As we await a fuller account of what happened at an off-campus, high school party with students reportedly from the Newport-Mesa Unified School District, where cups were formed into a swastika surrounded by students engaged in a Nazi salute, I want to express my condemnation of any and all anti-Semitic acts, and again emphasize my solidarity with the Jewish community in Orange County and elsewhere.
This is a personal matter for me. My folks, ages 91 and 88, suffered in their teenage years as the Nazi blitzkrieg conquered our native Holland in 1940. In 1944-45, they and all Dutch people suffered as the Nazis, their evil nearing defeat, imposed a famine in Holland just before it was liberated by the Allies. My wife is also of partial Jewish ancestry.
I also have long worked with local Jewish friends and groups to promote tolerance and fight hate. This also sparked in me an interest in California Jewish history, of which numerous volumes now are in my personal library. These books show the importance of the Jewish contributions to our community and of fighting anti-Semitism at all levels.
I have been in communication with Newport-Mesa Unified School District Trustees Charlene Metoyer and Martha Fluor, as well as Executive Director of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, Rabbi Meyer May and believe a response that seeks to educate these students on the real evils of Nazism and the Holocaust is an appropriate resolution to what was likely a poor and ill-informed high school gag. With that, it is my understanding that Irvine Valley College is hosting an event next Monday evening and the community is invited to attend. Additionally, the Simon Wiesenthal Center is offering these students free admission to see their Museum of Tolerance.
I encourage all my constituents to avail themselves of these opportunities so that a stronger and more united community can better repel the disgusting acts of anti-Semitism.
This article was released by the Office of Senator John Moorlach.