Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Jewish Purim Effigies Confuse And Offend Some In Borough Park 

Last week, Orthodox Jews in a predominantly Haredim part of Borough Park hung eleven mannequins in effigy across 12th Avenue. (Haredi Jews are widely considered the most conservative form of Orthodox Judaism.) The display was part of the Purim celebrations, but some non-Jewish locals who passed through the neighborhood were confused and even offended by the effigies, according to News 12. The local news channel says a viewer tipped them off about the display, and one passerby told them, "I don't know, I think it's kind of like ridiculing."

News 12 claims passers-by told the reporter they were offended, but these interviews are for some reason not included in the segment. But the report does include video of a Hasidic Jewish man wearing a cartoonish cowboy hat explaining the significance of the effigies. "There was a man named Hamman and he wanted to kill all the Jews and at the end they hang him and all his sons instead," area Jew Barry Spira tells News 12. "That's the story of the celebration we celebrate. This is the story that happened in the past."


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