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Swastikas keep showing up on campus at Macalester College

Officials say it's "highly likely" that someone in the community has information.
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People have been finding swastikas on campus at Macalester College all semester long. 

Back in September, several of the racist drawings were found on bulletin boards in Neill Hall. This week, recent sightings prompted the administration to put out three public safety notices.

According to school officials, two swastikas were found in residence halls this October – one carved into a room door, the other drawn on a bulletin board.

The college called the graffiti "unacceptable."

"Actions and behaviors such as this are unacceptable and have a wide range of negative impacts on the community," officials wrote in both notices. "The swastika is a symbol of anti-semitism and white supremacy that raises feelings among many communities of being targeted and singled out."

In a third incident, markings the school described as "anti-Arab hate speech" were found on the door of a custodial closet. Officials say there's no indication that any particular student or employee was targeted.

A report of each incident was filed with campus security and forwarded to the St. Paul Police Department.

Because the damages were done in residence halls, the administration says it's "highly likely" that someone in the Macalester community is responsible or has information about the perpetrator(s).

Macalester College is asking anyone with information about the incidents to contact campus security at 651-696-6555 or the Office of Student Affairs at 651-696-6220.

Officials say counseling on campus is available for anyone who felt harmed or affected by the drawings.

Uptick in anti-Semitic incidents

There’s been an uptick in anti-Semitism and hate crimes in both the United States and the world over the last year, especially in the wake of the presidential election, advocacy groups have said.

One of the most recent incidents happened in August, when a car plowed through a group of counter-protesters at a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

According to new data from the Anti-Defamation League, there were 1,299 anti-Semitic incidents across the country from Jan. 1 to Sept. 30 of 2017.

That total represents a 67 percent increase over the same period in 2016 and exceeds the 1,266 incidents reported all of last year.

The organization says of the incidents reported, there has been a disturbingly high number of anti-Semitic bullying and vandalism incidents in K-12 schools and college campuses across the U.S.

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