Emanuel and Beyond

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16 Responses

  1. L. Oberstein says:

    Very interesting and thought provoking. In short the problem is that the Sephardim want to go to Ashkenazi schools because it is socially more prestigious. In teh same way that dew blacks want to go to historically black colleges rather than Harvard. The Sephardim envy the Ashkenazim and want to emulate their mode of dress.All rabbanim in Israel wear the same uniform, straight out of Eastern Europe. Only the Chief Rabbi of the Sephrdim dresses with a turban,etc.
    Could someone explain why in Baltimore, we have absorbed hundreds of Iranian families and their children are fully integrated yet maintain pride in their heritage.There are Iranian talmidei chachamim on the faclties of the schools at the highest levels teaching all the students, not just the Iranians. Is there something different between here and Israel that makes it possible here but not there. The Sephardi elite are now the problem according to this article, they should stop trying to integrate and be like the Gerrer Chassidim who have their own schools and don’t want to integrate. Is this really a Sephardi self respect problem or the result of an unequal social status. Why can’t Emanuel be Baltimore?

  2. Kenneth Levy says:

    “Simply stated, the Sefardim want a ’separate but equal’ arrangement.”

    Interesting. One man makes a statement, and you somehow translate that into the universally held opinion of the entire Sephardic community.

  3. Kenneth Levy says:

    “The Sefardi mother who exhaled a plume a cigarette smoke into the TV camera, claiming her daughter was not accepted solely because of ethnic prejudice, is an image burnished into the collective mind of many observers.”

    A) Assuming that your point is that smoking is an obvious sign of a family not being appropriate for the Beis Yaakov Chassidi, are you indicating that none of the Chassidishe parents are smokers? Or is it because this is a female smoker, and somehow we’ve determined that smoking is acceptable for men but clearly not for women?

    B) How do “many observers” know what was bradcast, when TV is forbidden? Unless you are refering to non-Orthodox observers, in which case, why do you think that this image would be patricularly relevant to them?

  4. Bob Miller says:

    If Group A separates itself in some fashion from Group B to avoid absorbing “bad influences” from Group B, that is part of the picture. Possibly, another part of this picture is that Group B isn’t really all that “bad” now, but Group A’s self-isolation would have a negative effect on Group B by removing potential role models from Group B’s world.

    Ideally, the rabbonim and other communal leaders in all Orthodox groups in Israel would stay in touch with each other to maintain the best possible intergroup relations within the total Orthodox population, while respecting all differences in approach.

  5. Ori says:

    Are Charedi schools primarily about education, or are they a status symbol, similar in function to Ivy League colleges?

    Also, what is the problem with Ashkenazi kids in Sepharadic schools? That the schools are more lenient Halachically, which would cause problems (for example, kitniyot during Passover)?

  6. Doron Beckerman says:

    I thought I put a “should” in there, as in “should want…”. My apologies.

  7. Chareidi Leumi says:

    >“Simply stated, the Sefardim want a ’separate but equal’ arrangement.”

    This is an issue of hot debate in Shas and R’ Amsalam is considered to be somewhat of the odd-man-out on this issue in their party.

    Most in shas see el-HaMaayan (just like they see shas) as a reaction to discrimination, not as an ideal situation that should always have existed. This situation is a test regarding what is more important – some particular minhagim and havarot or true Achdut and ahavat Yisrael. To some of us it is clear what should win out and I have even heard statements by Hareidi gedolim regarding what should be done, but the Hareidi Tzibbur does not seem to accept such a ladder of values.

  8. Tal S. Benschar says:

    1.What does Gafni mean by “zonal?”

    2. Kenneth, R. Amsalem is not just “one man.” He is an MK from Shas, which purports to represent Sephardic Charedim. He does not speak for all Sephardim, but he does speak for a large group of Sephardic Charedim, at least those who voted for his party. That is a large portion of the people who have a stake in this debate.

  9. cvmay says:

    L’kvod Rav Beckerman,

    These minutes are from year 2006, in the last four years a mini yet major change has occurred in the Israeli Charedie world.

