I am more feminist than religious

October 28, 2010 by

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I am more feminist than religious.

My seat was 41K. Perfect. Near the window. I seated myself, put all my belongings in the compartments above, got myself cozy, and then 5 minutes before take-off two Haredi boys around 16 approach my row (41 rocks!), and tell me I am in the wrong seat.

No, I said. I am in the right seat.

Then, without apologizing, while talking in Yiddish among themselves, they ask me if I am willing to move, so they won’t have to sit near next to me, a fabulous tempting women, very very seductive at 1 am in the morning.

I thought about it and said No.

If they don’t want to sit next to me they should find themselves a different seat.

I could have been generous, tolerant, and switch to another window seat they found (Yiddish is a great commonly secret language on El Al flights), but I felt I was doing it on behalf of other women. Why should a women move for a man? The same with women on buses. Why should they move to the back? The man should. If he doesn’t want to be near a women, he should make the effort. She shouldn’t have to hide.

I asked the Yeshiva Bocher, what happened to Kvod Habriot – respect for others – why should I be the one to move if he doesn’t want to sit by me?

The angry feminist in me took over. One of the guys called me meshuggeneh. I told him he was absolutely charming. Needless to say he wasn’t happy when I asked him to stand as I wanted to go to the toilet.

Imagine it yourself.

And I am proud of it.

First appeared in Hebrew at http://spellingmistakes.blogspot.com/

Shlomit Naor is a poet and Vice Executive Director of Melitz.

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