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Police Surround St. Louis Temple, Nazis Tweet “#GasTheSynagogue”

Jacob Plitman
September 16, 2017


LAST NIGHT, former St. Louis police officer Jason Stockley was acquitted in the 2011 shooting of Anthony Lamar Smith. The decision sparked protests across the city. Police reacted with significant force, trampling protestors and spraying mace.
Some protestors, fleeing the police, arrived at Central Reform Congregation (CRC), where according to twitter Rabbi Susan Talve welcomed them into the building. Rabbi Talve is a longtime supporter of the #BlackLivesMatter movement.

Tweets and video show police surrounding the synagogue, brandishing cans of mace while protestors talk nervously inside. Videos show at least 30 activists taking refuge in the doorway of the synagogue.
It's still unclear exactly how the confrontation ended. The CRC twitter account is currently retweeting dozens of thank you messages from apparent activists who were shielded inside the building. CRC has not yet responded for comment.

[caption id="attachment_63507" align="alignright" width="300"] From the list of "likes" of the tweet at top.[/caption]
AS THE SITUATION at the CBC became public, some anti-Semitic users of twitter began tweeting under the hashtag, "#GasTheSynagogue". Some of these tweets came from apparent far-right accounts that also tweeted racist slurs. One of these the tweets using this hashtag was "liked" from an account of supply company Major Police Supply.
Last night's events in St. Louis come only a few weeks after a synagogue in Charlottesville, Virginia, synagogue was refused police protection as neo-Nazis threatened it.

Jacob Plitman is an Associate Editor of Jewish Currents. He tweets at @jacobplitman.

Jacob Plitman was the publisher of Jewish Currents from 2017 – 2022, during which time he stewarded the relaunch of the magazine.