing games to avoid answering a hard question. Stop it, it's transparent. Were there such a court, would you support the sentence of stoning? Given your repeated assertions, I expect you would say yes. Actually, I expect you to dodge the question. But hey, it still brings us back to the point: modern society won't let you practice all your laws.

Also, to entirely belabor the point, you've conveniently skipped the bit about the torah being just fine with slavery.


What do you want to do?! Do you want to debate the morality of a judicial system you do not understand?! Do you think that is going to help anyone?! All that is going to happen is I that I will say something, and then have to explain all the principles and logic behind it. Then you will use your very elementary understanding of a very complex topic to try, and make a counter argument to what I said. NOTHING good can come from debating like this.

Imagine Adam and Ben are debating about the political sciences, but Ben does not know anything about the political sciences. So whenever Adam says a term like 'social contract' he needs to digress and explain the complex idea in a couple sentences. Now, every time Ben makes an argument, he is basing it on complex, multidimensional issues that he has received a 5 minute summery of. When the debate ends, Adam is angry because he could never say his opinion because he had to try and teach Ben about everything that was brought up. Ben is angry because he thinks that when Adam explains why his understanding of a subject is wrong, Adam is actually redefining it. The are both angry for legitimate reasons. The end result being that Adam and Ben have created negative opinions about the other person and their ideas.

You cannot talk about what dark matter is made of to someone who has never learned particle physics. It simple does not work.
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby Azrael » Tue May 05, 2015 1:37 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:What do you want to do?! Do you want to debate the morality of a judicial system you do not understand?!

No, Mr Bond, I expect you to die.

Through the examples given, I expect you to recognize that strict adherence to some old testament religious laws is incompatible with modern society. Because of this, you need to explain the rationale for edge cases lest they be written off as equally unjustified as your laws that require stoning, or that validate slavery.

Or, if that is unacceptable, I expect you to leave. After all, there's no point in having a not-debate. As of now, you're positioning yourself behind things you "cannot debate", rather than using two givens (ancient torah law and modern secular legal system) to rationally explore how to fit your strictures into larger society. If you don't want to discuss how your religion interacts with modern society, don't start a thread on the topic.

Dogmatic responses only fly so far.

jewish_scientist wrote:You cannot talk about what dark matter is made of to someone who has never learned particle physics. It simple does not work.

Actually, people do this all the time. We can probably find a few threads on this forum that do so. I can find a half dozen decent youtube videos in mere seconds.

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby krogoth » Tue May 05, 2015 1:50 pm UTC

Most people here are well educated, more so than I often by orders of magnitude.

If you cannot explain to them an opinion, then writing a blog/youtube vid as I think all this was expected to start, or talking to common folk holding common jobs, would be less than fruitful or at best deceitful.

Suggesting two people cannot debate because of one's ineptitude of explanation is blamed on the person explaining, not the listener.

You are coherent to me at the least, until you step into the grounds where it sounds like you don't have the fortitude to tread. Then it sounds like you don't have the knowledge to make an argument, at least have the guts to say so like I have done so at least once this thread.

If you can make the argument do so, if not. it's not an argument.

jewish_scientist, you must be willing to debate the morality of any system, including your own, if you want to influence others.
R3sistance - I don't care at all for the ignorance spreading done by many and to the best of my abilities I try to correct this as much as I can, but I know and understand that even I can not be completely honest, truthful and factual all of the time.

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby elasto » Tue May 05, 2015 2:06 pm UTC

Yup. You need to understand something very important, j_s:

I forget the original title of this thread now, but it was something along the lines of you being able to logically, rationally disprove an article.

If you wish to do so, you cannot retreat to an appeal to authority. You cannot hide behind 'men and women are different spiritually', or 'it's what the Torah says'.

It's (sort of) fine for you in your personal life to say 'ok, so the Jewish faith is sexist and discriminatory in the eyes of the world, but for good, spiritual reasons', but you cannot tell yourself 'the Jewish faith isn't sexist and discriminatory in the eyes of the world' unless you can conclude that from the same first principles everyone else uses. You must argue the Jewish moral system in the abstract, purely on its own merits, as if you had invented it this very day and noone else had ever heard of it. You must be able to argue why it is better than Utilitarianism or any other construct.

We're here to tell you that the arguments you've put forward so far are not persuasive. You may not care about that; You may consider it a matter of faith; But then again, it seems like you do care since you started this thread.

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby ucim » Tue May 05, 2015 2:21 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:What do you want to do?! Do you want to debate the morality of a judicial system you do not understand?!
Condescension doesn't win points.

Originally you asked "How can I express my vary logical arguments?". (sic) We're telling you how and you're saying "I don't want to do that". The issue with Judaism and Sexism was merely an example.

So now it's the main topic ([Title Change]). This particular topic has many layers. Although they interact, they can be discussed independently. I would recommend that you pick one. As I see it, issues are, in rough order of specific to general:
  • This particular Judaic law is/is not sexist.
  • Judaism is/is not sexist.
  • Sexism in Judaism is/is not justifiable.
  • Judaic law is/is not justifiable.
  • Other people are/are not obligated to accommodate Judaic rulesets, while Jews are/are not obligated to accommodate other people's wishes and desires, and rulesets.
So, at what level do you wish to discuss this?

What happens when I substitute "Islamic" or "Pagan" or "Hindu" or "Pastafarian" for "Judaic"?

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby cphite » Tue May 05, 2015 2:50 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:What do you want to do?! Do you want to debate the morality of a judicial system you do not understand?!


Absolutely. Good debate can lead to understanding.

Do you think that is going to help anyone?!


That depends on whether or not there is actually good debate. If you continue to dodge and spin, there is probably less that can be learned.

All that is going to happen is I that I will say something, and then have to explain all the principles and logic behind it. Then you will use your very elementary understanding a very complex topic to try, and make a counter argument to what I said. NOTHING good can come from debating like this.


If cannot talk about something then you don't really know it. Nobody is expecting to come away from this with a full understanding of all the details of Orthodox Law; but if you cannot explain the concepts in terms of this discussion, then you are the one who is lacking.

