Countdown to Harry Potter 7: 2 Days

Ok, under two days. Woo!

The Saturday-at-midnight launch date is upsetting Israeli lawmakers. Because Saturday is the Jewish Sabbath and, dammit, you’re supposed to observe it.

With Israelis already clamoring for Deathly Hallows, many bookstores are planning to launch the book on time anyway. That has drawn fire from Orthodox Jewish lawmakers, including Industry and Trade Minister Eli Yishai, who threatened to fine any store that opens Saturday.

“Israeli law forbids businesses to force their employees to work on the Sabbath, and that applies in this case as well. The minister will fine and prosecute any businesses which violate the law,” said Roei Lachmanovich, a spokesman for Yishai, of the ultra-0rthodox Jewish Shas party.

Many bookstores, as they should, are still going through with the midnight release:

Steimatzky, Israel’s biggest bookstore chain, is holding a gala event in Tel Aviv beginning Friday night to launch the book, and the company has no plans to change the time, said spokeswoman Alona Zamir.

“We’re required by our agreement with the book’s publisher to launch the book at the same time as everywhere else in the world,” Zamir said.

And, of course, no article on Harry Potter is complete without a quotation from a fundie:

Avraham Ravitz of the United Torah Judaism Party slammed the Potter books for their “defective messages.”

“We don’t have to be dragged like monkeys after the world with this subculture, and certainly not while violating our holy Sabbath,” Ravitz said in a statement.

24 more hours until pure joy!

(Thanks to Bjorn for the link!)


[tags]Harry Potter, atheist, atheism, Israel, Sabbath, Eli Yishai, Roei Lachmanovich, Yishai, Shas, Steimatzky, Alona Zamir, Avraham Ravitz, United Torah Judaism Party[/tags]

  • http://globalizati.wordpress.com globalizati

    We don’t have to be dragged like monkeys after the world with this…

    The unintentional reference to our similarity to monkeys belies the fundamentalist’s incipient knowledge of the truth of our origins.

  • Maria

    The unintentional reference to our similarity to monkeys belies the fundamentalist’s incipient knowledge of the truth of our origins.

    LOL……don’t see Jewish fundies out too often…..

  • Richard Wade

    “…dragged like monkeys after the world”?? What the hell does that mean? People are frikkin’ nuts. It’s a novel. Get a grip.

  • http://olvlzl.blogspot.com/ olvlzl, no ism, no ist

    Those who want to strictly observe the Sabbath should, those who don’t wish to shouldn’t. It’s as simple as that. Personally, I think the United States would benefit by periodic observance of a day that wasn’t dedicated to the true state religion, Mammonism.

    Pure joy? JKR has said that people are either going to love the book or hate it, I’ll let you know which camp I’m in after I’ve read it, unfortunately out loud to my two nieces. Beware making rash promises at the beginning of a planned seven book series, some of those books might get a bit long. Book 4 could definitely have benefited from some vigorous pruning, maybe book 2 also, though I read it again and it got better the second time round.

  • http://bjornisageek.blogspot.com Bjorn Watland

    This is what you have when you have a state run by religion. God’s law, after all. Before you jump all over Jews, we used to be the same way, and some of that remains. Try to buy a TV at Best Buy at 9:00 PM on a Sunday, or beer anytime on a Sunday, or hard liquor anytime in a bar in Salt Lake City.

    While rational to the law makers, they are imposing god’s law on the state, it’s irrational when examining empirical evidence, or studying the social effects of opening businesses on Saturdays. The reasoning is that they are doing what is right by god, or g-d, here I go violating laws everywhere.

  • Alex Leckie

    While rational to the law makers, they are imposing god’s law on the state, it’s irrational when examining empirical evidence, or studying the social effects of opening businesses on Saturdays. The reasoning is that they are doing what is right by god, or g-d, here I go violating laws everywhere.

    too true, i really hate the goddam dry county laws, if i want a vodka i dont case about an ancient sentence inscribed on a long lost stone in a golden chest that was last seen in raiders in the lost ark.

  • http://www.skepchick.org writerdd

    I thought the sabbath was from sundown on Friday to sundown on Saturday. So what does that have to do with midnight on Saturday anyway?

  • Bjorn Watland

    It’s released on Friday night, Saturday morning at midnight, ah, the confusion of the change of days, so it’s smack dab right in the middle of god’s favorite day of the week.

  • monkeymind

    dragged like monkeys after the world

    I resemble that remark!

  • Karen

    24 more hours until pure joy!

    Hemant, are you going to put some kind of spoiler alert up for posts in which you discuss the book? If not, please let us know. I’m sure you’re going to get through it faster than my kids and I – and we’re desperately trying not to be spoiled for the ending.

    We have a tradition of reading the books aloud together, which started when they were little kids (7 and 5) and will continue this time. :-) I’m really glad we’ve been able to share this during their childhood, it’s been such joyous fun and something we’ll always remember as they get older.

    When the books first got popular, I was still a fundy and one of my first “rebellious” acts was to defend HP in church circles, where they were considered very dangerous. “They’re just fantasy novels, with good versus evil like any other great story!” I would tell people. No, I didn’t get very far in persuading anyone. And when they heard I was reading them to my kids … Well, my parenting skills and Christian bona fides were called into question quite strongly!
    ;-)

  • http://friendlyatheist.com FriendlyAtheist

    Hemant, are you going to put some kind of spoiler alert up for posts in which you discuss the book?

    I will put up a spoiler alert if needed, though I don’t anticipate talking about the book’s plot/ending. I wouldn’t want to ruin it for anyone!

  • Karen

    Thanks, Hemant! :-)


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