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Tide of racism sweeps land following presidential election


From the littlest voices yelling “build the wall” and scribbling “kill nirs” in grade school hallways, to adults targeting various religions and persons of color with threats and intimidation, a dark cloud of overt racism has descended upon America for the past 10 days.

In addressing the issue, Supervisor Hilda Solis this week previewed what she said will be an official call for residents and law enforcement agencies to stand up for people who are targeted.

Solis said she has received several reports of “acts of hate, harassment and bullying throughout the county” since the election.

The day after the election, a woman in Azusa was pushing a stroller along a sidewalk, when a gray-haired man in a red pickup truck pulled alongside, got out of the truck and said, “Get out of my country you  … You Mexicans infest this country and are all freeloaders,” before throwing a cup of soda on the woman, Solis said.

Before driving away, the man added, “You’re lucky. If I would have had my gun, it would have gone worse for you,” according to Solis, who said the report came from the Sheriff’s Department.

“Other reported incidents include a Muslim-American high school student in the San Fernando Valley who had her head scarf yanked off before being called a `terrorist’ and being told, “You shouldn’t be wearing that, you towel-head. You’re not American. This isn’t what America stands for.’ Another incident involved an African-American man who found a note slipped under his door telling him to “go back to the plantation,” and a physical education teacher at a South Los Angeles middle school who told his Latino students that their parents would be deported, leaving them to be placed in foster care,” Solis said.

Solis said Los Angeles residents pride themselves on inclusiveness, diversity and respect for one another.

In a motion titled “Halting the Post-Election Hate Crimes,” set to be heard next week, Solis said practices developed in the wake of the San Bernardino terrorist attack should be reviewed and re-adopted.

She plans to ask for her colleagues for support in calling on all county residents and departments to speak out against acts of bullying, discrimination and hate violence. Solis also wants the Sheriff’s Department and other law enforcement agencies to reassure targeted communities and encourage reporting of hate crimes.

“We cannot tolerate these loathsome acts of hate, discrimination bullying and harassment,” Solis said. “We must not yield to the forces of scapegoating and intolerance.”

The Southern Poverty Law Center has counted more than 300 cases of hateful harassment or intimidation since Election Day. “They’ve been everywhere—in schools, in places of business like Walmart, on the street,” said SPLC President Richard Cohen.

In New York, Gov. Andrew Cuomo ordered a joint investigation after someone painted a dugout wall in Wellsville, about 80 miles southeast of Buffalo. The message: A swastika, surrounded by the words “Make America White Again.”

Police in Ann Arbor, Mich., were investigating reports of a man who approached a Muslim student and threatened to set her on fire unless she removed her hijab.

At Maple Grove High School in Minnesota, someone had written #go back to Africa”, “Make America great again” on a toilet paper dispenser. On Nov. 9 in Durham, N.C., someone painted a racist message on the wall of a building that read “Black lives don’t matter and neither does your vote.” And at Canisius College in west New York state, students posted photos of a Black doll hanging from a dormitory curtain rod on social media, with one student creating a meme with language about “Trump fans.”

The racism was joined by two Connecticut men who were arrested for kicking a man waving an American flag and holding a Trump sign. And in Chicago, a man got into a fender-bender and when he got out of his car to exchange insurance information, men from the other vehicle began attacking him as a bystander yelled “you voted Trump!”