The most recent example of anti-Semitism in America hit very close to home when 59 (not 30 as first reported)
gravestones at the Hebrew Cemetery in Fall River were vandalized. They were covered with Nazi symbols and defaced with the most horrific version of hate. It hits close to home not only because it is 12 miles away from our office here in New Bedford, but because these are the graves of family members of people we see every day -- people we work and study and pray with every week. And it is different because of that.
I offer our support to those who were personally hurt by these bigots and offer our sympathy as we stand together, remaining united. I trust that law enforcement will find those responsible and that they will be punished. Our Federation has always been focused on education. We were reminded again this week just how much more work on that front we have to do.
I want to use this opportunity to ask all of you to join us on May 5th for our annual Yom HaShoah memorial service at the Holocaust Monument in Buttonwood Park. Let us show our strength in numbers as we remember the past and educate (and when necessary combat) those who have not learned from it.
We understand that a community cleanup event is planned for next week. Details are not currently available. Check The Herald News
in Fall River for more information as it becomes available.
I visited the cemetery earlier this afternoon and ran into reporter Kim Kalunian from Providence's Channel 12. I spoke to her and learned that she had talked to BCC Holocaust Center director Ron Weisberger before me. It's possible that the piece will run on the 5:30 news tonight. Check it out.