    The influx of American Yeshivish olim families & those who remain in Israel after their many years of post Beis Medresh learning have joined the Charedei circle. Additionally, children of baali tshuva (arachim, post Ohr Sameach/Aish, Amnon Yitzchak followers) and proud ‘Mixed-Marriages'(Ashkenize & Sefardic) have influenced and colored the three distinct Charedei groups. And BTW these number are continuously & constantly on the rise. Nuances of demands, standards, religious observances have shifted slightly to the disdain and frustration of original Israeli Charedeim. Many of the newest innovations are diverse educational instructions, accommodations for different learning styles and a more gentle rebbe-talmid interaction (IOW put away the rod and buy more carrots). Parental intervention/advice/opinions are thrown into the Chinuch Atzmai potpourri. Principals, Veteran Mechanechim and other educators are not overjoyed with this newest phoneme.
    For instance, ‘What shall we do with the American Beis Yakov girls (& their parents)? with the Baali tshuva and the proud mixed marriages (if the mother is Sefardi-it doesn’t show up externally) children? These groups are not automatically toeing the line or buying the product without questions. Schools are incorporating a 30% quota for these families also.

    RE: R. Gafni’s attitude on why/how/what the Shas party represents and supports is off base. In its former years the party was a major draw for traditional Jews of the Sefardic heritage who were distancing themselves from the Likud party. There was & is a diverse and strong social agenda of community help available for Sefardim of any observance level in place. Currently, it is hard to see that SHAS & UTJ are mirror images representing only different clientele, Shas constituents are more absorbed within Israeli society in the work, education and business realms. Their voters live in mixed neighborhoods, are right wing in political viewpoint and have a deeper/accurate insight into the mind and workings of the Arab society. IOWs NIGHT & DAY…..

  10. Jacob T says:

    >Also, what is the problem with Ashkenazi kids in Sepharadic schools? That the schools are more lenient Halachically, which would cause problems (for example, kitniyot during Passover)?

    This sort of attitude is part of the problem. There is nothing more lenient about eating kitniyot on pesach, or more machmir about refraining from them; all agree that they are not chametz. Th community of ashkenaz developed over time a mesorah that we do not eat them, while the community of sepharad, with different communal food storage customs and different rebbeim, do not have such a mesorah.

    Certainly in the name of achdut all Jew can respect the minhagim of our brothers, however different they may be from our own.

  11. Ori says:

    Jacob T, I’m sorry I wasn’t clear. I didn’t use “lenient” as being deficient, but in the sense of allowing more things. It is not a problem for a Sepharadi kid to eat in an Ashkenazi school on Passover. It is a problem for an Ashkenazi kid to eat in a Sepharadi school during that time. Unless the Ashkenazi parents decide it is OK for their kid to eat kitniyot, this is a problem for an Ashkenazi kid in a Sepharadi school.

  12. Chareidi Leumi says:

    >It is a problem for an Ashkenazi kid to eat in a Sepharadi school during that time

    Why? the kid can just avoid the kitniyot!

  13. rachel w says:

    I don’t know of any schools that are open on Pesach (except for Boarding schools, which cater to all kids) so why would eating present a problem?

  14. Jacob T says:

    In what other instances, though, would you suggest that the Sephardi mesorah is more “lenient halachically”?

  15. Ori says:

    Jacob T, I am not Orthodox, so I don’t know any other cases. I was asking if that is a reason for not putting Ashkenazi kids in a Sepharadi school because you never hear that it – it’s always the opposite, Sepharadi kids in an Ashkenazi school.

    Chareidi Leumi, telling kids not to eat kitniyot would work from a certain age. However, it means having to cook special non-kitniyot dishes, etc.

  16. Zadok says:

    I agree that there is an unwillingness to accept too many Sephardim in Askenazi schools in EY.But I would appreciate if someone who lived in EY could explain to me without getting emotional (1)why is that morally wrong in a case where the school administration and parents feel that cultural differences do not allow for many Sephardim (2)Why does the onus of accepting Sphardim into Askenazi seem to be placed exclusively on Askenazim?Why aren’t the Sphardim also held accountable for the reasons the Askenazi schools have unofficial quotas?If on is being honest and accepting that there is discrimination one must also accept the underlying cause for it.Shouldn’t the Sephardim consider why their own ‘elite’ doesn’t want to go to Sephardi schools?Is that also due to Askenzi discrimination and snobbery?As a well know, universally respected Odom Godal from the past generation allegedly once told a Sephrdic applicant to his Yeshiva.”If you despite being a Sephardi are unwilling to learn in a predominately Sephardi school, why am I required to allow my school to turn into one?”

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