ADL publishes its 2022 audit of anti-Semitic incidents.
The 2022 Anti-Semitic Incident Audit, released March 23 by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), shows that anti-Semitic incidents in Michigan remain alarmingly high, mirroring even more alarming numbers nationwide.
Anti-Semitic incidents again reached their highest level in the United States in 2022, with a total of 3,697 incidents of assault, harassment, and vandalism reported to the ADL. The 36 percent year-over-year increase represents the largest number of reported incidents since the ADL began tracking anti-Semitic incidents in 1979.
In Michigan, the numbers were flat (one less incident reported than last year), but as has been the case for several years, Michigan is among the top-ranked states in the nation for incidents of anti-Semitism — ranking ninth as total with 111 incidents in 2022.
The Michigan data contained some troubling trends, such as more vandalism than last year and one assault. Of course, many incidents go unreported at all.
Anti-Semitic incidents were slightly more widespread across the state in 2022. Incidents were reported from 34 cities in 16 Michigan counties statewide, representing two additional cities and one additional county involved in 2022 compared to 2021. None reported incidents from the Upper Peninsula in 2022
Peace Witness, an anti-Semitic and anti-Israel group, continued its activities in 2022, holding weekly protests outside Congregation Beth Israel in Ann Arbor. Eleven incidents involved Jewish schools or institutions (not including the 52 weekly incidents at Congregation Beth Israel); 16 incidents occurred in non-Jewish schools or universities.
Earlier this month, the ADL’s report on white supremacist propaganda indicated that Michigan was fourth in the nation for hateful propaganda. Although there were 354 cases of this type of propaganda listed in this report, a small proportion (17) were identified in this year’s audit, generally because these incidents had other connections to the Jewish community (such as distribution in a Jewish school or Jewish building).
Nationally, there were increases across the board compared to 2021 numbers. Harassment incidents increased 29 percent, acts of vandalism jumped 51 percent, physical assaults jumped 26 percent, activity by organized white supremacist groups doubled, and anti-Semitic activity on college campuses rose 41 percent. The audit found an average of 10 incidents each day in 2022.
For ADL Michigan Regional Director Carolyn Normandin, what’s important about the Michigan data is also important about the national data.
“As Jews, we know that Jews in this country have been attacked,” Normandin said. “Whether anti-Semitism is directed at an individual, at an institution or on social media, these incidents are getting bolder and real people are feeling the harm. Anti-Semitism in this country is at a fever pitch.”
Normandin notes that the number of anti-Semitic incidents in Michigan is clustered in states with much larger populations than Michigan, another troubling fact of these numbers.
“When I think about my home state being in those categories, it makes me sick to my stomach,” Normandin said. “I have always been a proud Michigander. And the fact that we continue to rank so high in those national numbers is very upsetting.”
When troubling reports like these come out, Normandin is consistent in her messaging.
“Stand up, share facts, show strength. We must continue to do this. As tiring as it gets, as much as we feel like we’ve been there, done that. We must not give up on that,” Normandin said. “And we are not alone in this. There are more like-minded people in this fight than haters. So we have to be together on this.”
To read the full 2022 ADL Antisemitic Incidents Audit, visit www.adl.org/resources/report/audit-antisemitic-incidents-2022.