Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews

Down with Jerusalem’s plans to have underground garbage collection!

Israelis are hospitable people. They like to serve lots of food. But they are also poor planners and even worse preservers. So much food gets thrown out while it’s still perfectly edible. How do I know? There was a time that I was so privileged/underprivileged that I needed to collect food at the garbage bins. Good food. Nothing revolting or unhealthy. I remember this bin close to a chic vegetable store. As soon as the new apples came in, the old ones went to the bin – still in perfect condition. When the worker saw me collect his former merchandise, he came out with a 5 kilo sack potatoes that he needed to throw out–clearly a lie not to embarrass me. I was not embarrassed. I did two commendable acts in one: feeding my family and preventing the wasting of good food.

Unfortunately, Israeli society is americanising. Perfectly good stuff gets thrown out because “we wanted something new” or “we want to be fashionable.” So many of the children’s clothes that my kids wore were “second hand” from the bin. I remember these princess dresses carefully piled up on the bin to be collected by a needy person that were in mint condition and my daughter’s size. So many Shabbats and Festivals she had fabulous dresses to put on. Great place with lots of variety and great prices: all for free. So many of my chairs, couches, rugs, beds and all kinds of house stuff were from these collection places at the same price.

(In Rechavia, the wealthy neighborhood of Jerusalem, people often put their handouts on the walls of their gardens. Ever a nicer place to collect food and books from. Good for them!)

Jerusalem doesn’t only have lots of collectables displayed at the bins. It also has a record number of poor people. (Poor people don’t need to feel shame about it. Rich people feel ashamed about being rich. In the end everyone feels bad about their financial situation, so stop feeling shame about it already.) Therefore, I heartily protest the intention of our municipality to start building underground garbage collection places. For what? So that the middle class doesn’t need to see or smell garbage bins? Guess what. Society is not only to serve the middle class and up.

The municipality has started feeding street cats. I wondered why. Now I know. So that the middle class will not feel bad about the cats starving when garbage is going to be put underground. But what about people starving? Many of the other collectors that I saw are Arabs. Are they less than cats? In these plans they are. And underground collection is just making every throw-out definite. So many times was I able to lift a plastic bottle from the bin to throw it in the plastic recycling bin placed next to it.

Therefore, no to underground garbage collection in Jerusalem!

About the Author
The author is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (DES - Diethylstilbestrol), born in 1953 to two Dutch Holocaust survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork, and holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam). He taught Re-evaluation Co-counseling, became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a vegan for 8 years now. * His most influential teachers (chronologically) are: his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach and lehavdiel bein chayim lechayim: Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo and Rav Zev Leff. * Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years he wrote hasbara for the Dutch public. His fields of attention now are varied: Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science, Politics (Israel, the US and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight Truth), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, GLBTQAI, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), Ecology and Veganism. Many people can't understand or like him because he has such a wide vision that he never fits any specialist's box. But that exactly what others love about him. Many of his posts relate to affairs from the news or the Torah Portion of the Week or are new insights that suddenly befell him. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, reassure the doubters but make the self-assured doubt more. He strives to bring a fresh perspective rather than bore you with the obvious. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds must be disputed. In short, his main political positions are: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, democracy, anti the fake peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, Science, Free Will, anti blaming-the-victim and for down-to-earth optimism. Read his blog how he attempts to bridge any discrepancies. He admits sometimes exaggerating to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quit a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. November 13, 2018, he published his 500st blog post with the ToI. * He likes doing age-appropriate and age-inappropriate things and looks forward to getting to know his timeless mature out-of-the-box soul mate. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me.
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