Just down the road from where Leo Frank was lynched, someone painted six large swastikas on neighborhood fences in East Cobb Friday.
The Anti-Defamation League and Temple Kol Emeth, close to where the swastikas were painted, immediately planned a community event at the site to respond to and condemn the vandalism. But due to scheduling complications, the community response scheduled for today will not take place, according to a media advisory from the two organizations.
The swastikas were reportedly located outside a residential neighborhood close to the intersection of Holly Springs and Post Oak Tritt roads near the former location of the Marcus JCC’s Shirley Blumenthal Park in Marietta.
The “interfaith unified response to an act of vandalism in the form of swastikas found in Cobb County” originally was scheduled for noon and then was rescheduled to early evening before being postponed with no further date indicated as of Monday morning.
Larry Sernovitz, the new senior rabbi at Temple Kol Emeth, and Allison Padilla-Goodman, vice president of ADL’s Southern division, were to co-host “a community gathering featuring interfaith partners from across the community to stand up against hatred together,” according to a press release Sunday afternoon.
“In the midst of a broken and challenged world, we must stand up to acts of hatred, bigotry and discrimination and say that in our world there is no place for hate,” Rabbi Sernovitz said in the press release. “The antidote to hatred is unity and hope, and we will stand together to show the unity of our community.”
Padilla-Goodman added, “We are living in times of alarming hatred, bigotry and antisemitism. Last year, ADL documented our largest number ever of antisemitic incidents, including a 19% increase in incidents of antisemitic vandalism from the previous year. Each of these incidents leave entire communities feeling targeted, fearful, and alone.”
The ADL was formed in 1913 in response to incidents such as the Frank case and to fight anti-Semitism and bigotry.
Rabbi Daniel Dorsch of nearby Congregation Etz Chaim said he was “deeply saddened by this senseless act of vandalism and what it represents. However, I also know that one isolated act does not speak for the overwhelming majority of our neighbors and friends in East Cobb who remain supportive of our greater Jewish community,” said Dorsch, who had planned to attend the community event.
“In this era of coronavirus, the bonds that connect East Cobb’s Jewish community and our neighbors are vital. We are all in this together.”
Check back with the AJT for more details coming soon.