It’s no secret that anti-Semitism is on the rise. The recent spike in hate crimes targeting the Jewish community has left many feeling frightened, hurt, and alone. But it doesn’t have to be this way. It’s time to come together and support our Jewish neighbors.
by David Stone
With conflicts in the Middle East escalating out of control, getting a handle on things is more important than ever. Jews are not Israel nor are they Israeli politics. Conflating very different things is dangerous and empowering for anti-semites.
Here’s what fair-minded people can do.
- Speak Out Against Hate
The first step in supporting our Jewish friends and neighbors is to speak out against hate. If you hear someone making a derogatory remark or spouting anti-Semitic rhetoric, don’t stay silent. Speak up and let them know that hate speech will not be tolerated. When we remain silent, we essentially condone hate speech. But when we speak out and make it clear that such words and actions are unacceptable, we can create a more inclusive and caring community.
- Show Your Support
Another way to rally around is to show our support. Attend rallies and vigils to stand in solidarity with the community. Show up at synagogues and community centers to offer support and volunteer your time. Understand that supporting the Jewish community doesn’t have to be flashy or grand. Small gestures like sending a letter or offering a kind word can go a long way in showing that you care.
- Educate Yourself About Jewish Culture
One of the best ways to support our Jewish neighbors is to educate ourselves about their culture. Take time to learn about traditions, holidays, and customs. Attend cultural events and ask questions to gain a better understanding of what it means to be a part of the Jewish community. By taking these steps, we can break down barriers and create a more welcoming environment for everyone.
- Support Jewish-Owned Businesses
Another way to stand in solidarity with our Jewish neighbors is to support Jewish-owned businesses. By doing so, we can help ensure that these businesses thrive and succeed. Consider shopping at Jewish-owned stores or eat at kosher restaurants. These actions may seem small, but they can make a big difference in supporting the Jewish community.
- Call Out Anti-Semitism
Finally, it’s important to call out anti-Semitism whenever we see it. This means not just speaking out against hateful speech or actions, but also calling out subtle instances of discrimination that may fly under the radar. When we call out anti-Semitism in all its forms, we send a message that hate has no place in our community.
Supporting the Jewish community isn’t just about making small, isolated gestures of kindness. It’s about creating a culture of inclusivity and standing up against hate and discrimination wherever it rears its ugly head. By following the steps outlined above, we can create a more welcoming and supportive environment for all our Jewish neighbors. It’s time to take a stand against hate. The time to rally around all our Jewish neighbors is now.