Imagine Adam and Ben are debating about the political sciences, but Ben does not know anything about the political sciences. So whenever Adam says a term like 'social contract' he needs to digress and explain the complex idea in a couple sentences. Now, every time Ben makes an argument, he is basing it on complex, multidimensional issues that he has received a 5 minute summery of. When the debate ends, Adam is angry because he could never say his opinion because he had to try and teach Ben about everything that was brought up. Ben is angry because he thinks that when Adam explains why his understanding of a subject is wrong, Adam is actually redefining it. The are both angry for legitimate reasons. The end result being that Adam and Ben have created negative opinions about the other person and their ideas.


If Adam cannot explain his position in layman's terms then he doesn't know what he's talking about.

You started this thread by asking how you can express your "very" logical arguments. Well, for starters, you could try actually presenting a logical argument. If your argument depends on specialized terms or concepts that you cannot explain, it's not a very logical argument. Assuming you actually understand the argument, you should have no problem phrasing it in a logical manner.

The onus falls on you to present the argument. If you believe that your audience will not be familiar with terms or concepts, the onus falls on you to describe those terms or concepts in a logical manner. This forum is filled with people who discuss things that are far, far more complicated than Orthodox Law; do your best, if people have questions they can ask them.

And since this is all written down, people can always look back at any information if they need to.

You cannot talk about Einsteinian physics to someone who has never learned Newtonian physics. It simple does not work.


Someone who actually understands Einstein should have no problem conveying the general ideas in layman's terms.

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby Angua » Tue May 05, 2015 3:23 pm UTC

Albert Einstein wrote:You do not really understand something unless you can explain it to your grandmother.


You can't hide behind the fact that it's too complicated by comparing it to physics.
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Re: How can I express my vary logical arguments?

Postby K-R » Tue May 05, 2015 3:53 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:The point is not that touching always causes lustful thought, but that it can. Can you honestly say that physical contact, of any kind, between a man and a woman has 0% chance of causing lustful thought in one of them?

Looking seems like a far higher-risk activity than touching, to me. I'd be very, very surprised if anyone ever went from zero to lustful based solely on touching. At least the sort of touching we're talking about.

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby elasto » Tue May 05, 2015 4:26 pm UTC

K-R wrote:
jewish_scientist wrote:The point is not that touching always causes lustful thought, but that it can. Can you honestly say that physical contact, of any kind, between a man and a woman has 0% chance of causing lustful thought in one of them?

Looking seems like a far higher-risk activity than touching, to me. I'd be very, very surprised if anyone ever went from zero to lustful based solely on touching. At least the sort of touching we're talking about.


Yup. Though it's obviously abhorrent at least Islam follows the argument through to its 'logical', 'rational' conclusion.

And given that roughly one in ten people are homosexual, if touch is such a high-risk activity the edict ought to be noone should be permitted to shake hands or sit close enough that there might be accidental contact. And both men and women should be veiled of course.

If we're not going for an appeal to authority - ie. we ignore what the Torah demands and try to work out the rational course from first principles - I find it hard to conclude any case has been made for the Jewish version of moral behaviour.

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby KrytenKoro » Tue May 05, 2015 4:41 pm UTC

elasto wrote:
K-R wrote:
jewish_scientist wrote:The point is not that touching always causes lustful thought, but that it can. Can you honestly say that physical contact, of any kind, between a man and a woman has 0% chance of causing lustful thought in one of them?

Looking seems like a far higher-risk activity than touching, to me. I'd be very, very surprised if anyone ever went from zero to lustful based solely on touching. At least the sort of touching we're talking about.


Yup. Though it's obviously abhorrent at least Islam follows the argument through to its 'logical', 'rational' conclusion.

And given that roughly one in ten people are homosexual, if touch is such a high-risk activity the edict ought to be noone should be permitted to shake hands or sit close enough that there might be accidental contact. And both men and women should be veiled of course.

If we're not going for an appeal to authority - ie. we ignore what the Torah demands and try to work out the rational course from first principles - I find it hard to conclude any case has been made for the Jewish version of moral behaviour.


This actually seems like one part where the New Testament was faithful to the old, and remarkably prescient of enlightened ideals regarding the limits of rights -- "if your right eye causes you to stumble, gouge it out."

Mutilation itself is not needed here, I think, but at the very least, perhaps something along the lines of vows of silence? Perhaps, rather than refusing to shake hands, simply commit to wearing gloves and a blindfold whenever one is in public? Or taking medication that dulls the sex drive (since that exists), or prevents puberty altogether? I know that full-on castration is anathema, so that's out, but does Orthodox Judaism allow the use of medicine that chemically prevents puberty?

Regardless, there are plenty of ways to remove the potential for lustful thoughts that do not require any form of sexism or burden on others. Why not try those?
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Re: How can I express my vary logical arguments?

Postby Tyndmyr » Tue May 05, 2015 4:52 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:
Tyndmyr wrote:
Knowing this, what does 'Ultra-Orthodox' mean. I think the definition would be along the lines of 'a Jew who follows all the religious laws more than an Orthodox Jew'. Do a simple substitution and the definition becomes 'a Jew who follows all religious laws more than another Jew who follows all religious laws.' Its like saying 'Ultra-Law-Abiding-Citizen', which would refer to a person who follows all the government's laws more than another person who follows all the government's laws. It makes Jews who are simple doing what the Torah (Bible) instructs them sound like an radical or extremest. This in turn implies that 'regular' Jews are the ones that believe that most, if not all, of the Torah is not applicable to modern times. By this same logic, Christian priests would be 'Ultra-Christians' , voters would be 'Ultra-Democrats' and people with a job would be 'Ultra-Capitalists'.


The substituted definition is congruent. Extreme Right Wing is a reasonable term that sees use. What's radical is determined by the population, not by it's relationship to a ruleset. If only a few percent of the population take the same viewpoint you do, with the rest all arrayed to one side of you, guess what, you're extreme.

Also, we call the equivalent sort of Christian folks "fundies". Or "crazy fundies". Cultists might be more appropriate for some. LOTS of people see following old religious rules in great detail to be a little ridiculous. Judaism is not treated special in regards to this. Welcome to the club.


