Jewish activists to hold anti-Trump vigils on the anniversary of civil rights workers’ brutal murder
A liberal Jewish political action group will mark the anniversary of the murder of three Civil Rights workers this month by holding anti-Trump vigils around the country, Haaretz reports.
The group, Bend the Arc-Jewish Action, will hold vigils on June 21, the anniversary of the murders of Andrew Goodman, Michael Schwerner and James Chaney in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Austin, Texas.
“It is an opportunity for us as the Jewish community to come out and demonstrate our horror at a possible Trump candidacy and to say we’re going to fight for the democracy that we so deeply believe in,” Bend the Arc CEO Stosh Cotler told JTA.
Goodman, Schwerner and Chaney were working on gaining voting rights for black people in the South when they were murdered by the Ku Klux Klan in 1964. Goodman and Schwerner were Jewish New Yorkers and Chaney was an African-American from Mississippi, where they were shot to death in a horrifically violent crime. Chaney was beaten before his death, and Goodman was buried while still alive.
The three men have become symbolic of the cooperation between the Jewish and black communities on civil rights causes, according to JTA.
Participants will carry yahrzeit, which are Jewish memorial candles, and signs reading #WeveSeenThisBefore.
Trump has been condemned by various Jewish organizations for his rhetoric — and the fact that white supremacists support him. Trump has attacked Muslims and immigrants while his supporters have also expressed anti-Semitic sentiments.
Says Cotler, “We are doing this both as commemoration and in memory of the values that they held and the legacy that they had fighting for democracy and fighting for a country that was free of political danger.”