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Israeli parliament rejects gay and inter-faith civil marriage bill

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  1. Gary Spedding 16 May 2012, 6:25pm

    Now I hope people reading this will come to realize and understand that when Israel discusses its LGBT rights record folk will realise it for what it actually is and that is Pink Washing!

    1. For what it actually is? You mean 100 times better than in any of the other ME countries? Regardless of its vote, Israel still is among top 20 world countries in terms of LGBT rights. Sadly, with the coalitions of the past 10 years, most progress on the topic has come from the judiciary and NOT the Knesset.

      1. Gary Spedding 17 May 2012, 3:06pm

        Hi Robert,

        Whilst Israel may have exceptionally progressive LGBT rights in some areas as I am sure you are aware from reading this article it is by far the most shining example. I suggest you firstly look up pinkwashing israel via a search enginge and then also try to understand that LGBT rights should never be pitted against other human rights as some kind of measuring method. LGBT rights have an unbreakable interelationship with all other basic human rights. You cannot ignore some human rights abuses just because of a good LGBT rights record as that is pinkwashing. LGBT rights, Minority rights, womens rights – HUMAN RIGHTS and Equality for ALL.

        As the article also says “According to a report by the Refugee Rights Clinic of Tel Aviv University published in 2008 Israel refuses to weigh requests for asylum by LGBT people fleeing persecution, including LGBT Palestinians.”

        You don’t realise that the Likud and Israel’s Knesset are exceptionally right wing!

    2. Well said. Israel is the worst human rights abuser in the Middle East and the most persistent violator of international law.. Using gay rights to lecture Palestinians (who die in their hundreds at Israeli hands every year) is disgusting.

      1. That There Other David 16 May 2012, 11:02pm

        Israel the worst human rights abuser in the Middle East? WTF are you on about? Have you not noticed what’s going on in Syria? Or Bahrain? Or Iraq? Or what passes for every day life in Iran?

        Christ, pull your head out of your arse and see that the world doesn’t begin and end with the Palestinian issue.

      2. Israel abuses human rights and it needs to address that HOWEVER it is NOT the worst human rights abuser in the Middle East. That is purely nonesense.

        1. Hodge Podge 17 May 2012, 9:58am

          Yeah a silly thing to say, much a I support Palestine.

      3. GingerlyColors 17 May 2012, 6:47am

        So by your reckoning, Iran is a better place to live. Try telling that to the men who have been sentenced to hang for being gay.

        1. it is ridiculous to compare democracy to totalitarian regime and it is even more ridiculous for israel to deny democracy to others and then to claim that they are the only democracy in region

  2. A good demonstration that religion and government can not and should not mix.

  3. Robert in S. Kensington 16 May 2012, 7:22pm

    This comes as no surprise, with rabbis in the knesset. Israeli law is rooted in judaism so technically, Israel is a theocracy.

    1. Rayne Van-Dunem 17 May 2012, 5:37pm

      Um, no. Israel is not a theocracy. The Jewish people, however, are a theocratic people/nation.

      That’s because the definition of Jewishness, one that was originally based on being a descendant of the Judeans by the time of the Roman rule in Judea, was handled and repackaged by the rabbis after the Second Temple (and priesthood) was destroyed. Now, instead of strictly a descent from the Judeans, Jewish identity is defined by conversion or adherence to Judaism (or a female ancestor’s adherence).

      But because Judaism is comparatively light on belief and heavy on tradition, creatures such as Jewish atheists and Jewish Buddhists actually exist.

      But if you want to get married in Israel, you have to get it done by an Orthodox rabbi for it to be legit, no matter if you are Reform/Progressive/Liberal/Reconstructionist. That’s given the Israeli Orthodox rabbis a monopoly on Jewish identity in Israel, meaning that nice things like this bill won’t get passed because of the Orthodox rabbis.

      1. Given the control that some theocratic people have over “democracy” in Israel, this makes Israel even more theocratic as a nation than the UK (with Lords Spiritual and head of state as head of a religion)

        1. Rayne Van-Dunem 17 May 2012, 6:12pm

          No, there is a difference between Jews as a people and Israel as a state. The rabbis set the definition of Jewishness for Jews (in diaspora as well), and Orthodox rabbis do this in Israel. The state simply goes along with this because it is more “authentically Jewish” than non-Orthodox marriages. Wistful nationalistic sentiments.

