Some members of New York’s Orthodox Jewish community were seen open carrying AR rifles at a community event on Sunday, a day after a man attacked a rabbi’s home with a machete, sending five people to the hospital with injuries.
Another attack occurred in Jersey City earlier this month at a Jewish grocery where where four people were killed.
The two attacks specifically targeting New York City’s Jewish community appear to have motivated some members of the community to arm themselves in self-defense.
The armed men were attending a community event intended to strengthen spirits in light of the traumatic events.
New York is a state that enacts some of the most Orwellian gun control policies in the country, and some questioned if the men’s rifles were legal under the state’s laws. Open carry is heavily restricted in New York, and only “featureless” AR rifles that contain cosmetic modifications can be legally bought and sold in the state.