Anti-Semitic vandalism towards Assemblywoman Seawright’s office under investigation as a hate crime

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Assemblywoman Seawright at a press conference in front of her office (left); White paint splattered on her office windows and door. (right)

A local assemblywoman’s office became a target of anti-Semitic vandalism.

On the morning of Aug. 11, Assemblymember Rebecca Seawright’s staff came to her office to find white paint splattered on her windows and doors and a note that contained anti-Semitic and obscene language directed against the assemblymember was slid under the door. The note alluded to Jewish stereotypes while making sexually explicit remarks.

A spatula that spread the paint was left behind at the scene and turned over to police. 

“We will never be intimidated by this criminal act. We have called for a hate crimes investigation,” said Seawright in a statement. “We stand before you today to denounce this disgraceful and hateful crime. We will remain vigilant.”

Seawright was joined by faith-based and community leaders that afternoon for a press conference to express their outrage over the vandalism.

“Anti-Semitism, or hatred of any kind, has no place in New York City,” said Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney. “I was dismayed to learn that my friend, Assemblywoman Rebecca Seawright’s, office was defaced with anti-Semitic symbols and note this morning. Unfortunately, this incident is part of an alarming spike of hate crimes and rhetoric throughout New York City and our nation. ‘One more incident’ is one incident too many, which is why I have made fighting hatred and anti-Semitism a personal mission. In May, the Senate passed my bill H.R. 943, the Never Again Education Act, to support Holocaust education in all schools across this country. The next generation of leaders must learn the horrific consequences of anti-Semitism, bigotry and hate.”

Seawright also gained support from Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio, the latter said that the NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force will be investigating the case.

“This cowardly act is antithetical to New York’s values. New York has zero tolerance for hate and we will do everything in our power to hold those responsible accountable,” said Cuomo on Twitter. “I extend my sympathy to [Assemblymember Seawright] that this repugnant note was left at her office.”

“If your heart is full of hate you have no home in New York City,” said de Blasio on Twitter. “[Assemblymember Seawright], your city stands with you. [The NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force] is investigating this.”

“I appreciate the governor’s show of support,” Seawright told amNewYork Metro. “When there’s an attack on one of us, there’s an attack on all of us.”

That evening, Seawright briefly addressed the vandalism during another virtual town hall that was livestreamed on Facebook, reiterating her statement that she will not be intimidated by this act.

Seawright recently sponsored one of her weekly virtual town hall events, this one focusing on combating Anti-Semitism and featuring New York State Jewish leaders. The NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force is investigating the vandalism.

“This criminal behavior has no place in the 76th District Assembly,” said Seawright.