Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Republican Party headquarters firebombed

Victoria Siano
News Editor

Just three weeks before the presidential election an event occurred that has been considered an attack on our democracy. On Saturday night, Oct. 15, a firebomb was found to have been set off in the Republican headquarters in Orange County, North Carolina. Additionally, graffiti messages had been painted on the building next door warning Republicans to flee town.
 According to pictures posted on Twitter by the Republican party early Sunday morning, the building inside has been completely destroyed, with blackened walls, burned campaigns signs for several Republican candidates, and charred furniture. As if this weren’t bad enough, pictures of the scene displayed graffiti that included a swastika and the terrifying message stating “Nazi Republicans leave town or else.”
 This immense damage, however, had not been discovered until the next day by a business owner who called the authorities by around 9:00 a.m., Sunday morning. After receiving this call, the Hillsborough police quickly started their investigation; analyzing the scene of the political terrorist attack as well as working with the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives in order to track down whoever was behind it. From their examinations, they have concluded that building had been destroyed by a bottle of flammable liquid reading the words “Freedom Speaks” which was thrown through one of the front windows of the building.
 In a statement to the New York Times, Mayor of Hillsboro, Tom Stevens, stated: “This highly disturbing act goes far beyond vandalizing property; it willfully threatens our community's safety via fire, and its hateful message undermines the decency, respect, and integrity of civic participation.” Along with this, Mayor Stevens also discussed the fact that North Carolina law enforcement is responding quickly to investigate the matter and “prosecute the perpetrators.”
 North Carolina law enforcement is not the only group that has responded to this act of political terror, however. Despite supposedly being held accountable for the act by none other than presidential candidate Donald Trump, the Democratic party started a GoFundMe campaign Sunday night, Oct. 16, in order to help raise money to rebuild the Republican Party headquarters. As of Monday morning, the campaign had already raised $13,000.

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