DeLand, FL – A DeLand woman found an unwelcome message in her yard over the weekend.
It was an antisemitic flyer at a time when the FBI is reporting a rise in extremism in Florida.
“I found it yesterday in my front yard when I went out to pick up the mail,” Elizabeth Phillips said.
What she found was a flyer in a sealed clear plastic bag with messaging about the impact of the Jewish faith in the federal government.
The flyer says at the very bottom on the front side that it was distributed randomly without any malicious intent. A lot of that is open to interpretation.
“I knew what it was instantly, I was angry, horrified, disgusted, and I knew I was being targeted. It just felt that way,” Phillips said.
She said she feels targeted because of her Biden sticker and her flags supporting gay pride and Black Lives Matter.
“It’s disgusting. It’s repulsive. It’s small-minded. It’s bigoted,” Phillips said.
On the reverse side of the flyer, there are a number of messages, with one that says: “You don’t support free speech? You are not an American.”
“Hate speech is not free speech. Hate speech is not protected,” Phillips said.
“Our only ‘target’ is the uninformed and the deceived,” another message on the back of the flyer reads. “We disavow violence. This is not intimidation.”
The CEO of the Holocaust Education Center of Florida said these types of flyers need to be called out.
“Typical form of antisemitism,” Talli Dippold said. “It doesn’t just harm and threaten Jewish people. It threatens democracy, and it harms and threatens other minority groups within the community.”
Phillips takes issue with the delivery of the message, a baggie tossed in her yard with the flyer inside.
“Come to my front door, and knock on my door, and try to talk to me about this, face to face. We’ll have a conversation,” Phillips said.
It’s not clear how many others in DeLand received the same flyer. Other neighborhoods in Central Florida found similar messages in their driveways earlier this year.