Op-Ed: When Will Mayor Deblasio Back Up His Talk With Action?

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New York Mayor Bill de Blasio (Seth Wenig/AP Photo)

NEW YORK (VINnews) — The attacks on Jews on the streets of New York do not seem to be slowing down. In fact, the opposite is true.

Since the beginning of Chanukah alone, there have been at least 5 different attacks on Jews in New York City.

In the first incident, a 65-year-old Jewish man was standing on East 41st Street between 2nd and 3rd Ave, when he was suddenly approached by a man who yelled expletives at him. When he looked up, he was punched in the face and fell to the ground. His attacker continued to pummel him on his face and torso as he lay on the ground.

The second incident occured on Monday as well. Williamsburg Shomrim and NYPD were called after 2 Jewish children were attacked in front of 99 Wilson Street.

In the third incident, a Jewish man was walking on Kingston Ave in Crown Heights on Tuesday morning, at approximately 2 AM. As he was walking, he was approached by a gang of black youths who proceeded to yell anti-Semitic slurs at him. When he took out his cellphone to film the incident, one of the youths threw his drink at him.

The fourth incident took place in Crown Heights as well. A Jewish man was walking on Union Street from Albany Ave towards Kingston Ave, when he noticed that he was being followed by a group of 8 teenagers. As the victim turned off Kingston Ave, the teens closed the distance and accosted him. One of the teens hit the victim in the back of the head, knocking him down to the ground.

In yet a fifth incident, a man was attacked Wednesday morning in Boro Park, on 13th Ave near 48th Street. The victim was walking down the street, when he was approached out of the blue by a man who promptly punched him. There were no words exchanged before the assault.

These attacks are in addition to the multitude of anti-Semitic attacks on Jews in New York City that occurred over the last few months.

In the majority of these incidents, Mayor Deblasio’s policy has proved to be consistent: send out a tweet (only sometimes). Arrest the perpetrators. Release them a few hours later back onto the streets.

The absurdity of this approach is obvious. The mayor cannot claim to be serious about eliminating anti-Semitic attacks in the city, while at the same time refusing to keep the perpetrators of these very crimes off the streets.

“We need @NYCMayor to step up and declare a STATE OF EMERGENCY in NYC!” tweeted Dov Hikind on Wednesday. “Enough with the statements, tweets, press conferences, we need real action now. We need LEADERSHIP.”

Indeed the mayor has been proven to use Twitter as his preferred method of purporting to care about attacks on the Jewish community. In fact, tweeting about the recent string of anti-Semitic attacks has been the only action we’ve seen the mayor take so far.

“It’s not enough to condemn anti-Semitism — we have to confront it,” tweeted the mayor on Wednesday afternoon. “The despicable crimes committed against our Jewish community over the last 24 hours are an attack on ALL New Yorkers. The NYPD is actively investigating all of them and will bring the perpetrators to justice.”

The mayor’s words are strong ones. The community would be applauding his leadership, were he not to have a reputation of being all talk and zero action.

To the mayor, the community can only say this.

We are watching you.

We will remember you in one of two ways. It will either be the man who was courageous in leadership and kept us safe. Or it will be the man who failed to do the job he was elected to do.

We pray you make the right decision.


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