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Long Islanders Say ‘Stop the Hate’

October 24, 2007

Patchogue, NY – A coalition of Long Island religious, labor, and immigrant leaders, as well as the N.A.A.C.P., meets today to demand an end to a rash of hate crimes in the area. From swastikas, to an explosion in the mailbox of a black household, to nooses at Hempstead city offices, local human rights organizations have compiled a list of 40 hate crimes and incidents of race, religious and/or anti-immigrant bias on Long Island over the past four years.

Nadia Marin-Molina is with the Long Island Immigrant Alliance. She stresses the importance of unity.

"We feel that it's important to stand together. All of us are potential victims of these kinds of hate crimes. The oppression of one group is connected to the oppression of all of us. You can terrorize Latinos, then you can go after African-Americans, and Jews -- and you don't know where that line continues."

Marin-Molina says it's time for Long Islanders to speak out against the types of hatred, from ethnic slurs to criminal behavior, which can easily escalate into violence when the majority is apathetic, or intimidated into silence.

Robert Knight/Chris Thomas, Public News Service - NY