May 10, 2011

Racy photo of Hillary erased


  1. Jacob9:54 PM

    But it's okay because "The readership of the Tzeitung believe that women should be appreciated for who they are and what they do, not for what they look like, and the Jewish laws of modesty are an expression of respect for women, not the opposite."

    Rather sweet, really. In some parts they're especially appreciated when they ride at the back of the bus.

  2. Which is why we should all wear burquas - if only we respected ourselves enough.

    I must note that they've apologized, but not sure if the apology was to Hillary specifically, or just a generalized "oops, did we do that to one of the most powerful women in the world" sort of apologies.

    Sitting at the back of the bus is entirely voluntary Jacob, and "the state would not tolerate the use of threats or violence to enforce the separation", which is nice.

  3. It's a NYC rag, so I'm just amazed they would do it thinking no one would notice. Or that they'd do it *period*, in the world's greatest metropolis.

    Nice job, though.

  4. geoffff6:50 AM

    I just love this stuff! Thanks Caz, I read the story here first. And thank you Jacob for linking the Forward editorial. I love that newspaper but I hardly ever get a chance to see it with everything else.

    I've read both the articles you guys linked and they surprised me. They were good! And this is Fairfax? The sub-editing was pretty grubby but what else would you expect.

    The comments at the Forward's editorial, in particular, are fascinating. Take a scan if you get a moment.

    Thanks again Jacob for that link.

  5. geoffff8:00 AM

    Incidents like this focus attention on the extreme segregation of the sexes which is part of the religious life of some ultra-Othodox Jews.

    It is a recent phenomenon( yeah I know -- as recent as photoshop).

    It also raises the weird survival of the Yiddish language. There's still a Yiddish newspaper in New York? I guess I'm not surprised. I think the Australian Jewish News stopped offering its Yiddish supplement over twenty years ago.

    I'm up for a civil conversation about either if anyone has any real interest.

    Any questions?

  6. geoffff8:19 AM

    Hang on. I've just noticed that Forward link is over a year old.

    Oh well. Never mind. It's still a great read.

    Thanks again Jacob.

    Some great comments. Unfair to pick any at random but ths one struck me:

    "I do not understand the Forward's fsscination with women and the Iaraeli transportation system.

    "Ther have bee less than ten reported incidents of harrasment of women for sitting in the wrong section of a mehadrin bus since the program started in Israel. Compare that with the hundreds of thousnads of sexual assualts on women around the world on crowded trains and buses in that period of time.

    "In Japan, fully three quarters of wonen who use public transportation have been groped. Sexual assault is the number one reported crime on New York City subways. Japan, India, and Egypt run women-only cars on their longer distance trains. Public announcements in the New York City subways urge women who have experienced illegal sexual contact to report it to the authorities.

    etc etc

    Read more:

  7. geoffff8:23 AM

    Come to think of it for years the Manly Ferry had a womens only section. It was used too especially on the night runs. Does it still?

  8. Can't we all speak Yiddish and get along?

  9. geoffff6:09 PM

    What's your take on these sects, Caz, as a sociologist?

    I think of them in much the same way as the Amish or even the Hare Khrisna. In the case of some of the Hassidic sects, in particular, women live parallel lives. They are by no means confined to the home, or wear a uniform outside like their menfolk, they have active social lives centring on the synagogue (women are separate but not excluded) especially the ritual baths (which are exclusively theirs and must be used) but they wear "modest clothing" outside and at least one of the sects still practices the bizarre (but I guess harmless) custom of married women shaving their hair and wearing wigs.

    The expurging women thing is of course not just bizarre but offensive. I'm inclined to think the Americans are handling this well. Only provide images on the condition they cannot be altered. I think these guys were genuinely mortified about breaching the official WH requirement as much as offending Clinton.

    But you are quite right Caz, I honestly do not think it even occurred to them that giving Clinton the photochop is offensive to all women. It is a matter of convincing them that if they are not prepared to publish photos with women in them then they should not publish the photos at all.

    I would expect that conversation is going on at several levels as we speak.

    But beyond that? The extreme sex segregation thing?

    It's not how I would choose to live my life. But I've never felt any compulsion to join Hare Khrshna either. And with these people the sex segregation is just a part of it. They live certain and ordered lives from cradle to grave. Every detail is covered. There seem to be many people who seem to need that.

    They are hardly on their own in that regard. I don't feel at all qualified to tell them they are wrong.

  10. Educate a man and you educated one person, educate a woman and you educate a family.

    Which is my odd way of segueing into suggesting that any where and any time women are taken out of the picture, or simply taken out, that's a society denying itself, its children and its women in the most basic sense, Geoff. There can be no progress, no growth for the betterment of all.

