Hate crimes

Racist Graffiti Incidents at Eastern Michigan and the University of Maryland Were Both Hoaxes

Both perpetrators were black males.


carmichaellibrary / Wikimedia Commons

Authorities finally caught the perpetrators of hate crimes at Eastern Michigan University and the University of Maryland. In both cases, the person responsible for racist graffiti was not a white supremacist but a black man.

Last year, someone spray-painted "KKK" and "Leave N***|**s" on the wall of a campus courtyard at Eastern Michigan University. After reviewing "more than 1,200 hours" of security video footage, according to MLive.com, officials finally got their man: Eddie Curlin, a 29-year-old student of color. Police Chief Robert Heighes told reporters there was no racial motive in this case; Curlin's vandalism was "totally self-serving."

Curlin is already serving 1–5 years in prison for concealing stolen property during a separate incident. While we don't yet know his true motives, EMU students can feel reassured that this was not the work of a genuine neo-Nazi.

At the University of Maryland, the story is much the same. Police have accused Ronald Alford, a 52-year-old ex-employee, of spray-painting a swastika on campus property. Alford, like Curlin, is black.

Nearby campuses have also been victimized by racist messages. A hate crime at the American University appears genuine—or, at least, the apparent perpetrator is conceivably someone who could harbor hatred for black people in his heart. Meanwhile, no one has any idea who could possibly be responsible for a string of racial incidents—presumed to be genuine acts of hate—at the University of Michigan.

The Michigan and American incidents may well be exactly what they appear to be. But the EMU and Maryland incidents also seemed like actual hate crimes. Unfortunately, since very few of the perpetrators are ever caught, we have no earthly idea what proportion of them are fakes. (A recent effort by BuzzFeed News to catalogue these kinds of occurrences came up woefully short, and its authors declined to answer basic questions that might have shed additional light on the subject.)

NEXT: Brickbat: Warrants? We Ain't Got No Warrants? We Don't Need No Warrants.

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  1. Last year, someone spray-painted “KKK” and “Leave N***|**s” on the wall of a campus courtyard at Eastern Michigan University.

    Seems pretty obvious. POC are the only ones allowed to use that word. (Not sure why he inserted the pipe in the middel.) The only question I have is how do these men identify? It might still be a hate crime.

    1. (Not sure why I spelled middle like that,)

    2. So if these nominally “black” men self-identify as “white”, then we can all collectively STILL go right ahead, and have paroxysms, confessions, examinations, and forced self-torture sessions, concerning our horrible collective racism? And spend yet MORE public money on self-torture?

      Can I escape it all by self-identifying as “not human”? Maybe I can declare myself to be a robot, for example, and then I can escape, not just racial self-torture, but also, insurance mandates, taxes, regulations, minimum wage, etc. ?

      1. Another choice here may be this: If these nominally “black” men do NOT self-identify as “white”, then what we have is black hatred or self-loathing of blacks… Which ALSO simply MUST be the result of white or “institutional” racism!

        We are still stuck, then, with endless collective self-torture about just how terribly racist we all are.

        Where’s the long-term fix? Can we all just get race-change operations to become a uniform gray shade? Or would that be some kind of “genocide”?

  2. My shocked face is in full effect here.

  3. Still a hate crime; book ’em!
    Equal justice under the law and all that jazz.
    I want to see the same blazing headlines and lead web stuff from all the liberals as if it were Trump himself!

    (or could it be possible that they are hypocrites?)

    1. I agree. Maybe they still hate black people, like in the Chappele skit.

  4. Just trying to start a conversation.

    1. Right; just because this one isn’t “real” doesn’t mean there isn’t racism somewhere in some fashion, and therefore the intent is good to let the narrative proceed.

  5. When the facts don’t fit the narrative, the facts must be ignored. Long live the narrative!

  6. At mortal risk of getting banned again by Reason – Jews do the same thing.

    Jill Stein tries not to forget to duck.

  7. Last year, someone spray-painted “KKK” and “Leave N***|**s” on the wall of a campus courtyard at Eastern Michigan University.

    Did they indicate where the N***i**s should be left? Maybe someone just needed a few more N***i**s.

  8. “Maybe someone just needed a few more N***i**s.” … To be left there where the sign or graffitti was posted, to later be collected by the person making the post… AND SOLD FOR A PROFIT!!!

    This is yet another indictment of capitalism and the Koch Brothers!

  9. To be sure, graffiti as form of expression is often valuable and shouldn’t be repressed…

  10. And the troll of the year award goes to…

  11. “” we have no earthly idea what proportion of them are fakes.”

    When the facts lean against your narrative: throw up your hands and declare the subject ‘unknowable’.

    Because, jeez, its not like there are any resources available to provide you a rough idea of the hoax-proportion relative to reported events

    oh, wait

  12. Now a days, when I hear of an alleged ‘hate crime’ that appears to be an egregious act/statement by an anonymous/unidentified my first thought is ‘hoax.’ My second thought is ‘drunken idiot’. Third is ‘outcome of a conflict that has nothing to do with race.’ The .0001% of alleged ‘hate crimes’ that don’t fall in one of those buckets genuinely surprise me.

    1. Sounds about right.

      Have there been any incidents of campus racist graffiti at all that we know with reasonable certainty are not hoaxes?

  13. What exactly, constitutes a hate crime?

  14. After reviewing “more than 1,200 hours” of security video footage, according to MLive.com, officials finally got their man:

    If you can’t pin down the time someone spray-painted something in more than 7 weeks, it must not be very offensive.

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