69 JCCs have had bomb threats since January. I am not anti-media like many others. So I will give kudos to NBC Nightly News and Lester Holt for having the latest round (yesterday 11 threats) on the news last night as the 3rd story.
However I was monitoring online for a few hours yesterday and until 6:30 last night not one news source I went to had any news about the latest round of threats. Not one. I got my info from an email from the JCC in Northern Virginia, which was not threatened. News feeds from St. Louis, Alabama, and Houston, which were threatened, had news, as did the Jerusalem Post. This morning, CBS This Morning had the story at 7:13 am, after numerous other stories. CNN.com now has a section on its home page about an uptick in threats to Jewish communities, which includes vandalism in Jewish cemeteries. MSNBC.com had nothing on its home page. BBC News had something as its 5th article on its home page. The Washington Post has a feature story on its home page. Fox News has one article, about Ivanka Trump’s tweet last night about these acts. The article on Fox News is buried on its home page. I even looked at Breitbart. Nothing there. No surprise.
While the first daughter has spoken, our president has yet to say anything about any of these acts other than to say that he’s not an antisemite. I wish HE had tweeted what she did. Will it help? I don’t think it would hurt. It certainly would be more helpful than berating a reporter for Ami Magazine (Orthodox Jewish magazine) for asking what the government was going to do to help stop these threats. It is good to know that, at least now, the FBI, DOJ, and Homeland Security are investigating.
When I was young my mom told me very plainly that there are those in this world that will dislike and hate me for being a Jew and that I had to get up when knocked down by them and keep moving on. I’ve been actively proselytized and questioned, called a non-believer and an atheist (for not believing in Jesus). I’ve been asked about my horns and told with all innocence that I couldn’t be Jewish because I was pretty. I’ve sat quietly while people at luncheons, and even clients, have made antisemitic remarks, either not realizing I was Jewish or just not caring that I am.
But this disturbs me more than anything ever has in all my years. What is our country becoming? Friends ask why I’m fearful. They don’t understand the fear.
They don’t understand that Jewish Community Centers are not only places of socialization and culture, but often serve as day care centers and pre-schools. Those evacuations are of our children. Some are babies in cribs!
What do people need to understand the fear? Is this enough or do these threats, thus far all hoaxes, need to turn violent before they will try to understand what it is like to be a Jew in this country?