March 7, 2017
By Steven Wishnia and Neal Tepel
Philadelphia, PA - Two city unions say they will help repair a vandalized Jewish cemetery for free. The Philadelphia Building and Construction Trades Council said Feb. 27 that it would replace damaged headstones at the Mount Carmel Cemetery in the city’s northeast, and re-sod and clean the grounds.
Meanwhile, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Union Local 98 offered to install additional lighting and security cameras. More than 100 gravestones—and by some counts, more than 450—were knocked over or broken on the night of Feb. 25-26. Trades Council head John Dougherty called it a “cowardly act of anti-Semitism that cannot be tolerated.” The destruction came during a week where dozens of Jewish community centers received bomb threats, and a week after similar vandalism at a Jewish cemetery in St. Louis. President Donald Trump told state attorney generals Feb. 28 that such attacks were “reprehensible”—but, according to Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, also said they could be “reverse” attacks intended “to make others look bad.” Read more