Mayor Kenney: “I Will Stand Up Against Hate Crimes”

The mayor responded to a string of incidents in Philadelphia following the election of Donald Trump.

Photo | Jeff Fusco

Photo | Jeff Fusco

During a speech last night, Mayor Jim Kenney denounced a string of apparently hate-spurred incidents in Philadelphia – and across the nation – since the election of Donald Trump

While celebrating the winner of the 2016 International Unity Cup, a World Cup-style soccer tournament composed largely of immigrant groups across the city, Kenney said he pledges to “stand up against hate crimes, violence and anything else that threatens our city’s inclusive and diverse practices,” according to PhillyVoice.

“But I cannot do it alone,” the mayor added.

Kenney made a call to Philadelphians to “call out bigotry when you see it” and “work – and I mean really work – to preserve and protect what you love about this city. Don’t just hold up a sign at a protest – protest is valuable and important and I will always respect your right to do it – but it alone will not strengthen our city in this time of darkness.”

Since the election, Philadelphia has seen spray-painted swastikas on a storefront in South Philly and other disturbing acts of vandalism, including at local schools, as well as violent and racist cyber messages sent to black students at the University of Pennsylvania.

Philadelphia, like other cities, has also seen ongoing protests since Trump was elected. Kenney said those looking to “channel your feelings into productive actions” should also consider becoming “educations, foster parents, rec center volunteers, homeless outreach workers, participants in our Police Service Areas,” and other “jobs and volunteer roles that make Philadelphia its best self.”

PhillyVoice has the full transcript for Kenney’s speech.

Follow @ClaireSasko on Twitter.