In October, Hamas launched an attack on Israel that killed 1,300 people and kidnapped 250 hostages. Israel launched a retaliatory strike campaign into the Gaza Strip to destroy Hamas and rescue its citizens. Around the world, countries saw protests against Israel’s retaliation and for it pop up. Here in Canada and around the province, news has been highlighted with Pro-Palestinian organizations marching along overpasses, at city halls and interrupting public gatherings.

Along with those protests, there have been reports of anti-semitic rhetoric used by the protestors. Reports of Jewish businesses being targeted and vandalized, and even violence towards people. In Vaughan, two individuals were targeted with violence, for no other reason than that they were Jewish. While peaceful expression and protest for opinions that one may find objectionable is protected by the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, it is not an excuse to explicitly target businesses or people on the basis that they are Jewish. Such behaviour can only be described as one thing: Anti-Semitism.

As more and more anti-semitic actions have been reported we thought it would be important to talk about this dangerous rise in Canadian politics. We wanted to discuss the anti-semitism we are seeing in our streets. We do not dive into the Middle East’s issues, mostly as that is not our beat and is not our experience. However, a community in our region, province and country is feeling isolated and alone. That is something we can talk about. To do so, we reached out to the Hamilton Jewish Federation and invited Jazmyn Rymberg to discuss this rising trend, and what can be done about it.

Links to the Federation’s website are here:

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Nicholas Paul: sound editing.

The Quadrafonics: fantastic opening and closing tunes!