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Saturday, June 22, 2013 

What some people in the public think of Ovadia Yosef's tirade

The writers to the Jerusalem Post said what they thought of Shas' spiritual leader for the irresponsible way he attacked rabbi David Stav:
There is no better argument for the abolishment of the Chief Rabbinate than the recent physical attack against Rabbi David Stav, a good and decent man (“Politicians rabbis express outrage over attack on Stav, June 18).

This was nothing less than horrific.

The verbal vitriol coming out of the mouth of Rabbi Ovadia Yosef is a clear and unambiguous manifestation of the dementia that is now afflicting him. Any member of Knesset who visits, or shows deference to this individual should be sanctioned in the Knesset plenum.

It is absolutely clear that the haredim, having failed in their quest to turn the State of Israel into a 14th century Lithuanian shtetl, are now driven by fear and trepidation regarding the decisions the new government will be making that impacts their community, such as studying the state’s core educational curriculum and participating in periodic scholastic evaluation examinations, performing military or national service as their non-religious fellow countrymen do, preparing themselves for a vocation that will enable them to earn a respectable living and support their ever-expanding families, and learning how to coexist with members of the opposite sex in a normal, interpersonal and egalitarian manner.

These are the principles that Stav stands for, and they will do nothing in the long term but benefit the ultra-Orthodox community.

The overwhelming fear and insecurity of this community regarding efforts to bring them into the mainstream can be overcome with Stav’s leadership.

If not, Israel will descend into a downward trajectory, and we will all be living in a state with two different societies having absolutely nothing to do with each other.
And another one says:
The recent extreme hostile pronouncements by the spiritual head of the Sephardi haredi community in Israel and former chief rabbi against a national religious MK for his insistence on “sharing the burden,” and towards the national-religious rabbi who is a candidate for the chief rabbi position, reminded me of a story that appeared in Rabbi Maimon’s book, Sarey Hameah, that has a moral lesson to it (“Tzohar calls on Shas leader to repent for comments against Stav,” June 17).

“One day, Satan complained to God that He created the angel Michael to be Israel’s pleader and defender of Israel and myself as the prosecutor of Israel, a task that I undertake with great dedication and devotion.

However, now you gave to Michael a ‘helpmate unto him,’ Rabbi Levi-Yitzchak from Barditchev, to aid him in his task, and I remain by myself without a helper. I beseech you to give me several righteous people that will help me to find fault with the people of Israel.”

It appears that Satan’s request was fulfilled.
And another says briefly:
Rabbi Ovadia Yosef’s description of Rabbi David Stav tells us only what opinion to have about Yosef.
Yup. Once again, Yosef set a terrible example of how to opine as a rabbi, preferring vulgarity over constructive disagreement. Unfortunately, there's no telling if Stav will succeed in receiving the nomination for chief rabbi. Yet the first example I cited here might give a good clue what'll have to be done if behavior like Yosef's keeps up: the chief rabbinate may have to be dissolved in favor of a system that separates religion and state. That could work to good effect.

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  • I'm Avi Green
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