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March 8, 1999 - March 21, 1999
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U. Wisconsin Student Reports
Another Swstika Graffiti Incident


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By Claire Herbst
The Badger Herald
University of Wisconsin
Published Mar. 8, 1999


(U-WIRE) MADISON, Wis. -- A U. Wisconsin-Madison student reported swastikas etched on his car Monday, in what appears to be the second anti-Semitic incident in as many weeks.

The student, who asked to remain anonymous, said he discovered the marks after leaving his car parked at a meter outside Grainger Hall Monday evening.

The vandalism, he said, most likely occurred between 5 and 6 p.m., while the car was parked by Grainger or earlier in the day, when he was parked outside of Amy's Café.

He said he considers the vandalism to be an attack related to his New York license plates, because he said at UW there is a frequent association of the East Coast with Jews.

He said while he has recognized feelings of anti-Semitism at UW before, he was surprised to be singled out.

"I've never been a victim of a hate crime before," he said. "But there are definitely some people around here who just have problems."

The student said he phoned in a "self-report" of the incident to the Madison police, and was informed that they would send him a copy of the official report.

At press time, the Madison police had not confirmed the report. Police said self-reports often take longer to process, and that they would begin an investigation as soon as they received the report.

Monday's incident follows similar vandalism two weeks ago.

In a Feb. 23 incident, six vehicles parked at the Madison Inn were vandalized with swastikas. Most of the vehicles vandalized had East Coast license plates.

Following the most recent incident, Eric Brakken, chair of Associated Students of Madison, said ASM will work to make it easier to report hate crimes on campus.

The vandalism should not come as a surprise to the campus community, he said.

Brakken said recent administrative decisions, including yesterday's speech code vote and the 2008 proposal,contribute to a climate that does not respect student concerns.

"This is supposed to be a climate of acceptance and openness," he said. "And we are taking every step backwards."

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