Monday, February 27, 2017

Another Jewish Cemetery Vandalized [UPDATED]

As many as 100 headstones at a Jewish cemetery in a section of Philadelphia were toppled and vandalized this weekend, making it the second time in a week that a Jewish cemetery has been desecrated. Last weekend, a Jewish cemetery in St. Louis was the victim of a similar act. Police are investigating the incident at the Mount Carmel Cemetery, while fundraising is underway to repair the damage, and community leaders across religious lines pledged to clean up the damage.

The vandalism follows dozens of bomb threats to Jewish community centers around the country, and cases of firebombings of Muslim mosques here, here, and here. The common enemy of Muslims and Jews are the neo-Nazis and white supremacists that have come out of the woodwork since the elections, feeling that they have a champion in neo-Fascist demagogue Donald "Rump" Trump. In the days immediately following his electoral college win, there was an outbreak of pro-Trump vandalism, intimidation and harassment. Now that their champion is facing increasing opposition to his policies and his attempts to undermine democracy, it's not inconceivable that some of his deranged right-wing followers are acting out their bigotry and frustration. We're afraid that this may be the beginning of a long siege of hatred.

BONUS:  In this light, Rex Huppke (Chicago Tribune) makes note of Rump commander- in- chief  Steve "Loose Cannon" Bannon's remarks at CPAC last week, in which Bannon taunted the press as "globalist media" --
"Globalist media" is a loaded term that bubbled up out of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories of a media controlled by Jewish elites, a concept akin to "international bankers," cabals of wealthy Jews supposedly plotting to take over the world. 
Bannon knows this, I have no doubt. He ran Breitbart, a website that caters to white nationalists, many of whom are overtly anti-Semitic. 
So why toss out the globalist media canard just days after the executive director of the Anne Frank Center for Mutual Respect condemned Trump and called the president's late statement about the Jewish center threats a "Band-Aid on the cancer of Antisemitism that has infected his own Administration." 
I spoke with Anne Frank Center director Steven Goldstein following Bannon's comment Thursday. 
"We are now seeing a pattern," he said. "And during the week in which the Trump administration has been under a microscope for anti-Semitism, this is how you refer to the press? In some of the most unfortunate anti-Semitic terms in history? That doesn't happen by accident." 
They're not even bothering with the dog whistle any more.

UPDATE: Sixteen Jewish Community Centers in 12 states have been threatened just today, forcing evacuations and heightened concerns.

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