a different side of Israel

Desperate mother fights for wheelchairs

Human drama in front of the Knesset building a couple of days ago: a woman, mother of two, threatened to blow up her car outside the compound, with one of her children inside. According to recent reports, the woman demanded two wheelchairs for her handicapped children. Police has also reported that she was holding a knife, while threatening to cut her own throat.

This woman is not insane, she’s a desperate mother. She was not looking for money or fame. This cry for help shows how easily we forget the real dramas in life: we talk about Tel Aviv’s most expensive apartment, valued at $ 34 million dollars, and at the same time, ignore the stories of thousands of Israeli families who don’t have most basic needs. I cannot imagine what went through her mind, but I’m not a mother who has to watch her own children suffer. I simply cannot judge her. Why hasn’t the state assisted her so far? A mechanical wheelchair costs less than what the state spends on a single MP in one month.

Luckily, the woman surrendered and the incident ended peacefully. The news says that the Variety foundation will finance the costs of the two wheelchairs. Yesterday, this woman, who has been struggling for years to receive wheelchairs for her children, finally won her personal battle. Who said ‘Desperate times call for drastic measures’? Evidently, that’s the only way to get things done in this country.


  1. Rashi from Ra'anana

    April 9, 2008 at 3:44 pm

    Sorry my friend – the woman is nuts. Between Yad Sarah and many other human service organisations including a Gemach, she could’ve found 2 good wheelchairs. Unfortunately it does take a lot of homework, but she would’ve found it without this.

  2. But, it is true that people in this country often have to go to the extreme to get something – like camping out in front of the
    Knesset, for example. In this case, however, had this event
    happened in L.A., the woman probably would have been shot by
    a police SWAT team. Then her kids would either have been put
    into an instituion, or some foster home arrangement, and
    that would have been that!

    At least over here we haven’t yet reached the “shoot first
    and ask questions later” stage.

    Or, have we?

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