Cops for Rosh Hashanah

September 29, 2008

On occasion, living in a Jewish neighborhood makes for some interesting observations. The local synagogue (calling itself a temple, thus, according to Wikipedia, giving the hint that it's a conservative congregation) seemed to be packed tonight, judging by the amount of cars parked around it, in observance of the Jewish holiday Rosh Hashanah.

In front of it: Two Pittsburgh cops, observing the passers-by.

I wonder why? Is the social climate here particularly hostile against Jewish citizens? That was not my impression, so far. But possibly, it's similar to the presence of policemen that I saw in front of the New Synagogue in Berlin a while ago (hey, at least the ones in Pittsburgh don't carry automatic guns). While today's German society as a whole is not prone to antisemitic tendencies, just in case some douche nozzle has a strong form of historic ignorance, there is protection in place anyway.

Come to think of it, I recently saw apparently anti-judaistic Christian missionaries quite obtrusively trying to convert the local Jews to Christianity, by walking around on the main street with transparents and forcing flyers onto innocent bystanders. (Interestingly, their targeting specifically orthodox jews for their evangelization efforts goes into the same--heavily criticized--direction of Pope Benedict's recent change to the Catholic Good Friday Prayer for the Jews, though I doubt these missionaries were Catholic. But I am digressing).

Anyway, sad if they need the police to keep such people off their backs.

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