Rabbi Haskel Lookstein.
(photo credit: screenshot)
NEW YORK - Over 600 alumni of the Modern Orthodox yeshiva day school Ramaz signed a petition earlier this week calling out their former principal, Rabbi Haskel Lookstein, for his public support of Donald Trump.
Rabbi Lookstein, who recently caught media attention due to the Israeli rabbinate's refusal to recognize conversions he performed in New York, is scheduled to attend the Republican National Convention in Cleveland next week to speak on behalf of Trump.
Lookstein is also the rabbi who converted Trump’s daughter Ivanka to Judaism.
Students who signed the petition said they were “outraged” by the rabbi’s decision to “lend his blessing” to the Republican candidate, who they describe as a “dangerous man”.
“Donald Trump openly spouts racist, misogynistic rhetoric; he advocates torture, the expulsion of millions of families, some long settled in America, and insinuates that some citizens of this great country are somehow less than others,” the petition said.
“To embrace Trump and Trumpism goes against all we’ve been taught. As graduates of Ramaz, and as current or former members of the Modern Orthodox community, this is a shanda beyond the pale.”
“Rabbi Lookstein, all the good work you’ve done in your life – everything you’ve done for your community, for the plight of Soviet Jews – will be flushed down the toilet for ten minutes on stage in Cleveland,” the graduates wrote. “This is the single action history will remember you by, and history will not be kind.”
They also warned their former principal that “Jews are never far behind” on Trump’s list of scapegoats and that by supporting Trump, Lookstein has decided to “embrace and politicize hate.”
“Not in our name. Today we are ashamed to be Ramaz graduates,” they concluded.
The graduates urged Rabbi Lookstein to reconsider his decision stating that the future of his own legacy is at stake.
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