Vigil Held After Racist Signs Found In Manchester

Jan 24, 2017

Salman Malik addresses a crowd.
Credit Allegra Boverman

Over 100 people gathered on Manchester’s West side Monday evening for a vigil after racist signs were found in the city last week.

In the chilly damp evening at Rock Rimmon Park, people held hands in a circle. Some wore headscarves; others the red jackets of Americorps City Year, a group that works in Manchester’s public schools.

They were there because last week, signs were found near two schools and a bridge in Manchester that read “diversity is a code word for white genocide.”

In response, people at the vigil held signs that read “hate has no home here” in five languages.

School board member, Mary Georges was among those who spoke out. She said she moved to Manchester from the Congo in the 1990’s. 

"As an immigrant," she said, "we cannot be discouraged because of those who want to put you down. You need to stand for yourself," she said, and also "stand for your neighbor." 

Salman Malik, an oral surgeon originally from Pakistan, said "I'm a Muslim. But I'm not here as a Muslim. I moved to New Hampshire in 1997 with my family. We've been here ever since. I'm a New Hampshireite now. Most importantly, I'm an American." 

Manchester Mayor Ted Gatsas, the Catholic Bishop Peter Anthony Libasci, and a handful of state lawmakers also spoke out against the racist acts.