Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Never Meet Your Idols

A Jewish paper features a woman, a professional, who answers people's queries, like "Dear Abby"; therefore, I shall refer to her as Abby. I eagerly flip to her article every week, usually impressed by her answers, in awe of her depth and wisdom.  

Then I met her. 

I was telling her how much I enjoy the diversity of the community.  

"Yes," she said, "there are people here who don't cover their hair." (She doesn't, either).

"Um, yeah, but I mean that so many different types of Jews are all living together and getting along. It's nice."  

I explained how my previous location was more of a homogenous, judgmental mass. To which she replied, "But there are women there who don't cover their hair!" 

Um . . .

I continued, about how my sister would love it here, as she is unhappy with her current neighborhood. 

"But there are people there who don't cover their hair!" Abby protested.  

I was starting to notice a pattern. 

My deep, introspective, intelligent Abby was insisting that "nice" equals "doesn't cover hair." Considering how many other be-wigged women were milling about (including my mother), I was surprised at her blatant prejudice.

When it comes to the topic of hair covering, I am, personally, not frantically pro or con. When it comes to matters of import in our community, it is not one that gets me hot under the collar (and I have no intention of debating it now). 

But what I found hard to grasp was her reverse discrimination, firmly insisting that those who cover their hair are automatically unkind and intolerant in all ways. Perhaps she may have come across some individuals who are impolite and also happen to cover their hair, yet considering how she is a mental health professional such coincidences are in no way proven scientific/spiritual fact.  

I still read her articles, but with less reverence. My guru is a bigot.  


Chava Canales said...

Now this here is just flat out rude. To each her own (hair cover)!
I'm a very friendly hair covering frummie.

Gavi said...

Once again, an external display of conformity to halacha determines whether a person is otherwise worthwhile as a human being.

(And let's leave the specifics of whether a married woman's hair covering is halachically required: that's not the issue at hand.)

Princess Lea said...

It was certainly not about hair coverings. I just can't believe someone could be so OBVIOUS.

Ariella Brown said...

Hair fetish?

Tovah11 said...

Isn't it horrible when we find our heroes are not just "as wonderful" as we thought they would be, but also truly ignorant?

Princess Lea said...

AB: Methinks!

Tovah: It certainly was a letdown.