The NYPD is looking for a man wearing “Make America Great Again” gear who pushed a hispanic man onto subway tracks after a violent altercation in which racial epithets were used. The police noted the MAGA hat because the suspect was wearing it on security camera footage. It made national news because headlines could be written suggesting fascist, anti-immigrant violence was occurring.
WANTED: Black male wearing a red hat and red shirt both with the words "Make America Great Again" , blue overalls, a black ¾ jacket, and jewelry around his neck. Wanted for assaulting a male on the 4 train platform in Union Square. Call #800577TIPS pic.twitter.com/FliEXrrxNZ
— NYPD NEWS (@NYPDnews) April 22, 2018
Police say the suspect got into a verbal dispute with another man at about 8:15 Friday night while on board a northbound 4 train approaching the Union Square/14th Street stop.
During the dispute, police say the suspect made multiple derogatory statements about the ethnicity of the victim, described as a 24-year-old Hispanic man.
He followed the victim when he got off the train at 14th Street and punched him on the head multiple times while on the 4 train platform.
He then pushed the victim to the track bed before fleeing to the Brooklyn-bound L train platform, police said.
The victim was helped up onto the platform by his friend and another person and was transported by EMS to an area hospital for treatment of a laceration to his head that he sustained when he fell onto the tracks.
Police describe the suspect as a black man with a heavy build, wearing a ‘Make America Great Again’ hat, a red shirt with ‘Make America Great Again’ in white letters, blue overalls, a black jacket and jewelry around his neck.
You seldom hear what political gear a criminal suspect was wearing unless it involves someone on the right. I have to believe that a great many crimes were committed by people wearing Obama gear without making national news. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Malcolm X or Che Guevara swag in local lockups. That isn’t newsworthy though because it extrapolating what those criminals were wearing to a whole movement wouldn’t fit the media’s agenda.
— The Hill (@thehill) April 22, 2018
That The Hill’s tweet mentioned the MAGA hat and the ethnicity of the victim but failed to mention that the perpetrator was black. Very clickbaity and reminiscent of—but not as bad as—when Contessa Brewer was on MSNBC clutching her pearls because we had a black president and white tea partiers were legally carrying guns in public. Andrew Breitbart shamed her for cropping the footage to avoid showing that the man carrying the gun at the tea party rally was black.
I have no problem believing that a certain percentage of any political movement is capable of gross misconduct or violence. I’m not prepared to tag the whole barrel with the crimes of one apple though. I’m not even prepared to take it for granted that this perpetrator wasn’t wearing the MAGA hat ironically or as a misdirection.