Points of Views
From Jerusalem
Points of Views
המשך Continue
רוצים לדעת מי אנחנו?

0202 – Points of View from Jerusalem


"'Not allowing the dead to live.' Everything about the police’s war against loudspeakers and posters:

Is it the end for the Jewish Haredi Jerusalemite industry of announcing funerals by plastering posters [on walls] and announcing through loudspeakers [on top of cars] [1]? Based on the municipality's tough enforcement, it would seem so.

For the past year and a half, the Jerusalem municipality has been battling against [people posting] obituary notices around the capital. In recent months the have begun confiscating the plasterer’s vehicles, as well as fining funeral announcers 900 shekel fines per announcement, even [if the announcements are done] in the morning.

Up until nearly two years ago, the plasterers had an agreement with the municipality regarding the [use of] notice boards dedicated to obituary notices, but these boards were only placed in a few locations. For a while now, the municipality has increased enforcement in the Haredi neighborhoods, sending detectives and inspectors to seek out the plasterers of the pirate ads, who claim they don’t have appropriate boards [to hang up their notices].

Zeev Tzatzik from ‘Voice of the Bridge of Life,’ whose cars have been confiscated many times and as a result has had to deal with exorbitant fines to release the cars, angrily told B'hol: 'It can not be impossible to put up obituary notices in Jerusalem. The cruelty of the city police knows no boundaries. Why do they confiscate the vehicles? Give us a ticket and we’ll be able to deal with it but confiscating cars is cruelty for cruelty's sake.'

Regarding the tickets, Tzatzik said: 'This is not about loudspeakers announcing demonstrations against recruitment [2] or grave desecration [3], this is simply ‘accompanying the deceased’ [4]. Just last week I announced the funeral of R’ Mordechai Tzeinort and the young yeshiva student Rabbi Rotman [and] I received [a fine of] 900 shekels. They photograph your car and force you to stop announcing the funeral. As a result, we need to charge accordingly. The mourning families have to pay us more because it’s not worthwhile for us to work like this. They don’t allow the dead to live also after they pass away. We reached out to Knesset Members Makleb and Eichler [5] and nothing gets done. We reached out to city council members as well but until it affects them, they don’t do anything.'

Yossi Nemirovski from the ‘Jerusalem Advertisement’ company which puts up obituary notices and announces funerals told B'hol: ‘Once they used to give fines and you would go to court, pay one fine and get it over with. A few months ago, they started to confiscated vehicles for a month or less and the damage is 15,000 shekels. The court now legitimizes this and have taken it one step further. Even when a funeral is announced, they don’t allow you to announce. They take your personal information and tell you to put away the speaker.'"

– B'hol

0202 Editor's Notes:
[1] In Haredi communities, printed announcements are still one of the main methods of spreading information. Most of these printed announcements are to inform of deaths and funerals. In addition, for some funerals, cars with loudspeakers attached to their roofs drive around the Haredi centers announcing the passing away of an individual and the funeral details. These methods are used for other reasons and occasions as well, such as requests to pray for the sick, donate to a specific urgent cause, rallying people for demonstrations and more.
[2] Recruitment to the Israeli army has been of the focal points of the relationship between the Haredi community and the rest of the Jewish population in Israel. Broadly speaking, most Haredis do not enlist in the army. Every so often, there are calls from the other sectors to change the laws that enable this situation. In response to these attempts, some of the Haredi communities organize protests.
[3] According to Jewish Orthodox law, Jewish graves need to be dealt with in a certain way. Some Haredi groups claim that these laws are broken by the state when ancient graves are discovered in the course of paving new roads or building new structures. In response, they attempt to halt the construction until the graves are properly taken care of.
[4] “Accompanying the deceased” is the Jewish religious expression for funerals. According to Jewish Orthodox law, making sure the deceased has a proper funeral is of utmost importance.
[5] Haredi Knesset Members from the Haredi party “Judaism of the Torah.”

#Funerals #Haredi_customs #Streets_of_Jerusalem