November 28, 2016

Evanston Public Library affected by hate crimes

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Evanston Public Library. Va Wikimedia Commons.

Evanston Public Library, via Wikimedia Commons

Amidst the horrific spike in hate crimes committed across the country these past weeks, the Evanston Public Library has discovered that seven books about Islam and the Qur’an have been defaced with “graffiti and racist language and imagery.”

In a statement last week, the library said, “The discovery of graffiti in books about Islam is troubling. Free speech is one thing; defacing sacred texts and books about religion is quite another.”

While police have opened an investigation, some of the books that were vandalized haven’t been checked out since 2014 or 2015, and an evidence technician told Ashlee Rezin at the Chicago Sun-Times that officials “are currently working on a time frame of occurrence being June until November 21.”

Below, a Facebook post from librarian Lorena Neal.

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Taylor Sperry is an editor at Melville House.

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