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Torah QueeriesWeekly Commentaries on the Hebrew Bible$
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Gregg Drinkwater, Joshua Lesser, and David Shneer

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780814720127

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814720127.001.0001

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How Flexible Can Jewish Law Be?

How Flexible Can Jewish Law Be?

Parashat Acharei Mot (Leviticus 16:1–18:30)

(p.151) Twenty-Nine How Flexible Can Jewish Law Be?
Torah Queeries

Elliot N. Dorff

NYU Press

This chapter critiques the homosexual discrimination as noted in the readings of Parashat Acharei Mot of Leviticus: “You shall not lie with a man as a man lies with a woman; it is an abomination.” Science has demonstrated that discrimination against gays and lesbians culminate to higher rates of suicide, smoking, and depression, together with many other threats to the physical and psychological well-being of queer individuals. In addition, given that the Talmud declares that “it is not good for a person to live alone,” and commands one to honor others, it is clearly a dishonor to gays and lesbians to prohibit them to be with their desired partners, and to label their sexual acts as an abomination.

Keywords:   homosexual discrimination, gays, lesbians heterosexuals, Talmud, sexual acts

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