Haredim extremists demanding that men and women not sit next to each on the airplane again have succeeded in creating anti-Semitism as well as delaying a flight, and this time it was Delta and not El Al.
A group of Haredim boarded Flight 484 from New York to Tel Aviv on Tuesday and immediately made a commotion, according to Haaretz.
It can be safely assumed that this was not the first time in their lives they boarded an airplane so it is a bit difficult to understand why they waited to parade into the parade before starting an uproar by refusing to sit in their assigned seats, lest they be smitten on the spot for sitting next to someone of the opposite sex.
Haredi men and women participated in the spectacle. Rather than committing an unforgiveable sin that is shared by no other people in the world except for your neighborhood fanatic Muslim, they did everyone on board a favor by getting off the plane.
Takeoff was delayed for 75 minutes until their baggage could be removed.
It is not known if they will get their money back, but it would be a shame if they do not feel financial pain for their spiritual insecurity.
There is no Jewish law forbidding a man and a woman to sit next to each other in separate chairs. It is easily argued that doing so can lead to immodesty – perhaps one may touch the other when tripping over a sleepy passenger’s legs on the way to the bathroom.
So let’s give the Haredim the benefit of the doubt that they are so cautious about modesty, or so screwed up that they break out in a sweat when they sit next to someone of the same gender.
After all, if that is they want to be Jewish, let them have a good time their own way.
But they know very well that seats are assigned at the ticket counter. All they have to do is tell the airline ticket agent, “I would prefer to sit next to an Ebola patient rather than someone from the opposite you know what.”
So why a fuss on the airplane?
There can be only one answer: They really are not in a hurry to fly anywhere.
And they like creating a bad name for Jews, especially for the majority of Haredim who are normal.
But everyone on the Delta flight really should thank the extremist Haredim. After they disembarked, everyone else had a lot more leg room.Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu