Anti-Semitic documents dropped on dozens of driveways in Glencoe, Winnetka and Highland Park
Packets containing anti-Semitic and racist content reportedly were placed on several driveways in Glencoe, Winnetka and Highland Park on Thursday, April 28, as first reported by the Chicago Tribune.
Glencoe Village Manager Phil Kiraly told The Record that the three towns’ police departments are coordinating an investigation into the packets, which reportedly are similar to those dropped at homes and parks in surrounding communities — such as Glenview, Skokie and Niles — on multiple dates in March.
“This is the first time I can recall we have seen these in Glencoe,” Kiraly said. “Hopefully it is absolutely the last. It is concerning and disgusting that this kind of information would be distributed in this way.”
Kiraly said about 30 Glencoe homes received a packet of several fliers containing “a variety of conspiracy theories and certainly anti-Semitic content,” such as phrases like “Judaism is communism,” photos of particular Illinois elected officials with claims they were “anti-white,” and messages about the U.S. and Ukrainian governments.
The seven pages of materials were packaged in a sealed plastic bag containing beans, presumably for weight, Kiraly said.
The incident aligned with Yom Hashoah, or Holocaust Remembrance Day, observed in the United States this year on Thursday, April 28, an occasion to remember the 6 million Jewish people murdered in the Holocaust.
“I was disgusted yesterday to learn that, apparently timed to coincide with Holocaust Remembrance Day, anonymous anti-Semitic (flyers) littered Glencoe and neighboring communities,” Glencoe Village President Howard Roin said in a statement. “Let me say in the strongest terms possible that the Village Board and I, as well as our entire community, find these pathetic acts of antisemitism repugnant and reprehensible. Glencoe proudly is an inclusive community, but these ideas and the hate that they represent have no place here.“
The Glencoe homes, Kiraly said, seemed to be chosen at random and were all along Sheridan Road.
Winnetka police confirmed they received similar reports and are investigating in conjunction with their neighboring departments.
Police officials from Wilmette and Kenilworth said they have received no recent reports of anti-Semitic packets from their respective communities.
The similar incidents reported in surrounding towns in March led to a rally to protest anti-Semitism and all hate on Sunday, April 24, organized by local community groups, and Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle and Commissioner Scott Britton, who reportedly received one of the packets at his Glenview home on March 3.
“This level of wanton hatred is disturbing, sad and dangerous. We cannot stand idly by when members of the Jewish community are becoming increasingly victimized,” Britton said in a statement April 7. “I take it as my personal responsibility to stand up for our brothers and sisters who are receiving hate as I would want others to stand for me. Hate has no home in Cook County.”
The County Board passed a resolution April 7 “against the rise in anti-Semitism and in support of the Cook County’s Jewish population.” At the rally, the county also unveiled a new symbol of its campaign: Cook County United Against Hate, and it reportedly recently invested $50 million in the Cook County Equity Fund.
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Joe Coughlin is a co-founder and the editor in chief of The Record. He leads investigative reporting and reports on anything else needed. Joe has been recognized for his investigative reporting and sports reporting, feature writing and photojournalism. Follow Joe on Twitter @joec2319