Rabbi speaks on growing antisemitism in the U.S.
Nov 13, 2023, 10:00 PM | Updated: Nov 30, 2023, 5:28 pm
WASHINGTON — American Jews are planning to march in Washington D.C. on Tuesday to combat antisemitism in the wake of the Israel-Hamas war.
This comes after 180,000 people marched peacefully across France to protest rising antisemitism. KSL NewsRadio’s Boyd Matheson spoke with Rabbi Brad Hirschfield on KSL TV on Sunday about antisemitism in the U.S. and the march. Matheson highlighted that conversation on KSL NewsRadio’s Inside Sources.
Hirschfield said the march is going to be a national rally. He hopes over 100,000 people will be there when it starts at 11 a.m. Mountain Time.
“We have seen increasingly, that people’s outrage … has actually turned into a set of acts against Jews, whoever they are, regardless of what they believe, independent of politics,” Hirschfield said.
He noted that he doesn’t believe all criticism of Israel is an antisemitic position. Hirschfield also said the rally is not meant to be about politics in Israel and the war, but about antisemitism and the around 240 hostages that have been taken.
Thinking critically about antisemitism
Hirschfield said he witnessed a woman tearing down posters of the hostages. He asked her why she was tearing down posters of an 8-year-old girl who was kidnapped by terrorists. After some loud back and forth, he said the woman got quiet.
That’s when Hirschfield realized it was a knee-jerk reaction.
“She was tearing down those posters because looking at the faces of the kidnap victims reminded her of the failed policies of the people she had previously supported and still supported,” he said. “And it was a reminder that she had supported the wrong people in the wrong way. And this is what it brought.”
That’s why Hirschfield suggested people think critically about why, in a moment of polarization, they are feeling a certain way. Instead of immediately pushing those feelings to an outside source, think about what things on the inside are causing that reaction.
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