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Governor right about Saranac Lake graffiti

To the editor:

Regarding your front-page article, “Diversity leader moving out of Saranac Lake,” I wish to emphasize the particular situation that understandably but sadly drives Nicole Hylton-Patterson from Saranac Lake. Five days a week she would run past a railroad bridge. Racist graffiti was written on that bridge, obviously targeting her specifically. In addition to a racist act, this was also a personal assault against her, a woman. The mayor and the director of the Saranac Lake Area Chamber of Commerce evidently did not recognize that its personal nature and gravity compound this racist hate crime.

I am Black and have lived in the Adirondacks for more than 15 years. Thankfully I have not experienced such a threat. But were I to encounter racist graffiti on a route I traveled routinely, I certainly would feel personally endangered and would seriously reconsider my safety here.

By promising criminal punishment for this racist attack, Gov. Andrew Cuomo reacted decisively. Saranac Lake’s leaders should follow the governor’s lead.

Sincerely,

Nell Painter

New Russia

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