Here is an appalling and disturbing occurrence being reported by Haaretz.
A woman who reported a vicious attack by an ad-hoc "modesty patrol" on a Jerusalem bus last month is now lining up support for her case and may be included in a petition to the High Court of Justice over the legality of sex-segregated buses.
Miriam Shear says she was traveling to pray at the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City early on November 24 when a group of ultra-Orthodox (Haredi) men attacked her for refusing to move to the back of the Egged No. 2 bus. She is now in touch with several legal advocacy and women's organizations, and at the same time, waiting for the police to apprehend her attackers.
Here at PYY, the nation of Israel is given a very fair shake. When others have unfairly criticized it, denigrated it, and attacked it, I have been one to condemn the perpetrators. I am a friend to Israel. But this kind of right-wing hatred cannot be condoned, nor tolerated. If this story is accurate and this did occur in a manner consistent with her version of events, this needs to be stopped.
A society cannot condemn those that engage in genital mutation, the harsh subjugation of women, and other atrocities, and yet allow this kind of action to go unpunished. More importantly, how is that in 21st century Israel that there are social mores that dictate women are second-class citizens to men?
Not only are women's fundamental rights being violated, take a look further in the article:
Throughout the encounter, Shear says the bus driver "did nothing." The other passengers, she says, blamed her for not moving to the back of the bus and called her a "stupid American with no sechel [common sense.] People blamed me for not knowing my place and not going to the back of the bus where I belong."
Now, I could write a whole post about how America has been there for Israel, since 1948. But let me just say that not only do we stand with them in numerous political and military affairs, a lot of tourist revenue comes from Americans. We spend a lot money there. We buy things, we take tours, stay in hotels, eat, and you know, all of the usual things that aren't cheap. If an American is going to be treated like a second-class citizen, he/she may, very well, decide not to visit. He/she may take their money elsewhere.
First, visitors must endure the usual threat of terrorist violence when touring the Holy Land. And now, there is the prospect that they may have deal with a bunch of angry reactionary thugs that believe they are better than others. If I were the government, I'd be putting a stop to this, and fast. And the first thing I'd do is, catch and prosecute these guys to the fullest extent of the law.