Reports of hate crimes rising across US after Trump’s election victory
Reports of hate crimes and racially motivated violence against minorities have increased in the United States after the election of Donald Trump as president.
There was a spate of hate crimes reported on social media and to police on Thursday that targeted Muslims, Latinos and African Americans.
Trump’s supporters have been accused of numerous attacks in the 24 hours following his stunning victory, including racist graffiti, death threats and physical assaults.
Police say two assailants confronted a Muslim woman at San Diego State University in the state of California with comments about Trump and the Muslim community.
The attackers then took off with the victim’s purse, backpack and car keys. The woman could then not locate her car.
Some US universities reported racist graffiti written on their walls, including “Whites Only” and “White America.” At New York University, students discovered the name of Trump written on the door to a prayer room for Muslims.
Some students at a middle school in the state of Michigan chanted “Build the Wall” in the cafeteria, referring to Trump’s campaign pledge to build a wall on the Mexican border.
Several Muslim women have reported Trump supporters attempting to rip off their hijabs, which cover the hair.
A Muslim woman said she was shopping at Walmart on Wednesday when another woman approached her, pulled off her hijab and said: “This is not allowed anymore, so go hang yourself with it around your neck not on your head.”
Trump has been criticized during his presidential campaign for his inflammatory language against Muslims, immigrants, women and other groups.
The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), a civil rights organization that tracks hate crimes, is seeing a rash of racially motivated violence in campuses around the country.
“I think this is absolutely clearly a result of Trump’s election,” Mark Potok, a senior fellow at SPLC, told the Guardian. “Donald Trump has ripped the lid off Pandora’s box.”
“We have seen [Ku Klux] Klan literature drops, we have seen that suicide hotlines are ringing off the hook, and we are hearing of very extensive bullying in and around schools,” he added.
On Thursday, a major Muslim advocacy group in the US called on Trump to repudiate alleged hate crime attacks on Muslim students across the country.
The Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) also called on Muslims who believe their rights have been violated to contact police for further inquiry.
Meanwhile, protests have been held for a second night in several major US cities after the election of Trump.
The demonstration in Portland, Oregon, turned violent as several thousand demonstrators took to the streets in the western city.
Store and car windows were smashed and police declared the protest a riot. Protesters threw firecrackers and a large rubbish bin was set alight.