The only Jewish member of the Georgia General Assembly, Rep. Esther Panitch, woke up Sunday morning, along with dozens of residents across Atlanta, to find a disgusting antisemitic flyer thrown onto her front lawn.
Folded into three plastic bags and weighed down by corn kernels, the fliers described the ancient Jewish text, the Talmud, as “satanic.”
Panitch tweeted, “Welcome to being a Jew in Georgia,” along with photos of the flyers as she found them on her Sandy Springs lawn. “I’m coming for you with the weight of the state behind me,” she added.
Panitch is referring to HB 30, a hate crimes measure co-sponsored with Republican Rep. John Carson, that would “provide for the definition of antisemitism” and determine “whether an alleged act was motivated by discriminatory antisemitic intent.” According to The Atlanta Journal Constitution (AJC), several lawmakers say the spate of antisemitic fliers may just help HB 30 get a fresh set of eyes.
RELATED STORY: Antisemitic platform Gab got thousands of Marjorie Taylor Greene's marketing dollars
Panitch’s bill has been supported by Republican House Majority Leader Chuck Efstration, a lawmaker who has called repeatedly for the Georgia Senate to pass HB 426—a hate crimes bill he authored.
Panitch told The Washington Post that finding the flier was “unsettling, aggravating — many people are afraid.” She added that it could be “too easily dismissed as a one-off, but stuff like this has been going on for months. But now they put it on my driveway, so I’m going to use my public megaphone, and people are going to know about it.”
Eytan Davidson, the regional director for the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) Southeast, says, “The trend of fliers like this being distributed is a longtime tactic of white supremacists and is happening with great frequency across the country … In fact, last year, incidents like this occurred roughly 150 times in Georgia alone.”
According to the ADL, the fliers appear to be connected to the Goyim Defense League, a group of people connected by antisemitism. The same group that hung banners over a Los Angeles freeway in October that read, “Kanye was right about the Jews,” the Post reports.
The AJC reports the fliers could also be connected to the White Lives Matter group.
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp tweeted, “This kind of hate has no place in our state,” and committed state law enforcement to help in local police investigations.
Panitch tells the AJC that critics of her hate crime measure have said it “isn’t the right one” but have, up until now, offered no alternatives.
She says simply to them, “Get out of our way.”