          Also, the Israelis inherited the current lack of civil marriages from the Muslim Ottomans, who only allowed for religious marriages to be conducted during their rule of Palestine and the Levant.

          Activism in Israel for civil marriages must be better concerted if even Yisrael Beiteinu (a secular right-wing party both in coalition with Netanyahu/Likud and in favor of civil marriage) couldn’t get his bill into law.

          1. Spanner1960 17 May 2012, 6:17pm

            Could have fooled me.

          2. Is the reality not that due to coalition government successive governments have had to kowtow to theocratic political parties. Thus it is the theocrats who have control over the direction of certain aspects of Israel as a state.

  4. “According to a report by the Refugee Rights Clinic of Tel Aviv University published in 2008 Israel refuses to weigh requests for asylum by LGBT people fleeing persecution, including LGBT Palestinians.”

    Im speechless, what sheer hypocrisy

  5. We must stop giving aid to these countries that deny gay rights.

    1. DJ Sheepiesheep 16 May 2012, 9:46pm

      So, does that extend to forbidding UK charities from donating money to causes in Gaza?

    2. Israel is set to pass the UK in GDP per capita next year. Surely it will not affect it. Also, 90% of the countries that receive aid from the UK are rather homophobic, so this would mean scraping the entire aid program. (or diverting it to Latin America and Nepal :D).

      1. As a Latin American myself, I say you can stuff it. It is not we who have debts 400% of our GDP. We don’t need Britain. The same I can’t say of Israel, which is the country that most absorbs foreign aid in the world, even though, as you said yourself, it is a prosperous country. And yet you have the galls to complain of European anti-Semitism in the rare occasions your policies are criticized by Europeran powers.

        1. You being who? I am not Israeli? Ok, fine, no aid for Latin America if it makes you feel better. :)

  6. ‘…Palestinian MKs voted for the bill…’

    moral higher ground has just shifted

    1. Well, I think they voted for PART of the law (only a small part was refering to gays). I highly doubt they would vote for the bill in the Ramallah legislature.

      1. ‘…I highly doubt they would vote for the bill in the Ramallah legislature…’

        palestine is not allowed to have proper democracy and thanks to israel’s treatment of palestine extremist parties in both countries keep getting elected.

      2. I don’t think there’s a way of voting for some parts of the bill and against others.

        Face it, whether or not Israeli Arab MKs are supporters of LGBT rights, they were willing to support the bill as it would enable interfaith marriage. It is mostly Israeli Jewish MKs who couldn’t let go of at least one their prejudices to support the whole of the bill.

        1. Well yeah, that is true. And wrong at the same time. The stupid sharade of forcing people to marry in Cyprus is beyond ridiculous.

        2. Rayne Van-Dunem 17 May 2012, 5:41pm

          Mostly Israeli *Orthodox* MKs (many of whom are also rabbis, see “Shas” and “United Torah Judaism” parties).

          Reform rabbis here in America would be happy as apples to see civil marriage (incl. interfaith/gay/atheist marriages) in Israel, but they’re getting stonewalled (no pun intended) by the rabbinical monopoly in Israel.

          1. Then Israeli Orthodox MKs are the majority of Jewish MKs in the Knesset — after all, the bill passed, didn’t it?

          2. @ Rafael
            “after all, the bill passed, didn’t it?”
            No it didn’t
            From article:
            ” Legislation for the option of civil marriage for Israeli citizens who cannot be wed via religious institutions, including same-sex marriage and marriages between members of different faiths, like Muslims and Jews, was rejected by the Israel parliament, or Knesset.”

  7. Like the 75.8% of Danes who support equal marriage.

    Like Mexico, Uruguay, Ireland, Nepal, Mongolia, France, England, Wales, Scotland, USA, Chile, New Zealand and many other nations who are making progressive approaches to equal marriage.

    There is no pendulum swinging.

    How many countries stopped interracial marriage after it was introduced? None and it spread pretty much globally. Thats what will happen with same sex marriage too.

