Issues

AFRO EXCLUSIVE: Op-ed: D.C.-Area Pastors on Rise of Antisemitism

History is riddled with examples of people and nations that allow danger to gather on their doorsteps in the belief that evil would not come for them. But evil comes and by then it may be too late. Today, there is a gathering storm in America, and it’s called antisemitism. As Christians, we cannot allow hatred to metastasize throughout our society. In the ashes of the Holocaust we have seen the horrors that can result.

The modern incarnation of the world’s oldest hatred here in our own country is shameful and frightening. American antisemitism has found favor outside the dark corners from whence it hibernated, and too few of us are alarmed.

The Anti-Defemination League (ADL) succinctly concluded earlier this year on the basis of FBI data that “Jews are consistently the most targeted religious community in the U.S.” The ADL also found that “Antisemitic incidents are being reported at record levels.” The Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law revealed that half of American Jewish college students “have felt the need to hide their Jewish identity.” But there is no mass movement uniting Americans to stand up for one another.

This is perhaps because Americans like to think our country’s dalliance with bigotry is limited to a small group of ignorant, politically irrelevant individuals who exist in the American hinterlands. This is a delusion. There are antisemites in Congress – both Republicans and Democrats. There is Jew-hatred in the esteemed halls of academia and the holy sanctuaries of houses of worship. And to be clear, while American white supremacy is rising, antisemitism is not limited to white America.

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