by Jack Russillo
Content Warning: This article contains graphic descriptions of racist violence.
Hate crimes are known to peak in election years, especially in the weeks preceding and following the election. In the United States in 2016, the five days with the highest number of reported hate crimes all occurred within a week after the election, according to a study from the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University at San Bernardino.
In Seattle, one-seventh of all hate crimes in 2016 took place in November, more than double the amount from the same month in the previous year, a non-election year. Across the country, the final months of that year saw the highest number of hate crimes since 2008. In the two weeks after Donald Trump’s presidential election, the daily average of hate crimes nearly doubled. No hard figures are available yet for the 2020 election, but the immigrant rights organization America’s Voice tracks documented hate incidents that have occurred since Trump’s election in an online map.
“I think that we’re dealing with a number of things, historically, but even more highlighted under the Trump administration,” said Anita Whitfield, King County’s Chief Equity and Inclusion Officer. “Fear of difference, fear of law, fear of perceived position. I think that there is probably a lot more bias-based activity than anybody knows about … in the current environment, it really feels as if there has been an official okay, openly letting people know that they are unwelcome, minimized, or disliked.”Continue reading Was a Robbery in Federal Way the First Hate Crime of the 2020 Election Season?