Education is key to helping stop antisemitism

April 3, 2022

Although I haven’t experienced a specific antisemitic event at East that stands out to me, there are definitely a few common phrases that can be heard circulating the school. People commonly say things like “oh, you do look Jewish” or “your nose doesn’t look Jewish”… and although I’ve learned not to take phrases like these too seriously, they do make me feel speechless for a moment.

I have friends who have shared antisemitic remarks made towards them- things like “get back in the oven” or “go back to hiding in the attic”–all of which are blatant references to the Holocaust.

People commonly say things like “oh, you do look Jewish” or “your nose doesn’t look Jewish”

— Emily Pober ('23)

Comments like these make everyone uncomfortable and are used more frequently towards Jews than people realize. I believe overall it just comes from a lack of knowledge that people have… and the tendency to take anger out on minority groups that can be easily targeted by using specific remarks that are undoubtedly going to offend anybody.

Antisemitic comments make Jewish youth feel targeted, reminding us of the denigration that our Jewish ancestors endured for generations. These comments are also clear reminders that society hasn’t changed, and they alarm us about how antisemitic ideology is rapidly spreading as time goes on.

If everyone was properly educated and more socially aware of the extent that their comments leave on people, there would be a better understanding of the history of antisemitic acts and the blatant disrespect which they emanate.

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