via Prince of Petworth, Anti-Semitic fliers litter Petworth.
There’s a guy named Peter J. Cojanes here in DC who, from time to time, decides to confetti neighborhoods with some really, really vile and insane anti-Semitic literature. I mean, really, take a close look at the high res picture at the link: that is some crazy-pants shit.
So why am I posting this? Because people don’t speak out about 21st century anti-Semitism, not really. Most religious Jews who do are dismissed as overly sensitive and accused of being Zionists who are trying to inappropriately defend Israel; as a result, a lot of Reform and Secular Jews don’t speak up about it at all. When we do there’s always the accusation that this ties back to the wars in the Middle East, as if the be-all end-all of being Jewish and Judaism is the state of Israel, and as if the mere existence of the nation of Israel means anti-Semitism is over, or irrelevant, or just something we’re making up.
Sometimes the anti-Semitism is so wacky (like the flier above) it feels like it’s impossible for it to be real, or a real threat. But the economy is bad, unemployment is high, and the world is an unstable place: This is the historical breeding ground of anti-Semitism. Economy failing? Blame the Jews. Foreign wars rising? Blame the Jews. Unrest in the world around you? Blame the Jews. It sounds silly and ridiculous until you remember that when it happened in depressed post-WWI Germany, it led to state-run genocide and the decimation of 1/3 of our total numbers. And that really wasn’t that long ago.
So why I’m posting this is to make sure you see it. That you recognize that anti-Semistism is racism is bigotry is hatred and is dangerous. Keep your eyes peeled.