Senator Anna M. Kaplan Speaks Out About White Supremacist Hate Mail

Senator Kaplan, who is Jewish, is notably the first refugee elected to the New York State Legislature, having fled her birth country due to the threat of anti-Semitic violence

Message included the phrase "109 soon 110" which is recognized by the Anti-Defamation League as white supremacist shorthand for the anti-Semitic claim that Jews have been expelled from 109 different countries, and that the US or some other location would be the next and 110th place to expel Jews.

The message also included a widely debunked claim about the safety of COVID-19 vaccines that is routinely spread by anti-vaxxers

Explicit: Anti-vaccination, anti-woman, and anti-Semitic mail sent to State Senator Anna M. Kaplan. Explicit: Anti-vaccination, anti-woman, and anti-Semitic mail sent to State Senator Anna M. Kaplan.
Click here for full resolution image of hate mail.

 

CARLE PLACE, NY (June 22, 2021) - Today, State Senator Anna M. Kaplan (D-North Hills) received a vile piece of hate mail using well-known white supremacist, anti-Semitic hate speech in response to a mailer providing information about the COVID-19 vaccine to residents in Nassau County. Senator Kaplan, who is Jewish, and an outspoken voice against hatred and anti-Semitism, is the first refugee elected to the New York State Legislature, having fled her birth country due to the threat of anti-Semitic violence.

"This incident is a sad reminder that Nassau County is not immune to hatred and white supremacy, and it's our responsibility as a community to forcefully reject this evil whenever it reveals itself among us," said Senator Anna M. Kaplan. "As a former religious refugee who fled anti-Semitism in my birth country, I have seen first-hand how anti-Semitism begins to permeate a society and ultimately lead to violence against Jewish people. That experience has taught me the importance of sounding the alarm against hate at every opportunity, and I hope this incident can be a teaching moment for all of us to remember that we can never stay silent in the face of hate."

The hate mail sent to Senator Kaplan was written on a piece of literature distributed by the Senator to Nassau County residents providing information about the COVID-19 vaccine. The handwritten message added to the literature responds to the information on the mailer by repeating widely-debunked misinformation about the safety of COVID-19 vaccines (source) that is commonly spread online by anti-vaxxers in an effort to frighten people and prevent them from taking the COVID-19 vaccine. The message goes on to call the Senator by a profoundly misogynistic slur, and states "109 soon 110," which is recognized by the Anti-Defamation League (source) as white supremacist shorthand for the anti-Semitic claim that Jews have been expelled from 109 different countries, and that the US or some other location would be the next and 110th place to expel Jews.

The incident has been reported to the Nassau County Police, and it is being actively investigated.

"We all deserve to live in a community free from hatred and bias, and I'm extremely grateful for the efforts of our Nassau County Police for their hard work and dedication to keep our community safe, and for their efforts to investigate this matter. I urge any Nassau resident who has been a victim of hate or bias to speak out and contact the Nassau County Police Department Bias Crimes Coordinator, Chief James Bartscherer, at 516-573-7710," Senator Kaplan concluded.