Religion Magazine

Another Bus Incident, This One Ends Differently

By Gldmeier @gldmeier
Carmit Reuven, a reporter for Galei Tzahal in northern Israel, posted the following incident online. It happened to her and is not a fictitious story. I share it because it is far better than the type of the incident that normally gets publicized out of these situations... This is a great example of what should be done - by both parties.
Carmit Reuven writes (my translation):
Another bus, Tel Aviv again, this time an optimistic story:
I got on the bus, the only available seat was next to a Haredi man. I asked to sit down, he got up and I sat down. When I raised my eyes from my iPhone I noticed he had not sat back down. He was standing in the appalling crowdedness of the #240 bus line and was fighting for stability. 

Suddenly I realized that he is not sitting because of me, and he appeared to be older than me by several decades. The dilemma began running through my head... on the one hand, it's his problem! what is this? exclusion of women, I too am a human.. 

on the other hand, this is not how it should be, it's not nice, I am supposed to get up and let those older than me sit and not the opposite.   

After some deliberation I stood up and I said to him: if you do not want to sit next to me, then sit in my place. I will stand.

He smiled, thanked me, and said that anyway he is getting off the bus at the next stop, and then he explained to me that this is his problem alone and it is he who must pay the price for his decisions. "If I decide I want to do a mitzva, for example getting up in the middle of the night and praying loudly, but it would disturb the sleep of my neighbors and  those in my house - it is better for me to go to sleep. Doing a mitzva is not worth anything if it disturbs the other people around me."

I agreed with every word.

Not everyone spits on the bus. The time has come to abandon the hatred and the prejudices, and progress further, to the next station.

Beautiful story. Hopefully it will set an example.
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