Is orthodox Judaism sexist?

Of course it’s sexist by today’s lackluster ethical morally depraved standards, we have dropped so far down the moral scale in the last 50 years that anything remotely reeking of religion is automatically shoved into the sexist closet. Ever since Kennedy decided not to wear a hat in office (he wore one at the inauguration) this country has taken a slide to the ancient ways of sodom and gemorah, so based on our societies standards orthodoxy is most definitely sexist.

Take a look at our religion, it was created by men for men, women just seem to be a by product for which they have a few commandments thrown in, but most of traditional Judaism is about keeping the women at bay (because of the high sex drives of men) so women pay for the faults of men by being shoved aside and told that any thoughts they have of doing anything more than they are told is from an evil source and therefore assur. Beyond this, women are told that anything they want to do out of the normal realm will cause men to sin and therefore the women suffer, not the men. Is that sexist? By ancient standards it was pretty much the norm, but society has changed, we have given the women the right to vote – very untznius because now once a year they leave the kitchen and are seen in public buildings everywhere.

All Charedi publications crop photos and try to banish women from their pages, even Binah Magazine which is a woman’s magazine features no pictures of women, God forbid the husband find it and have evil thoughts over Elishevas deli roll recipe. I don’t know if it’s sexist, what on earth is sexist about choosing not to show pictures of women, it is more like a fantasy that if we don’t show women, they won’t get us to sin – because all sinning must involve a woman.

Then again, I’m kind of down with the different roles excuse that Judaism tends to give for reasons why woman don’t do certian things (most of the cool stuff) Women do have different roles, I mean they have babies and all we have to do is poke them a couple of times, deal with their drama and hold their hand (if you’re really frummy there will be no hand holding due to niddah – that’s for another post) I’m actually being serious – women do have different roles, but that doesn’t mean they can’t long for the things they don’t have – yet if they do they are deemed as a feminist with no true intentions – now that’s sexist!

Aren’t all religions sexist, they were all created during periods of time where women were second class citizens, slavery was celebrated and women were viewed as property, heck we still view them as real estate with benefits. Our excuse is that the women are on a higher spiritual level, hence the reason they don’t “need” to do certian things, but that’s probably why they want to do those things – they are higher spiritually and actually want to roll out of bed and go to shachris – so what’s the problem with that? Yet orthodoxy maintains that it is a problem because it’s done for the wrong reasons, but who cares, it’s not a sin – if anything it’s a mitzvah because it helps with their relationship to Hashem.

I should mention that Judaism itself probably wouldn’t have been as sexist if it were created in modern times, could you imagine what it would have been like if some of the great female minds were involved in Rabbinical law – all of which talks about women causing men to sin and their duties, but none of the great sages were women and hence we never get the female view. I would absolutely love to see some brilliant halachic response written by some frum ladies, I always wonder why frum ladies just focus on sex and shidduchim – I know there are some brilliant talmudic minds out there.

Look, if something is against halacha that’s one thing, but the problem with orthodoxy is that it has become much more social than halachic. I’m still not actually sure if photo shopping Hillary out was actually sexist? Or just classic social charedi.

We have to remember that all ancient religions are considered sexist by today’s standards, but is orthodoxy systemically sexist or is it just a periodically based thing?