DWB = driving while black. it's not a positive connotation.

but this righteous lady (literally), Alysa Stanton, is going to be PREACHING while black... and female... and as of this weekend- an ordained rabbi! very cool. (the first female rabbi was ordained in the u.s. in 1974.)

but of course, the old guard is none too pleased about it. (well, frankly, i don't think they've been pleased since 1974.)

"My general feeling, as a rabbi, is that there is a great deal of room for everyone to have spiritual fulfillment in Judaism but the public role of a rabbi is only for certain people and that excludes women," Orthodox Rabbi Gil Student of New York City told ABCNews.com. "That's based on tradition and enshrined in law."

As for race, Student said that neither he nor the Orthodox Jewish community finds any problem with African-American Jews. "There is no such thing as skin color in Judaism, it doesn't exist," Student said.

why is race invisible, but gender is a problem? a person has no control over either. neither one defines a person's morality, intellect, or character.
so why? why would it not matter if this new rabbi was a black MAN, but somehow the fact that it's a black WOMAN creates controversy?

you guessed it. because deep down, it's because women are still viewed as inferior. the orthodox rabbi flat out said in the article that the correct role for women is only to raise the family.

honestly, every time i hear that kind of sentiment i want to throw up a little bit. not because i don't respect the work of raising a family. but because 1. what about women who have no desire to raise a family? like, you know, ME? so what are we, chopped liver? (i don't think i want to know mr. rabbi's answer to that.) and 2. it's a cop-out. it completely ignores the other parent's responsibility. it's counterintuitive to the whole conservative movement's recent apoplectic fit about "one man and one woman is the only proper way to raise a family". uh...apparently not. apparently, it's the woman's responsibility, period. the man would be much too busy LEADING.

and i love how he justifies the arbitrary exclusion of women by saying it's "enshrined in law". because a. laws are ALWAYS moral and stand the test of time, don't they? (ahem.) and b. what about 'thou shalt have no other gods before me'? (enshrine: to cherish as sacred.) unless i'm misunderstanding that commandment, it's god, not the law, that should ultimately be honored. so if a law is immoral, or just flat out wrong, it should be changed. period.

so anyway- i just wanted to toot Alysa's horn a little bit. kudos!
and also tell rabbi student to bugger off.

1 comment:

Elizabeth said...

She sounds like the kind of rabbi I would be honored to learn from. As for the conservatives - well, I left that camp years ago.