On Tuesday, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis spoke at a town hall organized by the Jewish Federations of Florida about anti-semitism. DeSantis touted an education bill he signed after this year’s legislative session requiring schools to teach about the Holocaust.
DeSantis also took time to address the increase of anti-Semitic attacks.
“If you look back 20 years ago, anti-Semitism is worse today than it was then,” DeSantis said in his remarks. “We’ve seen some of this nasty stuff in Florida. I think we all just need to speak with one voice and say that this is not something that’s going to be tolerated here.”
Earlier this year amid dual protests by Pro-Palestinian and pro-Israel groups in Boca Raton, pro-Palestinian protestors painted “Hitler was right” on one of their vehicles draped in a Palestinian flag.
We rally for peace and this van filled with hate, call for genocide and threats kept circling. Thank you to our local law enforcement for keeping us safe. Hard to believe in the heart of Boca Raton if didn’t see it myself. pic.twitter.com/SuuOBEtumd
— Rabbi Efrem Goldberg (@RabbiGoldberg) May 12, 2021
Back in 2019, Florida reported 91 anti-Semitic incidents, making it 6th in the country in terms of number of incidents.
“Anti-Semitism is akin to how we would treat racism. It has no place in our academic institutions,” DeSantis said. “We also believe that it’s very important that we have very strong Holocaust education… that is telling the accurate story. We cannot have people try to whitewash the Holocaust.”
Numerous Jewish groups attended the town hall where DeSantis reminded the audience he is prioritizing the relationship between Florida and Israel.
“We all need to speak with one voice and say that Anti-Semitism is not something that’s going to be tolerated,” said DeSantis. “We are going to stand with our Jewish brothers and sisters and we are absolutely going to stand strong in support of the Florida-Israel relationship. The Legislature and I have worked really hard on a lot of great legislation over the past few years on issues including Holocaust education, anti-BDS legislation, security for synagogues and Jewish day schools, and so much more.”
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