A Jewish woman was charged with spray painting two swastikas on a bus stop in the Borough Park section of Brooklyn, NY after she boasted in a Facebook post that “maybe the antisemites have a point.”
Farnoush Hakakian, 45, was arrested on Wednesday. She was charged with criminal mischief as a hate crime in connection with an incident on May 5 in which she allegedly spray painted a white swastika over an ad by a Jewish advocacy group calling for an end to antisemitism and also drew a swastika inside the bus stop, the New York Daily News reported.
A video allegedly showed the suspect during daylight hours spray painting swastikas on the sign at a Brooklyn bus stop, drawing one swastika over the sign with white spray paint and another above it. She then sat down at the bus stop to wait for a bus.
The act was committed in front of multiple witnesses.
The sign by the JewBelong organization was part of a recent antisemitism awareness campaign. It said: “We’re just 75 years since the gas chambers... So no, a billboard calling out Jew hate isn’t an overreaction. #EndJewHate.”
“This type of hate followed by the deafening silence from supposedly good people should be abhorrent to anyone who stands for justice. You don’t have to be a historian to know that to be quiet about hate doesn’t stop the haters,” JewBelong co-founder Stacy Stewart told the Daily News at the time of the incident.
When she was apprehended, Hakakian told police: “I am Jewish. This is my art, this is how I express myself. I don’t agree with Judaism and how the Jewish people are.”
A law enforcement source told the news outlet that she told police she had drawn the swastikas.
The day after she allegedly committed the vandalism, Hakakian wrote on Facebook: “Instead of condemning the antisemites, did it ever occur to you maybe we are doing many wrong things and we need to change????? Did it ever occur to you maybe the antisemites have a point? A good one?”
On Thursday, Hakakian posted on Facebook that she was converting to Buddhism.
(Israel National News' North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Israel National News articles, however, is Israeli time.)