Conversion Bill Hysteria

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4 Responses

  1. L. Oberstein says:

    Yes, the hetrodox movements are totally opposed to this law. They want the law to state that all conversions by all of the “streams’ are equally valid. That way, there won’t be this thorny issue of did the convert really accept to observe the mitzvos or was the whole thing a sham. What surprises me is that the chareidim agree with the Rusians to allow any city rabbi, even the most lenient, to make the conversion and that it would not be revokable by a more strict rabbi in another town.As long as Israel is under siege internationally and American Jewry is the main ally of Israel, there won’t be a law that states that only orthodox conversions are legal in Israel ,even though that is the case anyway. It will further weaken the weakening ties that bind an assimilating American Jewry with an ever more isolated Israel. The facts are as you say and I am on the same side, but this is an issue of kovod vs. bizayon for non orthodox rabbis. They feel that the Russians aren’t orthodox and don’t want to be orthodox, so who are you fooling.
    On this issue, I am surprised that the chareidim aren’t on the same side as the Reform.

  2. Joe Hall says:

    The Chareidim (other than the Shas political party) do NOT support the Rotem conversion bill.

  3. Dov says:

    Generalizing the author’s analogy to Rabbi Riskin’s comment: I’ve always believed that if Reform and Conservative would stay away from personal status issues, and focus on whatever variety of shuls and prayers they want, there would be very little opposition to them in Israel. They’d do whatever they wanted to do in their own shuls. It’s only their entry into personal status, where they’re essentially trying to force everyone in Israel to accept Reform or Conservative beliefs, that they’re causing and feeling all the trouble.

  4. Tal S. Benschar says:

    I find it hard to understand what the benefit of this bill is from the POV of Charedim (or any religious person, for that matter). It’s pretty clear that the vast majority of the 300,000 or so Russians have no intention of accepting ‘ol mitzvos. So either the contemplated conversions will be a sham, or, alternatively, the bill will create massive frustration and resentment when all but a tiny minority of this population is rejected for conversion by the Chief Rabbinate. So what’s the point?

    [YA – Someone in the Dati-Leumi camp has argued that much of the problem could be addressed not by 300,000 conversions, but by fewer than 20,000, or the number of single women of child-bearing age within that group. He believes that kosher conversions – with kabolas hamitzvos – are real possibiliites. I have no idea whether this is a pipe dream or a reasonable assessment.]

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