At a time when our country is experiencing an alarming rise in antisemitism, the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum applauds the actions of the Biden-Harris Administration to develop the first-ever national strategy for fighting this scourge. This plan details a comprehensive U.S. government-led effort to fight antisemitism.
One only has to look at the news to see that our country is facing a shocking increase in antisemitic hate crimes, targeted violence, and acts of harassment – including online abuse. American Jews account for 2.4% of the U.S. population, but they are the victims of 63% of reported religiously motivated hate crimes, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation. In 2022, the Anti-Defamation League recorded the highest number of antisemitic incidents in the U.S. since they began tracking incidents nearly 45 years ago.
Antisemitism, often referred to as the world’s longest hatred, is deep-rooted and has existed for thousands of years. It manifests as anti-Judaism, racial antisemitism, anti-Jewish conspiracy theories, and denying the Jewish people their right to self-determination. It is complex. That is why the Museum offers educational programs to students and has recently implemented a new professional training program to teach about its history, ramifications, and continuing presence.
Because of the complexity of antisemitism, there is no panacea. It would have been impossible for the first-ever national strategy to eradicate it, but this plan is a much-needed step in the right direction. We commend the government for their ongoing efforts to make this a national priority. This strategy advances a whole-of-society approach to countering antisemitism, resting on four pillars:
1. Increase awareness and understanding of antisemitism, including its threat to America, and broaden appreciation of Jewish American heritage.
2. Improve safety and security for Jewish communities.
3. Reverse the normalization of antisemitism and counter antisemitic discrimination.
4. Build cross-community solidarity and collective action to counter hate.
We invite you to read The U.S. National Strategy to Counter Antisemitism report and learn how you can take steps in your community to counter antisemitism and hate.
– Mary Pat Higgins, President and CEO
– Lee Michaels, Board Chair