Wednesday, September 23, 2009


Remember 2007?

mass rabbinic arrest
mass rabbinic a.c.d.
mass rabbinic impact
mass rabbinic closure

Well, they were at it again today!

About 50-100 rabbis (sorry for the vague number, didn't get to count them myself), most affiliated with the New York Board of Rabbis, obstructed traffic on First Avenue in Manhattan, NYC, just south of the United Nations, at 41st street. The police threatened them with arrest, and most of the protestors moved aside, but 11 stood (sat?) their ground and went all the way in order to highlight dramatically the danger that Pres. Ahmadinejad of Iran poses to his own people, to America, to Israel and to the rest of the world.

Please note: If you would like to make use of my photos, I am happy to contribute — but please email me at shtegosaurus you-know-what gmail etc. to ask for attribution information first! Thank you.

Preparing for the Protest

Protest Rally on the Sidewalk
With Speeches, Prayers and Tehillim

Stepping Out Onto the Street
and Obstructing Traffic

Sounding the Shofar

Final Warnings from the NYPD

Protesters Willing to Risk Arrest
Sit Themselves Down on the Street
and Refuse to Move

Arresting the Civilly-Disobedient Protesters

Loading the Arrestees into Police Vans

And a Few Self-Reflective Media Photos
because i admire real journalists
like Steven I. Weiss of The Jewish Channel

Also, see the following videos of the rabbis sounding their shofars and chanting "STOP HIM [=Ahmadinejad] NOW" as the NYPD orders them to stop blocking traffic, and of Shmuly Yanklowitz (of Uri L'Tzedek speaking passionately of the danger that the Iranian president poses to the world:

I'm just an amateur blogging photojournalist, but these real media reported on the civil-disobedience protest:

‘Arutz Sheva‘ HEBREW and ENGLISH and an INTERVIEW
Asbury Park Press BEFORE and AFTER
The Jewish Channel's Week In Review VIDEO
Yahoo! News PHOTOS


Anonymous wolfman said...

Why the gender homogeneity of the arrested rabbis?

(Not that I think highly of stunts like this, but why do only male rabbis act like idiot children?)

9/24/2009 2:24 AM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...

People who use ritualized legal drama to call attention to injustice and danger in the world are "idiot children"?

(that was a rhetorical question, the answer is 'no')

9/24/2009 7:55 AM  
Anonymous Garnel Ironheart said...

Protest in a democracy is a right. As long as these rabbonim were aware that there were consequences to their actions and didn't resist the police, kol hakavod to them.

9/24/2009 8:16 AM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...


Just like last time, everything was pre-coordinated with the police beforehand. The police also multiple times warned the rabbis before the protest than if anyone has any outstanding warrants (even a traffic violation), they should not risk arrest because that would end up being much worse than just getting a ticket for disorderly conduct.

9/24/2009 9:06 AM  
Blogger Jameel @ The Muqata said...

wolfman: idiot children stunts?

I can tell you must be doing a lot for the Jewish people.

Steg: Kudos for posting!

To The Rabbanim there: yasher kochachem!

Gmar Chatima Tova,


9/24/2009 4:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

what a dsiturbing chilul hashem. it is so ironic that the very same rabbis advocating and commiting civil disobedience (breaking the law) are the very same people behind a push attempting to promote (albeit sanctimoniously) higher "ethical" standars in the jewish community.

no credibility folks, sorry.

9/24/2009 5:14 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...


civil disobedience is the moral right of members of a free society — equating it with exploitation, fraud, and other unethical activities is nonsensical.

9/24/2009 5:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

justifiable double standars when it suits the invidual's own cause is inconsistent and hypocritical. either practice what you preach, or shut up. Certian people are quite judgmental and quick to jump. There might be a way to prove the valid point without being an idiot. What if something occurred nearby that required the cops attention when they were too busy helping a couple of people with very little seichel prove their point? Is it truly a worthwhile right to distract our police resources and waste their attention, time and our money when they could possibly be avaialble in casethey are needed for something maybe even a life or death situation? Is that allowable by halacha? Perhaps that should be a focus topic for the next yom inyun conference or ehtical standards panel discussion.

9/24/2009 7:02 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...


the police officers who handle pre-coordinated civil disobedience protests volunteer for it because it's easy overtime. they're not being taken away from anything else.

9/24/2009 7:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

and what about the ill will, and chillul hashem caused by all mr yaknlowitz and his friends in the minds of all the poor innocent commuters - all the victims of the shenanigans whose process and daily routine or tasks were hampered and disrupted by this "civil disobedience" Is it truly worth it - and even allowable by which ever halacha permits the behavior, to trade creating a dozens of new anti semites? these poeple who saw goofs in jewish prayer garb blocking their paths - who could care less about their cause and only want to get to where they have to go, now angry and some stupid jews? is that new ill will created really necessary and less significant than the symbolism "civil disobedience?" is this considered before executing the plans?
How is this any different than hareid shabbos proetests? NO DIFFERENT.

