Judaism, Not Extremism

JOFA quotes a recent Ynet article and reports: “A girls’ high school in Petah Tikva has announced, a fortnight before school resumes, that skirts must now be floor-length, when knee-length used to be the norm; the parents protest such extremism in a non-ultra-Orthodox establishment.”
 
It’s outrageous but unsurprising that JOFA presents the Ynet–i.e., radically anti-religious–version of the story as absolute fact. This rag’s bias is evident in its failure to post the full text of the letter in which the principal laid out the new rule.
In reality, we’re dealing here not with an inappropriate desire to impose excessive restrictions, but with a measure intended to combat the students’ flagrant violation of the existing dress code.
 
In the words of Holly Kutin Sragow, commenter on JOFA’s post (emphasis added): “From what I’ve been reading about this, it seems the goal was not about competition over skirt lengths but about trying to prevent girls from violating the old dress code of knee-length skirts by wearing short tight skirts, well above the knees. Why do we seem to have less interest in encouraging girls to follow the dress code than we do in calling out what we see as extremism?
 
It is not at all surprising or inconsistent that the secularist Ynet seeks to portray religious Jews in a one-sided, unfavorable light. But JOFA is supposedly Orthodox, so where is there concern for discussing this issue from the standpoint of the school administration and addressing their halacha-based concerns?
Rather, this posts reveals JOFA’s true secularist colors. Although they won’t say so outright, JOFA is not at all concerned about girls violating actual standards of modesty, because if JOFA would have its way, these standards wouldn’t exist altogether.
JOFA’s goal is to promote to the modern secular political ideology of feminism, which is inherently at odds with Judaism. As far as this discussion is concerned, feminism views the very concept of modesty as inherently “oppressive” and dismisses almost all dress codes as “patriarchy”.
 
This is not to suggest that there aren’t some schools and communities where the dress codes are truly excessive even by strict religious standards. However, by taking the side of the anti-religious Ynet, JOFA has made its true intentions clear.
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