• Richard Easson

Our Jewish Friends, The Forgotten Among Those Looted and Vandalized During Riots

Among all of the looting and vandalizing that's been taking place around the country in response to the death of George Floyd are stores and establishments of all types and sizes. The looting and vandalizing of establishments that have gone underreported or simply not reported at all are those at the heart of the Jewish community.

On the walls of one of the oldest synagogues in Los Angeles, California were the words "F*** Israel" and "Free Palestine" written in graffiti. Congregation Beth Israel, now at the center of this story for being defaced, is one of many locations that that have been the target of anti-Semitism during the current riots ravishing our country. Anti-Semitism during times of chaos is nothing new, though. The Jewish community becomes forgotten among the mix as the media focuses their time and energy on the chaos itself.

Congregation Beth Israel wasn't the only Jewish establishment to be looted or vandalized. Numerous bakeries and kosher restaurants were also targets of ransacking during the recent riots. "Some of the stores impacted include Ariel Glatt Kosher Market, Mensch Bakery and Kitchen, and Syd's Pharmacy and Kosher Vitamins, all located in the Fairfax district." Obviously, this isn't the only time Jews have been the target of anti-Semites within the past couple of years in this country.

On December 14, 2019, a synagogue in Beverly Hills, California was the target of vandalism.

On December 10, 2019, a shooting in a predominantly African American neighborhood in Jersey City, New Jersey targeting a Jewish business claimed four lives. Hours after the attack, a video went viral of people near the crime scene heard spewing anti-Semitic rhetoric. Only a week after the rampage, a Jersey City school board member was caught posting anti-Semitic messages on Facebook blaming the Jewish community for trying to push African Americans out of the community where the massacre occurred.

In November 2019, a white supremacist was charged in plotting to blow up one of the oldest synagogues in Colorado.

On October 27, 2018, 11 lives were lost during a shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

The above-mentioned instances of hate and discrimination are only a few of many that have plagued the Jewish community over the years here in America. The Jewish community needs to be protected just as well as anyone else and those who commit hate crimes against them need to be punished to the fullest extent of the law. Unfortunately, instances of anti-Semitism occur far too often than reported. Again, discrimination against the Jewish community is well underreported and needs to be addressed.