Author Topic: Outremont ban on street processions  (Read 1492 times)

lagatta

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Outremont ban on street processions
« on: April 06, 2012, 09:33:01 AM »
Another chapter in the never-ending saga of tensions between the large ultra-orthodox Chassidic community in Outremont and non-Chassids - a temporary ban on all processions and parades, including the Russian Orthodox Easter procession:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/outremont-easter-procession-cancelled-due-to-districts-conflict-with-hasidic-jews/article2393938/

« Last Edit: April 06, 2012, 06:15:29 PM by lagatta »
" Eure \'Ordnung\' ist auf Sand gebaut. Die Revolution wird sich morgen schon \'rasselnd wieder in die Höhe richten\' und zu eurem Schrecken mit Posaunenklang verkünden: \'Ich war, ich bin, ich werde sein!\' "
Rosa Luxemburg

Antonia

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Re: Outremont ban on street possessions
« Reply #1 on: April 06, 2012, 06:05:49 PM »
Slight typo in the subject title, Lagatta.  :))

As for this ban, well, this is an attack on the religious freedom of the orthodox worshipers. These Good Friday processions are indeed an integral part of the service, symbolizing the carrying of Jesus' body up to the crypt from which he was resurrected. A parade to welcome a foreign rabbi, on the other hand, is not a religious event but a ceremonial or celebratory one. You want a parade? get a permit.
It is when we all play safe that we create a world of utmost insecurity. It is when we all play safe that fatality will lead us to our doom. It is in the "dark shade of courage" alone that the spell can be broken.
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lagatta

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Re: Outremont ban on street processions
« Reply #2 on: April 06, 2012, 06:34:00 PM »
Yes, I thought it was a violation of religious freedom, but wasn't sure enough of the principles to assert it. Thanks a lot for drawing the distinction. One of the problems in Outremont is that the Hassidim (mostly the Satmar sect, a very extreme variety) have not shown any consideration to their non-Hassidic neighbours in some street events that did have a religious overtone, such as the recent Purim problems (men and boys who were quite inebriated indeed, and some driving in such a condition) and the aggression by a crowd of Hassidic men on a woman city council member who was taking photos of illegally parked buses. There has been an escalation of such tensions of late - they are not an easy community to live beside, even when a lot of the neighbours are Jewish, as in Williamsburg, Brookyln, or most of them are, as in Israeli cities and towns. It becomes a very delicate balance to ensure respect for religious freedom - and Hassidism does have some ceremonies typically in the streets, such as the parade for the Torah - and respect for all citizens of any faith or none.

I had a most unpleasant encounter with a couple of Hassidic men while riding my bicycle along Bernard Avenue in Outremont. One, of course in a big SUV, cut me off dangerously and then accused ME of not having stopped at the stop sign - which I most certainly had done. Then another Hassid coming in the other direction, in another big SUV, called out to his coreligionist (having his back, as one might say). I speak enough German to understand basic Yiddish, and simply left, as I did not want it to be the word of two against mine. I was very pissed off.

I've had pleasant friendly conversations with Hassidic women, on the other hand.

There are real cultural tensions too. I don't think most educated Outremontais are anti-semites by any means, but they are annoyed by the lack of care they see Hassids taking of their properties, and of course the packs of children remind Québécois of priest-ridden times past they would rather forget.

I suppose a legal defence is already taking on the ban on the Orthodox Easter procession (I often see the Greek Orthodox processions in Parc-Extension, and Levantine-Orthodox ones hereabouts).
" Eure \'Ordnung\' ist auf Sand gebaut. Die Revolution wird sich morgen schon \'rasselnd wieder in die Höhe richten\' und zu eurem Schrecken mit Posaunenklang verkünden: \'Ich war, ich bin, ich werde sein!\' "
Rosa Luxemburg

 

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