The eruv allows observant Jews to carry needed things in public on the Sabbath.
By Sharonne Cohenhttp://www.myjewishlearning.com/practices/Ritual/Shabbat_The_Sabbath/In_the_Community/Eruv.shtml
Shabbat is a day set apart from all others, differentiating between the sacred (kodesh) and the mundane (hol), between the work week and the day designated for rest, family, and spirituality. On Shabbat all activities associated with work are prohibited, and according to traditional Jewish law include formal employment as well as traveling, spending money, and carrying items outside the home, in the public domain.
The prohibition against carrying includes house keys, prayer books, canes or walkers, and even children who cannot walk on their own. Recognizing the difficulties this rule imposes, the sages of the Talmud devised a way to allow for carrying in public without breaking the rule. Through this means, called an eruv, communities are able to turn a large area into one that is considered, for Jewish law purposes, a large private domain, in which items may be carried.What It Is
The term eruv refers to the act of mixing or combining, and is shorthand for eruv hazerot--the mixing of domains, in this case, the private (rashut hayahid) and the public (rashut harabim). An eruv does not allow for carrying items otherwise prohibited by Jewish law on Shabbat, such as money or cell phones.
Having an eruv does not mean that a city or neighborhood is enclosed entirely by a wall. Rather, the eruv can be comprised of a series of pre-existing structures (walls, fences, electrical poles and wires) and/or structures created expressly for the eruv, often a wire mounted on poles. In practice, then, the eruv is a symbolic demarcation of the private sphere, one that communities come together to create.
To many people, the eruv sounds like a legal fiction, a way to circumvent the spirit and possibly letter of the law against carrying. To them, the eruv risks making the entire Jewish legal process seem absurd to non-Jews and non-observant Jews.
The talmudic Rabbis, however, were concerned with maintaining the integrity of the halakhic (Jewish legal) system while ensuring that the law is livable. Though the eruv makes use of a legal technicality, the fact that it is used--rather than allowing people to just carry anything, anywhere--is itself considered a form of respect for and submission to a legal system that is central and indispensable to traditionalist Jewish life.
The eruv helps enhance an aspect of Shabbat that the Rabbis considered vital-- "oneg Shabbat," the injunction to enjoy the Sabbath. With an eruv, Shabbat events are available to all families--young and old, mobile and less mobile--and individuals are able to carry house keys, reading glasses, or books outside their homes.(More)
The article that was posted to start this thread began with this line, "A renewed push for a symbolic Jewish boundary". The one word that should be emphasized in that sentence got lost in the text that followed. It's "SYMBOLIC
So if you're not an observant Jew, you probably won't even notice the 'symbolic boundary'.
If you are not an observant Jew, it won't in any way impede your daily life - you won't be prevented from entering or leaving an area, you won't have any rights taken away by having this 'symbolic wall' strung up on telephone poles in a specific area... basically you will be able to carry on with your daily life and not be affected by it.
It only affects those who choose to live according to Jewish law; and will make it possible for them to carry items (see above) within the symbolically allowed area.
Big deal. Why the tempest in a teapot? Who's behind this revolt against an orthodox Jewish group's wish to have a proscribed area in which they can practice their sabbath, and have some freedom to go about their necessary activities?
Who would complain about something that doesn't affect them unless they WANT to prevent others from practicing their orthodox religious beliefs?
Who gains by preventing this? Hmmm? (Hint: Which groups seek to destroy all religions in the world, and replace them with Gaia worship?)