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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Police in Pittsburgh are investigating hate-filled material that is being distributed in city neighborhoods.
Officials said in a press release Sunday that they “are aware of and are investigating the dissemination of anti-Semitic pamphlets in Pittsburgh neighborhoods, including Squirrel Hill.”
One man who did not wish to be identified said he found three plastic bags containing bird seed and pieces of paper as he was walking from Darlington Road toward Shady Avenue and Forbes Avenue — just down the road from the Jewish Community Center of Greater Pittsburgh — around 7 p.m. Saturday.
Photos of the flyers show they contained racist and anti-Semitic messages along with Ku Klux Klan logos.
Amy Wadas’ Report:
Police said “such hate-filled material will not be tolerated in Pittsburgh — not by residents, City officials nor Law Enforcement.”
The Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh released the following statement from CEO Jeff Finkelstein:
“These anti-Semitic and racist fliers targeted both the Jewish and African American communities. This is a prime example of how hateful people don’t only hate one group of people. The Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh stands in solidarity with the African American community and all other communities who join with us as we continue to fight anti-Semitism, racism, and hate with love. To quote Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., ‘Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.’
“We are committed to the safety and security of the Greater Pittsburgh Jewish community. We have the utmost confidence in our local and national law enforcement as they investigate.”
“Unfortunately, these things have happened prior to the horrors of Oct. 27 and they’re probably going to continue afterwards. It doesn’t matter when,” Finkelstein told KDKA-TV News.
“Flyers like that are just uncalled for, especially after what we’ve been through the last month or so in the neighborhood. To add something like that on is just terrible,” Pittsburgh City Councilman Cory O’Connor said.
“They’re trying to strike the iron while it’s hot and getting their people to rise up while the rest of Pittsburgh is trying to strike the iron while it’s hot and get everybody to come together and rise in solidarity against hate and violence and all the things that drive us apart,” Josh Friedman, with Bend The Arc Pittsburgh, said.
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The city said that the Department of Public Safety, Director Wendell Hissrich, Police Chief Scott Schubert and Zone 4 Commander Dan Herrman are taking the matter seriously and will investigate.
“Pittsburgh is and will remain Stronger than Hate,” said the city.
Anyone who has information on the flyers is asked to call 911. Anyone who has a surveillance camera that may have captured footage of the person or people who distributed the flyers is asked to reach out to police.
“As Rabbi Myers at Tree of Life has been saying everywhere, it’s all about love and not about hate,” Finkelstein said.