Those are some good points. Referring to a person as politically radical is very (with an 'e' :)) different than referring to a person as religiously radical. People who so strongly believe in their platform that they refuse to compromise are called extreme [insert political party here]. People who so strongly believe in their religion that they use violence are called [insert religion name here] extremist. What I am trying to say is that people at the furthest ends of a spectrum are extremists. People at the furthest ends of the religious spectrum are horrible people. Therefor, Orthodox Jews are not extremest. We may be more to the left or right on the spectrum, depending on how you define it, but we are not at the ends.


If you're an extremist, you are extreme. There is no difference in terms here. And your "horrible people" logic is strange at best. I don't care WHAT your political views are for determining if your religious views are extreme. The only relevant factor is how your views square up against other religious views. If you're extreme compared to most of them, bam, you're an extremist. Extremist = someone who is extreme by definition.

I have never heard the word cult used in a complimentary or neutral way. If 'crazy fundy' is equivalent to cultist, then it is an insult. Just because there is an insulting word that corresponds to every group, does not mean that the words are not insulting. For example, there are a lot of words (that I do not want to type out) that insult people who are African, Asian, Latino, and Inuit, but those words are still racist.


Crazy fundie IS insulting. It is meant to be. But it insults on the basis of religious belief, not on the basis of race. Therefore, it is not racist.

I kind of agree with you, but kind of disagree are the same time. When referring to religion, fundamentalist definitely has some negative connotations. I guess Ultra-Orthodox is like the Jewish version of fundamentalism. It just that whenever I see it being used, it is always in a negative light. In addition, no one self-identifies as 'Ultra-Orthodox', but some people would identify are Fundamentalist Christians.


Fundie isn't a self-identified term for fundamentalists either. So? It's negative, but still descriptive, and not racist.

jewish_scientist wrote:
krogth wrote:You don't have think of coitus just because you are in physical contact with someone, I generally don't think too much about the gender of people I meet and know. I recognize it, (most of the time, some people these days :/ not that it matters), but that as far as I'm aware has little to no impact on how i react to them.


The point is not that touching always causes lustful thought, but that it can. Can you honestly say that physical contact, of any kind, between a man and a woman has 0% chance of causing lustful thought in one of them?


Are we going to ban everything with a miniscule chance of creating an undesired thought? Really?

elasto wrote:Basically, it's quite unreasonable to restrict someone else's freedoms in order to pander to your moral inadequacy, which is what both veils and segregation would end up doing.


This is what this all comes down to. You're free to not shake hands if you wish. You're also free to avoid settings which you dislike. You are not free to demand other people avoid settings for your convenience. At least not public settings. Your freedom extends to your actions. You don't get to dictate how the rest of the world works. At least, not if we're talking about freedom, you don't.

But yes, people may assume negative things about you because of your choices. That's normal. Someone refusing to shake hands probably comes across as rude. Your freedom gives you the choice. It doesn't grant you immunity from other people's choices.

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby BattleMoose » Wed May 06, 2015 3:21 am UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:What do you want to do?! Do you want to debate the morality of a judicial system you do not understand?! Do you think that is going to help anyone?! All that is going to happen is I that I will say something, and then have to explain all the principles and logic behind it. Then you will use your very elementary understanding of a very complex topic to try, and make a counter argument to what I said. NOTHING good can come from debating like this.


In a word, yes. I think most people here can easily and competently engage in a moral discussion regarding the morality of "stoning". If there are compounding factors that you think are relevant, then share them (Although I cannot possibly imagine any compounding factors that could make stoning, moral, but I will listen). But this is what this place is, a place where ideas are shared and challenged. And you are refusing to have your ideas challenged, no dice.

Not to mention the extremely condescending nature of your last post. In terms of sharing your rational and logical ideas, this is the exact opposite way of doing it.

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby Copper Bezel » Wed May 06, 2015 5:00 am UTC

BattleMoose wrote:In a word, yes. I think most people here can easily and competently engage in a moral discussion regarding the morality of "stoning".


Really? The discussion so far has been about whether or not an element of Jewish law practiced in isolation is sexist by the standards of contemporary society. That question is ultimately, can strictly Orthodox Jews carry out their religious obligations and otherwise integrate with mainstream society, or is this particular observance unacceptably offensive and burdensome? It is itself, I think, an easy question, but I'm terribly biased in favor of throwing out old books when they tell you to be a dick.

If you want to open up to discussion of the whole Jewish law in a form that is no longer practiced - cannot be, because the ostensibly divinely authorized societal organ that arbitrates it in that form no longer exists and cannot be recreated* - then you have to start thinking in terms of a wholly separate and doubtless entirely reprehensible moral code. I don't understand the point of arguing whether or not it is the moral right of a present and communicating God on Earth to dictate capital punishment. We definitely don't have one around now to compare to and most of us quite sensibly believe we never did.

* A lot of things are more powerful as myths than they are as real human institutions - Walmart uses actual religious icons of Sam Walton to help keep their Associates focused on ephemeral ultimate rewards. But asking a Jewish believer to serve up a sacrifice or a stoning is very much the same thing as asking a Christian to produce Jesus to make up a batch of wine for your party tonight.
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby jewish_scientist » Wed May 06, 2015 6:33 am UTC

krogoth wrote:Suggesting two people cannot debate because of one's ineptitude of explanation is blamed on the person explaining, not the listener.

ucim wrote:Condescension doesn't win points.

cphite wrote:Nobody is expecting to come away from this with a full understanding of all the details of Orthodox Law; but if you cannot explain the concepts in terms of this discussion, then you are the one who is lacking.

BattleMoose wrote:Not to mention the extremely condescending nature of your last post.


The vast majority of my recent posts has been me trying to explain that we cannot debate the Torah's laws on capital punishment because I, me, jewish_scientist, am not smart to explain what the Torah's laws about capital punishment are. The net result is that everyone now thinks that I am a jerk. I know that I am not nearly smart enough to explain those laws to you. I have been unable to explain that I am not good enough to explain these laws. It is like a meta-failure. I cannot even tell you why we cannot talk about capital punishment. The best attempt I can and have make has ended in total disaster. I know that it is my fault that we cannot have debates on capital punishment. I have resorted to typing multiple sentences that have identical meaning because I don't know what else to do.