    You despise that – and the fact that you do, makes it all the better.

  8. Pretty shameful. Seems like they have forgotten that pink triangles stood side by side with yellow stars in the gas chambers.

  9. That There Other David 16 May 2012, 11:04pm

    This bill was also going to, let’s not forget, allow those of different faiths to marry. This is far more likely to be the reason it failed than same-sex marriage. Let’s not forget that there are other bigotries out there than just homophobia.

  10. Nebraska Jane Svoboda take a look and see yourself as in a mirror.

  11. I am absolutely astonished by this. Not because Israel have rejected marriage for gay couples. Rather because I hadn’t realised inter-faith marriages were not currently legal. Is Israel really still that backward? Seriously, it needs to wake up and join the 20th century, before we can expect it to join the 21st century.

    1. I too didn’t realise until yesterday that Israel has no form of non-religious marriage at all. For a country that’s so advanced in many ways, it’s really shocking.

      1. Robert in S. Kensington 17 May 2012, 3:15pm

        It’s also odd that israel recognises same-sex marriages but doesn’t want to introduce it. Makes no sense.

    2. Rayne Van-Dunem 17 May 2012, 5:46pm

      Israel inherited the Ottoman Empire’s laws which only provided for religious marriages. Combine that with the insistence of Orthodox rabbis to control the national and municipal chief rabbinates, as well as with the very definition of Jewishness (who inherits Jewish identity, is this conversion legit, etc.) being set by rabbinical authorities, and you have bills like this being defeated in the Knesset, no matter how many millions of Israelis (and Americans and Europeans) want this bill passed.

      Again, a number of unfortunate circumstances happening to meet and overlap at this point.

      1. You forget that, between the Ottoman rule over Israel and the establishment of Israel as a state, Palestine was under British control. The Ottoman Empire was two empires away from the Israeli state. There’s no way the Israelis would have inherited anything on its legal system from the Ottoman Empire. Plus, I highly doubt that marriage laws in the Ottoman Empire would’ve forbidden interfaith marriage, first because it had a relatively secular legislation; and second because even if the Quran allows marriage between Muslims and the People of the Book with no need of conversion. Christian-Muslim marriages aren’t rare among Palestinians and Israeli Arabs.

        Ottoman rule over Palestine ended almost 100 years ago. If Israel refuses to enact civil marriage, it is its own, not Turkish Muslims’, fault.

    3. Rayne Van-Dunem 17 May 2012, 5:48pm

      Also, Lebanon, another Ottoman territory, also doesn’t recognize civil marriages. One of the many bad policies or non-policies shared in the Levant.

      1. This is Lebanon’s own fault, then. Lebanon is not under Ottoman control — the Ottomans don’t exist anymore. If they fail to enact any one bill, this is to blame on the Lebanese parliament. THE SAME is true for Israel. That Israel can’t accept gay or interfaith marriage is something to be blamed on the Knesset, not on an empire that hasn’t controlled historical Palestine for almost 100 years.

  12. Faith. The failsafe bigot badge.

    God did it..

    Is there anybody left on this bl@@dy planet with a modicum of humanity or intelligence.

    1. Christopher 17 May 2012, 2:17am

      Me!!

    2. Alas, B, I couldn’t agree more. Its well established the more religious you are the more likely you are to be, well, an idiot.

      And for the chest thumping god screamers who frequent this site, because they “are straight”, read these:- http://news.yahoo.com/low-iq-conservative-beliefs-linked-prejudice-180403506.html & http://www.humanreligions.info/intelligence.html)

      Its why 98% of scientists are atheists/agnostics.

      1. And we allow these knuckle dragging freaks to run schools…

        1. I know. I have an issue with people who think the bible is a source of “truth” teaching the next generation science.

  13. “The pendulum swings back.”

    Back to the delusional place you live in where you think your kind is winning?

    LOL! Sure. Why not.

  14. Israel is definitely the best ME country for LGBT people to live in but a mix of religion and government is doing them no good.

  15. Spanner1960 17 May 2012, 9:02am

    Nice to know that the first country to leap up and scream persecution at people is themselves just as backward and bigoted.

