Holding Antisemites Accountable.

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Jewish Doctor Receives Antisemitic Death Threat at Work

Family physician Dr. Michelle Cohen is an outspoken member of the region’s health care community. “I’ve been speaking a lot about vaccines. I also do some tweeting and speaking about conspiracy theories,” said Cohen.

She believes that advocacy work may play a role in a letter she recently received.

The letter included reference to an antisemitic conspiracy theory coupled with a death threat. The Jewish advocacy group fighting antisemitism – StopAntisemitism – asked how this could be happening in the year 2022?

‘I’m not surprised that I was targeted by an antisemitic conspiracy theory,” said Cohen.

Cohen says behaviour like this is part of a worrying and growing trend.

“A colleague of mine in Ottawa, Dr. Nili Kaplan-Myrth, has been receiving a ton of these sorts of vile antisemitic messages and violent threats and death threats, things like that,” said Cohen.

President of the Kingston Jewish Council, Debbie Fitzerman, said antisemitism unfortunately isn’t new.

“Antisemitism has been around for centuries,” said Fitzerman. “It’s one of the oldest forms of hate.”

While shocked by the letter, Cohen says the views of the letter-writer puts them in the minority.

“The vast majority of people don’t have those views,” said Cohen.

To combat the bigotry, Fitzerman hopes to engage in more education opportunities in the Eastern Ontario region.