Police in East Grand Rapids are looking for the people spreading flyers and posters promoting what critics call “hate speech.”
Under cover of darkness sometime late Saturday night or early Sunday morning the flyers with the headline "It is okay to be white” were attached to trees, put on cars and, especially aggravating to many, they were pasted on top of “Black Lives Matter” yard signs.
“They are free to express themselves on their property or some public space,” said East Grand Rapids resident George Lundskow. “But they do not have the right to deface our signs and change our expression so that it says the exact opposite of what we intended.”
“The one that was left for us was left on our car, which was parked in front of our house,” said Amorak Huey. “Disappointed but ultimately not all that surprised. I guess that’s the world we live in where people who have these views I find abhorrent feel free to speak out about them.”
Some of the unauthorized leaflets were also distributed in areas of Grand Rapids that border East Grand Rapids, so the Grand Rapids Police Department is also investigating. East Grand Rapids Public Safety Director Mark Herald says they have not identified any suspects.
“We had some cameras on schools and we are looking at some video,” he says. “At this time we don’t have a particular person of interest.”
“Our public safety officers removed all the leaflets they could find on public property once they were notified,” says East Grand Rapids mayor Amna Seibold. “A detective has been assigned to the case. We are not going to let ignorant cowards derail us and cause infighting.”
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