Changing face of hate crimes

A series of incidents in which swastikas were found scrawled on walls, schools and streets, a cross burned on a lawn and a racist e-mail sent to a young girl had one thing in common: In each, Rockland teenagers were accused of committing hate crimes. The involvement of teenagers in spreading hate has become common across the country, experts say. The increasing role of young people shatters public perceptions about who commits hate acts and offers fertile ground for recruitment by hard-core hate groups that troll the Internet, experts say. ‘When most people think of hate crimes, they think of organized groups like the Klan, and other white supremacists and neo-Nazi groups,’ says Jack Levin, director of the Brudnick Center on Conflict and Violence at Northeastern University in Boston.

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