Currents News Staff
Investigators say Robert Bowers wanted all Jews to die. The suspect using his arsenal of weapons to try and kill as many Jews as he could, now faces a myriad hate crime and murder charges.
In Squirrel Hill, the center of Jewish life in and around Pittsburgh resident Hallie Goldstein says fear was never part of the equation until now.
“Before everyone was saying that they felt strong and they felt braver. And I don’t feel brave. I just felt scared,” said Goldstein.
Now there is a reason to fear, eleven people were just slaughtered in a synagogue in America.
For years incidents of anti-Semitism were on the decline in America then came the 2016 and presidential election.
Since then a meteoric rise, a 34 percent increase in 2016 and a 57 percent increase in 2017 according to the Anti-Defamation League that tracks it.
“That’s the single largest surge we’ve ever seen since we started tracking this data,” said Johnathan Greenblatt, CEO, Anti-Defamation League.
In Omaha, Nebraska a veteran’s memorial scarred with a swastika. In Indiana, a synagogue desecrated. In Sacramento California, flyers targeting Jewish students on campus.
“It screams of the same type of graphics and the same type of design that the Nazi’s used,” said Michael Gofman, UC Davis Student Body President.
And no one can forget the torch bearing men in Charlottesville, Virginia spewing their hate filled rhetoric. What is behind all this the ADL and those who track hate say there is no doubt political rhetoric is in part to blame.
That rhetoric can be subtle or in your face like U.S. Representative Steve King for example re-tweeting messages from a known Nazi sympathizer:
“I’m not deleting that because then you all pile on me and say Kind had to to apologize he was wrong he knows he’s guilty. I’m not. I don’t feel guilty one bit. I’m human,” said King.
While those accused of anti-Semitism for years, like Louis Farrakhan, continue to tweet and make inflammatory statements.
“When Jews are literally under attack, we should have a zero policy, a zero-tolerance policy on intolerance. It’s unacceptable that anyone from the president to Minister Farrakhan TO anyone in between who should make derisive comments in all of it should be called out. All of it should be unacceptable,” said Greenblatt.