ADL Releases Worrying New Study on Antisemitic Attitudes in US

The Anti-Defamation League’s Center for Antisemitic Research published a new study today on “Antisemitic Attitudes in America.” Here is its Executive Summary of topline findings:

ADL has measured antisemitic attitudes among Americans since the early 1960s. Building on this historic work and furthering it to ensure greater accuracy, ADL, the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago (NORC) and the One8 Foundation embarked on a year-long process to study the research literature on bias and antisemitism, convene academic and communal leaders and conduct qualitative interviews.

Based on the learnings from this process, ADL updated its ways of measuring antisemitism to develop a more nuanced suite of questions that provide greater understanding. ADL then used these upgraded measurement tools to survey over 4,000 individuals, a representative sample of the American population from September through October of 2022. The topline results, presented in this report, show several trends that are cause for concern:

Widespread belief in anti-Jewish tropes, at rates unseen for decades

Over three-quarters of Americans (85 percent) believe at least one anti-Jewish trope, as opposed to 61 percent found in 2019. Twenty percent of Americans believe six or more tropes, which is significantly more than the 11 percent that ADL found in 2019 and is the highest level measured in decades.

Substantial rates of Israel-focused antisemitism

Many Americans believe in Israel-oriented antisemitic positions – from 40 percent who at least slightly believe that Israel treats Palestinians like Nazis treated the Jews, to 18 percent who are uncomfortable spending time with a person who supports Israel.

Trope-focused and Israel-focused antisemitism appear to overlap significantly

There is a nearly 40 percent correlation between belief in anti-Jewish tropes and anti-Israel belief, meaning that a substantial number of people who believe anti-Jewish tropes also have negative attitudes toward Israel.

Young adults have more anti-Israel sentiment than older generations, and only marginally less belief in anti-Jewish tropes

While young adults (between the ages of 18 and 30) show less belief in anti-Jewish tropes (18 percent believe six or more tropes) than older adults (20 percent believe six or more tropes), the difference is substantially less than measured in previous studies. Additionally, young adults hold significantly more anti-Israel sentiment than older adults, with 21 percent and 11 percent agreeing with five or more anti-Israel statements, respectively.

You can read the entire report here.

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