The story of the young Israelis in Cyprus previously-accused of raping a British woman — demonstrates an important issue of religions.
Watching the story evolving on TV, one could not escape the religious aspects popping up here and there. Many of the boys were suddenly shown with a “Kippah” (a Jewish traditional head cover) on their head. Remarks were heard, which associated their religion with “pure behavior”. Upon their release and return to Israel, there were songs with religious contents, praising the Jewish God.
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The main issue here is the conflict between actual religious contents to the perceived ones. Religions (including the Jewish Orthodox one) are typically ancient, and though they have evolved, the principle of holding on to ancient rules and not changing them – remains sacred.
This means that ancient attitude towards women has got a grip on modern behaviors. Without getting into much detail, let’s just give the example of women forbidden from testifying in Jewish Orthodox religious courts, not to mention many harsher sexist rules. In fact, considering what was done by these guys in Cyprus – it’s sort of okay with the ancient religious verdicts.
On the other hand, being religious is still perceived as being “righteous”, kind of being “pure” and of course right. It’s this perception that causes many people in Israeli court to suddenly grow a “Kippah”, while they know little of Judaism. Even if it doesn’t help, it can’t do any harm.