Multicultural News

Jewish Center hosts antisemitism programs, shining light on growing issues

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Antisemitism, Jewish Community Center representatives says is a topic that needs to be talked about boldly and not swept under the rug. Recent pop-culture instances of antisemitism are helping expand the conversation.

Today marks nearly 85 years since the “Night of Broken Glass,” the first major act of violence inflicted on Jews. The Jewish Community Center representatives say that type of hate is seeing a resurgence. So, they are welcoming people to learn from that while hearing from two authors with writings around antisemitism.

Antisemitism is a hot topic, and controversy around rapper Kanye West and basketball player Kyrie Irving, Jewish community member say is bringing more attention to the long standing issue.

“Antisemitism, which is becoming so strong we felt that we wanted to open up to the community the opportunity to listen to and ask questions of authors who have written about two different perspectives of antisemitism,” said director of arts and education Lev Rothenberg.

He says for years they’ve used community programs supporting social justice, but in todays climate, they need to dig deeper.

“Unfortunately, in the last year it’s been the highest record of antisemitic incidents,” Rothenberg said.

It’s annual Ann Katz Festival of Books and Arts is shining a light directly on antisemitism. Bringing in two authors who’ve written on the topic and will share thoughts on how to make change.

“We’ve reached a point we’re just setting a good example is not enough we have to face it head on. Just like all forms of hatred have to be a faced head on,” Rothenberg said.

As we mark the anniversary of Kristallnacht, Night of Broken Glass, he said, it’s important to realize dangers nearly 85 years ago, and work so that it’s not repeated.

“There were hundreds of synagogues destroyed. Thousands of businesses and many people killed. And it was the beginning of what’s to come.”

Rothenberg said he hopes the author conversations shine a clearer light on the idea that there are new generations growing up with a resurgence of hate and the impact of that.