Anti-semitic fliers found in Livingston

By 
Justin Post — Enterprise Staff Writer
Wednesday, April 22, 2020

A number of Livingston residents said they awoke Wednesday morning to find anti-semitic fliers posted outside their homes.

At least two variations of the fliers were reportedly found by Livingston residents, including one that states, “With Jews You Lose.” The flier also depicts a declining line graph that it says represents the “value of a $1 federal reserve note in 1913 dollars.”

The flier lists the website of a Priest River, Idaho, group known as “The Brother Nathanael Foundation,” which is identified as a “general hate” group by The Southern Poverty Law Center.

A second flier found Wednesday morning included a picture of President John F. Kennedy. The flier includes an anti-semitic quote that it attributes to the former president, but the quote is listed as “false” by Snopes.com.

It’s unknown whether the two fliers are related, but both were placed in front of Livingston homes and on vehicles before residents awoke Wednesday morning.

South Third Street resident Jim Liska said he found the John F. Kennedy version of the flier under the windshield of his vehicle, which was parked in his driveway.

Liska said he wasn’t sure whether he was targeted because he’s Jewish, or whether other people in Livingston had also received a flier.

Liska said he researched the quote contained on the flier and discovered that his hunch was correct, and that the quote is fake.

“I was alive when Kennedy was president and I couldn’t even have imagined him saying something like this,” he said. “This guy is just making this stuff up.”

Liska, who has lived in Livingston for 27 years, said it’s rare for these types of materials to be distributed in Livingston. He recalled an incident about 10 years ago, but added that he’s still not surprised to find hate material pop up even in a small, close-knit community.

“I’m never surprised at anti-semitism,” he said. “It’s rampant and it always has been for the entire history of my people.”

Tom McNamee also awoke Wednesday to find one of the fliers under his windshield wiper — he received the “With Jews You Lose” version — and wondered if he was targeted because he and his wife, Elizabeth, are newcomers to Livingston from San Francisco and have California license plates.

“At first we thought it was a personal unfriendly welcome to Livingston,” McNamee said. “But we lived here before, and we’ve been spending every summer here for years, and this is the friendliest town I’ve ever known.”

McNamee and his wife contacted the Livingston Police Department to report the matter. The couple learned they weren’t targeted, but that many Livingston residents received one of the fliers.

“The police tell us these things were plastered all over the city last night,” McNamee said. “Nobody takes credit for it, of course — they’re always cowards.”

Matthew Hirsh, who lives in the area of Clark and I streets in Livingston, said one of the fliers was placed on the windshield of a truck parked in the alley behind his home. Hirsh said his wife walked down the alley and found the fliers placed on other vehicles.

He said a friend on the other side of town, on 11th Street, also found a flier on their vehicle.

Hirsh, a retired middle school teacher who has lived in Livingston for 24 years, said he took to Facebook to post a picture of the flier and let his fellow residents know someone is distributing anti-semitic fliers around town.

“It just makes me angry and I just wanted to get the word out to let people know this is not acceptable in our town,” he said.

He also picked up the phone and contacted the Livingston Police Department.

Livingston Police Chief Dale Johnson said two types of anti-semitic fliers were left on vehicles “all over town,” from about Eighth Street to G Street, south of Park Street.

Johnson said most of the targeted vehicles were parked in alleys.

“We have received numerous calls about it and I have collected a dozen or so that I found on vehicles,” he said.

One of the fliers referenced Israel, the Federal Reserve and kicking secret societies and Zionists out of the country, Johnson said. The others references the declining value of US currency over the last 100 years and states “With Jews You Lose,” he said.

Johnson asked that anyone with information about the fliers contact police at 222-2050.

“If anyone has any security footage please review it and let us know if they see anything pertaining to this incident,” Johnson said.