Opinion: Stop Anti-Chareidi Incitement


anti-chareidi-incitementBy Yehuda Shein, Yediot Achronot

For thousands of years governments have been directing the rage of the masses towards minorities. In our times, it is the economists supporting the ties between the tycoons and the government who are leading this effort. Many ultra-Orthodox, whose only sin is their desire to preserve their unique culture – a culture that has been safeguarded for thousands of years in the face of those who tried to force them to assimilate into other cultures – suffer from systematic discrimination.

Despite this injustice and the blatant discrimination against them, charedim did not take to the streets in protest. This is a fact, and it’s remarkable.

CHaredim do not enjoy equal employment opportunities. The State of Israel’s systematic, racial discrimination against ultra-Orthodox is meant to deny them equal employment opportunities. This is why the percentage of charedim who work in the public sector is close to zero. If the State is allowed to ban ultra-Orthodox, why should private employers act differently?

The charedi woman is discriminated against twice: Employers view her as a cheap worker who can be exploited and paid less because she is a woman and also because she is ultra-Orthodox.

This alone should have motivated hundreds of thousands of haredim to take to the streets many years ago. According to studies, the poverty level within the ultra-Orthodox community should have bred significant crime and violence, but the charedi public is different. It is restrained. The ultra-Orthodox have suffered quietly for so many years and have given up basic human rights to protect their culture and freedom of religion.

Since there is no special law for charedim, they pay much higher taxes than seculars in the same socio-economic class. Ultra-Orthodox usually have more children, so they pay more to finance the State and the banks’ brutal interest rates, which effectively double the purchase price for apartments. The same goes for the indirect tax on food and clothing items – those with more children pay more.

But despite paying more tax, the charedi cannot enjoy many of the things the State finances with his money, because they go against his way of life and religious beliefs. To add insult to injury, the State also sets special criteria aimed at humiliating and discriminating against the charedi.

The charedi will also find out that the “free education law” does not apply to ultra-Orthodox, and that 50% of his expenses will go to “free discrimination.” This is why this law was introduced in the first place. It is clear to all that no charedi will ever agree to an infringement of his religious freedom or to any interference in the education of his children. Therefore, the criteria were set in such a way that the discrimination against ultra-Orthodox appears legal.

Moreover, the incitement over the Tal Law debate is hypocritical. The army wants to gradually impose secular culture while using the charedim to extort funds from the Treasury under the pretext that it is “caring for the ultra-Orthodox” and wants to help them find work.

But the truth is that the IDF is not interested at all in recruiting ultra-Orthodox. It turns out that the politicians and their ilk, who incited against charedim in the name of “equality,” are all liars! The issue of military service is merely an excuse for them to perpetuate the discrimination against charedim. For these people, the Tal Law debate offers an opportunity to hurt the ultra-Orthodox financially and pit other sectors against them.

So, it is no surprise that the same public officials who sustain the bond between the government and the tycoons and later go to work for the moguls are the ones who submitted to the Plesner Committee the most evil and draconian proposal (regarding mass conscription of charedim into the IDF), which has the most potential to turn the different sectors of society against each other.

{Yediot Achronot}

{Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. “CHaredim do not enjoy equal employment opportunities”

    Two years ago, I applied for a job. The employer called me and we had an amazing phone interview that lasted about an hour. He invited me to his office to “discuss details and finalize”. When I walked into his office, it was as if he saw a ghost. The meeting lasted all of 15 minutes with him telling me why this job is not for me.

    What changed? The perfect university-level english on the phone did not match the long black coat, beard and payos.

    Another time, I applied for a job in Ramat Gan. I was more than qualified, which is what he told me on the phone. The interview was a minute lecture how this is not the place where I would want to work. Again, the lvush did not match.

    Such discrimination is totally illegal according to the laws of the Medinah.

  2. the tal law issue is a separate issue. The discrimination toward frum people by mainstream israeli society is shocking to those who never knew about it. It is frightning.

  3. it’s a bout time someone said the truth

    i moved out of israel because of the hatred towards religious people.

  4. “ey yid” [#1] speaks of discrimination on account of the levush.

    But what of the person who keeps Shabbat, Kashrut, and the other mitzvos, but who doesn’t wear the black hat, or who wears the kippah sruga, or even the 4-slice kippah instead of the 6-slice kippah? How is that person received in ey yid’s circles?

    Methinks that discrimination on account of the levush goes both ways.

  5. I have never read so much whinging, self-apologetic dribble in all my life as I did in this Yehuda Shein’s sorry excuse for a newspaper article.

    How many favors did “Yediot Ahronot” call in before its editors agreed to print and to publish this load of tripe?

  6. Sorry Yobro, you’re living in lala land.
    And Melisandre you’re right, it’s not impossible, but the fact of the matter is, that the establishment and the private sector put many many obstacles in the way of a chareidi trying to support his family outside of the traditional chareidi framework.

  7. “racial discrimination against ultra-Orthodox”

    Are “Ultra-Orthodox Jews” a separate race from the rest of us “regular” frum yidden now?

    The Wolf

  8. To my knowledge, all countries in the civilized world exempt theology students.
    And no other country prevents those exempt from a draft for any reason from working later should a position as a Rabbi not materialize. Also note that the number of chiloni exemptees far surpasses the number of Yeshiva students. It is not illegal for them to pursue careers.
    The laws are blatantly discriminatory, but we’ve always swallowed it to maintain peace. But if they try to tamper with the Yeshiva system, we will rise with the fury of a mother lion! “?? ???? ??????”
    They don’t realize that without those learning Torah, the IDF loses it’s much vaunted power.

