In his column, “Three Weddings And A Scuffle” (Between The Lines, Nov. 24), Gary Rosenblatt wrote: “Many Israelis are puzzled over why non-Orthodox Jews care about prayer at the Kotel. Many secular Israelis, who view the Kotel primarily as an historic site, and charedim, who believe egalitarian prayer at the holy spot is a violation of Jewish law, see the protests from American Jews as political.”
It would be nice if the above-referenced Israelis wanted to or tried to understand why we care about it, but that we do is even more important. Regardless, that is no justification for physical violence. We must not destroy ourselves.
My first visit to Israel and to the Kotel was in 1975. The main plaza was much more welcoming and “Hamish” then. It has been pulling steadily to the right ever since. Personally, I find the Robinson’s Arch section much more “hamish” and conducive to meditation, reflection and prayer. The main plaza has become a commercial country fair. But if Israel is for all Jews, then it should show respect for all Jews. If the charedi want respect from me (I gather they don’t or don’t care) then they must be willing to return it.