Creeping modesty

Gee, a sexism hat trick. The Israeli government is imposing “modesty” rules at government-sponsored events.

Israel’s Culture Ministry is to introduce new rules about how modestly performers should dress at government-sponsored events.

“Festivals and events funded by public money will respect the general public, which includes different communities,” a Culture Ministry spokesperson said.

And by “communities” they of course mean not communities at all, but religious sects. Calling them “communities” makes them sound cuddly rather than coercive.

The spokesperson spoke after a singer at a government-backed beach concert near Tel Aviv was kicked off the stage for wearing a bikini top. At a beach.

Hanna Goor, who came to public attention in Israel after appearing on a TV talent show, said a production representative told her to “get dressed” during her performance.

When she refused, he kicked her off stage before her set had finished, she claimed.

“Immediately after they took me down, I asked for an explanation. The bottom line, he explained to me, is that the request was imposed on him,” Ms Goor told the Haaretz newspaper.

Haredi influence?

Israel’s Culture Ministry disputed Ms Goor’s claim that her set was cut short, but said removing her from the stage was “necessary” because her performance did not “respect the general public who attended the show”.

“This is exactly the difference between freedom of expression and freedom of funding,” the spokesperson said, according to Jewish daily Forward.

Or maybe it’s exactly the difference between living in a secular country and living in a theocracy.

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