Thursday, September 16, 2010

Israeli Government Office Websites Stop Accepting Payments on Holidays/Sabbath. Does That Mean I DON'T Have to Pay My Parking Ticket?

Currently, Israel allows anyone who wants to, to pay hospital fees, renew passports, extend visas and the like, to do so online. That will not change.

What will change is that people will no longer be able to take advantage of these services on the Jewish Sabbath or High Holidays. For context, it is against Jewish law to exchange money on the aforementioned days. But not all Jews follow this specific dictate (nor for that matter are all people in Israel Jewish). 

But that is irrelevant to Israel's "religious minority" who currently controls the interior, health and religious affiars ministries. 

So now, if you are a tourist, a foreign worker, a secular Israeli Jew or an Israeli citizen of any other religion, you have reason to thank Israel's growing theocratic ways. Despite the fact that you do not adhere to this law in your own life, you will now be forced to follow it in at least one capacity, thus smoothing your entry into heaven, or Florida, or wherever, at least slightly. 

It seems to me that this would be like America, the nation that invented separation of church and state, outlawing sales of alcohol on Sundays (except of course where football is concerned) or telling one religious group that they cannot build a mosque (err, I mean place of worship) anywhere that they want, assuming that all laws are followed and paper work abided by.

Thank the founding fathers that we would never have to worry about having another's religious views being forced upon is in this great nation. Not in Washington's America. Not in Jefferson's America. And praise be to Jesus Mohammad, Moses, Joseph Smith, George Clooney or L. Ron Hubbard (stated in order of relevance), not in my America.

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