A swastika spray-painted on a building on Grand Avenue is just the latest incident in a rash of hate graffiti in the 104th Precinct.
A swastika appeared sometime before Wednesday morning on a metal door frame at 69-38 Grand Avenue.
When this newspaper brought the offensive symbol to the attention of Michael Terry, president of the Maspeth Chamber of Commerce, he said he’s noticed an unfortunate upswing in graffiti vandals in the area recently.
“It’s never a happy time to see anti-Semitic or racist symbols coming up,” he said, examining the graffiti drawn across the door.
Terry said he will bring the incident up at the next Chamber meeting, to be held on Tuesday, April 2nd at noon in Connolly’s Corner on Grand Avenue.
The swastika is drawn in blue paint marker over another tag, “MR,” which is written in dozens of places along Grand Avenue. In graffiti culture, it is an insult to draw over someone else’s tag.
Gary Giordano, district manager for Community Board 5, said the 104th Precinct has one of the highest graffiti arrest-rates in the city.
“But yet the vandals continue to do graffiti in this precinct where a lot of arrests are being made,” he said. “You would think that they would get the message.”
Giordano provided insight into why he thinks New York City’s graffiti epidemic persists – although he admitted that he does not know what is going through someone’s mind when they draw a swastika or other offensive symbol.
“I think that there’s some sort of unfortunate thrill with avoiding getting caught,” he said. “And I also think that some of it has to do with a lack of self-esteem and they can get a name for themselves by doing this and bragging about it.”
A representative from the 104th Precinct said officers responded to the location and saw the swastika along with an abundance of other graffiti.
The building owner was contacted and a report was generated, according to police.