No Room for Hatred

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In the dark of night, a vandal or vandals armed with a spray paint can committed a despicable act when they painted swastikas on two Queens libraries and a synagogue in Jackson Heights.

Although the American Nazi movement does not stand a chance of gaining a foothold here, the act is bound to strike fear in the hearts of those who survived or lost family in the Holocaust.

They should be heartened by the community’s response to this vandalism, which speaks louder than graffiti painted by a bigot ever can.

City Councilman Daniel Dromm, who knows the sting of prejudice, told a rally that he has demanded an investigation by the police department.

Borough President Helen Marshall, state Sen. Toby Stavisky, Council members Karen Koslowitz and Peter Koo and state Assemblymen Michael DenDekker and Francisco Moya also condemned what they rightly called a hate crime.

This crime may never be solved. It may also be that the person or people responsible do not understand that this symbol represents one of the most horrific evils of the 20th century.

Regardless, Queens will not tolerate anti-Semitism.

Deal with the Devil

If there was justice in this world, Edwin Fuentes, 44, would die in prison. Instead, the former Woodhaven resident was sentenced to 20 years, even though he has admitted to murdering and dismembering his wife, leaving two small children without a mother.

We are sure that, like the community that helped in this investigation, the Queens district attorney would have preferred that Fuentes be sentenced to life without parole.

The former butcher admitted in court that he strangled his wife and cut up her body, placing part of it in a suitcase he hid in Forest Park.

We understand that sometimes prosecutors have to make a deal with the devil. The DA’s office was not certain it could win a conviction and it did not want to have to put the children on the witness stand.

It would be reassuring in a case like this if the judge could place a condition on the sentence that Fuentes be sent to a hospital for the criminally insane until he is no longer a threat.

Posted 10:50 pm, November 9, 2011
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