Park Slope rabbi arrested in anti-Trump protest

All the president’s mensch: Slope rabbi arrested in anti-Trump protest

Righteous arrest: Park Slope Rabbi Rachel Timoner was arrested following an act of civil disobedience protesting Donald Trump’s executive order banning immigrants from Muslim-majority nations.
Brooklyn Paper
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

Don’t let my people go!

A Park Slope rabbi was among 19 Jewish leaders who deliberately got themselves arrested on Monday by blocking traffic outside Manhattan’s Trump Tower to protest the president’s controversial immigration ban.

Congregation Beth Elohim leader Rabbi Rachel Timoner says she felt compelled as a member of a faith with a long history of persecution to challenge the president’s ban on citizens from seven majority-Muslim countries from entering the U.S., which she thinks victimizes people purely for their faith and nationality.

“Our people were exterminated because we couldn’t get into other countries,” said Timoner. “As rabbis many of us feel obligated to stand up when other people are being discriminated against due to their religion and national origin.”

The 19 Talmudic teachers were part of a larger protest of around 200 people organized by progressive Jewish human rights group T’Ruah. But part-way through the picket line, the rabbis broke off and informed police of their intention to sit down in Central Park West in an act of civil disobedience.

The cops gave them about 20 minutes to do their thing — mostly, praying and trilling the “Song of the Sea,” which the ancient Israelites sang as they crossed the Red Sea in their flight from Egypt — before arresting them, Timoner recounted.

She feels Trump’s executive order is so heinous that the act of self-sacrifice was called for.

“When a person is willing to but their body on the line it means he or she feels very strongly that something is wrong,” Timoner said. “This ban rises to this level and I think many more of us need to rise up. We’re not going to be quiet.”

Only a few members of Timoner’s Park Slope congregation were present during her arrest, while the majority were engaged in a workshop on resisting Trump’s policies back at the Garfield Place sanctuary

She chose not to inform the majority of her flock of her impending arrest so as not to distract them from their important work, she said.

“That’s actually the work, that’s people rolling up their sleeves and working together,” Timoner said.

Since The Donald’s ascension as Commander in Chief, the synagogue has become a local focal point of resistance for left-leaning agitators, she says.

“I’m really proud of my congregation — really proud,” Timoner said. “They’ve been inspiring to me.”

Police gave Timoner a desk appearance ticket for a misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct for her role in the protest, and she is scheduled to appear before a judge on April 4.

Reach reporter Colin Mixson at or by calling (718) 260-4505.
Updated 10:17 pm, July 9, 2018
Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook

Don’t miss our updates:

Reasonable discourse

Ahmed from Queens says:
Rabbi Rachel your not welcome in Syria , Yemen , Gaza , Saudi Arabia , Iran , they all hate Jews and will execute you at will . You are protesting President Trump ? President Trump wants Americans to be safe from Terror and vett everyone who immigrates from these terror infested states who are and want to hurt Americans . Shame on you Rabbi Rachel
Feb. 8, 2017, 7:52 am
Boris from Borough Park says:
Well intentioned, but the very definition of a useful idiot.
Feb. 8, 2017, 10:12 am
Devorah from Park Slope says:
Recently Iran executed an Israeli-born Jewish woman along with her Armenian Christian husband, Did Rabbi Timoner demonstrate against Iran? In 2012, two jews Yehiya Zindani and his 53-year-old father Aharon stabed to death in Yemen bt government police , did Rabbi Timoner demonstrate against Yemen? 50,000 Jews expelled from Yemen during the 50'. Over 2000 Ethiopian Jews have died in refugee camps in the eastern Sudan since their exodus from Ethiopia because the government of Sudan refused food to be accessed to the Jews. did Rabbi Timoner shed one tear? The false, insincere display of emotion by such rabbis as Timoner, when they all know how much Jewish blood these governments have on their hands, or maybe these rabbis are just blank and uneducated about the history of these countries, You got to be a plain hypocrite and crying fake tears if you know the history of these countries and what the people of these countries did to the Jews, is this Rabbi Timoner for real?
Feb. 8, 2017, 6:32 pm
Morris from Mill Basin says:
And then, after they're dead, they need to be killed a second time!!!
Feb. 8, 2017, 7:02 pm
Boris from Borough Park says:
Well, Morris from Mill Basin is demonstrating the reasoned discourse of the Left. Which gave us Pol Pot, Stalin's purges, and Mao's ironically named Great Leap Forward and Cultural Revolution.

Ah, the tolerance of the Left in action.
Feb. 8, 2017, 10:20 pm
zvi from boro park says:
I am an affiliated Jew. This "Rabbi" (sic) does not in any way speak for me, or any other affiliated Jew I know.
Feb. 9, 2017, 12:47 am
Melvin from 11125 says:
Israel is the only country that DOESNT allow immigration yet the left which is run by Jews promotes open borders in Europe and America to destroy white people.
Feb. 9, 2017, 9:44 am
Gary from Fort Greene says:
Here's "The Song of the Sea": Glub glub glub! Glubbety glub! Glub-cough-gag.
Feb. 9, 2017, 10:35 am
Homey from Crooklyn says:
Indeed, she is a useful idiot
Feb. 9, 2017, 10:47 am
old time brooklyn from slope says:
a useful idiot yes -perhaps loss of tax exemptions is in order - imagine if they were Cath
olic priests and religous
Feb. 9, 2017, 11 am
Abbott from Brooklyn says:
An idiot indeed . This so called rabbi priest is not building the house of god , she is a fake and spills the blood of the innocent and just serves the jihadist interest .
Feb. 9, 2017, 1:51 pm
Rufus Leaking from BH says:
Heads will roll now!
Feb. 9, 2017, 2:26 pm
Phillip from Fort Greene says:
Thank you Rabbi Timoner for speaking up for all of us who believe in America's promise. I am an affiliated Jew who supports you 100% The parallels drawn by previous posters are not legitimate and don't make sense. America at its best has been a welcome home for the ancestors of many of us and should continue to welcome the "homeless, tempest tossed."
Feb. 9, 2017, 7:12 pm
Tyler from pps says:
The "but those other countries are terrible" is a ridiculous argument... that's the Eye for an Eye, Tooth for a Tooth mentality. Ya know, where everyone ends up blind and toothless.