If I offended or insulted anyone, I am sorry. It only happened because I am so horrible at communicating. I am actually crying because I am so sad. I never intended to hurt anyone's feelings. Just, please stop being ad at me. I would really like it if we went back to talking about sexism. O.k.? I know more about that topic.
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby krogoth » Wed May 06, 2015 8:14 am UTC

Following laws to the letter(orthodox) that you can't or don't understand can be a bad idea. The ignorant are easily lead astray.

I'm sorry you've been offended by these questions and statements. It's difficult for anyone to have their believes challenged. It's also not the easiest thing for people to challenge a book they find with many of abhorrent laws and still remain fully polite.

Have a look at at those laws, even if you don't think they are to be followed currently, or even if its just because you don't understand them, remember the reason many of us think it's a bad moral compass for some things, is because it is very bad at others, even if you can fish around and find a few good scraps in it.

If you would like to continue, maybe we can keep a list of specific laws you'd like to talk about. I think it would be a fair to use edit on the first comment to keep the list up to date.

So the for say the seating laws, I think it's fairly clear that Jew's should pre-arrange seats, Should flights offer to assist pre-arranging a seat? maybe, but even they shouldn't be held to guarantee. Either way Jews do not have the right to delay flight for an extended period of time. Sit down or being asked to leave without compensation if they are unable to accept the situation.

Leviticus 27 is undeniable sexist, and Deuteronomy 22 is both sexist and has those murder laws you don't want to talk about.
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby ucim » Wed May 06, 2015 1:33 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:...I know that I am not nearly smart enough to explain those laws to you. I have been unable to explain that I am not good enough to explain these laws...
Then why do you follow them? This is a serious question that gets to the heart of the reason the original question is a thing in the first place. At some point, you have to decide whether or not to follow a given ruleset, so how do you decide? And then, with respect to this, does it even matter whether the ruleset is sexist or not?

As to the original example, if your ruleset dictates who should or should not be in the seats next to you, then purchase both adjacent seats when you buy your own ticket. That way the burden of your ruleset is on you, not on somebody else. Perhaps a secondary market will develop in these seats, and a viable business opportunity will open up.

jewish_scientist wrote:I have been unable to explain that I am not good enough to explain these laws.
Perhaps you should revisit the original reason for the original post... the "how do I explain my very logical arguments?" one. First thing to consider is that your arguments might not be very logical if they are based on stuff you can't explain. So, take a step back and ask (us or yourself) how you could explain Jewish law. My impression of Orthodox Judaism is that it is very rule-based, and that the rules have historical reasons. However, my view on rules is that the rules are much less important than the reasons that they were made, and that rules should change as the reasons become inapplicable. Perhaps this is a different view of rules than Orthodox Judaism takes; that would be part of the discussion.

But in any case, there are two pieces:
1: Why should a Jew follow this (any given Jewish) law? (The answer does not go without saying.)
2: Why should a non-Jew also be made to follow this law?

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Re: How can I express my vary logical arguments?

Postby mathmannix » Wed May 06, 2015 1:51 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:I started rereading the article and some of the articles it links to, but I had to stop and get this off my chest because every time I see it a internally flip out.

The term 'Ultra-Orthadox' is offensive and possible antisemitic, depending on how you define antisemitism. Quick lesson on Jewish 'fractions'.


jewish_scientist wrote:I have never heard the word cult used in a complimentary or neutral way. If 'crazy fundy' is equivalent to cultist, then it is an insult.

...

I kind of agree with you, but kind of disagree are the same time. When referring to religion, fundamentalist definitely has some negative connotations. I guess Ultra-Orthodox is like the Jewish version of fundamentalism. It just that whenever I see it being used, it is always in a negative light. In addition, no one self-identifies as 'Ultra-Orthodox', but some people would identify are Fundamentalist Christians.


I proudly identify as a fundamentalist Christian. I take it literally, going back to the fundamentals of the religion. I think it’s analogous to being a strict Constitutionalist for a Supreme Court justice. (“Fundy” on the other hand is a pejorative insult, and “crazy fundy” is obviously meant to offend.)

That being said, however, I think with regards to a strict interpretations of law, there can be what some may call ultra-orthodox… basically, this would be sort of like “lawful stupid” (Warning, TV Tropes!) This is something Jesus Christ criticized the Pharisees for in the New Testament… missing the point of the law, and applying it when a common sense approach is better. “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath or not? Which of you, having an ass or an ox that has fallen into a well, will not immediately pull him out on the Sabbath?”

I think the answer lies in the different types of Jewish law.

Azrael wrote:
jewish_scientist wrote:Also, I am not restricting anyone freedoms but my own. I have decided that I will not touch women because I believe it is the moral thing to do.


… your discrimination in the name of religious belief doesn't get an unlimited free pass -- that's the whole point of the initial article. Most western societies would not accept your religious beliefs if you made the claim you couldn't touch black people because it would make you morally unclean. Or if you believed in stoning adulterers*. Those aren't acceptable behaviors in modern society, regardless of whether there is a historic or religious precedent.

Back to living in a society with multiple religious and secular doctrines that conflict -- there is well established ability to reasonably burden the practice of a religion. We might outlaw stoning, for instance. Or strike laws from the books that prevented stores from opening on the sabbath. Or stop excusing your behavior when you refuse to touch women, and either make you take your seat or disembark the aircraft. Are these burdens placed upon your right to freely practice your religion? Yes.

* SIDE NOTE: Stoning provides such a useful example. You say you want to follow the Torah even if you don't understand the laws, but what about stoning? Do you believe adulterers (or any of the other dozen or so crimes deemed worthy of that punishment) should be executed in that fashion? And if not, do you acknowledge that not all of the original laws can or should be followed? Isn't slavery in there too?

Because this is where people start drawing lines suggesting sexism in the case at hand. You want to follow the laws as closely as possible, but you acknowledge some of them can't be followed. So what makes this one OK? Especially when you start referencing texts that call women morally unclean, people are going to be skeptical that it's not an underlying discrimination that you're allowing to continue under the guise of a religious free pass.


