Shalom Life | October 17, 2015

Anti-Semitic Vandals Strike Home In Philadelphia

The Raker family awoke this week to discover the hateful words “Move Jew” painted on their garage door

By: Caitlin Marceau

Published: December 30th, 2014 in News » World

Anti-Semitic Vandals Strike Home In Philadelphia

Photo: Vandalism in Philadelphia

Credit: Forward


Earlier this week, a father and daughter in Philadelphia became the targets of anti-Semitism. The pair, who are part of the greater Yardley-Marketfield community, woke up one morning to find the hateful words “Move Jew” spraypainted onto their garage door. The community, stunned by this shallow act of racism, has rallied behind Michael and Samantha Raker to show their support, and to denounce acts of intolerance in their community.

A press conference was organised by State Rep. Steve Santarsiero to show that this type of intolerance won’t be taken lightly in the township. During the press conference, as reported by Bucks Local News, Samantha described the incident as both “heartbreaking” and “upsetting.”

“It’s ironic that this season of light and hope that we are here today to address an act of hate,” said Santarsiero. “It is appropriate that we come together and say in a loud voice that there is no place for hate in this place. We will not be silent. We will speak out… By our Constitution, it is appropriate that we have people here today of all faiths, backgrounds and community leaders to let everyone in our area know that this is unacceptable. Today, the focus of our gathering is to speak with one voice that we are a community of tolerance, a community of love, a community of caring and that this awful act is not welcome and will not be tolerated.”

During the press conference the Raker family was, in addition to support from local officials, joined by over 40 members of the local religious community. Speakers who attended included several Rabbis from the surrounding Philadelphia area, including Rabbi Josh Gruenberg of the Beth El Congregation, Sister Julia Lanigan (the president of Grey Nuns of the Sacred Heart), and Lee Noor Phillips (the assistant to the outreach director of the Zubaida Foundation).

According to Rabbi Gruenberg, “Things like this cannot be tolerated. Incidents like this come from a lack of education.”

Currently the incident of vandalism, and hate, is under investigation by the Lower Marketfield Police Department.

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