Encountering a Message of Hate on the LIRR After the El Paso Massacre

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Photo by Patrick Young

This morning I got on the 8:18 AM Long Island Railroad train from Mineola to Penn Station. It was a normal crowded train and I stood for the ride next to the doors for the passengers to get on and off the train. Just before we went under the East River, I noticed that there were a number of ads attached to the vestibule walls advertising the food delivery service DOORDASH. One of them, for tacos from DOORDASH, was covered with grafitti proclaiming “USA Love It Or Leave It.”

There were at least four different Doordash ads in sight of where I was standing, one for pizza, one for spaghetti, one for hamburgers, and one for tacos. Only the taco ad, which included the Spanish words “Al Pastor”, had the graffiti. I note that spaghetti, hamburger, and pizza are not English-derived words, but apparently only tacos are a foreign threat to the white nationalist.

I contacted the MTA and was assured that the message of hate aimed at Latinos would soon be removed.

I have to assume that the grafitti was written after the racist massacre in El Paso. The MTA tries to remove hate speech as soon as it is discovered, so anything put up two days ago would likely have already been removed. That means that while most Long Islanders responded to the slaughter of innocents in South Texas with love and compassion, at least one person took the opportunity to tell Latinos to leave the United States.


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