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Anti-Semitic Hate Crimes in U.S. Spiked 37% in 2017

Anti-Semitic hate crimes in the U.S. increased by 37 percent in 2017, according to the FBI’s annual Hate Crimes Statistics report released Nov. 13.

There were 7,175 hate crime incidents reported by law enforcement to the FBI last year, 1,054 more than in 2016, with 7,106 classified as single-bias and 69 as multiple-bias incidents.

“For each offense type reported, law enforcement must indicate at least one bias motivation,” the FBI explained. “A single-bias incident is defined as an incident in which one or more offense types are motivated by the same bias. As of 2013, a multiple-bias incident is defined as an incident in which one or more offense types are motivated by two or more biases.”

Of the single-bias incidents with a religious bias, 60 percent (938 incidents) were the result of anti-Jewish sentiment on the part of the offender, up from 53.7 percent (684 incidents) last year.

An EthicsDaily.com analysis published in late October using FBI hate crime data found that anti-Jewish sentiment has been the basis for a majority of the hate crimes with a religious bias each year in the U.S. since 1996 (the earliest available data).

The only other faith tradition in 2017 with a double-digit percentage of hate crime incidents linked to victims’ faith was Islam, with 17.5 percent (273 incidents) being anti-Islamic (Muslim) hate crimes, down slightly from 24.1 percent (307 incidents) in 2016.

There were 292 hate crime incidents last year that took place at a church, synagogue, temple or mosque (4.1 percent of all incidents), up from 241 (3.9 percent) in 2016.

The majority (58.1 percent, or 4,131 incidents) of single-bias hate crime incidents in 2017 were linked to the victims’ race, ethnicity or ancestry, with religious bias accounting for 22 percent (1,564 incidents), sexual orientation for 15.9 percent (1,130), disability for 1.7 percent (116), gender identity for 1.6 percent (119) and gender for 0.6 percent (46).

Anti-black or African-American bias on the part of the offender accounted for 48.7 percent (2,013 incidents) of the single-bias incidents linked to the victims’ race, ethnicity or ancestry, followed by anti-white bias (18 percent, or 741 incidents) and anti-Hispanic or Latino (10.3 percent, or 427 incidents), anti-Native American Indian or Alaskan Native (6.1 percent, or 251 incidents), anti-Asian (3.2 percent, or 131 incidents), anti-Arab (2.5 percent, or 102 incidents) and anti-Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander (0.39 percent, or 16 incidents).

In addition, 270 incidents (6.5 percent) were classified as anti-other race/ethnicity/ancestry and 180 incidents (4.4 percent) as anti-multiple races/groups.

The full report is available here.