Blog In Dm points us to a news article on HaMercaz about a play for women that was banned in Lakewood yesterday. There were two things about this ban that were very unusual.
Firstly, it was delivered by autodialer. A machine called up homes in Lakewood to advise people that the Roshei Yeshiva in Lakewood had banned the performance.
The second unusual factor about the ban was it was announced right before showtime. Literally.
According to the article, the phone calls were made after 8:00pm on the night of the performance. Most people had already left their homes by then.
Blog in Dm makes the valid point that there is absolutely no reason in the world why this ban should have been issued at the last minute. Much like the ban against the "Big Event" in March, the event was well-advertised ahead of time and that if one was going to ban it, it should have been banned well in advance. Banning it on the night of the performance is inexcusable and laughable.
To me, however, the whole thing just doesn't pass the "smell test." There are just too many troubling questions here. Some of the questions I have are:
1. Was this for real? Did the Roshei Yeshiva really ban the concert just hours before showtime (or at all), or is this someone's idea of a sick joke? Or was it an attempt by someone with an agenda to sabotage the event without the approval of the Roshei Yeshiva? After all, anyone with the proper equipment can set up an autodialer.
2. If the ban is real, who described the planned event to the Roshei Yeshiva and what, exactly, did they say would happen at the event. How accurately was the program depicted to the Roshei Yeshiva? The phone call didn't say why the show was banned, only giving a vauge "not in the spirit of tznius."
3. Were the organizers of the event given an opportunity to defend the show? Were they even consulted? Or did the meeting and banning happen entirely behind their backs?
4. Why weren't we told exactly why the show was banned? What, specifically, is objectionable?
5. Why was the ban issued at the last minute? Why wasn't this talked about and any possible objections brought to the fore in the weeks preceeding the event?
There are probably other questions that can be asked as well. I'm curious if anyone knows the answers to these questions.
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