  9. Excellent article. At least someone has the guts to say the truth. And it appears mATZAV is the only site willing to print it. Most other sites, even fun unzere, are always looking for things that make us look stupid and dumb and foolish

  10. This is the truth.

    I applied for a civil service job with the gov’t, and when they realized I was religious, they started throwing me through loops until they came up with a good excuse to tell me to fly a kite. Discrimination against Torah observant people is rampant.

  11. The government and israeli media never let up.

    Its easy smokescreen, just keep all eyes on those bad bad haredim, and then noone holds the government up to the light since they are busy.

    If you dont think there is discrimination, you have not applied for a job here.

  12. We chareidim have failed miserably in terms of PR in the media, and those extremists who call themselves chariedi just make things worse.

    We need to redirect some our talented kiruv resources to start doing some damage control, otherwise it will become more and more difficult to be mekarev our lost brothers and sisters because we have such a bad image

  13. Why is it so hard to understand that religious and secular non-charedim resent the fact that their children have to risk their lives in the army while charedim do not do so?

    Why is it so hard to understand that religious and secular non-charedim resent the fact that they have to pay high taxes while most charedim receive exemptions due to poverty?

  14. A friend of went on a business venture with a Tel-Aviv based company some years ago. They loved his ideas about saving money and increasing profit by a good percentage. The deal was almost final and he was set to go into business with them. At the final meeting this snobby woman told my friend “We very much like your ideas and we will use them in our company, but your not what we are looking for and we are not hiring you.” Shocked my friend asked, “Your not hiring me but your going to take my ideas? What’s this about?” “We don’t want Chareidim in our company,” she said. “Why then did you make me travel from Yerushalayim for all these meetings?” my friend asked. With the utmost chutzpah she said, “You can think of it as a trip to chutz la’Aretz.”

    The discrimination is real. Every time I donate blood at MD”A I got some stuck woman saying something biased toward me. All I want to do is a chesed to save the life of a fellow Jew, and that’s the thanks I get? Well they’re still welcome.

  15. To #4 Baal Teshuvah:

    Unfortunatly I had to follow the same course. After living in Israel for close to 5 years, we had enough of the abuse. We moved back here to the states 20 years ago & B”H we live free as Bnei Torah & this Medina shel chesed accomidates us to all our needs. When Mashiach arrives, it will be time to go back.

  16. #16:
    Every Western country with a mandatory draft has always had deferments, if not exemptions, for divinity students. The myth that all chareidim are exempt is just that – a myth. Only full-time learners and clergy get deferments – NOT exemptions. No one gets a deferment just because he’s chareidi.

    As an aside, one of Israel’s most famous and popular rock singers – he was THE most popular 10-15 years ago – was a notorious draft dodger, and everyone knew it. Didn’t seem to bother anybody, though.

    As far as the tax issue, any chiloni family is welcome to make the same amount that the average charedi family makes, and have the same amount of children, and get the same tax exemption. Find me one that would rather do that than make the salary they’re making and pay income tax.

  17. I applied for a job with a charedi organization, right here in Yerushalayim, about a year ago.

    I did so, thinking that my potential new co-workers could offer me gibush in my efforts to repent and to return to mainstream Yiddishkeit.

    When I was rejected after reaching the final three candidates in the selection process I asked why.

    “We don’t think you could fit in with our ethos”, was the response.

    I am still eating BLTs twice a week. Why not? Clearly I am “not good enough” to join the charedi work force.

  18. To Expatriate Owl:

    I am sorry but you have no idea who I am or in what circles I live.

    I would recommend that you not prejudge me or my circles.

  19. Ey Yid:

    Firstly, I regret that you took my comment too personally, and take responsibility for couching it in what may have been suboptimal terms. I did not intend to accuse you or your social circles of insolence towards fellow Jews based upon levush, and regret it if my comments were so perceived.

    Secondly, I do not in any way support your reported incident of blatant discrimination, the occurence of which I have no reason to doubt. In addition to depriving you a fair opportunity to use your skills, your prospective employers no doubt deprived themselves of all the advantages of your talents.

    Having stated the foregoing, I, too, have been subjected to less-than-friendly attitudes from other Jews. On far more than an insignificant number of occasions. My kippah is one of those a 4-slice leather ones, and I do not wear a black fedora or a streimel. And, like you, there is no doubt in my mind that my own levush was the issue.

    And it is not only me and my family. Many others have reported similar experiences, many even more blatant than my own.

    And so, I stand by my observation that the discrimination flows in both directions. To which, I hasten to add, it is wrong no matter which direction it flows.

  20. The discrimination is real. Every time I donate blood at MD”A I got some stuck woman saying something biased toward me. All I want to do is a chesed to save the life of a fellow Jew, and that’s the thanks I get? Well they’re still welcome.

    As a visitor, which is all I will ever be in EY as long as it is under the memsheles hazadoin, I have experienced the same discrimination at MDA. Meanwhile, haredim give more blood than anyone else, especially as volunteer donors as opposed to donors donating for a specific patient.

    I have only had trouble because of my clothing and beard in 2 places:
    Copenhagen – attacked by Muslim immigrant kids
    Yerushalayim – verbally abused by sad descendants of those who were themselves abused by the leftists in the maabarot.

    Hashem Hu Malkeinu!

  21. Yes, there are companies who discriminate against chareidim. I would love for chareidim to be hired, but if I’m the tenth man in their minchah minyan, they will look for someone else. You can’t have it both ways , fellas. You want to play with me, pray with me.