Thousands of protesters have marched across New York in a display of solidarity with the Jewish community amid a recent spate of violent anti-Semitic attacks and other incidents in the Tri-State area.
Billed as the ‘No Hate, No Fear Solidarity March’, the event began at 11am in lower Manhattan’s Foley Square on Sunday, and continued across the Brooklyn Bridge before rounding out the march in the borough’s Cadman Plaza.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Sunday morning that more than 10,000 people had gathered to take part in the march. US Senator Chuck Schumer, congressional freshman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and New York Mayor Bill De Blasio also attended the event alongside Cuomo.
‘I am heartened to see this amazing show of support and solidarity.’ Cuomo told the exuberant crowd. ‘Over 10,000 people have shown up to show support and love for the Jewish community, and that’s New York at her best.
‘Discrimination, racism and antisemitism is repugnant to every value New Yorkers hold dear and every value this country represents,’ Cuomo continued. ‘Anti-Semitism is anti-American and we have to remember that.’
The rally comes just one week after the brutal December 28 stabbing attack inside a Rabbi’s home during Hanukkah celebrations, in Monsey, New York, which left five people hospitalized with serious injuries.
Just weeks prior, a targeted shooting spree at a kosher deli in Jersey City also left three civilians and a police officer dead.
Organized by UJA-Federation of New York, Jewish Community Relations Council of New York, Anti Defamation League-New York, AJC-NY, and the New York Board of Rabbis, the aim of the procession is to bring together public figures, civic and nonprofit leaders, as well as a number of faith-based organizations to stand united in against hatred of any kind in New York City.
‘There are certain moments where we are obligated to stand up together,’ said Rabbi Rick Jacobs, the head of the Reform movement. ‘There’s a lot that still divides us. But today we stand as one.’
Evan Bernstein, the ADL’s regional director, echoed: ‘What we are witnessing these weeks is a normalization of anti-Semitism in the New York-New Jersey region not seen in recent history.
‘The fact that we are witnessing almost daily anti-Semitic incidents in our region shows that we are facing a crisis that can only be addressed through solidarity across our communities.’
Chuck Schumer evoked lessons from the Holocaust while speaking to fellow marchers, telling the crowd: ‘When people of good will saw anti-Semitism in Germany in the 20s and 30s, they did not do enough,’ he said. ‘We are standing strong.’
Holocaust survivor and retired lawyer Franz Leichter, 89, who fled from Austria during World War II also attended the event.
‘I think we must stand up,’ Leicheter, who now lives on the Upper East Side told the NY Daily News. ‘I think the good citizens are the majority and overwhelm the minority and they must express themselves.’
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Source: Daily Mail