The Antisemitic Graffiti at Miriam’s Restaurant Should Spur All of Us to Act

When the members of my family left Eastern Europe for America more than a century ago, they hoped that the antisemitism that forced them out of their homelands would not follow them.

They were wrong.

Last week, Miriam’s Restaurant, located on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, was tagged via graffiti with the following line “Fuck Jews“.

As of Friday, the perpetrator(s) remain at large.

The message is clear. We are not welcome in New York City.

To say that I am scared shitless is an understatement. I was born and raised in NYC, as was most of my family. I shouldn’t be afraid to express who I am without fear of being attacked, but I am.
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Whoever did this wants us to be afraid. They want us to cower in the corner, watching every shadow that goes by with heart-pounding anxiety.

I have every confidence that officials will do everything in their power to find whoever did this and make them pay. I also know that I will always be proud to be Jewish, regardless of someone else’s opinion.

What I love about this city is how colorful it is. We have everyone from everywhere. Our diversity makes us beautiful and powerful. But until we face this monster head-on, it will continue to nip at our heels.

What The F*ck Don’t They Understand About Staying at Home?

In a time of crisis, logic often secedes into emotion and chaos. While this secession is completely and understandably normal, it can lead to actions that would not otherwise be taken.

As many of my regular readers know, I live in New York City. Anyone who does not have their head in the sand is aware that NYC is one of the Covid-19 hot spots in the United States. Since March, those of us who live in the city have heard the same three words countless time: stay at home.

Unfortunately, there are some fools who are putting their lives and the lives of others at risk. Over the last few days, there were three incidents in which I have to question if the participants truly understand what we are going through.

  • Incident #1: In Bedford-Stuyvesant, a Yeshiva (religious school for Orthodox and Ultra-Orthodox Jews) was still open in spite of the order from the city to close all schools. Neighbors contacted the local police precinct when they saw students and teachers exiting the building. I am all for education and religious instruction (especially from my coreligionists), but would it hurt to use a little common sense?
  • Incident #2: A party in Canarsie was broken up by police. After two months of staying home nearly 24/7, I am more than eager to see another set of four walls and my friends. However, there is a little thing going around called Covid-19. This virus attacks and kills its hosts indiscriminately. That last thing I would ever want on my conscious is knowing that I may have been the one to give Covid-19 to someone else.
  • Incident #3: The weather this past Saturday was perfect. Last year at this time, I would have gone out for a drink without question. But not this year. According to news reports, several bars on the Upper West Side had a full house. Some patrons hung out on the sidewalk, unable to find seats inside. I am all for meeting my friends at a bar to relax after a long week, but not with the threat of Covid-19 hanging above us.

What the f*ck don’t they understand about staying at home?

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