Words Can Kill: Reflecting on LGBT Issues in Israel

Inside Leadership

Words Can Kill: Reflecting on LGBT Issues in Israel

In recent days, the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community has been under a blistering attack by various political and social groups. On the eve of the Jerusalem Gay Pride Parade, whose theme this year will be a memorial to 16-year-old Shira Banki, who was stabbed to death at last year's parade by an ultra-Orthodox extremist, there is a heavy feeling in the LGBT community.

While the public discourse in Israel has undergone an encouraging transformation in recent years, Orthodox rabbis and public figures, in the name of Judaism, have allowed themselves to speak out against the LGBT community and support discrimination against it.

The public was once again debating the cancellation of the Beersheba Gay Pride Parade, raising questions about the importance and meaning of the parade for the LGBT community. The parades in cities outside of Tel Aviv, such as Jerusalem, Haifa, Beersheba and Ashdod, serve not only as human rights demonstrations, but also opportunities for rectifying past wrongs.

Read the rest of this op-ed in Israel Hayom.

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Rabbi Noa Sattath is the director of the Israel Religious Action Center.

Rabbi Noa Sattath

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