Hate crimes peaked in 2023. Why 'a perfect storm' might lift them. (Part-2)

The Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University released preliminary data Friday showing that hate crimes in the nation's 10 largest cities surged again in 2023.  

The annual study found at least 2,184 hate crimes in New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, Phoenix, Philadelphia, San Antonio, San Diego, Dallas, and Austin last year, up nearly 13% from 2022 due to the Israel-Hamas war. A wider study of 25 American cities indicated hate crimes rose 17% from 2022.

"The top 10 cities generally match what's going to happen nationally," said CSU, San Bernardino professor emeritus and Center for the Study of Hate & Extremism founder Brian Levin.

The FBI terms a hate crime a "committed criminal offense which is motivated, in whole or in part, by the offender’s bias(es) against a race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, ethnicity, gender, or gender identity."

New York and Los Angeles witnessed 12.6% and 48% rises in anti-Jewish hate crimes, while Los Angeles and Chicago saw 40% and 300% spikes in anti-Muslim hate crimes. Hamas-led militants killed 1,200 Israelis and abducted over 240 hostages on October 7. "It just explodes after October 7," Levin added.

Levin predicted that national FBI hate crime data later this year will reveal a record number of anti-Jewish hate crimes. He predicted anti-Muslim hate crimes could reach their highest level since 2015–2017.

The surge became Jews America's major 10 cities' most targeted group, surpassing African Americans. The next most targeted groups were black and LGBT Americans. Levin said the rise in antisemitic attacks is a decades-long trend.

"In the 1990s and the first decade of this century, anti-Jewish hate crimes spiked in the months around Israel-Palestinian conflict," stated. "We consistently see increases in anti-Jewish hate crimes when there is violence in the Holy Land."

Watch this space for further developments.