BY BRADEN CARTWRIGHT
Daily Post Staff Writer
Los Altos Councilman Jonathan Weinberg’s push for the City Council to condemn the Oct. 7 Hamas terrorist attacks has highlighted the divide between Palestinian and Jewish residents.
People from both sides packed the council chambers on Tuesday night (Nov. 14) for a long and emotional meeting. Mayor Sally Meadows had to tell people to stop interrupting several times, and multiple police officers were present.
Most of the Jewish speakers supported Weinberg’s proposal, saying they’ve been afraid to wear Jewish symbols out of fear of antisemitism.
“Myself and hundreds of other families in our community no longer feel safe, no longer feel supported, no longer have a sense of belonging,” resident Alex Levich said.
Palestinians wanted council to condemn Islamaphobia too.
“If any resolution needs to be passed, it needs to be a resolution that strongly denounces any hate,” Aiza Khalid said.
Councilman Pete Dailey said the calls from residents to denounce Islamaphobia remind him of when people would say “all lives matter” in response to someone saying “Black lives matter.”
“If your house was on fire, how would you feel if the fire department started hosing down every other house on the block and told you all houses matter?” he said.
A broad statement by council would minimize threats against Jews, who have been uniquely persecuted throughout history, Dailey said.
“The threat of violence against Jews in our community is not the same as threats against me, or threats of violence against other marginalized groups,” he said.
“I just cannot move on from what happened on Oct. 7,” Weinberg said.
Councilwoman Neysa Fligor said Muslim residents feel unsafe too.
“We cannot ignore the other things that have resulted from the Hamas terrorist attack on Oct. 7. We have residents who are hurting for other reasons,” she said.
Weinberg agreed to write a resolution that responds to what he heard at the meeting and bring it to council on a date to be determined.