In the wake of the supermarket attack in Buffalo, NY, the Jewish Federation of Northeastern Pennsylvania stands in solidarity with the families of the victims and with the people of Buffalo. The targeting and killing of people in the name of hate engendered by a divisive, dangerous, and discredited political agenda is unacceptable in our society. Democracy is based on a civil discussion of issues by the citizens, and a peaceful resolution of differences.
Attacking people because of their difference raises in us, as Jews, the specter of the darkest periods in our own history – from antisemitic attacks to the Holocaust. The alleged perpetrator may have acted alone, but those who spread the opinions and false information that inspired his deadly actions cannot escape their complicity.
Our community believes in a pluralistic society where each individual is valued regardless of ethnic or national origin and regardless of religious or political beliefs. As we lament the victims, we commend law enforcement for their fast response, which prevented a higher death toll. We also acknowledge those public officials who have so quickly and strongly condemned the gunman and those who think or act like him.
May the memories of those who lost their lives be a blessing, and may all Americans stand up for those beliefs and actions which heal our divisions and our wounds.