Ohio Law Enforcement Officials Refuse to Treat Racist Anti-Obama Vandalism as Hate Crime
Spray-painting racial epithets on private property is a hate crime, but local law enforcement authorities in Lima, Ohio are refusing to treat it as anything more than a juvenile prank. This report is from the Lima News two days ago:
Gwen Pricer, an Obama supporter, has seen two Obama banners at her Fort Amanda Road property damaged.
The Krendl barn [painted with an Obama logo as part of the "Barns for Obama" program] was vandalized twice, once with a racial epithet and again with sprayed paint. Each time family members have repainted the barn and now they've added some new security measures.
The Krendl family is fighting back, reporting the damage to the Allen County Sheriff's Office and offering a reward for information leading to prosecution. However, the sheriff "won't classify the vandalism as hate crimes" despite the explicit racial character of the crime. Confirming their resistance to taking the racially-motivated crime seriously, the article indicates that law enforcement officials actually advised Obama supporter Gwen Pricer to take down her sign:
Pricer said she won't take the signs down, even after a deputy suggested the safest thing for her horse might be to take a banner off a barn wall.
"I'm not about to take them down. My son fixed them," Pricer said. "These are hate crimes against Obama. Should I take the signs out of my window? Would someone burn the house down? I have a young Republican friend whose husband is fighting right now in Iraq on the premise of providing the freedoms we enjoy here: our basic right to select and support the candidate of our choice."
These incidents are directly related to the ugly mob sentiment that McCain and Palin are inciting through their vicious smear campaign against Obama, with supporters at rallies openly calling Obama a "terrorist". Officers of the law who downplay anti-Obama property crime like these incidents in Lima are fanning the flames of that unleashed hatred.