“Jew-hatred,” as former Democratic New York State Assemblyman Dov Hikind likes to call it, has gotten to the point where Jews are assaulted while just walking down the street, especially in New York City, where more than 1 million Jews live, and especially in Brooklyn, where he served and where hundreds of thousands of visibly identifiable Orthodox Jews live.
In fact, anti-Semitic crimes spiked last month by 400%.
Hikind sat on the New York State Assembly for 36 years. Today, he is working to break the cycle of anti-Semitism in his city.
“The fact is that people are afraid,” he said in an interview with Ellie Cohanim this week. “People are concerned. People are putting away their Stars of David, taking off their yarmulkes when they have to go out.”
The attacks, according to Hikind, are mainly against individuals who are “visibly Jewish;” for example, those who wear traditional dress, including black hats, black coats and kippahs. And they are overwhelmingly being targeted by members of the city’s minority communities, such as African-Americans and Hispanics.
The attacks are “overwhelmingly, maybe even 90%, from the minority community,” he said, “and no one is blaming the minority community. How do you solve a problem if you don’t even want to talk about the problem? If you don’t want to identify what’s going on? Why are so many people who happen to be minorities attacking Jews?”
And why isn’t anything being done? he asked.
“Everybody is against anti-Semitism,” he said, but there seems to be no plan to actually stop it.
“Show me the plan,” he pressed. “What are you going to do? I want to see it in black-and-white; what is your plan? So far, I don’t see any.”
About “Global Perspectives with Ellie Cohanim”:
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These conversations provide key insights into critical and time-sensitive issues, including the Iranian nuclear threat, the rise of violent anti-Semitism, anti-Zionist activities, Christian and Muslim support for Israel, and the historic Abraham Accords.
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