Did Buffalo Mass Shooter Reference Ocean County’s Orthodox Jewish Community in Manifesto?

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A man is detained following a mass shooting in the parking lot of TOPS supermarket, in a still image from a social media video in Buffalo

LAKEWOOD, NJ – On Sunday, the Lakewood Scoop published a page reported to be from the manifesto of Buffalo mass shooting suspect Payton S. Gendron, 18, who shot and killed ten people Saturday in a crowded supermarket.

According to the Lakewood Scoop, a passage in the shooter’s 180-page manifesto references northern Ocean County. That citation has not been confirmed, but one thing is clear, the passage is not the original work of Gendron.

Gendron quoted a January 2020 article entitled Wave of Antisemitism Exaggerated, penned by AFP author Phil Girardi.

Girardi’s article criticizes former President Donald J. Trump and his protection of Jewish-American citizens, saying the wave of antisemitism in America is contrived by the right.

The following Girardi passage was allegedly quoted in the gunman’s manifesto:

Indeed, the whole story of Hasidic community growth and its impact on some established neighborhoods has been pretty much ignored by the mainstream press. Hasidic activities in Brooklyn, in Jersey City, in New York ex-urb Bloomingburg and Lakewood and Toms River, New Jersey are deplorable, and attempts by local communities to fight back are regularly met with claims that the locals are anti-Semites. Hasidim routinely register their homes as places of worship to avoid property taxes, making other local residents pay for police and fire services as well as maintenance of infrastructure. When sufficient Hasidim become residents to get elected to the public school board, they divert the funding of state provided education to support their own private schools. As Hasidim get married within their community and do not register with the state, the women routinely file as single mothers to get public childcare subsidy checks. The men often do not work at all so they can study the Talmud so they are able to engage in wholesale welfare fraud, claiming poverty, to get food stamps, social security, and other money services.

Hasidim also do not consider the judicial system applicable to themselves. They have private courts that have served to hide criminals including even child molesters in their community. Once they achieve a certain presence in a town or city neighborhood, they buy up buildings and force long-term residents out. They ignore building codes and zoning to bring in co-religionists with their large families, and, once established, they create enclaves that are hostile to outsiders

Originally published by AFP/Phil Girardi, allegedly referenced in gunman’s manifesto

The reference seems to quote passages that are frequent on many social media pages in the communities of Toms River, Jackson Lakewood, and the surrounding communities. There are several social media pages and groups dedicated solely to reporting the misdeeds and perceived misdeeds of the Ocean County Jewish community which serve as an incubator for the anti-Jewish sentiment that fills those pages.

Some pages have been removed from Facebook and Twitter and condemned by the Ocean County Board of Commissioners, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy, and local politicians.

At this time, we could not confirm the authenticity of the manifesto, but the information within it provides a clear and present link to the gunman who live-streamed his rampage on Twitch.