According to the Anti-Defamation League’s Annual Audit of Anti-Semitic Incidents within the United States, a total of 1,080 anti-Semitic occurrences were reported in 2011, which represents a 13 percent decrease from 2010, when 1,239 anti-Semitic events took place in the US. Thus, the Anti-Defamation League asserted that the level of anti-semitism in the US is at its lowest within the past two decades.

Abraham Foxman, ADL national director, was reported as telling Yedioth Achronot, “It is encouraging that over the past five or six years we have seen a consistent decline in the number of anti-Semitic incidents across the country and that the numbers are now at a historic low. To the extent that these incidents serve as a barometer, the decline shows that we have made progress as a society in confronting anti-Semitism and pushing it to the far fringes, making expressions of anti-Jewish hatred unacceptable.”

The Times of Israel, however, reported a rise in the number of cases of Jewish students being bullied within the US because of their Jewish heritage in 2011. “ADL continues to receive a distressing number of complaints about children, adolescents and teenagers engaging in anti-Semitic behavior, both on and off school grounds,” ADL National Chair Robert G. Sugarman told the Huffington Post. Sugerman called for “a sustained emphasis on Holocaust and diversity education in schools” in order to counter this.

For example, in 2011, the ADL report cited that a Jewish teenager in Florida was told by a classmate, “I am a Nazi, you are a stupid Jew, I am going to cut you into pieces, feed it to the dog, and kill the dog to put it out of its misery.” The ADL report claims that another incident took place in California, where a Jewish middle school student was referred to as a “stupid Jew” and “dirty Jew” by classmates, who then proceeded to state, “burn all the Jews” and declared that they would commemorate Hitler’s birthday by burning down this Jewish students house. And in Connecticut, the ADL report asserted that an elementary school student told a Jewish classmate, “Your family deserves to be killed. I hate Jewish people.”

The ADL report also demonstrates that anti-semitism on college campuses remains to be an issue within the American Jewish community. For example, in Michigan, on the anniversary of Kristallnacht, students ran through the halls of a university dormitory, gave Nazi salutes, yelled out “Hail Hitler,” and then proceeded to break the dorm window of a Jewish student.

In total, the ADL report claimed that in 2011, 19 Jews were physically assaulted by anti-Semites, 731 Jews living in the US were victims of anti-Semitic threats and harassment, and there were 330 incidents of anti-Semitic vandalism. The Anti-Defamation League’s Annual Audit “identifies both criminal and non-criminal acts of harassment and intimidation, including distribution of hate propaganda, threats and slurs. Compiled using official crime statistics, as well as information provided by victims, law enforcement officers and community leaders and evaluated by ADL’s professional staff, the Audit provides an annual snapshot of one specific aspect of a nationwide problem while identifying possible trends or changes in the types of activity reported.”

Reported by: Rachel Avraham for United With Israel

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