Analysis of Antisemitism

While it is not recent news, the recent trend of threats against Jewish community centers, Synagogues, and general locations associated with the Jewish religion have been increasing at an exponential rate.  It was not until recently that police were able to make an arrest and it was a huge shock to discover that the person responsible for the threats was actually an Israeli Jew.  There has been theories on why an Israeli Jew would commit such acts, the number one being that he was getting revenge because of the fact that he was denied entry to the Israeli military. Another possible explanation is the son’s recent diagnosis of a tumor, which could medically affect his mind and actions.  I personally believe that there is something bigger going on here, the recent trend of antisemitism all over the world could possibly be associated with the election of Donald Trump.  Republicans usually tend to favor the white middle to upper class, so it is easy to assume how the Jewish people could be left out of the picture.  However, growing up in the 2000’s in a suburban neighborhood, I have always thought of Jewish people to be white and rightfully so.  Today, if you were to walk around New York City, it would be significantly more difficult to identify a Jewish person today than it would have been during the middle to late 1900’s.  I am Jewish and do not have any of the characteristics of a typical Jewish person.  So, in conclusion, I believe that there is more of a fundamental problem occurring today, more than any other theory. The...

Macalester College Student Speaks About Campus Antisemitism

In an opinion piece written for The Mac Weekly, Macalester College’s independent student newspaper, Ali Marks speaks about invisible antisemitism on liberal college campuses. While she speaks specifically about acts of antisemitism she’s faced attending a university in St. Paul, Minnesota, what is significant to me is that her experiences with antisemitism appear to reflect the experiences of some Jewish students at Michigan State University. Marks writes that in the Fall she had a professor schedule two of five total quizzes during the High Holidays (Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanah) and the professor was reluctant to let Marks complete the quizzes at a different time. At Michigan State, some university students spoke about this same experience during a student forum on campus antisemitism—saying that they had to attend exams scheduled during the High Holidays because professors had been unwilling to change the date. Not only does this violate university policy regarding religious observance, but this also places Jewish students in the unnecessary position of having to choose between their religion and their grades. Similarly, Marks explains that during her time in college, she’s overheard a variety of off-hand antisemitic comments. Marks writes that when joking about the underwhelming dating scene at Macalester, her roommates said that the “lack of ‘dateable’ men was due to ‘too many Jewish boys.’” Marks points out that this stereotype comes from centuries-old propaganda that stereotypes ‘Jewish features’ as being undesirable. However, despite the fact that these stereotypes have led to “the desexualization of and discrimination against Jews,” students do not seem to care, or perhaps are simply ignorant of how their comments mimic the...

Study Conducted on Antisemitic Hate Speech on Social Media

According to a new study conducted by the World Jewish Congress, there is a new antisemitic message on social media every 83 seconds. This study has observed over 382,000 hate-filled messages against Jews posted via Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube just in 2016 alone. The majority, 63%, have been linked to tweets on the social media platform Twitter. While there has been a general understand in the rise of antisemitism online, this study gives concrete evidence of its massive increase. CEO, Robert Singer, of the World Jewish Congress reports, “We hope this serves as a wake-up call to all internet forums to maintain moral standards, rid themselves of offensive content, and make the digital world a safer place for all” (Times). The criteria used during the study to determine whether or not a post was anti-Semitic was based on the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA)’s May 2016 definition. Their definition states that “anti-Semitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of anti-Semitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.” Many organization such as the Anti-Defamation League have called for more action on the issue. There has even been talk of plans with centers in Silicon Valley to tackle this rise of online hate speech. This is a new development that has not yet come up, and I believe it’s a much more proactive approach to combating these problem. With the knowledge and resources these institutes in Silicon Valley posses it seems like a much more effective approach that could produce answers...

