Antisemitic crimes in L.A. increased nearly 60% in 2021

Antisemitic hate crimes in Los Angeles,
 Jan. 1-June 30, 2018-2021

Antisemitic violence has risen precipitously in Los Angeles, with an increase of almost 60% over last year.

The data-focused local news resource Crosstown, based at the USC Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism, cited LAPD statistics showing 43 reported hate crimes against Jews in the first six months of 2021.

That marked a 59.2% increase over the same period in 2020, and twice as much as in 2018.

The spike corresponded with a general rise in reported hate crimes, with the LAPD recording 62 in April — the highest for a single month in a decade. In total, 295 hate crimes were reported for the first half of 2021.

Jews constituted the third-largest victim group, with 14.6% of all hate crimes being antisemitic. Slightly over 5% of the city’s population is Jewish.

Just over a quarter of attacks, the largest share, were recorded as “anti-Black or African American,” with 16.3% of incidents targeting Hispanics, the second largest category.

In addition, a special report released in June by California’s attorney general showed a 107% rise in hate crimes against Asians in 2020, likely motivated by stereotypes and racism resulting from the coronavirus pandemic.

Besides the general trend, Los Angeles was not immune to the national rise in antisemitic hate crimes that took place during and after Israel’s 11-day conflict with Hamas in May. In one highly publicized incident, members of a convoy waving Palestinian flags was filmed attacking Jewish diners at a Beverly Grove restaurant.

Rabbi Yonah Bookstein, of the Pico Shul synagogue, told Crosstown that incidents of vandalism in the past have not been seen as part of a trend, but “because of the increase in hate crimes, now everyone is just on edge.”

While he noted that “the good news is that crimes against Jews are investigated and taken seriously,” Bookstein asked, “who wants to be in a situation where we’re always thanking the police for arresting the guys killing us?”

Ariella Loewenstein, deputy regional manager at the Anti-Defamation League Los Angeles, agreed that the national atmosphere has grown increasingly toxic, saying, “Over the last four years, and leading into 2021, we have seen an emboldenment of extremists. A central part of conspiratorial views that fuel extremist violence is antisemitism.”

Source: algemeiner