This week, Robert Bowers allegedly carried out a vicious attack at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh during Shabbat services taking away the lives of 11 innocent worshipers. This deadly attack on the Jewish community came after the shooter proclaimed anti-Semitic slurs such as “All Jews must die” (“Harrowing accounts from Pittsburgh synagogue shooting; suspect due in court,” Oct. 29).
The rise of lone wolf hate crimes following divisive politics in our country is extremely alarming and arguably the gravest challenge we face today. Perhaps in this case the attack was not directly perpetrated by our leadership, but it is unequivocally clear that the seditious rhetoric President Donald Trump is proliferating has created an atmosphere that is influencing lone wolf attacks.
With great power comes great responsibility — responsibility that is being undermined as of late. The continuous divisive rhetoric and actions in our country like separating migrant children from parents, proposed travel bans and slashing the refugee cap to its lowest level in over 30 years have led to dangerous rippling effects. By no coincidence, these were the same things the shooter was searching before he carried out this violent attack.
And that’s a problem.
Jariullah Adnan, Severn
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