Newly Reelected Israeli Mayor Thanks God There are No Gay Residents in His City

AbutbulAn Israeli mayor is apparently taking a page out of former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's playbook with his recent assertion that there are no homosexuals in his city. The Times of Israel reports that Moshe Abutbul, the newly reelected haredi Orthodox mayor of Beit Shemesh, made the claim in an Israeli talk show interview:

In a Friday interview on Channel 10, Abutbul, when asked about the presence of homosexuals in the city, said that "we have no such things…Thank God this city is holy and pure." The mayor said that he "was not involved" in the issue, and it was up to the Health Ministry and the police to "take care of them."

Unsurprisingly, the comment set off a firestorm among current and former Beit Shemesh residents:

"There are hundreds of gay men and women in Beit Shemesh and it saddens me that he thinks we should be treated by the Health Ministry and the police," said Segev Israel Afriat, a resident of the city. […]

Elinor Sidi, director of the Jerusalem Open House for Pride and Tolerance, and former Beit Shemesh resident, added: "As one who was born and raised in Beit Shemesh, I can only lament the transformation the city has undergone in the past couple of years. Xenophobia, ignorance, homophobia and racism have replaced the warming of hearts which once characterized Beit Shemesh."

"I studied at a religious school in a tolerant atmosphere which embraced the other instead of rejecting him. Abutbul's Judaism is not the Judaism I learned as a child. Beit Shemesh had gay residents long before Abutbul."

 The Association of Gays, Lesbians, Bisexuals and Transgendered in Israel has also filed a complaint against Abutbul, with the association's chairman, Shai Doitsh, saying the mayor's comment "constitutes incitement, urging attacks on and a show of contempt for the LGBT community." 


  1. Lee says

    The man only won by 100 votes and many of the cities residents are trying to have him removed for corruption. The only reason he won is several ultra orthodox families have moved to the city in recent years because of cheap housing.

  2. Oliver Evans says

    Absolute disgusting vermin. And no doubt this Pig believes God will “bless” him because he oppresses Palestinians, steals their land and hates gay people.

  3. Lee says

    Oliver first of all Beit shemesh is not in juda or Samaria its in the Jerusalem district. Second while this man is an idiot the “Palestinians” (really Jordanians, Syrians, & Egyptians) are much worse and their population wouldn’t just say they don’t exist but will kill any gay they find. That’s the sufferance between Jews as Arab Jews have few crazies and don’t think twice about calling our own kind out, Arabs however are all insane and never will accept their culture needs to change or be doomed to extinction.

  4. emjayay says

    Fundamentalist Jews and conservative Arab Muslims are just two expressions of the same culture. Woman cutting their hair and wearing a wig and women wearing headscarves are essentially the same thing. Both cultures separate women and men, with men as the superior, in worship and life.

    When it comes to gay people, of course they are pretty much the same.

  5. Patric says

    “Arabs however are all insane”

    Generalize much?

    “Second while this man is an idiot the “Palestinians” (really Jordanians, Syrians, & Egyptians) are much worse” Yeah, they’re all much worse than a guy who says that the Health Ministry and police should “take care of” gay people in his jurisdiction.

    You do realize that you have zero credibility with those of us who don’t have a horse in the Arab-Israeli conflict when you speak in such ridiculous sweeping generalizations, don’t you? People on your side of the conflict are capable of being such as evil as people on the other side, whether you choose to acknowledge it or not.

  6. Derrick from Philly says

    LOL What is this? Comedy in the morning on Towleroad?

    “…Arabs however are all insane…”

    And so are queens, but I’m not seeking any psycho-therapy, honey. I’ll just keep reading Towleroad.

  7. ben says

    Lee – my wife is palestinian. Her family have lived in the hills surrounding Ramallah for hundreds of years. I don’t know where you get off talking about “they’re all saudis and egyptians” but there have been arab inhabitants of the west bank and gaza since biblical times.

  8. Lee says

    KEVINVT this man has no real power using him to say Israel hates gays is like saying the USA must hate them because of some homophobic mayor in KA. Fact is Beit shemesh is an out of the way place no one really goes to and the actual people in charge (the PM, Knesset, the IDF, and the HCOJ) are all really supportive of LGBT rights.

  9. Lee says

    And PATRIC just go to gaza or Ramallah and try being openly gay if you make it out alive tell me how it went. Also yes their are a few crazies but they are at least kept in line by the government in Israel they are not allowed to just attack, hurt, or harass people.

  10. Lee says

    Ben here family came to the region from Assyria during te Muslim conquest they are not native to the land of juda but like white Americans or Australians are invaders (which is what the term Palestinian means btw) the lad belongs to Jews if Arabs want their own state they already have 22 to pick from jews have nothing with out Israel so either deal with it or suck a Lebanon but its our land no more will we be European punching bag or the Arabs dihmmi.

  11. Lee says

    And Ben no, Arabs came I to Israel in the 7th century with the so called “prophet” ( really a bipolar schizophrenic) and conquered the region expelling/killing the Christians, and Jews who refused to submit and enslaving the rest as dihmmis.

  12. Jeton Ademaj says

    kudos to Lee for playing the role of psychopathic religious bigot in total self-serving denial…

    …it IS just a role, right Lee? you can’t really be that insane, can you?

  13. Lee says

    Ben they stole the land they act as tho they are native but they are not jews lived in the is land to 30000 yars Arabs are recent area vials compared to that. Again Arabs have 22 states jews have one its simple logic Arabia for the Arabs Israel for th Jews. And Jeton I’m actually not religious at all work on Saturday and eat shellfish but my i take complete pride in my ethnic group the Jews and will fight to th death for our homeland which is eratz Israel!

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