Groups rally in support of Jewish communities across US
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Groups rally in support of Jewish communities across US

‘We have your back,‘ pledges Pennsylvania sheriff, as non-Jews slam countrywide anti-Semitism

Sue Surkes is The Times of Israel's environment reporter.

Signs, flowers and food delivered to the Asheville, North Carolina JCC by members of local churches on March 2, 2017, after the local community center received a bomb threat earlier in the week. (Courtesy/Tami Gross)
Signs, flowers and food delivered to the Asheville, North Carolina JCC by members of local churches on March 2, 2017, after the local community center received a bomb threat earlier in the week. (Courtesy/Tami Gross)

Meetings, vigils and demonstrations were staged in several towns across the United States on Monday to protest a wave of anti-Semitism seen to be plaguing the country since Donald Trump’s election to the presidency.

Since the beginning of the year, over 100 Jewish institutions across the US have received bomb threats and Jewish cemeteries in Missouri, Pennsylvania and New York have been vandalized. Last week, in Evansville, Indiana, a bullet was fired into the window of a synagogue classroom that was empty at the time.

In Las Vegas, Nevada, on Monday nearly 200 university students and Jewish community leaders staged a solidarity march through the city.

They were joined by representatives of university Greek organizations and faith-based groups, according to the Las Vegas Sun.

The Albany JCC closed briefly due to a bomb scare, January 18, 2017. (Screenshot from Twitter via JTA)
The Albany JCC closed briefly due to a bomb scare, January 18, 2017. (Screenshot from Twitter via JTA)

In Los Alamos, New Mexico, more than 100 people attended a candlelit vigil to show support for Jewish communities across the US, the Los Alamos Daily Post reported.

Scranton, Pennsylvania, Mayor Bill Courtright met with Jewish community representatives along with county Sheriff Mark McAndrew, senior police officers and city council members, the Scranton Times-Tribune reported.

Two JCCs elsewhere in the state were among 23 countrywide to receive bomb threats just a week ago.

US Jewish leaders meet with the FBI director James Comey to discuss the ongoing investigation of bomb threats to JCCs on March 3, 2017. (Courtesy/Jewish Community Centers of North America )
US Jewish leaders meet with the FBI director James Comey to discuss the ongoing investigation of bomb threats to JCCs on March 3, 2017. (Courtesy/Jewish Community Centers of North America )

“We have your back,” County Sheriff Mark McAndrew said, adding that his 102 deputies had never been better trained to handle acts of violence.

Scranton JCC director Dan Cardonick told the Times-Tribune that police upped their patrols in the area of the JCC without having been asked.

“We’re just appreciative of the response, given all the news nationally, and I didn’t even have to make a phone call,” he said.

In Columbus, Ohio, Jews and Muslims were among those attending an interfaith meeting at a local Islamic Center Monday to discuss the nationwide wave of Islamophobia, the ABC6 news site said.

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