After a hiatus, I’m back with three quickie news items, all related to — what else? — religious coercion. We’ll take it in chronological order:
First off is convoluted. Ready? So a court ruled that [the bus company] Egged may not comply with advertising agency Cnaan’s complying with the ultra-Orthodox demand not to feature humans of any gender on bus ads. There. Did I get that right? Well, I have to correct myself: The ultra-Orthodox didn’t actually demand it, but they demanded that no images of women be used, so Cnaan came up with the solution of no humans of either gender being used.
Now, while I certainly don’t have a problem with humans of either gender being shown in ads (barring the ones that use sex to sell, of course), I do believe that Cnaan’s solution is fine, and fair, and violates no one’s rights. So we’ll be like the Muslims, i.e., no human forms, no one to offend, or as a great prophet of our generation sang, "No woman, no cry".
But no: Enter Yerushalmim [Jerusalemites], an organization that opposes women being excluded from the public sphere, who insist that they’ll fight this thing until ads featuring women are back. But why? I believe they’re barking up the wrong tree, which I’ll get back to later. Meanwhile, let’s move along:
Now, finally, after only six-plus decades of rabbinic tyranny, restaurant owners are opting out of kashrut licenses, while adhering to the laws of kashrut voluntarily. It’s called “kosher by conscience”. Just one little problem: The kashrut inspectors are threatening to haul such establishments into court for false advertising.
Five Jerusalem eateries are fighting back by taking the city’s rabbinate to court after being fined for daring to call themselves kosher without having paid the kashrut inspection fee, which is really nothing but blackmail. So along with Avigayil Aharon in Tiberias, make a point of patronizing these brave businesses: Adón Cohen in Talpiót; Café Carousela in Rehávia; Salón Shabazi in Nachlaót; Ichikidana in Machanè Yehuda, and Topolino in Óhel Moshè.