By Chava Ewa
Last Updated 2/6/2023 at 5:30 PM
Tel Tzion: “It’s like early Purim! The evil decree has been lifted and we are free again!” exclaimed Rivky, a resident of Tel Tzion who is busy planning a Bar Mitzvah and a Bat Mitzvah. “My son’s Bar Mitzvah is in Iyar… I didn’t want to choose between buying plasticware and soda drinks …. or buying tefillin for him. A boy can always borrow tefillin, but it is literally impossible to make a simcha without plastic plates. Baruch Hashem, this evil tax has been repealed just in time.“
We spoke to some of Rivky’s friends, many of whom recently had Bar and Bat Mitzvah celebrations and asked them how they managed. “My brother was coming in from New Jersey, so he brought us a suitcase of plastic plates.” explained one friend. “Now that Israel has Ziplocs , he had a lot of extra room in his luggage.”
“We ordered plasticware on Amazon…. Baruch Hashem they have free shipping to Israel!” noted Rivky’s friend Rochel.
Another friend quietly confided that she had taken a second job off-the-books (in addition to her regular off-the-books job) in order to buy all the plasticware for her kids’ smachot.
We asked the women if, in light of recent events, they were now supportive of the current government. “I’m happy that they repealed the plastics tax.” noted Rivky. “But I’m sure I’ll always find another reason to hate the government.”
By Chava Ewa
Last Updated 11/4/2021 at 3:00 PM
Jerusalem, Neve Yaakov: “I feel personally victimized…. by this government! This obviously anti-religious bill attacks me personally!” lamented Yisroel M, a 20-year-old yeshiva student, describing his feelings about the new tax on disposable plasticware. “If the Yeshiva wanted us to do dishes, they should have put dishwashers in our dorm rooms, but all they gave us was a ‘negel vasser’ sink in the middle of the kitchenette.“
“When my sister Shevy in Sanhedriya heard the news she tore keriya.” Yisroel explained. “As a mom with seven small children, how does anyone expect her to wash dishes? Between her unlicensed gan that she runs out of her house and her cash-only sheitel washing business, she doesn’t have time. With this extra expense, she’s looking for another job….. a few of her neighbors approached her to join their shady MLM.“
We wanted to speak with Shevy but Yisroel warned us not to. “She’s just going to pester you about when you’re going to America next and if you can bring her back some plastic plates in your luggage.” he admonished. “Our aunt just visited and half her suitcase was filled with American toilet paper! What’s wrong with Shevy? Can’t she just order it on Amazon like everyone else?“
Yisroel offered us a cup of grainy instant coffee from his yeshiva lounge as we discussed his distrust of coercive government. “They tax stuff we really need …because they’re telling us what to do! I’m an independent thinker, nobody tells me what to do…. except for my Rosh Yeshiva.”
As we left, Yisroel noted that he was afraid the government would impose taxes on other things that he loved in order to try to make him buy less of them. “What if they taxed black pants that don’t reach my ankles? Or buying cholent Thursday night? Or imagine if they put a tax …. on our cigarettes!“