Vandals Target Jewish Community at Passover

Two synagogues in Huntsville, Alabama were found spray-painted with swastikas and other anti-Semitic graffiti. Both vandalizations took place during Passover, one at Etz Chayim Conservative Synagogue of Huntsville on April 8 and one at Chabad of Huntsville the following night. A $2,000 reward has been offered for tips that could lead to an arrest. Huntsville Police Chief Mark McMurray announced a fundraising initiative to provide safety for the 9,500 Jewish people in the community with needed equipment and supplies, of which the first $30,000 raised would be matched by private donors, according to “One individual who is filled with hate in his heart and his action will not bring down an entire community to fear and to panic,” McMurray said. “Because of his actions, we are going to be above that. We are going to be stronger than that. We are going to be sure that we are doing more than ever before to combat this hate and this terror.”

You might figure that hate crimes would be nonexistent in the U.S. in recent weeks with essentially a nationwide quarantine enacted. Yet someone took this pandemic as a time to strike and bring terror to a large Jewish community. Unfortunately, anti-Semitism isn’t going away any time soon in the U.S. That fact is especially easy to understand when it happens during a pandemic. Fortunately, it seems in this case a hate crime has brought out the best of a community. With a reward for tips on an arrest and a fundraising initiative underway, Huntsville should be commended for bringing hope to the Jewish people in a difficult time.