The 13th-century Christian theologian Thomas Aquinas famously explained that the laws in the Old Testament (Torah) could be divided into three groups: moral, ceremonial, and judicial (also called civil). (Some people split dietary laws off as a fourth group, but they are usually considered under ceremonial.) While I understand that a Jewish scientist would probably not adhere to the writings of a Christian theologian, I think it is still important to look at the reasons behind various laws in the Torah.

The first category is Moral laws (apparently the Hebrew word is mishpatim). They are based on God’s holy nature, and are holy, just, and unchanging. Christians are still considered bound to them. Examples include the laws forbidding murder, or stealing, or certain sexual relations (like adultery or incest).

The second category is Ceremonial laws (apparently called hukkim or chuqqah). These include the dietary restrictions, other restrictions related to cleanliness, necessary sacrifices, and laws like the one against wearing fabrics made of two different types of clothing. Christians regard them as symbolic, either pointing toward the future (Christ, especially sacrifices), or showing symbolically how to be pure (don’t mix fabrics, just as you shouldn’t serve other gods as well as God.) I would argue that Jews should still follow these.

The third category is Judicial laws. These are laws that pertained to the ancient state of Israel, including proscribed punishments for certain laws in the other two categories. For example, stoning of adulterers. Capital punishment is a type of law that a state can establish, so if a modern nation today wants to have adulterers stoned to death, that is its right – as long as it is applied fairly – although it can have consequences, such as other nations making that nation a pariah over what they perceive as human rights violations. And if a religious person (of any religion) wants to stone a person to death for adultery in the United States, this is wrong because it is a violation of United States law. So it is sometimes actually wrong to follow these laws literally.

Which type of law is the one in question? I think it is clearly a ceremonial law. (Not only that, but it is apparently a ceremonial law which comes from traditional Rabbinical teachings, not the Torah per se, so that is another reason it is not followed by Christians.) I think it is appropriate for Jews to follow, and should be respected by others as a valid restriction of Orthodoxy.

Now, regarding the comparison to racism. Now at first I thought, well yeah, it would be obviously racist (and wrong) to refuse to shake people’s hands because they are black, and shouldn’t it be the same for if they are women? Then I realized something… distinguishing (which used to be called “discriminating” before that word changed meaning!) between people of different races isn’t treated the same as distinguishing between people by gender. (And I don’t think it should be.) It was clearly wrong to have different bathrooms for whites and blacks, as was the case back in the 60’s. However, there are several good reasons to have different bathrooms for men and women (although arguments are also made against this.) Separation of the sexes is not sexist in the same way that separation of the races is racist. Men and women don’t need different water fountains, for example, but they (arguably) do need different bathrooms.

It is not okay to treat black people and white people differently, but it sometimes is okay to treat men and women differently, if it is based on the ways in which they are factually different.
Last edited by mathmannix on Wed May 06, 2015 2:07 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby Fractal_Tangent » Wed May 06, 2015 2:05 pm UTC

I'm not Jewish, so I don't know much about Judaism. However, I was raised a Roman Catholic and have been confirmed. I'm agnostic now (fun story). I think this thread is very interesting because it's something that my boyfriend (atheist) and I have discussed in depth. That is, the question of 'How far should the religious ideals of treating men and women differently be allowed to co-exist with the modern world?'

Personally, I have never been able to get over the Catholic Church's 'men and women have separate but equal roles' deal because it usually ends up with something like 'men and women have separate but equal that nearly always end up giving men most of the power'. I remember finding out that we were 'All made in God's Image' and then at the same time I couldn't be a priest because priests should be as Christ-like as possible: not women.

It seems from what is going on in this thread is that women are the ones who are spiritually unclean. Whether or not this is a 'bad thing' is debated but it is treated in such a way that everyone must distance themselves from women -> The outcomes for women aren't amazing, whether or not the unclean thing is or isn't. Kind of like if for 2 weeks out of every month, a select group of the population were turned purple. Them being purple isn't a Bad Thing. But society dictated that every time you saw a purple person, you had to poke them with a stick. Being purple = Not Bad. Reaction to being purple = Not Awesome.

Personally: If women (specifically women) exist in a state (through no fault of their own) in which they are considered to pose some sort of threat to men's (and only men, not women because gay people don't exist) spiritual well being which requires these women to change their behaviour (even those who do not believe) to save men from this issue, then not awesome.

If I have the correct end of the stick (which I might not): what I take issue with here is the branding of women as a state which must have negative outcomes for women. Whether or not women are unclean semantically doesn't matter. If you treat women like they can't do X or Y because of that uncleanliness, that's sexist.

Whether or not I am willing to change my behaviour for a belief system I don't agree with is another matter entirely. If it means not touching you because you think I'm that much of a sexpot that you just can't resist fantasizing about me for a second or two (WILD STRAWMAN ALERT), I suppose. If it means delaying 200 people from seeing their families/getting to their bitchin' holiday destination because I have to swap my sweet window seat - less cool (unless I'm being upgraded to first class, then, I'll be wildly unclean for anyone).
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
SIDEBAR:

The post above mine: How so 'men and women are factually different?'. I find these types of conversations very difficult to have because of the ways in which men and women are defined (ovaries? breasts? testicles? penis? clitorus? estrogen? testosterone? womb? facial hair?) because they can come in all sorts of different combinations. Also treating men and women like their minds work in different ways also frustrates me because woman in male dominated fields are fighting against enough as is. We don't need people saying 'well, have you thought that maybe you're just genetically predisposed to being shit at titrating/building particle accelerators/differentiating/working in large international groups?'
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby Izawwlgood » Wed May 06, 2015 10:45 pm UTC

I think the OP is doing a poor job representing what Judaism actually commands. The Torah for example requires citizens abide by the laws of the country one resides in. The modern emergence of the ultra-orthodox movement is a new phenomenon that not just avoids assimilation, but desires judicial self-regulation, which is quite strange.

