November 9, 2022
November 8th and 9th are significant days of remembrance for us as residents of Butte county and as Jews. Four years ago on November 8th, the unthinkable happened with the Camp Fire in Paradise. It is important to pause and remember together. We recall the trauma we endured as a community. We realize that we still carry that trauma with us–in small ways and for some in very big and present ways. We pray for continued healing and the potential for positive transformation that can come out of devastation and loss.
As a Jewish community, we also remember Kristallnacht, a very dark time in our history. On November 9th, 1938, German Nazis began a brutal campaign to terrorize the Jewish people. It started with smashed windows, the breaking of glass, that damaged hundreds of synagogues, Jewish homes, and business. This is where the name Kristallnacht comes from, “The Night of Broken Glass.” Additionally, schools and graveyards were desecrated. In all, 30,000 Jews were deported to concentration camps, 7,500 Jewish businesses destroyed, 267 synagogues burned, and 91 Jews murdered. Historically we know that this event foreshadowed the unimaginable evil that culminated with the Holocaust.
Not only do we remember, but we must confront the dark reality that the same hatred that fueled these historic events still is with us today. Unfortunately, we felt this close to home this past week, on our front lawn, when the CBI sign was set on fire and vandalized with swastikas and SS thunderbolts. The need to rise together and create a strong force to counteract this, and all forms of hatred and intolerance, is urgent.
There is a rising wave of antisemitism we must confront. Aleinu–it is upon us! Achshav–the time is now! We must call out acts of antisemitism and anti Jewish microaggressions, in all their forms. At the same time, we must stand in solidarity with everyone who is vulnerable to hate crimes.
Thank you to all who have risen to support our community this past week. With your help, we have weathered this horrible incident, and grown stronger in the process. With many strong voices, we have spoken out sharply against antisemitism. Together we can make a difference.