The Rabbinical Alliance of America – Igud HaRabbonim, representing nearly one thousand rabbis and spiritual leaders serving throughout these blessed United States of America – hereby expresses thanks and appreciation to President Donald J. Trump and to his administration for the swift and immediate condemnation of the evil and tragic massacre of our fellow Jews at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
We also note with gratitude the President’s numerous public statements expressing the administration’s vehement condemnations of anti-Semitism and all acts and expressions of hatred.
As spiritual leaders who are accountable and answerable to the congregations and communities we represent, we reject in the strongest terms the unseemly politicization of the tragic evil that took place at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh. We reject the disgraceful hijacking of this tragedy by those seeking to display contempt to the duly elected President of the United States and leader of the free world.
It is not only shameful and irresponsible to do so but, moreover, it is in direct opposition to the exhortation of our Sages who state, “Pray for the welfare of the government” (Ethics/Avot 3:2) that applies even in an atmosphere of heated national discourse.
RAA/Igud rejects the recent public demonstrations of disrespect and ridicule aimed at the President during his visit of solidarity to Pittsburgh. We feel compelled to explain that those acts of disrespect do not represent the Jewish community of America. We see such acts as irresponsible and toxic to the flourishing of democracy and freedom. Everyone has the right to protest but this was unproductive, overly personal, and downright disrespectful of the mourning process.
Rabbi Yehoshua S. Hecht, Chairman of the RAA Presidium, calls upon leaders of communal Jewish organizations to be watchful of those who seek to coopt Jewish organizational support for their divisive political agendas that place the Jewish people in America and abroad in a less than supportive light.
May the One who makes peace in the Heavenly heights make peace upon us and upon all Israel, Amen.