It’s not nice to wake up during the Passover holiday to ugly graffiti:
Especially if it’s racist graffiti that says, ““Arabs, go home,” and “We want revenge.” It also had “Kahane was right,” Rabbi Meir Kahane, the founder of the outlawed Kach movement that called to expel Arabs from Israel and the Palestinian territories, who was assassinated in Manhattan in 2012.
Fortunately, a group of activists, part of our network of activists for tolerance that include residents, city council members and the Municipality, were quick to act. They called the Municipal hotline, and within a few hours the graffiti was cleaned.
But they didn’t stop there. They replaced the graffiti with other signs, full of love and acceptance.
Here’s an independent post of what happened. The incident was even reported in both the English and Hebrew YNET web sites, which are associated with the most widely read national daily newspaper, Yediot Acharonot.
We were doubly interested in this process, since we’ve been helping residents and activists along the Railway Park initiate community-building activities along the park almost since its opening. Coupled with this cooperative work to promote tolerance, we’re pretty proud of this network of activists, which acted quickly, independently, and effectively, with our support and encouragement.
Even Yael Freidson, the Ynet reporter who first reported the racist graffiti, tweeted, when she saw the final result, with a hashtag that says “these are things that make me happy”. Indeed, the tolerance activists of Jerusalem managed to make lemonade out of lemons. They demonstrated that Jerusalem has an efficient and sustainable network of tolerance!
— Yael Freidson (@YaelFreidson) April 13, 2017
Of course, the incident was posted on our Jerusalem Tolerance Facebook page:
Many thanks to the UJA-Federation of New York for its support of our efforts both with residents along the Railway Park and to promote tolerance throughout Jerusalem. Many thanks also go to the Jerusalem Foundation for their support of our work.