A new ad campaign featured on buses around Israel has sparked controversy, after quotations from the Lubavitcher Rebbe that some have called 'misleading' were featured.
According to one of the quotes ascribed to the Lubavitcher Rebbe, "A woman traveling [here] must do so with her husband's agreement, since a 'proper woman does her husband's will.'"
In fact, the accepted explanation of the quote in the Chabad movement is that a woman creates her husband's will (the Hebrew word "osah" can be understood as doing submissively, or creating actively). In addition, the Lubavitcher Rebbe in the instance quoted was discussing a case in which a woman wished to travel from afar to Crown Heights, New York, to speak to the Rebbe.
The Lubavitcher Rebbe was not discussing traveling on a bus or in a car to somewhere nearby.
Meretz MKs Tamar Zandberg and Michal Rozin turned to the Supreme Court insisting that the campaign be investigated.
"This is an embarrassing, chauvinistic, and inciting campaign which encourages discriminating against women and tells women they are their husband's property," they said.
Channel 2 asked the campaign leader how he "dared" to run such a campaign, as well as to "Dan," the bus company which ran the ads.
Dan said the issue would be investigated and promised to remove the offending ads.
"This is a private initiative of a Lubavitcher Chassid who publicizes short passages ‘as is’ from various Chasidic texts without a meaningful translation into contemporary Hebrew and without providing any context," said Rabbi Mordechai Ender, who is with the Communications Department of the Chabad Youth Organization in Israel. "At times, these snippets are impossible to understand. On occasion, they can be read to mean the exact opposite of their original intent".