In the article “Pew Study On Religion Finds Increased Harassment of Jews”, The Two Way 26 February 2015, written by Tom Gjelten (http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2015/02/26/389250366/pew-study-on-religion-finds-increased-harassment-of-jews) discusses the presence of religious discrimination globally, specifically targeting Jews. 25% of all countries experience high levels of religious conflicts. In some countries such as; China, India and Russia these conflicts are a result of high government intervention and control over religious practice. The annual Pew Report discovered that Muslims and Christians face similar levels of discrimination; however Christians are commonly targeted by the government while Muslims are by individuals. This report also found that since 2007 Jews have experienced higher levels of hostility and have been targeted more. Jews are targeted in 76% of countries in Europe and moderately in the United States.
I was very saddened after reading this article. After witnessing and learning about religious discrimination and violence in the news and over history, I’d like to believe at some point we would have learnt from our past mistakes. Especially in Europe where there are high levels of harassment towards Jews. The tragic events that took place not too long ago during World War II and the remorse those countries still feel today acts as an important lesson to society, one that we seem to ignore. Has society learnt nothing? Will there ever be a day when we truly have religious freedom? Reading articles similar to this one lead me to answer no to both questions. However, I do hope that publicizing reports such as The Pew Report will increase awareness of the issues religious groups still face today and thus increase initiatives to decrease the hostility and conflict.