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After the deadly shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue over the weekend, local communities have been banding together to show support and give comfort to the victims and their families. That includes Muslim-led interfaith fundraising and statements of solidarity.
The White House, on the other hand, has had a less supportive and more chaotic response. Donald Trump—who tacitly eggs on anti-Semitism with his talk of globalist conspiracies and the menace of George Soros—reportedly had to be convinced by his daughter and son-in-law to formally condemn violence against Jewish people. Kellyanne Conway tried to all-lives-matter the shooting by telling Fox & Friends it was inspired by "anti-religiousity" fueled by late-night comics. And Mike Pence, the man who's supposed to be the respectable white-washer for the Trump administration, also royally botched his pantomime of caring about religious diversity.
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On Monday, Pence appeared at a campaign rally for Lena Epstein, a GOP candidate for an open congressional seat in Michigan. At the rally, he invited to the stage Rabbi Loren Jacobs for a memorial for the 11 people killed in Pittsburgh. The problem: Jacobs is a "Messianic Jew," a sect that believes in the divinity of Jesus. In fact, Jacobs invoked Jesus in his opening prayer.
As NBC News reports, Messianic Judaism "is not recognized as Jewish by any mainstream Jewish movement in the United States, or by the Chief Rabbinate, the supreme spiritual authority for Judaism in Israel." Per their own website, one of their goals is converting Jewish people to believe that Jesus is the messiah.
While, for what it's worth, Pence didn't arrange for Jacobs to appear at the rally, but by all accounts he did invite him onto the stage. He's drawn fierce criticism for appearing with him so shortly after a mass shooting at a synagogue. It certainly doesn't help that, instead of saying the traditional Jewish prayer for the dead, Jacobs prayed for a series of Republican candidates off a list he was given.
This is a good indication of what exactly Republicans are referring to when they call for "unity not division" after national tragedies: the steamrolling continuation of whatever their agenda already was and quiet acceptance from the people who were victimized.