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Tuesday, November 17, 2015

SFPD Investigating Hate Crime Over Graffiti That Is Definitely Not Isis Flag

Posted By on Tue, Nov 17, 2015 at 2:32 PM

click to enlarge "AQMI FLAG" BY YO, CREATIVE COMMONS
  • "AQMI Flag" by Yo, Creative Commons

Despite reports from KRON and SFist, no one graffitied the ISIS flag on the wall of the playground of the French American International School on Oak Street in San Francisco. 

Both outlets repeated this claim, despite the fact that the graffiti in question, photographed by KRON, looks nothing like the ISIS flag.

(This isn't the first time the media has gotten confused on this. You may recall CNN freaking out over a bunch of dildos and butt plugs.) 

KRON has since updated its report saying that the police have "confirmed" that the graffiti, which, again, doesn't look anything like the ISIS flag, is "a symbol used by a group called 5 Percent Nation who have links to the Nation of Islam."

SFPD spokesman Officer Albie Esparza says that the department is investigating the vandalism and whether or not a hate crime occurred, but is not confirming that the graffiti is connected to the Five Percent Nation.

Five Percent Nation promotes economic self-determination for African Americans, racial equality, and the importance of education. Bustah Rhymes, LL Cool J, Raekwon, and Ghostface Killah are all former members. 

That the graffiti is an attempt at copying the Five Percent Nation emblem is a much likelier explanation than the breathless ISIS claims. 

But according to Officer Albie Esparza, SFPD's special investigations unit would be investigating the vandalism, no matter the content, due to the recent terrorist attacks in Paris. 

"Given the school and what it stands for," he said, "that should be enough." 

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About The Author

Julia Carrie Wong

Bio:
Julia Carrie Wong's work has appeared in numerous local and national titles including 48hills, Salon, In These Times, The Nation, and The New Yorker.

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