Protesting violence and extremism in Beit Shemesh.

The House of Sun has been pretty dark lately. And by pretty dark, I mean as dark as a ten-layer burqa on a Jewish woman.

I  haven’t written about it here, but you can learn more about the abuse of 8-year-old dati leumi Na’ama Margolies, signs ordering women how to modestly walk the streets, and the  whole drama that erupted because of the Orot Banot elementary school that opened in Ramat Beit Shemesh this year.

Well, tonight is the public, national beginning/culmination of the Jew vs Jew misfortune in Beit Shemesh with an expected 10,000-person protest outside the girls’ school. People from all across the country, from all stripes, are expected to join together against the violence and extremism that has grown from the extreme Haredi sector here.

I think this is messy. Jew vs Jew is  bound to be. But even within the protesting camp, where there will inevitably be plenty of Beit Shemesh haredim opposed to the extremism (finally) – will the secular folks from out of town get that? Will they assume they are the evil ones? Will they begin to see the difference between dati leumi, haredi lite and haredi? Are secular people from across Israel prepared to learn that there are plenty of peaceful, respectful haredim out there? Among us? That they are related to us, married to our family members, that they hold jobs AND learn Torah, that they want to live and let live?

The protest is scheduled for 6pm on Sderot Herzog, Beit Shemesh.

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