We reject torture, even though our enemies do it. It's a war crime to target family members of enemies, even if our enemies employ this 'technique.' The moral and humane position is the outreached hand of love and kindness, even if others' actions are evil or unfair.

X country doesn't allow Jews.... that's bad. Why do you think replicating that bad behavior is a good idea?

(And Old Time -- Catholic and Anglican priests have also been on the streets protesting... I know several personally. Just because you don't know about it doesn't mean it isn't happening.)
Feb. 10, 2017, 1:40 pm
Tyler from pps says:
By the way, I'm curious if Zvi's "rabbi (sic)" was an innocent Hebrew grammar point or a little dig about women rabbis.

(By the way, Rachel Timoner uses the title Rabbi -- Rabbi Rachel Timoner. There's a clear reason why a female rabbi chooses not to use the feminine form. For example, feminine form is often used to designate the wife of the rabbi... as an honorific, divorced from any knowledge of Torah she may or may not have.)
Feb. 10, 2017, 2:02 pm
Tal Barziali from Pleasantville, NY says:
I might as well post this letter to the editor here from the Daily News since it seems relevant to what's being discussed here.

The Jews stood up

Flushing: To Voicer Fareed Sari: Will you look at that? Nineteen rabbis were arrested protesting the travel ban on Muslims. Can you please tell me the last time Muslim clerics were ever arrested protesting any anti-Semitic acts against the Jews? I’ll tell you: Zero protests, zero arrests.

George Schwartz
Feb. 10, 2017, 4:08 pm
Charles from Bklyn says:
Very proud of Rabbi Timoner and her willingness to sacrifice for the good of others. Love is more powerful than hate, and most people will recognize the rightousness of protecting the weak as opposed to listening to the small people without faith in their hearts who cling to fear and malicious intent.
Feb. 11, 2017, 8:26 am
St. Michael from Sunset Park says:
I wonder if she'll turn down the extra police protection for synagogues that we always hear about on the news every time there is an Islamic terrorist attack in Europe.
Feb. 11, 2017, 10:36 am
Native Amidst the Gentrischmucks from Well, take one guess... says:
Please understand, she is but one of the multitudinous, falsely sanctimonious holier-than-thou smug SEEP*s Park Slope is beyond infested with. Gotta love the "SAY NO TO HATE & ISLAMOPHOBIA" signs that area merchants are forced (yes, FORCED) to put in their windows by the gentrif*cking leftist vaginamaniacal ——hats. How 'bout a sign instead saying, "SAY NO TO BEING FORCED INTO PUTTING UP SIGNS AGAINST YOUR WILL & BETTER JUDGEMENT!" As far as this "Rabbi" goes (or would that be ARABbi?) it gives me great comfort knowing that Rachel "Left Hoof" Maddow has a clitsister.

* Self Entitled Elitist Pr*ck
Feb. 12, 2017, 8:39 pm
Native Amidst the Gentrischmucks from Well, take one guess... says:
That'd be ——hats...
Feb. 12, 2017, 8:40 pm
Janet from Park Slope says:
The arrest was at the Trump building at Columbus Circle, not Trump Tower. Was the "reporter" present?
Feb. 13, 2017, 11:04 am
Judy from Brooklyn says:
I am a woman just like this fony Timoner. And I'm willing to bet I am alot more liberated than her. Yet I will tell you emphatically, as a Jew who is guided -as he/she should be by the Torah, The Torah's law says that ONLY a man can be a Rabbi. A woman can be equally as great in her own right but can not officiate as a Rabbi. NOT because women are inferior, on the contrary, according to the Torah, women are on a much higher level. but women have their role and men have theirs. Just like a man can NEVER give birth to a child. I actually feel bad for this woman who has'nt been able to find her rightful place. She can call herself reform or reconstructionist or some other ridiculous title but there is only one Judaism and one Torah. Using these titles is only an excuse for violating the Torah laws without a guilty conscious. The only thing I can say about her and her ilk is "Jews are their own worst enemy"!!! we finally have a president who is a friend of Israel and its prime minister (unlike the muslim who showed his obvious hatred), a man who loves this country ( enough to work without pay) rather than our enemies - the muslim fiends, and these fools can't see beyond their own shadows. She should not be disgracing the title Rabbi, perhaps Rebel would be more appropriate.
Feb. 16, 2017, 5:15 pm

Comments closed.

First name
Last name
Your neighborhood
Email address
Daytime phone

Your letter must be signed and include all of the information requested above. (Only your name and neighborhood are published with the letter.) Letters should be as brief as possible; while they may discuss any topic of interest to our readers, priority will be given to letters that relate to stories covered by The Brooklyn Paper.

Letters will be edited at the sole discretion of the editor, may be published in whole or part in any media, and upon publication become the property of The Brooklyn Paper. The earlier in the week you send your letter, the better.

Keep it local!

Stay in touch with your community. Subscribe to our free newsletter: