Eliezer Melamed, a rabbi from the community of Har Beracha (see photo) in Samaria, was recently interviewed and offered some acute observations on feminism.
“Feminism,” the rabbi said, “like other associated liberal concepts, is mistaken at its core. Feminism sees people solely as individuals, that they are not members of a family, of a nation, or even of society at large. Feminists are not good neighbors. They prefer loose personal connections so they can focus on themselves. This is not appropriate human behavior, which should involve concern for those around you. It’s no wonder that feminism has destroyed families, with both men and women as its casualties.
“People are not meant to live in isolation; they are a part of something. All of halacha (Torah law) regarding families does not relate to individual men or women but to a formula for healthy family life, which automatically includes how life is best lived by men and women — as husbands and wives, fathers and mothers. Feminism promotes external individual achievements, such as female army service, without much interest in family life.
“Due to the feminist movement, many men are more reluctant today to form connections with women. They feel that they are looked upon with suspicion and that they need to prove their innocence. They feel that they are constantly being scrutinized under the watchful eye of the feminist police.
“The consequences of feminism should be a warning to us all: more divorce, more unmarrieds, more LGBT’s, more children living without parental presence much of the time. Advances of women in academic and professional life are definitely positive but these advances must come slowly, and never at the family’s expense.”
Yet the rabbi is optimistic. He thinks that feminism will self-destruct just as communism self-destructed in the Soviet Union. “In the Soviet Union, a great effort was made to nullify nationalist and religious feelings, but the moment the Soviet Union fell apart, there was a strong return to nationalism and to religion since it is natural for people to be attached to a land and to a faith. So, too, it is in our nature to be part of a family. It may be possible to destroy the family framework temporarily, but in the not too distant future there will be a return to the family structure, and it will be stronger than ever before.”