Five Minutes for Israel has introduced a new feature. Each week we will poll our readers on a current issue. Please vote and especially important comment on your reasons for your vote. Discussion is unmoderated but as far as possible trolls will be deleted, where found.
When I figure out a free or very cheap way to link the website poll with Facebook I will add it.
This week’s poll
Interesting discussion in my local English speakers group. Should Jews, particularly in areas of Jerusalem where being attacked by Arabs is a plausible risk, carry pepper spray?
In Israel (Rehovot English speakers – a very self-selected, unrepresentative group I admit) were divided but a majority seemed to be against.
In the single Facebook I posted the overwhelming majority (most probably American) supported the idea with a significant number recommending firearms.
Firearms are out of the question for most of us. Israel along with most civilised countries (no, I don’t want a 2nd amendment discussion) does not give a constitutional right to keep and bear arms. In actual fact, gun control is among the strictest in the world and may become stricter.
Check out Kiss Kiss Bang Bang for a discussion from March 2013
However the arguments coming from the Rehovot group against pepper spray are quite similar to those against firearms.
- Greater risk of injury to the innocent than the likelihood of protecting against an attack.
- Encourages vigilantism and violence outside the conflict arena.
- Increases likelihood of police violence (English police can go unarmed because the expectation is that the people and the crims are unarmed.
- Much more serious damage caused that advocates believe.
Five Minutes for Israel links to the campaign Pepper Spray for Israelis for information only. This isn’t an endorsement and I have no intention to either donate nor buy pepper spray for myself or my family. Circumstances could change.
- Pepper Spray Attacks Highlight Violence at Health Clinics, Cynthia Blank, Arutz Sheva 7, 23 October 2014
- Jerusalemites stock up on self-defense weapons, Daniel K. Eisenbud, Jerusalem Post, 12 November 2014
- Arab cab driver pepper-sprayed in Jerusalem attack, Lazar Berman, The Times of Israel, 1 December 2014