Religious yeshiva student Aryeh Yerushalmi had a novel way of protesting a decision of an Israeli court to allow the sale of leavened grain products. The Court ruled last year that the Israeli law only prohibits the sale of hametz (bread and leavened grain products) in public on Passover. By ruling that stores are closed spaces and not public in that sense, the court loosened up the law. Yerushalmi decided, therefore, to strip in a supermarket in Tel Aviv since it cannot be viewed as “public indecency.”
Yerushalmi, 28, did wear a sock over a certain part of his anatomy for decency in his legal/religious protest and dressed after police appeared.
Israel continues to impose Jewish rules on the entire population and does not have a separation of temple and state. The 1986 Hametz Law forbids the sale of bread products in a “public” area on Passover, but as not enforced until 2008 when four stores were prosecuted. Judge Tamar Ben-Tzaban adopted a narrow interpretation to protect the right of stores to sell the products so long as they do not do so outside of the store “in public.” If the inside of the store is not public for the sale of leavened bread, Yerushalmi figured that it is not public for the purpose of indecency.
The court clearly was not won over by the legal argument and sentenced Yerushalmi to a week of home confinement, where he can practice further advocacy in various states of dress.
This, I suppose, is why courts insist that legal argument appear in briefs.
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