Senator David Carlucci

@DavidCarlucci/Twitter

Leaders Decry Neo-Nazi Group's Flyers Plastered In NY Communities

September 21, 2018 - 4:35 pm
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SPRING VALLEY, N.Y. (WCBS 880) -- Community leaders gathered Friday in Rockland County to denounce the spread of hate-filled flyers from a local white supremacist group linked to last year’s deadly rally in Charlottesville.

The flyers were put up in towns on Long Island, as well as in Rockland and Westchester counties, according to officials, who said the hate group Identity Evropa posted photos of the leaflets to its Twitter page; they include an image of Gov. Cuomo and the words: “Freedom of speech? Not in New York!”

Members of Identity Evropa were on the frontlines of the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, in July 2017. The group, which is identified as a white supremacist, Neo-Nazi group by the Anti-Defamation League and Southern Poverty Law Center, also held an anti-immigration rally in front of Fort Tryon Park in Manhattan earlier this summer.

Now, local leaders say Identity Evropa is bringing its brand of hate to communities like Spring Valley, where police were searching for the reported flyers this week.

At a press conference Friday, state Sen. David Carlucci said hate groups are “feeling more emboldened” and that the recent propaganda is an example of the weaponization of social media.

“Our young kids today, they spend more time online than they do in person. And that’s something we want to make sure that we’re trying to change – that they get out and talk to people that might not go to the same church as them, might not look the same way that they do,” Carlucci said.

Evan Bernstein of the Anti-Defamation League says the flyers are part of a disturbing trend; anti-Semitic incidents in New York State jumped by 90 percent from 2016 to 2017.

"We're one year after Charlottesville. We did not see a gathering like we did the year before,” Bernstein said.  

Reverend Richard Hasselbach, of Clarkstown Reformed Church in West Nyack, says residents shouldn’t fight hate with hate.

“If we hate these hateful people, they win,” Hasselbach said. “But if we find love in our hearts to oppose them without despising them, then we win.”