9/24/2009 7:09 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

thanks for proving my point. "easy overtime. Who decided that its a worthy allocation of our tax dollars??? HUH? who are you to decide that? and you never know what they could have been doing otherwise. so you have no way of knowing that.
there are too many trade offs, and in the end what is accomplished? who accomplished anything?

9/24/2009 7:11 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...


check the timestamps on the pictures -- it was all over and done with in a few minutes. no one was significantly inconvenienced.

by "hareid shabbos protests" are you referring to the riots in mei’a she‘arim, where they throw rocks, destroy property, and attack people? if you see no difference between a violent riot and a peaceful demonstration, then there's no point discussing this difference of opinion.

9/24/2009 7:14 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...


Actually, in 2007 when i went to play photojournalist for the first time and document the civil disobedience protest then, a New York City DA explained to me exactly how the NYPD and the NYC legal system deal with these kinds of protests, and that's how i know where the officers involved come from and what they would otherwise be doing.

Interestingly enough, the police were very supportive of them and urged them to make more and larger protests in the future because they agree with the protesters' assessment of the danger that Ahmadinejad poses to the world.

9/24/2009 7:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

would you block traffic in a vain attempt to get arrested?

9/24/2009 7:23 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...


like i told some of my friends who urged me to participate — i'm not a protester, i'm a journalist.

Btw, if you really feel like the people involved are being hypocritical, contact them and challenge them to explain themselves! I don't think they're hanging around my blog waiting to answer readers' questions.

9/24/2009 7:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Only asked since you seem so defensive if hypothetically you would do so yourself.

9/25/2009 12:37 PM  
Anonymous Ben Qor'ha said...

Sorry to see some of these very talented and educated rabbis dancing at the tunes of ahmedinejad.
All he is looking for is publicity and here they are, providing it to him on a silver plater.
There is no room here for 'civil disobedience' so to speak; they ain't A J Heschel, neither is their cause his cause.
You kidding? from the midrash of motti eilon, wearing the guise of Heschel?! Nah, doesn't work that way!
America enjoys the rule of law and civil liberties, and so does Israel (though a tad less so on civil liberties) in addition to being independent.
This is no spiritual leadership. We just come across as puerile fools.
The comparison with Amos, Yirmiahu and others, is nothing short of astonishing.
Back to your study books and study benches! ve-idakh, zil ugmor!
The only difference between them n Satmer demonstrators is at least they are against our enemies while Satmer is for them. Fine!
Otherwise, both neglect the directive of neim zemiros yisroel: "sur mero' vaassei tov". shun evil and do good. Which is what they should be dwellin on.

9/25/2009 1:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

psychotic display leades little difference between people like Shmuly Yanklowitz and Yehuda Levin. crazy is crazy.

9/29/2009 11:37 AM  
Anonymous Dan - Israeli Uncensored News said...

If Ahmadinejad is not welcome, how come Obama who shields Ahmadinejad from Israeli attack is welcome?

10/16/2009 3:01 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...

uh... because obama isn't a bloodthirsty theocratic dictator?

10/16/2009 3:20 PM  
Anonymous ilona@israel said...

they are sure pretty brave, but its not gonna help. why would not them found some organization that will support opposition in iran or smth like that-would be much more effective then this wiered demonstration.

1/04/2010 9:18 AM  
Anonymous kayin said...

hey got new torah?

1/28/2010 3:28 AM  
Blogger The back of the hill said...

Write what!
Already too long completely nothing!

2/05/2010 3:42 PM  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

Nu, not even Purim Torah?

3/01/2010 6:30 PM  
Blogger The back of the hill said...

Hey Steg, what SHE said.
Shreib voss!

3/01/2010 8:54 PM  
Blogger Steg (dos iz nit der šteg) said...

sorry guys, not so much into the blogging lately... been too busy with RL ("real world") stuff, and even my drashas and divrey torah are too personal and referent to RL things and people in my life that i don't want them on teh anonymous intarwebs.

3/01/2010 9:49 PM  
Blogger The back of the hill said...

Aha! A sign of life!

3/02/2010 9:18 PM  
Blogger jony maginex said...

Hi I am João I am from Portugal.
Your blog is great, I love the fotos. keep going.
If you want you can visit my blo too,
and see some of my school works.

Have a nice day :)

3/28/2010 8:48 AM  

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