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July 19, 2002 - Image 26

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2002-07-19

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This Week


Not Hate Crime?

Canadian police, Jewish community diffir
over murder of Chasidic man.

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Jewish Telegraphic Agency



anadian police say there is
no concrete evidence that
this week's murder of a
Chasidic man wearing a
skullcap was a hate crime.
But members of the Canadian
Jewish community disagree over the
characterization of Sunday's stabbing
of David Rosenzweig, 49, outside a
kosher pizzeria.
After making the arrest of
_ Christopher Steven McBride and
another suspect on Monday night,
police officials said more investigation
was needed before the death of the
father of six could be classified as a
hate crime.
"We have to wait and see," Toronto
Police Chief Julian Fantino said. "We
had no further information that would
classify it formally as a hate-motivated
crime, but we don't exclude the possi-
McBride and his associates were
involved in an earlier altercation with
the owner of the pizzeria, who threw
them out of the store, police said. The
owner, David Chazan, told the
Jerusalem Post they "looked like they
were out for a fight," but added that
"nothing they said was anti-Semitic."
One of the men produced a knife
outside the restaurant, where
Rosenzweig, an accountant and the

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• Referee, Michigan Civil Rights Commission
• Past Chair, State Bar of Michigan Committee for the Court of Appeals

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• Chair, Committee on Housing and Mentoririg, Oakland Coalition
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child of Holocaust survivors, was help-
ing fix a flat tire on his son's car.
"David was extremely caring and
loving to his family," said his brother-
in-law, Rabbi Ben Hecht. "He was
devoted to his wife and children. It's
not surprising that he was out after
midnight to help his son." Apparently,
he was never inside the pizzeria.
"Mr. Rosenzweig was outside the
store on the street, basically an innocent
bystander, and one of the men stabbed
him in the back," said a police media
relations officer, Sgt. Jim Muscat. He
"was basically in the wrong place at the
wrong time," Chief Fantino said.
McBride is a slight 20-year-old with
a shaved head and tattoos. "I don't cat-
egorize him as a skinhead," Police
Staff-Inspector Bob Clarke said. "I cat-
egorize him as an individual who has
his head shaved."

Latest Incident

But some of the 200 people who gath-
ered at a vigil Monday night near the
site said the attack was just the latest
in an international wave of anti-
Semitism during the past year.
"I'm shocked by it, but I'm not sur-
prised it happened," said Fern
Waterman, a physician-psychologist.
Referring to a United Nations anti-
racism conference in South Africa that
featured widespread anti-Semitism, she
added, "I think it's entirely in keeping
with the spirit of that witch hunt that



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"We're looking at multiple levels,"
he said. "We're talking to people in the
federal government about what can be
done in Congress, but we're also talk-
ing to our coalition partners in a num-
ber of states where we think we have
friendly governors and legislatures.
Ultimately, voucher programs have to
be pursued aggressively at every level."
In Congress, Rep. Dick Armey, R-
Texas, the House majority leader, has
reintroduced a proposal for a voucher
demonstration project in the District
of Columbia. Under theplan, low-
income families could receive up to

$5,000 in vouchers to help with pri-
vate or parochial school tuition.
Congress passed a similar bill in
1997, but former President Bill
Clinton vetoed it. This time around,
there's a pro-voucher Republican in
the White House, but a Democratic
Senate, where opposition to new
voucher proposals is strong.
Voucher opponents are still groping
for strategies after the high court deci-
sion in the Cleveland case. One tactic
will be to fight to preserve provisions in a
number of state constitutions restricting
the use of public money for parochial
schools, said Marc Stern, legal director
for the American Jewish Congress.

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