The shooting at Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh is a sad and frightening reminder that the forces of anti-Semitism and hate are alive and threatening. Too many incidents like this have happened in Europe and other parts of the world in recent times. It is clear that the significant increase in antisemitic incidents all over our country—including here on Long Island—are not merely harmless acts of a lunatic fringe, and that appropriate and strong responses are called for. With neo-Nazism and associated movements arising and influencing people in the United States and abroad, concrete steps must be taken to ensure that adequate security measures are in place at all Jewish schools, synagogues, cultural centers and other institutions.
Equally important, centers of learning like the Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center of Nassau County must be provided the resources to step up their educational efforts to teach youngsters and adults the long and terrible history of anti-Semitism and other forms of hate, and to instill respect and acceptance for people of all backgrounds in the communities in which we live.
Our prayers, and heartfelt condolences go out to the victims and families of today’s tragic event in Pittsburgh.