Jewish Congressional Candidate Battles Antisemitic Trolls

Erin Schrode, a democrat running for office in California, has been the target of antisemtic internet trolls. Schrode received antisemtic emails, pictures, and has even had her website hacked. This extreme harassment is thought to be spurred on by The Daily Stormer,  an antisemtic and alt-right website. Followers of this website, acquired access to Schrode’s contact information as well as her social media accounts through which antisemtic images of her (like the one in the photo above), tweets,  and emails were posted and sent to her. In addition on election day, her website was hacked and her name was changed to “Adolf Hitler.” Unfortunately, this harassment has occurred over months and Schrode is still dealing with it today. Because Schrode is running as a politician, the need for social media and public outreach through the internet is important for a number of reasons. She can’t just delete her twitter, Facebook account, and website, because they are all vital to her gaining support and acknowledgement among her constituents. And considering these internet trolls are nearly impossible to find and press charges against, there’s not much Schrode could do. However, Google, Twitter, and Facebook could possibly filter out all antisemtic images and comments. As far as internet trolling goes, I think it’s sad that people spend their time attacking and harassing other people for amusement. And like other antisemitic acts, this is just another way people can say or do things without being held responsible for their actions. Unfortunately it’s coming to a point where social media may have to be policed, especially if real harm is being done to individuals.  ...

Second Wave of Antisemitic Fliers Posted at UIC

As Arutz Sheva reports, just days after initial antisemitic fliers were discovered at the University of Illinois at Chicago, a new round of antisemitic materials were found on school grounds on Saturday. While the initial antisemitic fliers dealt with ‘Jewish privilege,’ with posters saying “Ending white privilege…starts with ending Jewish privilege,” this new wave of antisemitic materials included “four new sets of fliers” that all make “explicitly anti-Semitic references” (Rosenberg). On one flier, there is a comparison of Zionism to Nazism and a subsequent comparison of Auschwitz to Gaza. As the flier claims: “‘The largest Concentration Camp in the world today is owned and operated by Zionists’” (Rosenberg). Another flier appears to defend Holocaust denial by “comparing the Holocaust to fringe conspiracy theory beliefs” (Rosenberg). On the third flier, a former University of Illinois professor who was fired for his antisemitic tweets was defended, as creators of the poster claim that Jewish donation money was responsible for his dismissal. The final poster reiterated the message of the initial antisemitic fliers, “again calling for an end to Jewish Privilege” (Rosenberg). Rosenberg reports that “while last week’s posters were not credited to any group or individual author and left no evidence of whether far-left or White supremacists were responsible,” these most recent fliers paid tribute to the Black Lives Matter movement, #WeAreAllMuslims, and #StandWithPalestine. Creators of the fliers even seem to have anticipated accusations of antisemitism, as they wrote “‘standing up for Palestine is not anti-Semitic. It is not defamatory. It does not insult anyone. It is social justice’” (Rosenberg). Similarly, they wrote: “questioning the influence of university donors is not anti-semitic. It...

Minnesota university denounces anti-Semitism after Muslim student body president’s tweets resurface

On March 22, 2017 The Washington Times covered a story about a students antisemtic tweet at Minnesota University.  Muslims study body president Muhammad said “If you support Israel in anyway, shape, or form, please unfollow me right now cause those people are the scum of the earth,” Muhammad wrote in July 2014, according to screenshots captured by Canary Mission.  Later that day, he wrote, “the yahood [the Jews] will get what coming for them Insha’Allah.” In June 2012, he tweeted, “Imma start stealing candy bars so I can help my n–-s in Palestine. #KaluQuotes @kKass1m looool,” using a racial slur. He followed up that tweet by writing, “100 candy bars = 1 Grenade let’s do this. #KaluQuotes @kkass1m.” Muhammad then gave a statement saying “I am coming under attack for being a Muslim leader of the student government at a private Catholic institution,” he wrote. “Growing up, I was taught by my religion to treat everyone with respect and dignity no matter where they came from or what they believed in. The tweets that resurfaced were from 3+ years ago and do not reflect what I meant at the time,” he continued. “My words were poorly chosen and shared during a period of time where I was very emotional about Israel’s politics and the loss of life in Gaza. I regret my choice of words and apologize for any impact this may have had on people reading my tweets.” The University of St. Thomas said they are looking for student input when it comes to punishment for Muhammad and future leadership. The University needs to take more action when it comes...