    Not that feminism has done much for Western and developed countries. I can't believe it's 2011 and women's bodies, behaviors and place in every sphere of life is still debated and policed by all and sundry. Truly, I thought this nonsense would end in my lifetime, at least in developed countries (there is far too much that needs doing in second and third world countries, and that will not be fixed in my lifetime, alas).

    Yes, 2011, and Julia Gilllard - unmarried, baron, Marxist - has just announced that teenage girls who get pregnant and don't abort will be punished, monitored, harangued into going to work or back to school when their babies are just 6 months old, because, you know, as a teenage mother you don't have enough to worry about already, and obviously have plenty of time on your hands.

    This new punishment is on girls only, of course. Notably, the responsible fathers will not face some similar or corresponding punishment for depositing their sperm.

    Doesn't Israel face a problem with the growth of fundamentalists? I've read (but not sure if it's true), that a certain branch of Jews are paid by the state (as are rabbis), because they are fundamentalists ... that's it, that's their job, they don't do paid work. Being a fundamentalist Jew (sorry, can't remember the right name, it does have one, and my use of "fundamentalist" is quite misplaced), is a growth industry, and while they don't work, they do breed. As I understand it, the burden on the state of paying these good folk is getting a bit much, and in years to come it's going to be quite a drain on the budget.

    I can't say I appreciate the way they treat women, but I feel the same of any religion - and they all treat (mistreat) women in much the same manner.

    It says much of any man how he thinks of and treats women, in particular, and in general.

    How's that for an incoherent bunch of thoughts?

  11. geoffff10:40 PM

    Not bad.

    It occurs to me that at least their women (and young folk) are relatively protected. I imagine the average Hassidic girl, for instance, in NYC, is far less likely to come to harm than, say, a typical secular girl, Jewish or not.

    For them this is pretty much what this is about, I guess. Feeling safe. There's a substantial and wealthy Hare Khrishna colony in the mountains close to here. I imagine that's what they are about as well.

    Drugs. Alcohol. Most movies. Nearly all TV. Nights out on the town with workmates. Boys. Not on.

    These are urban communities but they are as tight as a Lancaster county village in spring time.

    Israel is a different situation. Yeah there are issues such as military exemptions and other privileges that were granted on the foundation of the state for historical reasons that are resented and an election system that encourages small parties which can have disproportionate power as a consequence.

    Australians are now very familar with this process and how it can lead to a government ruling on the goodwill and leave of a handful of religious nutjobs.

  12. Thing is Geoff, if we had healthy societies (all of them), girls and women wouldn't need to feel "protected", the concept wouldn't exist. They would not be the targets of unique social mores and demands, they would not be required to conform to an arbitrary and ever changing middle-ground judged as being the "right" place for respectable women.

    Despite most often being the initiators and targets of violent crime, no one gives a hoot about the safety of men. They're not told what to do, where to go, how to act, dress and behave so as to be deemed acceptable.

    Hardly ever see the Hare Khrishna folk in Melbourne these days. When I was growing up, it was a common thing to see them singing in the city, much in the way that it was common to see a Wilderness Society koala demanding money in Canberra. Comes as a surprise when I see the Khrihna now, maybe once a year, and to note that they still exist. All that chanting made them rich, hey? Good for them!

  13. geoffff3:12 PM

    You're quite right Caz. And the main point is that women have no place in the outside world unless they leave the community. Mind you, much the same can be said for the men. As I understand it some of them at least work in commerce.

    Oh yes, the Khrshna are alive and well and come a long way from the dancing in the streets and the mooching at Nimbin.

    They have a big slab of lush land up around Mt Warning and a pretty grand temple and other buildings.

    They run a few well regarded vegetarian restaurants I believe including I think one in Sydney. Their temple is open to visit anytime and I'm told they offer excellent lunches for a standard price. I've never been there but I planned recently to take some Israeli visitors partly because being exclusively vegetarian it would have to be the only strictly kosher restaurant anywhere around without getting on a plane. Events didn't permit.

    Next time.

  14. I think rules and conforming are comforting and easy for a lot of people Geoff. They choose to live within highly defined boundaries. It requires no reflection, just mute adherence to a set of habits, behaviors and beliefs.

    I understand the appeal, but it's a mindless way to live, I would suggest. Although we are all forced to live at some point on the same spectrum, it's only be decrees that we differ.

    We're all sheep, but some sheep are less oppressive, destructive, than others ... ?