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Democratic presidential candidates: Do Jewish lives matter?

With the impending doom of white privilege and supremacy, one would think that the Democrats would seize the opportunity during at least one of their primary debates to raise the alarm on how much anti-Semitism is an issue in this country.

From left: 2020 Democratic presidential candidates Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Pete Buttigieg, mayor of South Bend, Ind., at the CNN/New York Times debate in Westerville, Ohio, on Oct. 15, 2019. Source: Screenshot.
From left: 2020 Democratic presidential candidates Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Pete Buttigieg, mayor of South Bend, Ind., at the CNN/New York Times debate in Westerville, Ohio, on Oct. 15, 2019. Source: Screenshot.
Bryan E. Leib and Rabbi Yechezkel Moskowitz

Here’s the deal, we are two millennial Jews living in New York City who are deeply concerned about the lack of attention being given to the rise of anti-Semitism.

In the Democratic primary for president in the 2020 elections, we’ve seen numerous televised debates, hundreds of town halls, thousands of network interviews and yet haven’t heard the issue of rising anti-Semitism in this country make it into the political discourse.

However, with the impending doom of white privilege and supremacy, one would think that the Democrats would seize the opportunity during at least one of their primary debates to raise the alarm on how much anti-Semitism is an issue in this country. But not one candidate has said one word—nada, zilch, nothing, not even once.

To be fair, the blame cannot be placed on the candidates themselves, as no major media network has brought the rise of anti-Semitism into the mainstream, Why not?

Thankfully, there is one brave member of the media. Michelle Makori at i24News in New York City has consistently used her platform to raise awareness, calling for action against the rise of anti-Semitism. Bravo, Michelle!

As New York Jews, we know this to be the case, but is the average American aware of this harsh reality? Probably not. Does average American care about this alarming trend? We sure hope so.

Yet we feel it safe to assume that the average American is pretty oblivious to this reality, and we think the rise in anti-Semitism poses a national-security threat to this country. Is the average American aware that per the NYPD, hate crimes targeting Jews have increased more than 50 percent from 2018? They aren’t. Most Jews outside of New York don’t even know about that.

Americans should be aware of the targeted attacks in the streets of Brooklyn, where violence directed at the Jewish community is seemingly becoming an everyday occurrence.

This rising threat is happening in tandem with the already commonplace targeting of synagogues, Jewish schools and Jewish community centers, which are regularly defaced by vandalism all throughout the country.

How many of the Democrats running for president do you think have personally thought (not from their campaign staff telling them) about what happened last year in Pittsburgh on Oct. 27 and the one-year anniversary that is approaching?

How many of the Democrats running for president have condemned the vicious attacks happening in New York City?

Sadly, very few have, and those who have in the past had done it mainly as a tool to attack the president when all he’s done is stand up for the Jewish people.

Fact: U.S. President Donald Trump has done more than any president before him to combat Anti-Semitism in America! We both applaud President Trump for his staunch support of Jews in America and in the Jewish State of Israel.

Why won’t the Democratic candidates for president address anti-Semitism head on? Do Jewish lives matter to them? We sure hope so, but the record reflects otherwise.

Rabbi Yechezkel Moskowitz serves as the special assistant to Cherna Moskowitz, and as a policy consultant for Middle East and Israel affairs for several think tanks and elected officials. He has appeared on OAN and Fox News.

Bryan E. Leib is a Philadelphia native who lives in New York City. He was previously with the Israeli-American Council, and in 2018 was the Republican Candidate for U.S. Congress in Philadelphia. He serves on the boards of Americans Against Anti-Semitism, Young Friends of the National Museum of American Jewish History and is a member of the JNF-USA Speakers Bureau.

The opinions and facts presented in this article are those of the author, and neither JNS nor its partners assume any responsibility for them.
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