Published On: Mon, Nov 14th, 2016

Anti-Semitism Rises In U.S. After Trump Win — But Is He To Blame?

“Since the election, we’ve seen a big uptick in incidents of vandalism, threats, intimidation spurred by the rhetoric surrounding Mr. Trump’s election."

wellsville-swastika

Acts of anti-Semitism, specifically vandalism, have spiked in the days since Donald Trump was elected President of the United States. There have also been many racist incidents recorded in last few days. But is there a correlation with Trump’s victory?

Over the weekend, a swastika was painted on the sidewalk in a Jewish neighborhood in Brooklyn. The New York Daily News reported that it was discovered on Montgomery St. near Brooklyn Ave. on Sunday morning.

Mordechai Lightston, who works for Chabad, was quoted saying, “It’s appalling. This is the heart of the Jewish area. It’s not something that should happen in New York or anywhere, ever.”

Swastikas were also painted in White Plains New York. This was reported by many people on social media.

In another incident, also in New York City, swastikas were painted on four walls in a dormitory at The New School in Manhattan.

David Van Zandt, the school’s president, stated, “Any form of expression that denigrates members of our community based on their race, ethnicity, religion, sexual or gender identity, or political beliefs is completely abhorrent and antithetical to our core values.”

And in a blog post, The Anti-Defamation League listed the following anti-Semitic events which have occurred over the past week, in addition to a number of other racists incidents.

A softball dugout in Wellsville, NY, was defaced Tuesday night with the words “Make America White Again, ” accompanied by a large swastika

Artwork at the University of New Mexico was vandalized Tuesday night with swastikas and the words “Seig Heil Trump.”

A swastika and the words “Seig Heil 2016” were spray painted Tuesday night on a storefront in South Philadelphia. Nearby, an SUV was spray painted with the words “TRUMP RULES” and “TRUMP BLACK BITCH.”

USA Today is also reporting on an increase in hate crimes across America. “Since the election, we’ve seen a big uptick in incidents of vandalism, threats, intimidation spurred by the rhetoric surrounding Mr. Trump’s election, ” Richard Cohen, president of the Southern Poverty Law Center in Montgomery, Ala., told USA TODAY. “The white supremacists out there are celebrating his victory and many are feeling their oats, ” Cohen said.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and New York Governor Andrew Cuomo have both expressed shock and dismay at the rise in hate crimes.

But can we blame Donald Trump for any of this?

Well his supporters certainly say no. They argue that there is no correlation between a few racists acting out in his name and Trump’s policies. They have also pointed out that many people who opposed trump’s candidacy are taking to the streets in protest, saying things like “not my President.”

steve-bannon

But Mr. Trump did just appoint Steve Bannon to a senior position in his administration. Bannon had previously run Breitbart News which has been charged with having racist content. And Bannon has also been associated with the racist alt-right website.

ADL head Jonathan Greenblatt said of Bannon’s appointment, “It is a sad day when a man who presided over the premier website of the alt-right, a loose-knit group of white nationalists and unabashed anti-Semites and racists, is slated to be a senior staff member in the ‘people’s house’ [The White House].”

And former senior adviser to President Obama David Axelrod called Bannon’s appointment “deeply troubling” in a tweet.

So is there reason for concern. Yes, but not to panic. People should wait and see what happens in the next few weeks. And if these incidents increase then Donald Trump must say something about it.

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