It’s demoralizing and unsettling to have the sanctity and security of one’s home violated. That is the experience Richard Rodriguez and his 12-year-old son are enduring, victims of a hate crime that should sadden all of Pittsfield.

Vandals spray-painted two swastikas, two hangman’s gallows and other offensive symbols on the home Mr. Rodriguez recently purchased on Lucille Street. It’s likely that the simple-minded bigots responsible don’t know the real meaning of the swastika, only that its presence on a home inflicts pain. Mr. Rodriguez, a 14-year resident of Pittsfield and a new home-owner, told The Eagle he suspects he was targeted because he is of Puerto Rican descent and we suspect he is correct. Racism and ignorance exist everywhere and are able to flourish in a mean-spirited national political climate.

Those who committed this hate crime don’t speak for Pittsfield. That is small consolation, but we hope Mr. Rodriguez knows this and will be reminded of it in the days and weeks ahead.


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