To combat the current rise of antisemitism and Holocaust denial, the Nancy & David Wolf Holocaust & Humanity Center, located at Union Terminal, is providing free general admission until the end of January.
This decision is a direct response to the increase in antisemitic incidents following the Oct. 7 attack on Israel by Hamas.
“Dehumanizing rhetoric and framing have created a climate where it’s easy to lose track of our own humanity, as well as the humanity of others,” said Jackie Congedo, chief community engagement and external affairs officer, in a press conference.
Since the October 7 attack on Israel by Hamas, and the ensuing conflict between Hamas and Israel, antisemitic incidents in the U.S. have reached record numbers.
In its December report, the Anti-Defamation League noted a significant rise in U.S. antisemitic incidents following the attack on Israel. This marked the highest two-month tally of such incidents since the league started keeping records in 1979. From Oct. 7 to Dec. 7, the league documented 2,031 incidents, a substantial increase from the 465 incidents recorded in the same timeframe in 2022.
“We’ve seen an increased rise in antisemitism at schools, at universities. Prior to October 7 we were seeing about one per week, and now we’re seeing one per day,” said Jewish Federation CEO Danielle Minson at a press conference.
A recent poll by the Economist found that 1 in 5 young Americans think the Holocaust is a myth.
“Just as hatred can be taught, so can humanity, and our museum is designed to do just that,” said Congedo.
Visitors to the museum will be able to engage with the Dimensions in Testimony exhibit, which features interactive AI. With it, people can converse with Holocaust survivors who respond to their questions. The museum also has a new addition that offers information on the history and nuances of antisemitism.
“Throughout history, antisemitic libels and conspiracies have often led to disastrous outcomes for Jews: expulsion, deadly riots, and, of course, the Holocaust. One walk through this museum, and you will see firsthand how these lies have played out across contexts and throughout time with devastating consequences,” said Congressman Greg Landsman in a joint press release with the Holocaust & Humanity Center. “We must push back, every time, and I know with absolute certainty that Holocaust museums and education, here and elsewhere, are more important than ever.”
Landsman was subject to an antisemitic incident at the end of November when a womens shelter near his office in Walnut Hills was tagged with an antisemitic poster accusing the Congressman of supporting genocide in Gaza.
The Nancy & David Wolf Holocaust & Humanity Center is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday through Monday.
“We hope we see strong attendance that will lead to conversations that will lead to empathy, cultivate critical thinking and preempt some of the things we are seeing,” said Congedo.