Jewish Americans are taking drastic measures to protect themselves and their loved ones, with many turning to firearms for the first time amid an alarming surge in antisemitism nationwide.
Florida gun store owner David Kowalsky addressed the growing number of Jews seeking to buy firearms and train with guns during “America’s Newsroom” as many fear for their safety as war rages between Israel and Hamas in the Middle East.
“I have a lot of people coming in saying that they’ve never thought they’d be in this position where they had to purchase own or train with a firearm,” Kowalsky told Dana Perino Tuesday. “And they’re coming in and wanting more information on how to obtain one train with one and to be able to protect their family and loved ones.”
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Kowalsky said he has known people who have received direct threats since the war began one month ago following Hamas’ unprecedented massacre on the Israeli people.
“Aside from neighborhoods being vandalized, synagogues, areas… saying they want to kill Jews and direct threats, they are very conscientious, very worried about what is going on around them and around the country in general.,” Kowalsky said.
Antisemitism has surged 388% according to the Anti-Defamation League, taking root across college campuses and even outside the White House gates.
Over the weekend tens of thousands of anti-Israel protesters took to the streets in Washington, D.C. praising Hamas and calling for the annihilation of the Jewish state.
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ANSWER Coalition, an anti-war and anti-racism organization, reportedly bussed thousands of people into Washington, D.C., to participate in the pro-Palestinian demonstrations from cities like New York, Tampa, Boston and Cleveland.
“Genocide Joe needs to halt his actions immediately and realize that he’s going to face massive opposition from Democrat voters next election,” one protester told FOX News’ Griff Jenkins.
Protesters even defaced the gates to the White House with fake blood to show their solidarity with the terrorist organization. As of Tuesday morning, the red substance was still there, although concealed, correspondent Peter Doocy reported.
The widespread anti-Israeli sentiment has spurred college students and families alike to fear for the safety and ultimately turn to their Second Amendment rights to quell their concerns.
“There’s been definitely a large surge in Jewish women wanting to protect their families, learning how to train,” Kowalsky said. “Also, a large rise in couples wanting to train together, which is something that’s a bit anomalous. They start out very, very hesitant. They’ve never shot before. They’ve never held a gun before.”
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“Once we’re done with their training, they feel much more emboldened and confident in their abilities,” he continued.
One California firearm shop, Burbank Ammo and Guns, reported a more than 450% rise in firearms safety tests compared to last October. The shop processed 203 firearms safety certificate tests in October 2023 compared to 45 last year.
In the Golden State, the safety tests are required for individuals purchasing a firearm for the first time.
“We see many, many individuals from the Jewish community who are first time buyers, and not just the men, but women as well, mothers especially. They want to know what they can do and what they are allowed to do to defend themselves,” manager Eric Fletcher told Julie Banderas last week.
FOX News’ Maddie Coggins contributed to this report.
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