According to Herald News, over 30 headstones at a Jewish cemetery in Massachusetts were desecrated with swastikas and anti-Semitic language this week. The police became aware of the defaced headstones on Sunday when a maintenance worker at the cemetery reported it. The investigation is ongoing, and no arrests have been made.
On the gravestones, messages such as “heil Hitler” and “Hitler was right” were written in black marker. One of the gravestones belonged to a veteran. On one gravestone, above an engraved menorah were the words “Oy vey! This is MAGA country, which references Trump’s campaign slogan: “Make America Great Again.”
“If that was written on a gravestone, then that person is connecting the slogan of our current president with his own anti-Semitism,” said Rabbi Jacqueline Romm Satlow. The rabbi oversees the UMass Dartmouth Center For Jewish Culture.
On two gravestones, the phrase “Day of the Rope” was written, which references the novel, “The Turner Diaries” about a white supremacist army which overturns the U.S. government.
In Massachusetts, anti-Semitism is on the rise. The Anti-Defamation League reported 177 anti-Semitic incidents in 2017, which is a 42% increase from 2016.
Satlow said that it’s clear that “people who hate, for some reason, feel empowered more empowered than they did a few years ago.”