The Jewish community was up in arms over a photo Ivanka Trump posted on Instagram of her and her family making their way to the Inaugural Prayer Service at the Washington National Cathedral.
Ivanka, President Donald Trump’s oldest daughter, converted to Judaism in 2009 before marrying her current husband, Jared Kushner, according to Hollywood Take. The family is relatively orthodox, keeping kosher and celebrating the Sabbath, the holy day of rest.
“From Friday to Saturday we don’t do anything but hang out with one another,” Ivanka told Vogue in a February 2015 interview. “We don’t make phone calls.”
During the Sabbath, Orthodox Jews are not allowed to use any electrical appliances whatsoever. So, when Ivanka posted pictures of her and her family on Inauguration Day, which fell on the Sabbath, the Jewish community reprimanded her for breaking tradition.
The couple received a rabbinical exemption to break Sabbath and attend the Inauguration, according to Hollywood Take. A rabbi will provide an exemption to following the religious code if somebody’s safety would be in danger were they to follow the rules of the Torah.
Some feel as though Ivanka and her family were undeserving of an exemption and abused the privilege. Ivanka used her phone to take a family selfie, which would be prohibited on the day of the Sabbath. Not only that, the photo shows the family inside a car, which is also not allowed. Finally, both children seem to be using electronic devices.
One opinion writer for the Jerusalem Post defended the family, saying that people shouldn’t harp too much on whether or not Ivanka and her husband follow every single religious mandate.
“We all should spend less time worrying about how Jared Kushner and Ivanka Trump, or any of us, observe Jewish rituals and more time asking how we or they affirm Jewish values,” he writes.
Ivanka has not responded to any criticism over the photo, and nor has she announced how her religious values will change — if at all — now that her family has relocated to D.C.