Anti-Semitic Incidents in the U.S. Rose 57 Percent in 2017

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The number of reported anti-Semitic incidents in the United States rose 57 percent, almost doubling on K-12 schools and college campuses, according to an annual report by the Anti-Defamation League.

The 2017 Audit of Anti-Semitic Incidents, released on Tuesday, analyzed 1,986 incidents reported in 2017, compared with 1,267 in 2016. This is the highest number of incidents the organization has recorded since the 2,066 incidents recorded in 1994, and the second highest number recorded since the league began tracking the reports in 1979.

In 2013, the number of incidents was as low as 751, but the ADL reported seeing an uptick in reported incidents starting in 2016.

"It had been trending in the right direction for a long time," Jonathan A. Greenblatt, chief executive of the ADL, told the New York Times. "And then something changed." According to the Times, Greenblatt attributed this change to divisive American politics, emboldened extremists, and social media influence, which he said "allowed the kind of poison of prejudice to grow at a velocity and to expand in ways that really are unprecedented." Some of the increase could also be a result of more rigorous reporting of incidents.

While reported numbers of harassment and vandalism increased, the number of reported assaults decreased by 47 percent from 2016; however, for the first time in a decade, incidents were reported in all 50 states.

The ADL analysis showed that most of the anti-Semitic incidents took place in K-12 schools, a departure from past reports, which showed such incidents mainly occurred in public spaces. Reports on K-12 school grounds increased by 94 percent, rising from 235 to 457. College campuses also so an 89 percent spike in reported incidents—from 108 incidents in 2016 to 204 incidents in 2017.