EDIT: Jewish law is obviously quite sexist/racist in many ways, and for the times it was written, surprisingly egalitarian in others. Shrug.
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby PAstrychef » Wed May 06, 2015 11:57 pm UTC

Just going to come right out with it, as a Jewish woman, the interpretations of Judaism used by the Chabad sects are some of the most sexist, mysoginist, repressive, backward thinking rules for society I've ever encountered. To be unable to see that the claim that any encounter between men and women must generate lustful thoughts,and therefore the woman must behave in appropriate ways, so that the excessively fragile normal system of the man isn't accidentally triggered is sexist is to be so oblivious to the real world that you would be laughable-if you weren't making so much noise about modesty on the buses in Israel and attacking women who only wish to pray at the same holy spots you want to keep safe from female "cooties".
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby jewish_scientist » Thu May 07, 2015 4:08 am UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:Here is something to think about, by why do all the articles she brings up mention a man refusing to sit next to a woman. The prohibition applies to women also. Unless women travel significantly less than men, there should be just as many incidents and articles about woman refusing to sit next to men. So, why are there not?


I have not read all the newest replies, but to my knowledge no one has addressed this. Can anyone think of a reason why Orthodox women are treated differently than Orthodox men? The only two that I can think of is that
A) Orthodox women are female; Orthodox men are male.
B) Many Orthodox men wear a characteristic suit, have a beard, and cover their heads; Orthodox women wear dresses that most other women would wear. The result is that most people who see an Orthodox man recognize him as a Jew, while people who see an Orthodox woman think that she is just a woman in a nice dress.
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby Copper Bezel » Thu May 07, 2015 4:38 am UTC

"Number of incidents that escalate" is a subset of "number of incidents" and a superset of "number of incidents which are reported." Journalistic bias could result in the cases of men being the ones publicized because they match an existing narrative of sexism. A similar bias could indeed affect how the incidents escalate; the request might seem less sexist in a role reversal. It's also possible that there are simply fewer strictly-Orthodox women on airplanes who make the demand in the first place, either because fewer of them are flying or fewer of them are willing to start an argument or both.

It's not really an important point, I don't think. None of those possibilities make the prohibition less sexist. I don't find it convincing that someone might be more likely to argue because the religion is more obvious, because it's basically the only excuse the strictly-Orthodox Jewish person who is making the objection has for making it. Still, I'm not sure that even that really changes the main point. None of these scenarios change the circumstances of a strictly-Orthodox Jewish man refusing to sit next to a woman, which is the scenario we're discussing here.
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby ucim » Thu May 07, 2015 4:44 am UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:Can anyone think of a reason why Orthodox women are treated differently than Orthodox men?
Maybe Orthodox men behave differently from Orthodox women. Could it be that Orthodox men are more likely to be demanding, and Orthodox women are more likely to be accommodating?

Does Jewish culture tend to support such a difference between the sexes?

In fact, don't most cultures do this? (That is, men tend to be more demanding, and women tend to be more accommodating, across the board, and most cultures seem to support this.)

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby CorruptUser » Thu May 07, 2015 10:36 am UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:B) Many Orthodox men wear a characteristic suit, have a beard, and cover their heads; Orthodox women wear dresses that most other women would wear. The result is that most people who see an Orthodox man recognize him as a Jew, while people who see an Orthodox woman think that she is just a woman in a nice dress.


Most ultra-orthodox women are easy to spot. You know how Muslim women wear the hijab? Ultra-orthodox women have something similar. Then there's the frumpy dress, ankle length skirt, the dozen kids...

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby morriswalters » Thu May 07, 2015 12:25 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:First things first; establish what the objective is. My objective is to show that Amanda Bennett is incorrect.
You can't prove her to be incorrect. You start from two different points, with different assumptions. She seems to assume a secular position, that your Religion can't justify behaviors that she see's as sexist. You seem to be saying that they aren't sexist, because they derive from your Religious practice.
Amanda Bennett wrote:Yet later I wondered: Why are biased acts against women — even religiously motivated ones — considered so much less toxic than biased acts of any other kind? Why do women often demur and accept humiliation rather than make a fuss? Why does respect even for admittedly extreme religious beliefs trump respect for half the human race?
The question is, why does she have to accommodate you? If you don't want to shake her hand it is all well and good. There is no obligation other than courtesy. However if you want her to leave her seat on a plane than why should she? She isn't Jewish. Neither is the plane, or the company that makes it available to you both. On the other hand why should she feel any need to worry about you at all outside the public sphere. How you practice your faith should be of no concern to her. But the conflict arises in the public sphere.

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby Azrael » Thu May 07, 2015 12:44 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:
jewish_scientist wrote:Here is something to think about, by why do all the articles she brings up mention a man refusing to sit next to a woman. The prohibition applies to women also. Unless women travel significantly less than men, there should be just as many incidents and articles about woman refusing to sit next to men. So, why are there not?


I have not read all the newest replies, but to my knowledge no one has addressed this. Can anyone think of a reason why Orthodox women are treated differently than Orthodox men? The only two that I can think of is that .

Again, you are making faulty assumptions and trying to build a case to support them, rather than looking at the data and building an understanding from there.

There are several scenarios that explain the observed phenomena that orthodox men are more frequently reported as refusing to touch women:

1) The men are more frequently refusing to touch women
2) The men are more frequently observed refusing to touch women
3) The men are more frequently discussed for refusing to touch women
etc...

You've jumped to #2 or #3 as being "correct", and are looking for why the rest of society is scrutinizing those orthodox men differently from the orthodox women. But this is based on the assumption that since there are just as many orthodox women, they must be refusing just as frequently. You have no data supporting this assumption -- no data that contradicts the observed data at hand. Which makes it a pretty terrible assertion.

Based on the available data, the rest of us are going to ask: Why aren't women refusing to touch men as frequently? Sure, there's a bit of Occam's Razor to our assumption; namely that it is more likely that the observed facts are going to be indicative of behaviors than not. Either way, it is especially interesting question under a system where the men are worried about being morally compromised by touching women -- who are the "problem" here, as men don't menstruate, after all.

And by interesting, I mean in the 'oh look, yet another black rock in the pile of evidence pointing towards this being a terribly sexist practice' sort of way.

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby Copper Bezel » Thu May 07, 2015 8:04 pm UTC

Azrael wrote:women -- who are the "problem" here, as men don't menstruate, after all.