    1. Rayne Van-Dunem 17 May 2012, 5:53pm

      The government is extra-sensitive due to a long 1,500-year history in “Christian Europe,” which we all know went, in Ann Coulter’s words, “swimmingly.”

      Israel, however, inherited its laws on marriage from the Muslim Ottomans who ruled Palestine/Israel, Lebanon, Jordan, Syria and Turkey (among others) until WW1.

      1. You forget that, between the Ottoman rule over Israel and the establishment of Israel as a state, Palestine was under British control. The Ottoman Empire was two empires away from the Israeli state. There’s no way the Israelis would have inherited anything on its legal system from the Ottoman Empire. Plus, I highly doubt that marriage laws in the Ottoman Empire would’ve forbidden interfaith marriage, first because it had a relatively secular legislation; and second because even if the Quran allows marriage between Muslims and the People of the Book with no need of conversion. Christian-Muslim marriages aren’t rare among Palestinians and Israeli Arabs.

  16. Very Disappointing! You would think as Israel was only formed as a result of discrimination they would know better.

    1. Rayne Van-Dunem 17 May 2012, 5:55pm

      Israel inherited this “no civil marriage” law from the Muslim Ottomans, and haven’t changed it because of Orthodox rabbis, Muslim imams and Christian priests all saying “no.”

      There’s your reason.

      1. Spanner1960 17 May 2012, 6:16pm

        What part of “civil” do you and these people not understand?

      2. Thats not a reason for it still to be in this state or for them to refuse to enact the law that was before the Knesset

  17. You should try it too sometime.

    You’ll find it more rewarding then alcoholism and denial.

    1. Robert in S. Kensington 17 May 2012, 3:13pm

      And let’s not forget self-loathing. I suppose praying away the gay or aversion therapy didn’t work after all.

  18. Spanner1960 17 May 2012, 2:15pm

    What’s the bets this whole discussion gets jumped on by Jewish people that have probably never set foot in Israel that start accusing everybody of anti-Semitism?

    1. …..dunno Spanner but we seem to have managed to get to 39 comments without anyone but you raising the possibility……so maybe the odds are against it.

      What was your point, precisely? Did you have one? Or was it just the old canard about Jews equating anti Israel with anti semitism? Didn’t that fall with the Protocols of the Elders of Zion?

      1. Spanner1960 17 May 2012, 6:15pm

        Well, it is a point. I notice a lot of people on here seem to be getting red-arrowed simply for criticising Israel.

        1. I have to say the whole Israel / Palestinian situation is complex.

          Israel have done a lot of good things LGBT wise – this is not one of them – but that does not excuse any of the horrendous acts that they have perpetrated in the name of “security”.

          Equally, there have been horrendous acts either by or in the name of Palestinians which do not justify some of the appalling attacks on Israeli civilians.

          Its a mess.

          In general LGBT terms Israel is better (although far from perfect). However, in the entire bigger picture neither side comes up smelling of roses and the biggest barrier to peace and security is Israeli intransigence.

  19. How seriously do you think people are going to take the opinion of a talking butt plug collection?

    1. Robert in S. Kensington 17 May 2012, 3:12pm

      I think it’s best to ignore the idiot, it only enables him when responding to his absurd comments. It’s tempting not to but I’m going to give it a try.

      1. I know I know but it’s sooooo tempting.

      2. Noooo Keith. Absurd A B S U R D

        Shall we get someone to explain it for you?

    2. It’s not even my collection!

      ;-)

  20. gattagiudecca 18 May 2012, 3:29am

    Why is it whenever there is an article about Israel, there are a high number of people who comment along the lines of “well at least they are better than Iran”, as if this absolves Israel of any criticism. Of course Israel is bloody better than Iran for LGBTs! It’s hardly difficult. Just because Israel is physically situated beside horrifically homophobic countries, does not mean it can adopt a lesser standard of LGBT rights than I would expect in Europe. It would be a much fairer comparison to compare Israel’s LGBT record with European countries or the USA. If they do something that is anti-LGBT then we have a right to criticise them for it. And vice-versa! If the UK does something anti-LGBT, then I don’t expect Israelis to say “oh well, at least they don’t hang the gays in London.”.

  21. Hmmmmmm…….they are surrounded by people that hate them. WTF????

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