The Equality Act Could Prove a Threat to Religious Jews

Recently passed by the House of Representatives, the bill known as the Equality Act seeks to protect homosexuals and transsexuals from bigotry and discrimination. But, argue Yaakov Menken and Monica Burke, if passed it would inevitably intrude on the freedoms of religious traditionalists, and perhaps of Orthodox Jews in particular:

Should it ever become law, it will impact businesses, non-profits, houses of worship, and individuals. For example, it could put Jewish wedding halls, bands, caterers, and photographers out of business if they refuse service to a gay wedding. Even a synagogue that rents out a hall for weddings and other celebrations could be at risk. Furthermore, the bill would obligate businesses seeking to hire individuals of a particular sex to evaluate candidates based upon their expressed “gender preference,” rather than their biological sex. . . .

[Such] policies could also be the undoing of many religious charities. The Downtown Hope Center in Anchorage, Alaska was recently sued after it declined to allow a biological male who identifies as a woman to stay overnight in its shelter for battered women. That biological women—especially women seeking refuge from abuse—often feel unsafe sleeping near unfamiliar men was of no interest to government investigators. . . .

The Equality Act would [also] require doctors and nurses to perform and prescribe “transition-affirming” therapies, even if they deem them to be detrimental to their patients. Hospitals, even those with religious missions, would be forced to provide these procedures, and insurers would be required to pay for them.

And if the medical community is expected to provide hormonal and surgical interventions for adults, it will soon be expected to do the same for children. Activists suggest social transition for children as young as four, puberty-blocking drugs for children as young as nine, cross-sex hormones for children as young as fourteen, and surgery a few years later. These drastic therapies come with harmful and potentially fatal side effects: increased risk for cancer, heart disease, liver disease, and, of course, sterility.

Read more at Jewish Press

More about: American politics, Homosexuality, Judaism, Transsexuals

 

While Israel Is Distracted on Two Fronts, Iran Is on the Verge of Building Nuclear Weapons

Iran recently announced its plans to install over 1,000 new advanced centrifuges at its Fordow nuclear facility. Once they are up and running, the Institute for Science and International Security assesses, Fordow will be able to produce enough highly enriched uranium for three nuclear bombs in a mere ten days. The U.S. has remained indifferent. Jacob Nagel writes:

For more than two decades, Iran has continued its efforts to enhance its nuclear-weapons capability—mainly by enriching uranium—causing Israel and the world to concentrate on the fissile material. The International Atomic Energy Agency recently confirmed that Iran has a huge stockpile of uranium enriched to 60 percent, as well as more enriched to 20 percent, and the IAEA board of governors adopted the E3 (France, Germany, UK) proposed resolution to censure Iran for the violations and lack of cooperation with the agency. The Biden administration tried to block it, but joined the resolution when it understood its efforts to block it had failed.

To clarify, enrichment of uranium above 20 percent is unnecessary for most civilian purposes, and transforming 20-percent-enriched uranium to the 90-percent-enriched product necessary for producing weapons is a relatively small step. Washington’s reluctance even to express concern about this development appears to stem from an unwillingness to acknowledge the failures of President Obama’s nuclear policy. Worse, writes Nagel, it is turning a blind eye to efforts at weaponization. But Israel has no such luxury:

Israel must adopt a totally new approach, concentrating mainly on two main efforts: [halting] Iran’s weaponization actions and weakening the regime hoping it will lead to its replacement. Israel should continue the fight against Iran’s enrichment facilities (especially against the new deep underground facility being built near Natanz) and uranium stockpiles, but it should not be the only goal, and for sure not the priority.

The biggest danger threatening Israel’s existence remains the nuclear program. It would be better to confront this threat with Washington, but Israel also must be fully prepared to do it alone.

Read more at Ynet

More about: Iran nuclear program, Israeli Security, Joseph Biden, U.S. Foreign policy