what does that mean in english?
"who are the public?"
like is that some grand philosophical question?
It’s kinda like how Maggie Thatcher said there was no such thing as society.
In English the noun "the public" conjugates as singular. Therefore, it should be "Who is the public?"
I don't know what this question means...at least the 'correct' answer is meaningless in English. In the context of אל תפרוש מן הצבור it would mean 'who is this community that I am not supposed to separate myself from'.
Sorry the hebrew english thing doesn't work so well. Basically mi zeh literally means who is this and it is just shortened to who when its translated
Somebody might say "I don't have a problem with you being gay, but the public might." To which you might reply "Who are the public?" to emphasize the fact that different people hold different opinions and there is no way to please everybody so you just care about people liking you for who you are or whatever, because "the public" don't all think the same way to begin with. And using the plural with collective nouns is quite common in contemporary British English. Americans finding it weird shouldn't make it unacceptable.
We just don't use the word public this way; but we use plural with collective nouns too. In the U.S. we might say something like, "Yeah, well just who is 'we.'" And yes...I did this on purpose.