With confidence, pride and strength we will always raise our collective voice to ensure that “Never Again!” carries more weight than the shallow words of a mere slogan.
Action > Words
Americans Against Antisemitism was formally launched in 2019 as a grassroots, non-partisan organization in response to the re-emergence of virulent antisemitism. Particularly concerning was the recognition that in its current iteration, antisemitic attacks are not just coming from the far-right but seem to be coming more and more from the far-left as well.
It has become a daily occurrence to hear about differing forms of attacks and public humiliation with violent undertones, property defacement using swastikas, and other forms of antisemitic vandalism. New York City for example, long known as a bastion for American Jewry, is no longer immune from daily antisemitism. Our community is feeling stunned and abandoned because not only is it increasing in nature but the increase in violent attacks is being met with silence or platitudes from elected officials and an absolute refusal to deal with the antisemitism that is being committed by other minority groups. And these events are not limited to New York City alone, as we’ve seen antisemitism spread rapidly throughout the United States and, again, throughout Europe.
Although Jews account for less than 2% of the American population, they account for more than 60% of all hate crime victims targeted for their religion. Jewish students on university campuses across the country are being shunned, marginalized, intimidated and forced to play down their Jewish identity while having anti-Zionist (and antisemitic) ideologies practically forced upon them. Nearly a third of the American Jewish population now fears wearing Jewish symbols in public, while a quarter avoids Jewish events and institutions in fear of being targeted for violence (AJC survey).
In other words, European-style antisemitism has landed with a resounding boom in America. And we won’t be silent or passive about it, so it’s time for good people from all walks of life to wake up and react to the canary in the coal mine before it’s too late.
Dov Hikind, founder of Americans Against Antisemitism, served in the New York State Assembly for 36 years as an outspoken advocate for his constituency, battling discrimination, antisemitism, Holocaust denial, and human rights violations. Dov’s career began as an activist who fought for Jewish emigration from Russia before the Iron Curtain had fallen. As the son of Holocaust survivors, educating the public on Nazi atrocities and fighting against antisemites and racists so as to prevent the reoccurrence of genocide has remained his central mission.
Israel B. Bitton
Israel B. Bitton is an award-winning communications executive who has helped clients across many industries achieve their goals and reach broader global audiences. With his degree in history of philosophy and a penchant for researching and writing, Israel effectively combines his accumulated knowledge and skills, applying them to the study of antisemitism and the cause of countering the age-old phenomenon by authoring A Brief and Visual History of Antisemitism, our educational curriculum. He is also a guest lecturer for Project Witness, a Holocaust education initiative, on the subject of Nazi and new-age propaganda.
Inna Vernikov is the founding attorney of the Law Offices of Inna Vernikov, PLLC. She is a recipient of Jewish Week’s 36 Under 36 Award, the Women’s Committee Chair for Americans Against Antisemitism, and a Chairperson and Cadet at Legion Self Defense. Inna has been published in the Forward, Algemeiner, and IN TOUCH Weekly. Inna brings with her a great fiery passion for her people and an ability to get into the trenches to ensure people from all walks of life are engaged and motivated to act against antisemitism.
Mazal Barton is a school counselor with the department of education and a mother of two beautiful children. As a graduate of the Hunter College School of Social Work, Mazal was instrumental in demanding action on and being vocal about overt incidents of antisemitism within the school community. Mazal participated in The Kaleidoscope Project which documented the experiences of Jews of Sephardic and Mizrahi descent and was published in Tablet Magazine. A fervent advocate of the Jewish people and the state of Israel, Mazal is also passionate about empowering others to combat antisemitism.