What advice could I give to a friend of mine who is considering sending his daughter to a co-ed yeshiva?
Tell him that he should be like an Irishman or an Italian of forty years ago. Forty years ago there wasn’t an Irishman or an Italian who would send his daughter to a co-ed public school. Beyond elementary school, all schools were segregated. If you can still find an old-time public school building, you’ll see as follows: Over one entrance, built into the brick, is a sign that says “BOYS.” And over the other entrance, built into the brick, is a sign that says “GIRLS.” The boys went into the boys’ playground for recess time, and the girls went to the girl’s playground. That’s how it was up to thirteen years old. For high school there were separate buildings entirely, in different parts of the city.
So we tell him, “Be like that gentile of forty, fifty years ago. That’s not too much to expect of you. Or be like a Persian, like Vashti Hamalka, who had a separate party for women. Be like a good decent goy. At least that, we could ask of you.” The truth is, the liberal Jews of today, the Modern Orthodox, are far beneath the old-time goyim in very many ways.
TAPE # 496 (March 1984)