August 4: Goodbye, busline

Harassment against women on public buses in Beit Shemesh is a daily occurrence.

August 3, 2013 23:51

Letters 370. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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Goodbye, busline

Sir, – Regarding “Haredi extremists in Beit Shemesh smash bus windows, throw stones” (August 1), last Thursday, our 19-year-old daughter finished her year of National Service in Pardes Katz. It was the last time she had to ride the 497 bus to and from Bnei Brak.

Without fail, every ride for the entire year meant enduring verbal harassment from haredi men and sometimes women for her refusal to sit at the back of the bus.

The bus drivers varied in their response. Some demanded that the perpetrators stop or leave the bus, while others ignored the problem. On one occasion she filed a complaint with the police.

Make no mistake: Harassment against women on public buses in Beit Shemesh is a daily occurrence, and a problem that we are suffering alone.

Beit Shemesh

Out of control

Sir, – “Link revealed between Bank of China and American tycoon Sheldon Adelson” (August 1) by Ben Caspit is close to yellow journalism. The hatred Caspit has for Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is out of control.

Sheldon Adelson can take care of himself, and the insinuation that our prime minister is protecting him is absurd. The entire situation has more to do with business that Israel wants to do with China than it does with Adelson.

This charge is masking the real tragedy of the family involved in the drama.


Fair threshold

Sir, – Regarding “Electoral reforms bill passes hurdle” (August 1), I have a suggestion for the electoral threshold that takes a page straight from American policy.

The US House Of Representatives has 435 members. They are apportioned among states by population, but every state is guaranteed at least one member, even those whose population is less than 1/435 of the total (as was the case for three states in the last census in 2010).

Why not consider leaving the Knesset threshold at 2 percent but limiting the number of Knesset members to no more than one or two unless a threshold of 4% is reached? This would avoid shutting out small voices completely, but still reduce the chances that a lot of smaller parties deadlock the body. It would also encourage the formation of larger and broader political groupings.

Lawrence, New York

Lawyer joke

Sir, – Congratulations to the Post for finally including a humor section. It was hilarious to read about attorney Dola Indidis (“Kenyan lawyer takes Israel to Hague over Jesus’s death,” August 1).

Aside from the fact that Israel didn’t exist at the time, Indidis’s actions also ignore the fact that the International Court of Justice doesn’t have jurisdiction or even care about such facts.

It would be interesting to know who this lawyer’s clients are – the Roman Legion? The Emperor? King Herod? And how will he be paid? In ancient Roman coins?


Talking peace...

Sir, – I commend The Jerusalem Post for drawing attention to Tzipi Livni’s statement on the renewed peace negotiations: “History is not made by cynics. It is made by realists who are not afraid to dream. And let us be these people” (“Kerry: Talks aim to reach final-status agreement in 9 months,” July 31).

But Livni also warned: “In these negotiations, it’s not our intention to argue about the past but to create solutions and make decisions for the future.”

Not since Golda Meir published her autobiography My Life has another Israeli woman laid out a more compelling argument for a better future for Israeli children. Under Meir, Israel did so much to help my native Uganda to set the foundation for development soon after our independence.

I urge Israelis and all people of good will around the world to be realists, not cynics, and to support Livni and the chance to turn the dream about peace with the Palestinians into reality.


...a matter of luck

Sir, – Here’s an idea to make the “piece” negotiations more palatable to us.

Let Mifal Hapays start a lottery.

Participants would stake NIS 20 and guess the number of days it takes for the Palestinians, having had their prisoners released, to decide to bolt the circus. The winner or winners would be those who guess the correct or closest number.

This should give at least some people light relief in an otherwise grim and pointless effort.


Trust? Seriously?

Sir, – The tortured centrism of Gil Troy (“When negotiating, trust but verify,” Center Field, July 31) is increasingly pathetic.

Despite all the previous failed negotiations with the Palestinians, buttressed by the blood of Jewish terror victims, Troy still protests that he “genuinely” wants “serious negotiations to start” and "desperately” wants Palestinians to “control their own national destiny.”

Trust? Is he serious? When will our doleful centrists realize that our enemies have not permitted us to come close to the threshold of trust? We haven’t yet even reached the stage suggested by the talmudic principle guiding negotiations: kabdehu v’hashdehu (honor your interlocutor but be suspicious).

Let our enemies begin by honoring our national Jewish rights to self-determination in the Land of Israel. Then we’ll negotiate with varying degrees of trust and suspicion, verifying every promise and commitment.

Until then, let’s be honest with ourselves: The US is pressuring us in ways that we ordinary Israelis are not privy to. Our government, we pray, knows what it is doing. All agonizing prognostications on our part are sad and just plain sour.


Little coverage

Sir, – Concerning “A celebratory send-off” (July 31), why did the 19th Maccabiah Games have so little publicity in general, especially on TV and in my favorite morning newspaper, The Jerusalem Post? By the way, enough is enough about the royal baby. Let’s read more about our own accomplishments.


Who can, who can’t

Sir, – In “Hypnotherapy:From charlatans and performers to medical care” (Health, July 28), Dr. Shaul Livnay is quoted as saying: “Untrained people have been sued for harming patients.” I trust that astute readers are able to recognize the many benefits of modern medical practice and still be aware that very well trained and educated medical professionals are sued for harming patients every day! Livnay is also quoted as saying: “There was a famous case a few years ago of a Florida high school principal who tried to help pupils suffering from test anxiety, and a suicide was the result.” That statement is complete rubbish! There was/is absolutely no evidence that the hypnosis used by the principal to reduce test anxiety resulted in a suicide! Tens of thousands of Israelis who could be helped to feel better, heal faster and generally be more effective will not be, because outdated Israeli law prevents the practice of hypnosis by qualified practitioners that are not also medical doctors or psychologists. Instead, they will be forced to visit one of the perceived experts and risk being told that they can’t be hypnotized because they are poor subjects.

Pompano Beach, Florida
The writer is an expert on hypnotic pain relief

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