By Bryant Reed

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — A group of athletes and community leaders held a panel to work together to fight racism and anti-Semitism.

Steelers offensive lineman Zach Banner hosted “Athletes against Antisemitism” on Wednesday to bring athletes and activists together to inform the public and close the education gap.

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Banner says anti-Semitism really struck home when another NFL player talked down on the Jewish community.

“We preach to identify to the Black and brown people in the city of Pittsburgh. But you can’t do that by turning off the light on Squirrel Hill, Shady Side and other Jewish communities that we have,” Banner said.

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Banner wanted the conversation to educate himself and others. Joining him on the panel was former Pittsburgh Pirate Josh Bell, WNBA star Alysha Clark and Tree of Life Rabbi Jeffrey Myers.

“You can’t understand someone unless you walk a mile in their shoes, to hear their stories, to hear the concerns. … We’re stronger when we’re together,” Myers said.

You learn, you grow and you make better decisions in the future — that’s the moral of the story panelists were trying to drive home. It’s sitting down to have a conversation based on experience and education. That’s how they’re trying to improve everybody’s situation.

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“We want a Pittsburgh livable for all, not just a select few. That is the work we are trying to strive for,” said Jasiri X, the co-founder of 1Hood.