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Antisemitism ad that runs during Oscars draws criticism

“I’m sure they had decent intentions, but this ad sends a poor message,” wrote Jewish educator Dovid Bashevkin.

Police Tape. Credit: Matt Gush/Shutterstock.
Police Tape. Credit: Matt Gush/Shutterstock.

An ad purchased by the Foundation to Combat Antisemitism that ran during the Academy Awards on Sunday is drawing criticism for depicting a bar mitzvah celebrated in a church.

“I’m sure they had decent intentions but this ad sends a poor message,” wrote Dovid Bashevkin, director of education for NCSY. “We are grateful to our non-Jewish neighbors, but we don’t take kindly to seeing a bar mitzvah in a church.”

“Our history of forced conversion and assimilation makes such imagery honestly too painful to bear,” he added.

Rabbi Shlomo Litvin, a Chabad rabbi in Kentucky called the ad “absolutely moronic.”

“A bar mitzvah takes place in the middle of the night and gets a bomb threat, so they go next door to a church to finish the ceremony,” he wrote. “What in the ignorant savior foolishness motivated the script? Maybe stop Jew-hatred by meeting a Jew.”

The ad states that “895 Jewish temples received bomb threats last year,” adding that “this is one of those stories.”

Police cars rush to the synagogue and officers interrupt the service. The rabbi and congregants retreat to an adjacent church, as a SWAT team searches the building.

The commercial concludes with the rabbi stating in the church sanctuary, “Thank you for welcoming us,” before continuing with the bar mitzvah celebration.

“Hate loses when we stand together,” the ad states.

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