By Charlie Deitch
Pittsburgh Current Editor
Just a few days before the one-year commemoration of the antisemitic shooting at a Squirrel Hill synagogue, a protester shouted down President Donald Trump yelling, “Trump Endangers Jews.”
During the scrum, Trump told his crowd not to hurt the protester before saying, “They don’t know they are dealing with very tough people in this room.”
The protester’s statement was the only mention of the events at the Tree of Life Synagogue on Oct. 27, 2018. But the day started off with a protest held by several groups including Progressive Jewish organization, Bend The Arc. Fourteen people were arrested for blocking the street during the protest, meant to stop the spread of white nationalism. According to KDKA, they carried a banner reading “Our solidarity will defeat White Nationalists,” and they chanted, “You are not welcome here Donald Trump.”
The sentiment is identical to the one sent to Trump in the wake of last year’s shooting which resulted in the deaths of 11 congregants inside the synagogue. Trump was asked by community leaders not to come to Pittsburgh in the days following the attack. That was in large part because many people felt his rhetoric in the months leading up to the shooting emboldened white nationalist thinking.
We will have more on the President’s speech and protests later today.