lake view

Apparent Anti-Semitic Graffiti Scrawled on Lake View Buildings

According to the Anti-Defamation League, anti-Semitic incidents in the Midwest have gone up by 84% since 2016

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Graffiti that appears to deliver a message of anti-Semitic hate has popped up on multiple buildings in Chicago's Lake View neighborhood, prompting concerns among the city's Jewish community and nearby residents.

A caricature many people may find offensive was painted on buildings at the following intersections: Belmont Avenue and Orchard Street, Roscoe Street and Broadway as well as at Melrose Street and Broadway.

"They were tags that kind depict a stereotypical derogatory Jewish man with a big nose, possibly horns, which are very stereotypical, and very, I guess you can say, racist," Madeline Isaacs, a Lake View East resident, explained.

Isaacs said she was disgusted, terrified and scared upon learning of the graffiti.

"...I think these past few weeks have definitely been scared to be Jewish," she said.

One of the buildings that was tagged sits steps away from a synagogue, Anshe Sholom B'Nail Israel Congregation.

"There’s a lot of tension right now, there have been a number of instances of Jewish people being assaulted in major American cities in the last two weeks," said synagogue Rabbi David Wolkenfeld.

According to a survey conducted by the Anti-Defamation League, anti-Semitic incidents in the Midwest have gone up by 84% since 2016 - an alarming number for the Jewish Federation of Chicago.

Dan Goldwin, executive director of public affairs for the Jewish United Fund/Jewish Federation of Chicago, said the organization is looking for ways to bring people together across races, religions and political divides.

"There’s enough that divides us," he said. "We need to find some things that unite us. What happened here a path a block from this synagogue is not going to help."

The incidents remain under investigation by the Anti-Defamation League.

The Chicago Police Department said only one police report has been filed.

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