What follows is an introduction to Bray's latest.
From where I sit, the real problem is that the Torah and the tradition and the law permit Jewish women to do lots of things that the 2009 culture frowns upon.
There are dozens and dozens of things we could do that are perfectly legal to make Orthodox Judaism more female friendly. For example, women can:
- daven with a minyan everyday
- learn anything they want
- receive aliyot (allowed by law, banned by tradition and a concern for the honor of men)
- form their own mezumen (100 percent ok per the mishha berurah)
- be yotze a man in any mitzvah that they are required to do themselves (eg any brocha on food, such as hamotzie)
- wear t'fillin (Tf'illin belong to the same category as a lulav; a woman has no chiyuv but she can do it as a kiyum. She doesn't by tradition)
Also, there is nothing in the law or tradition that says synagouge architecture must be so unfriendly to women.
Unfortunately, OJ refuses to do anything but frown on women who wish to pursue their own spirituality and sense of fufillment via the performance of permitted actions. That is what opens OJ to charges of sexism.
I say all this as an introduction to Bray's latest.