We awoke this morning to the horrific news of the shooting deaths of at least ten and the injury of at least ten more during the celebration of the Lunar New Year in Monterey Park, California, a predominantly and historically Asian American community, with a sizable Latino and Hispanic population, too.
While no motivation has yet been determined for the massacre, we do not need one to feel deeply saddened for this community, or to once again acknowledge the deadly result of hate mixed with guns.
We know this tragedy comes amidst an increase in incidents of hate directed at Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders around the country. We have seen the images on the evening news of our fellow citizens beaten and bruised and shoved to the ground.
Our hearts reach out to the wounded and the bereaved, and to all who are living in fear. But we must do more. As we walk the streets of our own city, let us keep our eyes open to what is going on around us, and be prepared to assist if possible, and certainly to report. The Jewish people knows too well the experience of being targeted for violent attack.
Last week, on Martin Luther King Day, we reaffirmed our commitment to fighting all forms of bigotry and prejudice. There is no room for it in the world Dr. King hoped to create. May that world come soon.
Rabbi Joshua M. Davidson