MIAMI BEACH (CBSMiami) – It was so far away, yet so close to home.
The South Florida Jewish community rallied on Tuesday, remembering the 11 lives lost in Pittsburgh on Saturday morning.
The local residents that gathered at the Holocaust Memorial in Miami Beach were bolstered by members of multiple faiths, sending a message that they are not going to put up with anti-Semitism and hate.
“At this moment, we are no longer many families, but one family together,” said Father Patrick O’Neal. “We are god’s family.”
The temper of the times is never far from the discourse, as long time pillar of the local Jewish community Norma Braman makes known.
“People are fed up with this plague of hateful violence in our nation,” he said. “In fact, we live in a moment when the New York Times publishes a column called This Week In Hate.”
And for the crowd at the vigil, it’s an old story that they have unfortunately seen before.
“We suffered crusades, inquisitions, pogroms….shoved into cattle cars, put into gas chambers and ethnically cleansed by termination and final solution,” said Rabbi Ariel Yeshurun.
Organizers of the vigil from early on wanted to send a message both locally and nationally.
“You never know until you look back in history what the turning point was,” said Jacob Solomon. “And I’m sure for the Jews in pre-war Europe, they didn’t know what was going on, when it was going on. There was total clarity looking back. We’re not going to be victims of history. If we see evil, we’re going to confront it.”