@ScottHech/Twitter
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Jewish Woman Writes Emotional Note To MAGA Hat-Wearing Passenger On Her Flight

On Saturday, October 28, a gunman open fired in the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, PA. Though the shooter was doubtless deranged before receiving any influence from external sources, many are connecting his actions with rhetoric from President Trump leading up to the midterm elections. Trump has floated anti-Semitic conspiracy theories in the past, claiming as recently as this week that billionaire George Soros may be responsible for financing the caravan of migrants, currently in Central America, seeking eventual asylum in the United States.

With 11 people killed, the shooting at Tree of Life marks the most deadly anti-Semitic attack in American history. When a friend of Twitter user Scott Hechinger boarded a plane and saw a man was wearing his “Make America Great Again” hat, the entire context of the situation and the hatred faced by minorities in our nation forced her to speak out:

The note begins:

“Dear Sir in the Pretty Red Hat,

“My name is Merissa and I am sitting a few rows behind you. I am in Los Angeles because my family lives here. We are Jewish. We survived the Holocaust. My family members were murdered in gas chambers—all of them except the 5 that lived. So here I am, on a plane with you. As my father says, we were born with anguish.”

@ScottHech/Twitter

She goes on:

“I flew to Los Angeles because 11 Jews over 55 years old were shot + killed during prayer. After they were shot I couldn’t stop crying. I was afraid. I didn’t want to be alone.

“Our president blamed Saturday’s killing spree on the synagogue. He said if they had an armed guard it would have been fine. Do you have an armed guard when you pray? God should be safe to convene with, right?”

Merissa finishes by addressing the man’s hat:

“A lot of people were upset, angry, + scared on the plane when they saw your hat. For you, I want to assume it’s about politics, economics + the support of a charismatic man. I wonder if you mean to scare black people, Jews, + immigrants? To us your hat sanctions our death, our murder, our evisceration. Because your hat supports a man who does little to help us + so much to fuel hatred, violence + cruelty.

“I love you. I hope your good America does not include flushing me + my people out.”

Many conservatives online are mocking the note, believing its point was to tell the hat-wearer that she thought he was going to commit some sort of terrorist act.

A careful reading of the note reveals that’s not what it was about at all. The author did at one point say the hat scares her and wondered whether its intent was to scare minorities, but it caused her fear not because she thought the man would commit any violent acts. In her mind, the hat represented unwavering support for a President who has been complicit in many acts of violence through his hateful rhetoric and failure to condemn violence.

Fortunately, others saw the beauty in her message.

History will show us where the good people stood during these times.

H/T – Twitter, Alternet

Written by Collin Gossel

Collin Gossel is a writer and comedian living in Brooklyn, New York, but there are nights when he looks up at the stars and wistfully thinks to himself “there’s got to be more out there…” You can catch Collin improvising new musicals every Tuesday night at the Magnet Theater’s Musical Megawatt, or follow his unfiltered thoughts on Twitter and Instagram @CollinGossel.--