Since the beginning of 2017, a total of 100 bomb threats have been called into Jewish community centers and day schools across the country. The threats have come in waves, CNN reports, including on Jan. 9, Jan. 18, Jan. 31, Feb. 20, and Feb. 27. On Monday alone, 31 threats were called into 23 schools and community centers.
The JCC Association of North America reports that the threats have targeted 81 different locations in 33 states and two Canadian provinces in all. Concerned parents are withdrawing their children from schools out of fear, with photos of cribs being wheeled out during emergency evacuations making the rounds on social media. An unnamed JCC CEO in the Northeast told CNN that after 60-plus years in business without a single threat, his center has recieved three in 2017. "It's alarming," said the CEO, who wished to remain nameless out of security concerns.
The latest wave of threats comes after two Jewish cemeteries were vandalized earlier this month, with dozens of headstones toppled at the Chesed Shel Emeth Cemetery in Missouri and then a week later at Mount Carmel Jewish Cemetery in Philadelphia. Muslim-American activists raised thousands of dollars in just a few hours to repair the damage at Chesed Shel Emeth Cemetery, while Vice President Mike Pence made an unannounced visit there in the days after the incident. "There is no place in America for hatred, prejudice, or actions of violence, or anti-Semitism," Pence said.
The FBI and the Department of Justice have launched investigations, and President Trump has promised this "horrible" anti-Semitism is "going to stop."