(JTA) – The Muslim Student Associations of Florida State and Florida A&M universities delivered bouquets of flowers to campus Jewish organizations and local synagogues.
The flowers and the accompanying notes were meant to show solidarity at a time when both the Muslim and Jewish communities are under attack.
They were delivered to the Chabad and Hillel organizations at Florida State and to Shomrei Torah and Temple Israel synagogues in Tallahassee.
The note said: “We are writing this message to extend a hand of friendship. In times of great division, it is important that we stand together in unity so we hope that these flowers can be seen as a symbol of our solidarity.”
The gesture comes days after dozens of gravestones were overturned in a Jewish cemetery in the St. Louis area and a day before the discovery of toppled gravestones at a Jewish cemetery in Philadelphia. It also comes amid a series of bomb threats called in to Jewish community centres and Jewish schools, including in Florida.
“Keeping up with the news lately has shown a plethora of very sad stories and hateful crimes against many minority groups,” FSU Muslim Student Association President Moneba Anees wrote in an email to the Tallahassee-Democrat newspaper. “Although we could not think of a way to help our Jewish friends and peers directly, we decided that we could show them that people are taking note of what is happening and that they have our support, love and prayers.”
In December, a hate-filled letter was found in the Shomrei Torah mailbox.