B’nai B’rith International President Charles O. Kaufman and CEO Daniel S. Mariaschin have issued the following statement:
Jews in the New York metropolitan region are again grappling with anti-Semitic violence. A machete attack at a Chanukah celebration in Monsey has left at least five hurt. Jews in Brooklyn, New Jersey and now Monsey are under daily threat of violence. We cannot accept as normal the beatings, stabbings, shovings and slurs targeting Jews. Though a suspect in the Monsey attack has been arrested, this cannot be the end of the story.
There must be an unequivocal condemnation of this across the spectrum — from political and religious leaders. We also call on the media to give this epidemic more extensive coverage than it has.
B’nai B’rith’s United Nations and Intercommunal Affairs Director David Michaels today joined New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and civic and religious leaders in pledging a firm response to a wave of anti-Semitism that has reached the largest Jewish population center in the diaspora.
The Jewish community should not be made to feel that what is now a near-daily occurrence of violence is just some phase that will go away on its own. Apathy or disinterest are not acceptable in this climate of hatred.
What we have seen in recent days and weeks has never occurred in this country. Before analogies are made to darker periods in history where this kind of behavior was not addressed – and in fact was encouraged – community leaders, judges and law enforcement must commit to a full range of resources to stop these outbreaks.
We thank the Guardian Angels – an unarmed crime-prevention group – for patrolling the neighborhoods most impacted by these attacks.
Meanwhile, we encourage police to work more proactively to protect the Jewish community. Also, we urge New York leaders to review the parole reform laws in the city, which allow those individuals arrested for hate crimes to be back on the streets almost immediately.