Crystal Springs, Caledonia, MI – Malicious antisemitic flyers are being distributed around a Gaines Township neighborhood.
Anti-Defamation League Michigan states this type of propaganda is being found all over the state and country.
A homeowner in the Crystal Springs neighborhood reported the flyers to the Kent County Sheriff’s Office Monday morning after seeing a van driving around dropping off the materials in driveways Sunday.
The driver has been identified and the investigation is ongoing. There’s no word yet on any potential charges.
The small flyers were located inside a plastic bag and are meant to spread conspiracies out to the community.
“Like Jews did 9/11 or Jews own Disney or Jews are responsible for COVID. All of the ills of society are what this particular group likes to put onto flyers,” said Carolyn Normandin, the Regional Director with ADL Michigan.
The League says they’re being distributed by a loose network of individuals connected by antisemitism who’ve been operating in the state for more than a year.
There has been a rise in antisemitism and other forms of hatred over the last few years.
“This hateful rhetoric has been become more virulent,” said Normandin. “The antisemitism has become more robust and people have been harassed, assaulted and their head coverings being pulled off or things like that.”
Those responsible can be charged with littering.
“We can’t just discard property in someone’s yard. That’s a civil infraction, however, there may be more for us to still learn. This case is still open,” said Sgt. Eric Brunner, a spokesperson with the sheriff’s office. “Our deputies got a report of it since 9:30 this morning. We may have had a few others come in since then that I’m not aware of so we’re still looking at it.”
Normandin says the community can stand up against this rhetoric.
“Shining a light on these kinds of activities is important, but also not giving oxygen to the story by not mentioning the group’s name is also important.”