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Silly Controversy Over Frum EP Candidate Who Won’t Shake Women’s Hands

Wednesday February 19, 2014 7:30 AM - 12 Comments

shneur-zalman-odzeA nasty row has broken out within the UKIP (United Kingdom Independence Party) over an EP (European Parliament) candidate’s refusal to shake women’s hands due to his religious beliefs.

Shneur Zalman Odze, a prospective MEP for the North West of England, has told party members his Orthodox Judaism forbids him from physical contact with women other than his wife.

Some party activists say they are offended by his stance, which threatens to alienate half the electorate.

But senior officials have rebuked these activists as “rude” and “wrong” for refusing to respect Odze’s beliefs.

Fred McGlade, a UKIP regional organizer, has already resigned from his post in protest at the decision to include Odze, 31, on the party’s list of top MEP candidates.

He warned UKIP chairman Steve Crowther that he would stand down if Odze was chosen by the party, because of his attitude towards women.

At least one UKIP branch has banned Odze because of what a member described as his “difficult and aggressive behavior.”

Crowther told the Times it was “rude” of McGlade and others to complain about Odze.

He said: “We have a policy of tolerance for and acceptance of people’s own religious observance. We do not consider it grounds for complaint. It harms no one.”

Ozde, who is fourth on the Ukip’s MEP list in the North West, was unavailable to comment.

Crown Heights

{Matzav.com Newscenter}

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12 Responses to “Silly Controversy Over Frum EP Candidate Who Won’t Shake Women’s Hands”

1. Comment from Go Chabad
Time February 19, 2014 at 9:07 AM

He should go from strength to strength.

2. Comment from Medakdeik
Time February 19, 2014 at 9:17 AM

For the benefit of those unfamiliar with UK politics, UKIP is an openly racist (and hence anti-semitic) party - whose increasing popularity is scary!

3. Comment from shvigger
Time February 19, 2014 at 9:49 AM

Yidden do not belong in politics.

4. Comment from Hallacha
Time February 19, 2014 at 10:03 AM

For an interesting discussion of shaking a woman’s hand in Halacha- see Umekareiv Biyamin number 14 by Harav Chaim Avraham Zakutinsky.
Here’s the link- http://hebrewbooks.org/pdfpager.aspx?req=51347&st=&pgnum=201

5. Comment from MMI
Time February 19, 2014 at 10:12 AM

Anyone who knows observant Jews knows how they are brought up to respect women, from mothers to wives and all others. We are constantly taught on all levels to avoid even the indecency which is so prevalent and even encouraged in the world at large.

6. Comment from Solution
Time February 19, 2014 at 10:40 AM

Solve the issue quickly!
Don’t shake ANYONE’S hand!

7. Comment from Anonymous
Time February 19, 2014 at 12:47 PM

Ultimately, he has his true calling. Being a Jew. Not running for office. He can certainly do as he wishes and perhaps he will or will not be elected. Ultimately, I think he should do what is right for his Judaism and not for his “state”.

8. Comment from Very good
Time February 19, 2014 at 4:25 PM

Baruch Hashem he is following Halacha.

9. Comment from Antiloobybrigade
Time February 19, 2014 at 4:41 PM

although they deny it.

10. Comment from Anonymous
Time February 19, 2014 at 6:18 PM

its not against women. Women cant shake mens hand either

11. Comment from Anonymous
Time February 19, 2014 at 9:09 PM

isav sonei yaakob

12. Comment from MMI
Time February 19, 2014 at 9:15 PM

I don’t think it’s silly at all. McGlade’s actions indicate that he is a anti- semite. He is evil and reverses the truth.

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