By John Lynds
One time may be a fluke, the result of pranksters seeing anti-Semitic images that have recently become national news after the Charlottesville clashes between neo-Nazis and anti-hate groups.
However, when anti-Semitic graffiti ends up on the same building four separate times in the span of a week one has to believe it is targeted and police investigators agree.
Between August 20 and August 27 swastikas have been spray painted on the side of 3-5 Lamson Court. Residents on the small hidden street in Jeffries Point woke up to the horror of the anti-Semitic images on August 20, 24, 25 and 27. Each time the graffiti was removed only to reappear a few days later.
The address where the swastikas have appeared is the site of an ongoing development project. The project, which was approved by the city’s Zoning Board of Appeals, plans to raze the existing structure to create a three residential unit townhouse.
According to people connected with the ongoing project the developer of 3-5 Lamson Court is Jewish.
Police said that the department’s Civil Rights Unit is currently investigating the incident.
“Spray painting swastikas is unacceptable and there is no place for hatred or racism in our neighborhood,” said City Councilor Sal LaMattina, Rep. Adrian Madaro and Sen. Joseph Boncore in a joint statement. “This behavior is disheartening and disgusting, and will never be tolerated in East Boston.”
District 1 City council candidate Margaret Farmer, who is Jewish, said she was sickened by what appears to be a targeted attack and a hate crime.
“The appearance of hate-filled graffiti in East Boston is extremely upsetting,” said Farmer. “We are a diverse, beautiful community where all are welcome, regardless of race, religion, language or country of origin. As the gateway to Boston for many years, we have experienced many cultures and ethnicities, and have welcomed everyone into our community.”
District 1 City Council candidate Lydia Edwards agreed and said the bigot or bigots responsible do not represent Eastie.
“Whoever is doing this, doesn’t know East Boston, and doesn’t understand our ability to come together to help and support our neighbors,” said Edwards. “Your behavior will not change us.We are a united community and proud of our diversity. This is not the East Boston I know and I know our community will only be strengthened by standing firmly against this sign of hatred. Whoever thought this cowardly act would do anything but unite us doesn’t know East Boston. I look forward to being part of building bridges and cleaning this up.”
District 1 City Council candidate Stephen Passacantilli added, “Hatred and intolerance have no place in our community. The Boston Police Department are working to ensure that those responsible are identified, caught and prosecuted.”
Police were called to the same street several years ago after reports of an effigy that was erected with disparaging remarks about City Councilor Sal LaMattina and former Mayoral Liaison Ernani DeAraujo following a disagreement over a separate developer.