A hateful and shocking inscription appeared painted on a railroad power box this week in Lincolnton, raising concerns that someone wanted to stir up racial tensions ahead of the presidential election.
We don’t know who did it. We don’t know their age, gender, educational level or criminal history. Although we might make assumptions, we don’t even know their ethnic background.
We don’t know their motives. Did they call for violence against innocent children of color because they are full of hate? Were they just trying to shock the community? Was their motivation political? Were they just hoping to get a kick out of having their handiwork appear on TV and in the newspaper?
We can, however, be certain that the vandals are pathetically ignorant individuals. And we can say that all of their mischief will fail to accomplish much because this community is stronger than their ignorance.
There is a race problem in Lincolnton, as this despicable act shows us. If it were not for this particular group, we would not have to deal with a single one of the problems that our society faces today.
And yet there are individuals of this totally depraved race who show redemptive qualities. As certainly as the vandals besmirched this community with their filth, a few bold young people stood up and washed the vile words away.
It’s because of these gentle souls and others like them that there’s some hope for this particular race, and why the potential for good outweighs the tendency toward evil among them.
We do not know much about the vandals, but we do know, that like those who scrubbed away their works, and like the children they threatened with those remarks, they were members of the human race.
We agree wholeheartedly with the woman on the scene who spoke with a Times-News reporter about not letting this juvenile prank become a source of division in the community: “We’re not going to stoop that low … We’re here to live together and work together.”