Protesters rallied in Bensonhurst March 21 amid a nationwide outbreak of attacks on Asian-Americans.
Residents, elected officials and community leaders gathered outside New Ruan’s Restaurant,1955 86th St. Many of them carried signs that said, “Support the NYPD!” “Stop the Hate Crimes!” and “Asian Lives Matter!”
Assemblymember William Colton referred to the recent murders of eight people in Atlanta.
“We must all unite in stopping hate by teaching and speaking acts of love and concern for all, as we pray for the eight precious lives that became the latest victims of hate,” Colton said.
The vigil was organized by Ari Kagan, a Democratic candidate for City Council in the 47th District.
“We held eight candles in memory of victims of the massacre in Atlanta and brought a sign with their names,” Kagan said. “All speakers talked about unity and strong support for the Asian-American community as well as for all communities that are targeted by haters.”
Speakers included Democratic District Leader Nancy Tong, Asian-American community leaders Stephanie Wong, Dr. Tim Law, Lina Chen, John Chan and YK Cheung, Dr. Joseph Rizzi of the Federation of Italian American Organizations of Brooklyn and Amarilys Herrera of the Marlboro Resident Association.
The day wasn’t without incident, according to the South Brooklyn Community Coalition, which said a small group of people yelled, “Go Back to China.”
“They were chased away by the police at the vigil,” the group wrote on Facebook. “It is so heartbreaking to see this again and again!”