Jewish-Owned Bagel Shop in Miami Vandalized With Antisemitic Graffiti, Gets Cleaned Up by Mayor, Federal Judge

Jewish-Owned Bagel Shop in Miami Vandalized With Antisemitic Graffiti, Gets Cleaned Up by Mayor, Federal Judge

Shiryn Ghermezian

Graffiti outside Holy Bagels & Pizzeria in downtown Miami. Photo: Screenshot

Miami Mayor Francis Suarez and US District Court Judge Roy Altman were among those who helped clean off antisemitic graffiti from a Jewish-owned kosher restaurant in downtown Miami that was vandalized on Sunday.

“Free Palestine” and “Stop Genocide” were spray painted in red on the front door and windows of Holy Bagels & Pizzeria. A security camera from inside the store captured a hooded person early Sunday morning spraying the windows and doors. The vandal also tore down from outside the store an Israeli-American flag that said “Stand With Israel” and spray painted “Free Palestine” on that as well.

“I’m here because we will not allow antisemites to silence our community,” Altman said, when asked why he came to help scrub off the graffiti from the bagel shop. “We are one community. We love the West, we support Israel. We Jews will never be silenced like we were in 1941. We will never go down [like in] 1941 again. Am Israel Chai [Long live Israel]. God bless America.”

“Hate speech, vandalism, and hostility will never be tolerated,” said Suarez. He added that the city of Miami “will always support these small businesses as they face antisemitism.”

Security company owner Auggie Mejia offered to provide free patrols to Josh Nodel, the owner of Holy Bagels & Pizzeria, and Miami-Dade Mayor Daniela Kava also visited the restaurant after the vandalism to express solidarity with the eatery and the Jewish community. The Miami Police Department has launched an antisemitic hate crime investigation into Sunday’s vandalism and released a photo of the suspect who they believe is responsible for the incident. Miami Police Chief Manuel Morales said police detectives are “working around the clock” to identify and locate those responsible for the “senseless” vandalism.

“As a society, we must unequivocally reject and not tolerate hate crimes in any form,” Morales added. “Discrimination, violence, and prejudice have no place in our communities, and it is essential that we stand united against such acts to create a safer and more inclusive community.”

Holy Bagels & Pizzeria said in an Instagram post that it will not let the vandalism over the weekend deter its support for Israel.

“We will not let it get us down. This is what they do. They hurt and destroy and want us to cower in fear,” read the Instagram post. “But we are strong and united and only love will destroy their hate.  We will not back down, we stand forever united with Israel.”

Nodel’s other bagel shop in Miami Beach was defaced three times in the past eight months, including the ripping down of Israeli flags.

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