In yet another example of how the extremists of every religion have far more in common with one another than they do with many of their own co-religionists, an ultra-Orthodox sect in London has forbid women from driving, saying that if they drive their children to school, the children will be turned away.
The education secretary has condemned an ultra-Orthodox Jewish sect’s decision to ban women from driving, saying the edict was “completely unacceptable in modern Britain”.
Nicky Morgan, who is also the minister for women and equalities, spoke as the Department for Education launched an investigation into the order issued by the Belz sect, which runs two schools in Stamford Hill, north London. A letter to parents said that, from later this year, children driven to school by women would be turned away.
Parents in the area defended the ban on Friday, saying it was part of the choice they made when they agreed to live within the Belz community. Women rejected the characterisation that they were oppressed, and the schools wrote to Morgan, saying the notice had been misrepresented.
The group runs Talmud Torah Machzikei Hadass, a boys’ primary school, and Beis Malka, a primary school for girls. Both have been rated good by Ofsted.
The schools had said that, from August, any child driven to school by their mother would be turned away at the school gates. The letter said the ban was based on the recommendations of Rabbi Yissachar Dov Rokeach, the Belzer spiritual leader in Israel.
The extremists of all three Abrahamic religions are deeply misogynistic, differing only on tactics but not on ideology.