Neighbours gather to show their support of the community near a rabbi's residence in Monsey, N.Y., Sunday, Dec. 29, 2019, following a stabbing Saturday night during a Hanukkah celebration. (AP Photo/Craig Ruttle)

Topics: Justice | Religion

American Jews report increasing incidents of anti-Semitism, mostly online: poll

More than 60 percent of American Jews said they experienced or heard anti-Semitic comments, slurs or threats, up from 54 percent a year earlier

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(RNS) — More than half of American Jews continue to experience or witness anti-Semitic incidents in the form of comments, slurs or threats according to a new poll released by the Anti-Defamation League on Wednesday (March 31).

The poll, conducted in January by YouGov, also reveals that nine percent of American Jews reported being physically attacked in the last five years.


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The poll is the second in a row conducted by YouGov for the ADL and it shows a slight uptick in anti-Semitic incidents, with 63 percent of respondents saying they had experienced or heard anti-Semitic comments, slurs or threats targeting others, up from 54 percent a year earlier.

Graphic courtesy of ADL

“In the aftermath of major anti-Semitic attacks in Pittsburgh, Poway, Jersey City and Monsey, American Jews are reporting that they feel less safe in the U.S. today than they were just a decade earlier,” said the ADL’s chief executive officer, Jonathan Greenblatt, referring to the fatal shooting and stabbing of Jews in those cities in 2018 and 2019.

In the past year, many of the anti-Semitic incidents took place online, with 36 percent saying they had experienced some form of online harassment, mostly on Facebook. Most Jews said they had been called offensive names, but 13 percent said they were physically threatened online. The poll showed the vast majority of Americans want online platforms to better address harassment and make it easier to report hateful content.

Jewish vulnerability, which had gone down in the decades following World War II is up dramatically, with 59 percent of Jewish Americans saying they feel less safe in the U.S. today than they were a decade ago.

And nearly half (49 percent) reported being afraid of a violent attack at a synagogue. Most synagogues in the U.S. beefed up security in the wake of the Pittsburgh massacre at the Tree of Life synagogue that killed 11 Jews.

The survey of more than 503 Jewish American adults over the age of 18 was conducted from Jan. 7-15, 2021 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.4 percent.

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  • says:

    We dont need to go to the US for anti-Semitism stories. There is much in the press right now about anti-Semitism at the University of Toronto. B’nai Brith has been at the forefront of exposing it. They report on the RSM or Revolutionary Student Movement a Marxist-Leninist-Maoist group active at the University of Toronto and other Canadian universities. Thus revealing that anti-Semitism is not only found on the so-called far right. It is found on the progressive and left elements of the political spectrum. Given this magazine is located in Toronto please report on anti-Semitism in one of the premier universities in Canada. Anti-Semitism is not the reserve only of the far right but also the progressive left of the political spectrum. As I understand UofT has not yet accepted the international definition of anti-Semitism. This ought also to cause the UCC to review its discriminatory support of BDS. I am unsure at this time whether they are reviewing this. Perhaps this magazine which is funded by the UCC might interview the churches staff who manage our policy on BDS.