The New York Times has an article today about (drum roll, please!) -- Jews! This time around they're the NYT's favorite flavor of Jew, Orthodox. The story is about the voting bylaws of the Crown Heights Jewish Community Council:
According to the bylaws of the Crown Heights Jewish Community Council, a social service agency and community pillar that has received millions of dollars in government grants over the years, only those who meet the following requirements can vote for its leadership:
- Jewish and religiously observant residents of Crown Heights
- Married, previously married or at least 30 years old
Well, at least the bylaws don't stipulate that they also have to be "white" and "landowners." We've come so far.
The council have good reasons for not extending the vote to women. One is that it's never been done. Orthodox Jews are nothing if not traditional and can't just change like that ( cue: snap of the fingers). I mean, it's only bee 90+ years since women received the vote in this country. That's not enough time to see if this suffrage thing will really catch on. I mean voting isn't a technology like timers for your lights so you can pretend you're not using electricity on the Sabbath. It's important to tread lightly when it comes to the equal distribution of rights and responsibilities.
Another argument put forth is that extending both spouses the "vote" would plant the seeds of discord in otherwise perfectly happily married couples. Nothing says shalom bayit like one person deciding what you should think and feel. It's about as comfortable as wearing shoes that are a couple of sizes too small.
But perhaps my favorite reason the vote hasn't been extended to Lubavitch women is that the act is immodest. Yes folks -- suffrage is for sluts.
I mean, I vote. My American history and civics teaching mother would kill me if I didn't. But as you all know, I'm a slut. Of course I want my viewpoint to be heard. And by "viewpoint" I mean that I want to show you my breasts.