To whom it may concern.
As a resident of Ocean County, I am dismayed at the rise in antisemitism and bigotry in our area. It is scary to walk to shul on Shabbos and to have a car speed by yelling insults and racial slurs at myself and my children. As an Orthodox Jew I do not carry a phone on Shabbos and therefore am unable to call the police until Saturday night and by then I do not remember the license plate number.
It is scary to be shopping in Walmart and to overhear two shoppers saying” Why are they here…can’t they go back to Brooklyn” or ”Wish they would stay in Lakewood.” What can we do and what can be done?
I believe that we can not begin to hold the average resident’s feet to the fire until we begin to hold our public officials responsible first. When governments pass laws meant to keep Orthodox Jews out of their towns and appoint bigots to their boards they are sending a very clear message that bigotry is tolerated. When towns utilize their departments to target Orthodox Jews they are giving winks and nods to the hateful minority. How can we as a society and as a county come together when public officials use Jews as a way of painting the other party as corrupt?
We as residents must urge our county leaders to help and send a stronger message that Ocean County does not tolerate hate. We must urge them that when they hire an employee to work for our county that they ensure the person is not bigoted and hateful. We must ensure that anyone working for our county is a welcoming and honest individual.
I as an Orthodox Jew take great offense that the county employees people like Mike Reina as Supervisor of Bridges. Mike Reina is the classic case of a government official who has given winks and nods to the bigots in our county and has done all that is possible to keep constantly Jackson’s Jews lives miserable. We need our county to hire people who build bridges and not those who seek to divide and break bridges. Under his lack of leadership, Jackson is being sued in State and Federal courts with active Federal and State investigations continuing. Mike Reina is a lousy choice for Bridge Supervisor.