Donald Trump’s language during his rallies, the words that he uses to gin up his fans incite violence among some of those same people. He called himself a (white) nationalist, fully aware of the word’s implication. After all, he knows the former grand wizard of the Ku Klux Klan (KKK). Now, the inciter-in-chief wants to go get his photo op at the scene of the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, the scene of a mass shooting. Here is the Jewish community had to say.
Pittsburgh chapter leaders of a national Jewish organization, Bend the Arc, said that Trump was not welcome. To come, he must denounce white nationalism and end his “targeting” of minorities. Well over 16,000 people signed an open letter addressed to POTUS.
Trump called the shooting “pure evil,” The Washington Post reported.
‘All of America is in mourning over the mass murder of Jewish Americans at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh. We pray for those who perished and their loved ones, and our hearts go out to the brave police officers who sustained serious injuries…
‘…This evil Anti-Semitic attack is an assault on humanity. It will take all of us working together to extract the poison of Anti-Semitism from our world. We must unite to conquer hate.’
Bend the Arc consists of progressive Jews and deals primarily with social justice. After the deadliest attack on Jews in American history at Tree of Life Synagogue, 11 died and six more were wounded. The letter the leaders compiled had 16,533 signatures. They wrote:
‘For the past three years your words and your policies have emboldened a growing white nationalist movement. You yourself called the murderer evil, but yesterday’s violence is the direct culmination of your influence.
‘Our Jewish community is not the only group you have targeted. You have also deliberately undermined the safety of people of color, Muslims, LGBTQ people, and people with disabilities. Yesterday’s massacre is not the first act of terror you incited against a minority group in our country.’
A leader of Bend the Arc’s Pittsburgh chapter, Joshua Friedman, does not go to Tree of Life Synagogue. This was his response to the mass murder:
‘My immediate reaction was he is not welcome here. I immediately wrote to the rest of our steering committee that he is not welcome, we have to make that clear.’
The letter included four bold faced lines:
‘President Trump, you are not welcome in Pittsburgh until you fully denounce white nationalism…President Trump, you are not welcome in Pittsburgh until you stop targeting and endangering all minorities…President Trump, you are not welcome in Pittsburgh until you cease your assault on immigrants and refugees…President Trump, you are not welcome in Pittsburgh until you commit yourself to compassionate, democratic policies that recognize the dignity of all of us.’
Friedman read the letter along with 10 other leaders of his organization while he was attending a vigil at the White House. Spontaneously, the crowd read these same words aloud. As a result, Friedman said he felt “powerful” and “energized:’
‘People are on board. People are hearing the words. People understand why we need do this.’
Featured image is a screenshot via YouTube.