Religion Magazine

Banning WoW from Blowing Shofar at the Kotel

By Gldmeier @gldmeier
headlines like these bother me so much. If it happened anywhere else, everyone would be screaming anti-semitism and that it evokes memories of the British Mandate period andd of other difficult times in Jewish history.
Kikar has a report about the monthly Rosh Chodesh fighting at the Kotel between the Haredi community and the Women of the Wall members and supporters. Today seems to have been a little bit unique because the WoW people wanted to bring in shofars to blow, as per the custom during the month of Elul at the end of davening.
The event turned violent, as it often does, and someone (on WoW's side) was arrested for acting violently against young protesting the WoW prayer service. Because they were expected to bring in shofars for blowing, the lawyer representing those opposing WoW requested from Avichai Mandelblit, the Attorney General, to ban WoW from bringing and using shofars at the Kotel.
The article does not say if he acceded to the request and banned the shofars or not, but implies that the women were doing something wrong and against the rules.
Even if I think the approach used against WoW is wrong and counter-productive, I can at least understand the opposition to women wearing tefillin in public and reading from torahs when making a minyan. I do not get what is wrong with women blowing shofar. As far as I am aware, the Shulchan Aruch and poskim do not call it yohara or haughtiness, as by teifllin, and there is seemingly nothing halachically inappropriate or disturbing about  a woman blowing the shofar. Women are allowed to blow the shofar, especially for themselves and for other women, and according to many even for men. And, the blowing of the shofar now is custom, not obligation, so it is even much more minor of an issue than, say, on Rosh Hashana itself. So, Israelis trying to ban Jews from blowing shofar at the Kotel reminds me of the stories of the British arresting Jews for blowing shofar at the Kotel on Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur, and I do not understand what the opposition to it is about. They should just continue to focus on opposing the torah reading and tallis/tefillin wearing which makes more sense.
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