Just so we don't get sidetracked, since JS has touched on this issue a couple of times, there are two touch prohibitions, one of which has to do with menstruation and one of which has to do with unrelated individuals in public spaces, and this thread is solely about the latter. That the former has sexist implications is obvious, and that the latter has sexist underpinnings and effects is beginning to seem rather obvious, too, but menstruation isn't involved here. The former is really about during which part of a woman's hormonal cycle married couples are allowed to have sex.

That doesn't in any way invalidate anything else you said, obviously.
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby Azrael » Thu May 07, 2015 10:12 pm UTC

Copper Bezel wrote:
Azrael wrote:women -- who are the "problem" here, as men don't menstruate, after all.

Just so we don't get sidetracked, since JS has touched on this issue a couple of times, there are two touch prohibitions, one of which has to do with menstruation and one of which has to do with unrelated individuals in public spaces, and this thread is solely about the latter.

He might like them to be considered entirely separately but he doesn't get to play that game. Context matters.

An appeal could be made to segregate classrooms by gender based in order to improve the quality of education by removing the distractions that hormonal teenagers of opposite genders tends to experience. But if that case were made by a group that required (for example) girls to wear a tightly controlled wardrobe but had no restrictions on the boys, the appeal for segregation would be fairly transparent. It would be discredited unless there was some underlying data or rationale that wasn't tainted by the obvious bias. So unless we get some rationale that withstands a bit of scrutiny on the whole "no touching = less lust" aspect, the restriction will be judged in the context of the larger beliefs system.

But sure, if you'd like, we can ignore that aside and the rest of my earlier point stands on it's own.

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby Copper Bezel » Thu May 07, 2015 10:33 pm UTC

But ... I mean, they're separate things, separate rules, and only one of them is being invoked in the airplane situation. Obviously we can discuss the inherent sexism of either one or both and make comparisons, but "women are the problem, because only women menstruate" is just not ... a thing? The implication I'm getting from the law that's being invoked here is just good old-fashioned sexism: "Women are the problem, because only heterosexual men have sex drives, and thinking about sex is bad, so women are bad."

The prohibition against husbands having sex with their wives in a certain part of the woman's hormonal cycle is a context for illustrating sexism in this brand of Judaism. It is not anyone's justification for the law in the airplane scenario, and I think you're massively oversimplifying and overlooking the pervasiveness of sexism if you're going to pin it on an idea of women being "dirty" because they menstruate.
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby Azrael » Fri May 08, 2015 1:17 am UTC

Copper Bezel wrote:... overlooking the pervasiveness of sexism if you're going to pin it on an idea of women being "dirty" because they menstruate.

That's sorta the exact opposite of what I'm trying to express. The pervasiveness of sexism across the whole set of beliefs makes it hard to pick one single rule and, no matter how hard one might try, make a case that this apparently sexist behavior is in fact totally cool and everyone is just misinterpreting it. That J-S doesn't get to separate the issues in order to make Belief B look better when it isn't in standing next to Belief A.

On the other hand, we pretty much agree and you've nailed the vibe of the specific point, so my appeal to the larger context is now kinda irrelevant.

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby ObsessoMom » Fri May 08, 2015 5:10 am UTC

[Much blather about the Torah in the context of the Talmud and other commentaries deleted, because no one was going to read it, anyway.]

People might be interested in Wikipedia's summary of some of the varying interpretations of Jewish prohibitions on touching members of the opposite sex. Both sides will find things to support their arguments.

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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby Copper Bezel » Fri May 08, 2015 6:22 am UTC

Ah, I see. Ignore me, then. I really was falling into the trap of thinking JS was accurately representing the things he was talking about.
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby jewish_scientist » Fri May 08, 2015 1:53 pm UTC

ucim wrote:
jewish_scientist wrote:Can anyone think of a reason why Orthodox women are treated differently than Orthodox men?
Maybe Orthodox men behave differently from Orthodox women. Could it be that Orthodox men are more likely to be demanding, and Orthodox women are more likely to be accommodating?

Does Jewish culture tend to support such a difference between the sexes?


First question; I cannot think of a reason for this being true.
Second question; No. Interestingly, the fact that the Jewish people were not assimilated millennia ago has been attributed to the strength of the Jewish women. The reason that Moshe taught the Torah to the women before the men was because they can be trusted to keep its laws in a time of distress more than the men.

CorruptUser wrote:
jewish_scientist wrote:B) Many Orthodox men wear a characteristic suit, have a beard, and cover their heads; Orthodox women wear dresses that most other women would wear. The result is that most people who see an Orthodox man recognize him as a Jew, while people who see an Orthodox woman think that she is just a woman in a nice dress.


Most ultra-orthodox women are easy to spot. You know how Muslim women wear the hijab? Ultra-orthodox women have something similar. Then there's the frumpy dress, ankle length skirt, the dozen kids...


I am going to post one link and completely refute your point. http://www.vogue.com/7696801/orthodox-j ... f-modesty/

Azrael wrote:Again, you are making faulty assumptions and trying to build a case to support them, rather than looking at the data and building an understanding from there.

There are several scenarios that explain the observed phenomena that orthodox men are more frequently reported as refusing to touch women:

1) The men are more frequently refusing to touch women
2) The men are more frequently observed refusing to touch women
3) The men are more frequently discussed for refusing to touch women


A bunch of other people also said that if Orthodox women are less likely to object when in the same situation as an Orthodox man, the absence of articles about women refusing to take there seat would be explained. I did consider that, but dismissed it because its sexist. That argument basically says that when women are put into a situation where following their principles would cause an awkward social interaction, they are more likely then men to abandon their principles. By saying that an Orthodox woman is less likely to follow a law than an Orthodox man because she is female while he is male, you are implying that women have a disposition to submissiveness. Look at what I said to ucim above.

Azrael wrote:Based on the available data, the rest of us are going to ask: Why aren't women refusing to touch men as frequently? Sure, there's a bit of Occam's Razor to our assumption; namely that it is more likely that the observed facts are going to be indicative of behaviors than not. Either way, it is especially interesting question under a system where the men are worried about being morally compromised by touching women -- who are the "problem" here, as men don't menstruate, after all.


jewish_scientist wrote:In Jewish law, the touching of men and women is forbidden. Men and women may sit next to each other according to the letter of the law, but it is not preferable... The reason that I keep writing 'and' in bold is because the prohibitions go both ways. A woman should not shake hands with or sit next to a man.


