On March 11th a high school basketball division title game between the all-boys Catholic Memorial School and the public Newton North High School became marred by antisemitic abuse
The Washington Post reported that the incident took place in Boston, where an estimated 100 young men sitting in the student section supporting Catholic Memorial jeered, “You killed Jesus, you killed Jesus”. Newton North High School has a large Jewish community of students. One spectator, whose parents are survivors of World War II concentration camps said, “I can’t believe it,” “I just can’t believe it.”
Peter F. Folan, president of Catholic Memorial, released a statement the next day:
“Catholic Memorial School is deeply disturbed by the behavior of a group of student spectators who made an unacceptable chant Friday night while playing Newton North High School.
CM faculty and staff acted immediately to stop the behavior. Administrators from both schools and representatives from the MIAA discussed the incident. At the conclusion of the game, CM students were reprimanded and each student personally apologized to the Principal of Newton North High School and shook his hand before leaving the arena.
We have been the subject of hurtful chants as well and we will work diligently within our own community and with other schools to end this abhorrent behavior. Catholic Memorial School believes deeply that intolerance, of any kind, is unacceptable. We apologize for the actions of our students and we will continue to strenuously address this issue within our community.”
Robert Trestan, the Anti-Defamation League’s New England regional director, said “We are very concerned why some fans thought this chant was appropriate for a high school basketball game… Hate speech has no place in the stands of any sporting event. We are grateful for the quick intervention by school officials and hope they use this as a teachable moment.”
This incident has shocked many and especially the choice of the Memorial School fans to causally revert to repeating the charge that the Jews committed deicide, which was used for centuries as an excuse to persecute Jews.