ערב ראש החודש החמישי תשע"ד
YNET: Tel Aviv's rabbi slams mayor: City is annulling Shabbat
Following proposal to allow service-providing businesses to operate in Tel Aviv on Saturday, Rabbi Lau hits at Mayor Huldai: 'Cry of Shabbat breaks through walls of my heart'.
Gilad Morag, March 18, 2014
Tel Aviv's Chief Rabbi Israel Meir Lau slammed City Mayor Ron Huldai for his bid to allow businesses to operate within the city on Saturday, the Jewish day of rest.
Out of respect of observant Jews and in accordance with the Jewish character of the State, Tel Aviv, like many other cities in Israel, respects the Shabbat and does not allow businesses or public transportation to operate in the city.
The city's chief rabbi sent a letter to the mayor on Monday, nothing that "this is the breaking of the pattern of the city's life since its establishment 105 years ago. Let us consider what is at stake in the decision that stands before you."
Rabbi Lau added that he had never before turned to the mayor. "I am going out of my way because the cry of Shabbat breaks through the walls of my heart and I cannot remain silent." (cont.)
Esser Agaroth (2¢):
This is an old article, but far from the end of the story. Interior Minister Gid'on Sa'ar has since intervened, and has said that he overrule any such local decisions to allow increased categories of businesses to operate on Shabbath. Apparently, the Interior Minister has the power to do so.
Nu? Who knew? Yet, I wonder how this would conflict, or rather, collide, with MK Elazar Stern's proposal to allow for restaurants, to obtain Kashruth certification from Israel's Chief Rabbinate, even if open on Shabbath. Since the Jewish Home Party has blocked Stern's proposal, hopefully, we will never have to find out.
But, the story does not end there, either. Tel-Aviv business owners were all ready to protest the Interior Ministry's intervention, and open up on Shabbath anyway.
|Mayor Ron Huldai|
(Photo: Reuven Castro)
However, because of the rockets from Gaza, I wonder just how consistently these businesses have been able to stay open, not only on Shabbath, but during the regular week as well.
No, I am suggesting that increased Shabbath violations are behind the City of Tel-Aviv being the primary target of rocket fire. Actually, I remember, during the first Gulf War, this was part of the the reasoning applied by some, as to why Tel-Aviv incurred Scud missile damage, and neighboring B'nei Braq did not. Personally, I believe that Tel-Aviv differentiating between these Yishma'elim (Arabs) and those Yishma'elim is more likely to be connected to Tel-Aviv getting hit 23 years ago, and being under fire again today.
But, who can say? I sincerely doubt that Shabbath violations have done anything to aid the situation.
I have been suggesting for years that any serious solution of the Gaza problem, or for that matter the Hezbollah problem to the north, would only be taken once rockets reached Tel-Aviv and its "limousine liberal" power base.
|Mayor Ron Huldai|
(Photo: Oren Zin)
How many will run away, thinning out the Erev Rav?
How many of the African "refugees," who have been terrorizing the residents in the southern part of the city, will get sick of the rockets, and finally get up and leave?
There are countless reasons why Tel-Aviv has been, and continues to be, a target, not the least of which is the attempt by Yishma'elim to strike a blow to Israel's economic and banking center.
YNET, and possibly the City of Tel-Aviv, believes that being respectful to observant Jews is the only legitimate reason to keep [not even all] businesses closed on Shabbath. The Holy One, Blessed Be He, never appears to enter their reasoning.
And so, it appears that He has been having to remind them that he is, in fact, present and watching over them.
If only they would pay attention and acknowledge Him, if not cry out to Him.