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Obama's Win Spurs Racial Crimes

Published November 19, 2008

Posted Nov. 17, 2008 – Racial epithets on cars and homes, cross-burnings and children chanting "Assassinate Obama," are among some of the incidents that make up what officials say is a rise in post-election racial incidents across the country. From Maine to California, police have clocked a range of crimes that include vandalism, at least one physical attack and vague threats.

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There have been "hundreds" of incidents since the election, many more than usual, Mark Potok, director of the hate-crime monitoring Intelligence Project at the Southern Poverty Law Center, told The Associated Press.

Four North Carolina State University students admitted writing anti-Obama comments in the notorious free-speech tunnel, including one that said: "Let's shoot that (N-word) in the head."

In fact, Obama has received more threats than any other president-elect, authorities say.

In other incidents, crosses were burned in yards of Obama supporters in Hardwick, N.J., and Apolacan Township, Pa. A Black teenager in New York City said he was attacked with a bat on election night by four White men who shouted “Obama.” Racist graffiti was found in places including New York's Long Island, where two dozen cars were spray-painted; Kilgore, Texas, where the local high school and skate park were defaced; and the Los Angeles area, where swastikas, racial slurs and "Go Back To Africa" were spray-painted on sidewalks, houses and cars.

Potok, who is White, said he believes there is "a large subset of White people in this country who feel that they are losing everything they know, that the country their forefathers built has somehow been stolen from them."

Written by BET-Staff

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