Because every law on this issue is symmetric, your last sentence can be rewritten as, 'Either way, it is especially interesting question under a system where the women are worried about being morally compromised by touching men.' Also, that law about not touching a women for that period of time every month applies only to her husband.

Copper Bezel wrote:But ... I mean, they're separate things, separate rules, and only one of them is being invoked in the airplane situation. Obviously we can discuss the inherent sexism of either one or both and make comparisons, but "women are the problem, because only women menstruate" is just not ... a thing? The implication I'm getting from the law that's being invoked here is just good old-fashioned sexism: "Women are the problem, because only heterosexual men have sex drives, and thinking about sex is bad, so women are bad."

The prohibition against husbands having sex with their wives in a certain part of the woman's hormonal cycle is a context for illustrating sexism in this brand of Judaism. It is not anyone's justification for the law in the airplane scenario, and I think you're massively oversimplifying and overlooking the pervasiveness of sexism if you're going to pin it on an idea of women being "dirty" because they menstruate.


That you so for understanding what I have been trying to say. The only problem I have is with the last sentence of the first paragraph. The laws and reasons for the laws apply equally to men and women. We know that women have the same same desires as men, so the prohibitions need to be symmetrical. In addition, we believe the desire for intimacy is not inherently negative. That is why we do not want to make it casual or cheapen it by reducing it to just another way to feel pleasure. Its purpose is to create, and be the ultimate expression of, an emotional connection between spouses. That is why a man is obligated to 'know' his wife regularly and to ensure that she is fully satisfied.

**********************************************************************************

Society has adopted the ethics of the Sexual Revolution. The most fundamental idea of the Sexual Revolution is that any sexual act where all parties give consent is moral. It is easy to derive from this that society should treat everyone the same regardless of the sexual acts they enjoy. For example; if a person want to or has had premarital sex, then they should be treated no differently than a person who does not want to have premarital sex.

But this is a two was street. If a person does not want to have premarital sex, then they should not be treated differently than a person who does want to or has had premarital sex. Because society has accepted this as its model of moral sexuality, they must follow it even if what a person does or does not consent to is the opposite of the most popular public opinion. In Brave New World the majority of people regularly have casual sex and orgies. When the main character makes the decision to not participate in these, he becomes a social outcast (I am not saying that what you believe is going to great a dystopian society; I am saying that there is one aspect of this society that I am going to compare your opinion to). When a man says, "I do not wish to sit next to this woman, not because of anything wrong with her; but because feel uncomfortable being that close to a woman I does not know for several hours," his decision must be respected as much as a person who says the opposite. Whether one of them gives consent or not because of their religious beliefs is irrelevant; all that matters is if that person does or does not consent to the interaction.

It is also worth pointing out the the Orthodox Jews who do not wish to sit next to a women say that the woman or himself/herself be moved to a different set. Even if there are no empty seats for him to go to, there would be plenty of people on the plane who would trade seats with him. The burden placed on the airlines is not unbearable.
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby Izawwlgood » Fri May 08, 2015 2:04 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:But this is a two was street. If a person does not want to have premarital sex, then they should not be treated differently than a person who does want to or has had premarital sex. Because society has accepted this as its model of moral sexuality, they must follow it even if what a person does or does not consent to is the opposite of the most popular public opinion.
Ah yes, the 'ol 'you need to accommodate my rules but I shouldn't have to accommodate yours'.

jewish_scientist wrote:When a man says, "I do not wish to sit next to this woman, not because of anything wrong with her; but because feel uncomfortable being that close to a woman I does not know for several hours," his decision must be respected as much as a person who says the opposite. Whether one of them gives consent or not because of their religious beliefs is irrelevant; all that matters is if that person does or does not consent to the interaction.
And he can get up and move instead of demanding she dress differently or do something differently.

jewish_scientist wrote:It is also worth pointing out the the Orthodox Jews who do not wish to sit next to a women say that the woman or himself/herself be moved to a different set. Even if there are no empty seats for him to go to, there would be plenty of people on the plane who would trade seats with him. The burden placed on the airlines is not unbearable.
Of course not, which is why it's perfectly acceptable for him to ask to trade seats with someone else. Notice it's *not* perfectly acceptable for him to demand the woman move.

jewish_scientist wrote:Interestingly, the fact that the Jewish people were not assimilated millennia ago has been attributed to the strength of the Jewish women. The reason that Moshe taught the Torah to the women before the men was because they can be trusted to keep its laws in a time of distress more than the men.
This is the sort of vague platitudes religion heaps on woman. Ah yes, the blessing and strength of child rearing, the responsibility that lets them be the vessels... it's weak, it doesn't translate to any real power, and it's obnoxious to see people using it as some proof of equality.
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Re: Orthodox Judaism & Sexism [Title Change]

Postby Azrael » Fri May 08, 2015 2:44 pm UTC

jewish_scientist wrote:A bunch of other people also said that if Orthodox women are less likely to object when in the same situation as an Orthodox man, the absence of articles about women refusing to take there seat would be explained. I did consider that, but dismissed it because its sexist. That argument basically says that when women are put into a situation where following their principles would cause an awkward social interaction, they are more likely then men to abandon their principles. By saying that an Orthodox woman is less likely to follow a law than an Orthodox man because she is female while he is male, you are implying that women have a disposition to submissiveness.

Yeah, not what I'm saying.

That the data suggests that women are doing something less frequently cannot be ignored because you assume the only explanation is because they're naturally more submissive. That speaks volumes about your shitty assumptions, but doesn't address the situation. It's data. You don't get to ignore it, or refuse to explore the reasons behind the behavior because you can hypothesize one explanation that you aren't comfortable with.

Never mind that there's all sorts of real data that shows that inherent and systematic sexism can/will/does encourage/reward/force women to be more submissive. So were we to explore the situation and find that women were acting more submissively, it suggests that the system they're living under is sexist. It doesn't mean they're inherently disposed that way.

"The explanation couldn't possibly be sexism, because that'd be sexist" Holy shit, reverse tautologies and circular logic everywhere.


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