Massachusetts, USA – A high school basketball game was marred by anti-Semitic epithets being shouted. Catholic Memorial School and Newton North High School played a basketball game Friday night in the suburbs of Boston, but it seems the game was anything but sportsmanlike.
“You killed Jesus!” shouted about 50 to 75 Catholic Memorial students, according to the Boston Globe.
“I found it chilling,” Newton superintendent David Fleishman, who arrived at the game, which was held at Newton South High School, about 20 minutes late.
Fleishman said he was immediately approached by a visibly disturbed parent who told him she was shaken.
“In my mind, this is incredibly upsetting and troubling, and they have a lot of work to do at Catholic Memorial,” he said.
Fleishman contacted the Anti-Defemation League about the issue, and told the Globe that Newton students would discuss the incident at school Monday.
The president of Catholic Memorial issued a statement Saturday condemning the “abhorrent behavior” of his students and promising to work toward ending it.
“Catholic Memorial School is deeply disturbed by the behavior of a group of student spectators who made an unacceptable chant Friday night while playing Newton North High School,” he said.
The president went on to clarify that faculty and staff “acted immediately” to end the racist chants, adding that Catholic Memorial pupils were reprimanded and each student was required to personally apologize to the Newton North principle.
Fleishman confirmed that the moment the anti-Jewish chants were heard, Catholic Memorial administration moved in to stop it.
Doug Haslam, the father of one Newton North senior, said he has been attending games for years and has frequently heard anti-Jewish chants. However, he said he had never heard chants about killing Jesus until Friday.
“There’s a lot of rowdy, rambunctious, probably crude and obnoxious chants, but there’s usually a line, and students rarely cross it,” he said. “When they do, there are repercussions.”
Anti-Semitism has been a concern for Newton North recently, as three cases of anti-Jewish graffiti were reported in recent months at F.A. Day Middle School. One of those incidents results in “Burn the Jews” being emblazoned across the wall of the boys bathroom.
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