Community Unites Against Hate Following Charlottesville
August 16, 2017
Posted by: Jeremy Russell, Director of Marketing and Communications
There has been an enormous and moving outpouring of public condemnation for the anti-Semitic rally and ensuing violence in Charlottesville, VA. It is heartening to see so many united against hate. We are gathering pertinent statements, but this is only a small sampling. If you do not see a statement that you feel should be listed, please send a link to JCRC Director of Marketing and Communications Jeremy Russell. Thank you!
JCRC Statement: JCRC Responds to White Nationalist Violence in Virginia
The hateful demonstration in Charlottesville, VA, by those peddling anti-Semitism, white supremacy and racism, has left so many in our nation and in our Jewish community reeling.
JCRC was founded on a belief that the Jewish community has a special need to safeguard democracy and contribute to the strengthening of civil society. History has taught us that where there are strains in the democratic fabric, anti-Semitism flourishes and discrimination and marginalization of all ethnic and racial minorities rises. Racist demonstrations undermine our sense of shared national identity by making people feel vulnerable and under attack. The violence and intolerance this weekend was a stark reminder of the fragility of our nation’s sense of commonality.
We are heartened by the words of congressional members from both sides of the aisle who immediately called out by name this evil and who made a clarion call for unity in the face of hate. We are thankful for the clear words of the Governor of Virginia, who spoke directly to white supremacist demonstrators and said, "Shame on you. You pretend that you're patriots, but you are anything but a patriot.... There is no place for you here.” Our hearts go out to the people who felt this hate and intolerance firsthand, and we stand by them.
Over the past year, JCRC has engaged hundreds of Jewish community members and dozens of representatives of Jewish organizations from across the religious and political spectrum in an in-depth deliberative process to find points of consensus on issues related to racial justice. The resulting consensus policy position espouses the values of our Bay Area Jewish community. JCRC stands for racial equality and equity, and will be working in the days and months to come to advance these principles. This is the antidote to racial hatred, as are the strong words of condemnation, the counterdemonstrations and the actions of solidarity witnessed this weekend. These are the values that will prevail and keep our democracy strong.
-- Marty Schenker, JCRC President, and Abby Michelson Porth, JCRC Executive Director
Jewish Community Federation & Endowment Fund and Jewish Federation of the East Bay Joint Statement: The violence, racism, anti-Semitism, and white supremacist ideology on display in Charlottesville this weekend have no place in America
The violence, racism, anti-Semitism, and white supremacist ideology on display in Charlottesville this weekend have no place in America. The true America that we deeply believe in is one of welcome diversity, equality, and acknowledgement of the critical history and ongoing contributions of immigrants in our country. We stand together with the vast majority of Americans and join our community partners in condemning hate, hateful rhetoric, and violence. As Jews, we must have zero tolerance for those who would seek to scapegoat our community and conjure the murderous symbols and language of the Nazi past in order to divide our nation. The recent rise in hate crimes and incidents across America, including those directed at the Jewish community, is an abomination. Our hearts ache for those killed and injured in Virginia and for the many victims of hate and inequality across America.
-- Danny Grossman, CEO of the San Francisco based Jewish Community Federation, and Rabbi Jim Brandt, CEO of the Jewish Federation of the East Bay.
San Francisco Interfaith Council Statement: SF Faith Leaders Stand United Against Hate in Charlottesville and Our Backyard
First and foremost, we offer our prayers for the victims and the families of the dead in Charlottesville, Virginia, and all who were traumatized by the hateful violence that ensued there.
Sometimes when horrific and deadly acts are perpetrated in the name of hate, such as our nation witnessed on August 12, 2017 in Charlottesville, we are tempted to limit those incidents to the context in which they occurred. Charlottesville is a place intimately identified with our nation's painful and divisive Civil War history, and it is easy to think that such an event could only happen in that region of the country. Sadly, what happened in Charlottesville is symptomatic of an unprecedented growth of organized hate in our nation that knows no geographic boundaries. We need look no further than the findings of a recent report published by the Southern Poverty Law Center to face the reality that 917 hate groups exist in the United States of America, 79 of which are found in California, and a significant number calling the Bay Area their home.
As statements and vigils decrying acts of hate and violence in Charlottesville flooded social and other media, a group calling itself "Patriot Prayer," actively petitioned to host back-to-back rallies in San Francisco's Crissy Field and Berkeley's Martin Luther King Park on August 26 and 27, respectively. The former is billed as "Patriot Prayer: Free Speech, Unity and Peace San Francisco," the latter, a "No to Marxism Rally."
As people of faith, we stand united to denounce those who use words such as "prayer," "unity" and "peace" to mask any agenda of hate, intolerance, and bigotry. In the days ahead, we will use the voices of faith communities - through prayer, the pulpit, and our communications networks - to educate and inform, and to fight racism, hatred, and bigotry wherever it may occur, particularly in our City of St. Francis. We will not step aside but will stand strong for our values of inclusivity, respect for all persons, and justice.
AIPAC: Statement on Charlottesville
Anti-Defamation League: ADL Condemns President Trump's Remarks
Carolina Jews for Justice: Statement on Racist Violence in Charlottesville
CJP and JCRC of Greater Boston: Statement on Violence and Bigotry in Charlottesville
Indianapolis Jewish Community Relations Council: Statement re: Charlottesville and Condemning Nazism & White Supremacy
Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington: Condemns Violence in Charlottesville
Jewish Community Relations Council of the Milwaukee Jewish Federation: Calls for United Response Against White Supremacists
Jewish Council on Public Affairs: JCPA Condemns White Supremacist Violence in Charlottesville
Jews for Racial and Economic Justice: Standing Against Racist Violence in Charlottesville
National Council of Jewish Women: Unity Against Hate Must Start at the Top
Rabbinical Council of America: The RCA Condemns Charlottesville Violence and Bigotry and Challenges Charlottesville Moral Equivalency
Rabbinical Assembly: Conservative Movement Statement on Violent Demonstrations in Charlottesville, VA
Republican Jewish Coalition: Statement by RJC National Chairman Senator Norm Coleman and RJC Executive Director Matt Brooks
United Jewish Federation: Statement on the Rally and Violence in Charlottesville, VA
Walter and Elise Haas Fund: Following Charlottesville
YMCA of San Francisco: No Place for Hate: A Message from our CEO
Thank you to JCPA and Jewish Social Justice Roundtable for gathering/sharing statements.
PHOTO: “Memorial for Heather Heyer, H. Jay Cullen, and Berke M.M. Bates,” Charlottesville, VA, by Evan Nesterak (2017).