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Corpus Christi Rabbi gives insight on antisemitism, reacts to recent synagogue attack in north Texas

Rabbi Ilan Emanuel of Congregation Beth Israel was appointed to the new Texas Holocaust, Genocide and Anti-Semitism Advisory Commission by Gov. Greg Abbott.

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Following the recent events that took place at a north Texas synagogue, a local rabbi spoke about the far reaching impacts it has on the community. 

Rabbi Ilan Emanuel of Congregation Beth Israel said whenever an incident like what occurred in north Texas takes place, those among the Jewish community consider it a personal attack.

"My colleague called and said have you heard what's happening?" Emanuel said. 

After hearing the news of what took place, Emanuel's thoughts immediately went to his fellow Rabbi Charlie Cytron Walker, and the other hostages. 

"My understanding is that he had gone through active shooter training that kicked in," Emanuel said. "And that is certainty something we are looking at for our congregation." 

The training is credited with for helping save the hostages lives, and Emanuel said the attack could have happened anywhere, including the Coastal Bend. He added that unfortunately synagogues and Jewish institutions around the world have had to worry about their security for years. 

"But we've had armed security for over 20 years at the congregation and various other security measures," Emanuel said. 

Anti-Semitism has proven to be an ongoing issue throughout America, and Emanuel points out how important unity is in dire situations. 

"When something like this happens to a Jewish institution, wherever it is, you're Jewish friends feel that this is an attack on them," Emanuel said. "And to reach out to comfort them, this could have easily happen to us."

Just last week, the local rabbi was appointed to the new Texas Holocaust, Genocide and Anti-Semitism Advisory Commission by Gov. Greg Abbott. Emanuel also laminates how important it is to support one another, even going as far as to quote Martin Luther King.

"I think I'm always inspired by his statement darkness can can not drive out darkness only light can do that," Emanuel said. "And hate can not drive out hate only love can do that, we should allow that to drive us to do more to help each other to fight against antisemitism and other kinds of hatred."

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