Israel – parts of it at least – promotes itself as the most tolerant country in the Middle East. Gays and lesbians have a freedom to live openly unheard of in the Arab world. Transsexual singer Dana International is a popular entertainer and TV personality. Yet… Yet… Late Saturday an unidentified shooter opened fire in a Tel Aviv club that provides a haven for gay teens and youth. Two are dead. Another 10 are wounded, some critically.
Mainstream and ultra-Orthodox politicians have risen to condemn the shooting. The Mayor of Tel Aviv pledged his city will remain friendly to and supportive of gays. Yet…there is often open talk in this country about how homosexuality is the root of many problems – even earthquakes!
Shalom Hartman Institute has made a point of being an open, pluralistic center that is a place where gay and Orthodox rabbis study together. Rabbi Dr. Donniel Hartman has several times on our website condemned the hateful speech of anti-gay political and religious leaders.
Read his recent posts: