The campaign of Indian-American Democratic Congressional Candidate Peter Jacob and the community of Union Township in Union County, New Jersey, was shaken by a spate of hate graffiti painted on his home and the sidewalk adjacent to it on October 7 and October 11.
The Indian-American candidate for U.S. Congress in New Jersey has been speaking out against Donald Trump’s rhetoric after vandals defaced his home with swastikas twice in a matter of days.
Peter Jacob (D), who is running for office in the state’s 7th Congressional District, says the sidewalk outside his Union home was vandalized Friday night with swastikas, and that the back wall of his house was covered with the symbol two days later.
Such a hate crime, Jacob said in an email to supporters, is exactly the kind of behavior that the GOP presidential nominee enables. “Let there be no mistake, the people who committed this crime did so because they feel comfortable and confident to commit hateful acts due to an ever increasing atmosphere of accepted racism,” Jacob said. “We must work harder than ever to ensure that on November 8th, we do not let a man who has called for a ban on an entire religion, someone who has advocated for sexual assault, incest, and an attack on women’s rights, in to office.”
Jacob also called out his Republican opponent, four-term incumbent Rep. Leonard Lance, for supporting Trump’s White House run. The rise of Islamophobia in the U.S. has made targets out of many brown-skinned people, regardless of their religion. The Council on American Islamic Relations has spoken out against these attacks, including the one against Jacob. Jacob’s opponent, incumbent Republican Leonard Lance, promptly released a statement Oct. 11, calling the display of anti-Semitic hate symbols like the swastika “abhorrent.”
“At the end of the day, this is why I’m running for office – to fight racism, ignorance and divisiveness,” Jacob said.