N.O. City Council issue statements on NJC graffiti incident

The New Orleans City Council issued a statement late his afternoon, stating the Council is” extremely troubled by the anti-Semitic graffiti at the Northshore Jewish Congregation in Mandeville this week.”

The statement added:  “We condemn this act of anti-Semitism and hope the perpetrators will be brought to justice soon. When this kind of hate is displayed at a place of worship, everyone should take it seriously. We are pleased that the Mandeville Police Department is doing just that by opening an investigation and consulting with the FBI. We stand with the Northshore Jewish Congregation and the Anti-Defamation League and strongly condemn these acts.

All seven of the Council members issued individual statements, beginning with the president and vice president, who are at-large members.

Council president Jason Williams said:  “The growing expressions of hate through our country are disheartening and alarming. I stand with this congregation and the Jewish community in lifting up the freedom of religion and religious practice in the face of violence.”

Council vice president Helena Moreno said:  “New Orleans is a beacon of light that welcomes all as they are and we must spread this gospel of good throughout the region. I stand with New Orleanians to condemn this hateful act and offer our city’s support to lift up our neighbors across the lake.

District Councilmembers continued. District “A” Councilmember Joseph I. Giarrusso III, who is Jewish, said:  “The timing of this act is particularly hateful as the Jewish community prepares to celebrate Rosh Hashana this weekend. My hope for the new year is that people of all faiths will find love and tolerance in their hearts for every one of their neighbors.”

District “B” Councilmember Jay H. Banks added: “Hatred, bigotry, and the devaluation of human life is, unfortunately, being legitimized and people are feeling empowered to spew this kind of venom. It’s wrong, and I hope that the adults in whatever rooms they are in stand up and say something.”

District “C” Councilmember Kristin Gisleson Palmer’s statement was: “I stand with my fellow councilmembers in condemning this hateful act in the strongest possible terms. I commend the Mandeville Police Department for swiftly launching an investigation. We will continue resisting hate in all of its forms and believe that the goodness of our communities will prevail.”

District “D” Councilmember Jared Brossett added:  “The actions of those responsible for this despicable display of anti-Semitism should not be tolerated. We have come too far, and we must continue to move forward together in our fight against all forms of hatred and prejudice. Today, we stand with our Jewish brothers and sisters to assure them that this horrific act by a select few, in no way represents the greater New Orleans area.”

Finally, District “E” Councilmember Cyndi Nguyen said:  “In today’s age there is no room for or reason to defame any institution. It is particularly offensive as we approach this month the Jewish High Holy Days of Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur. In our area, we pride ourselves on our diversity and inclusion, and we find this act of anti-Semitism inexcusable and offensive.”

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