Swastika sprayed inside NC State Free Expression Tunnel 'can threaten students' sense of safety'

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- It's an ugly stain on the NC State campus, spotted on a day when that community celebrates academic achievement and good works.

Large enough for visibility while walking though the campus Free Expression Tunnel but small enough that a casual viewer might miss it - a spray painted swastika awaits the unwary.

"This is my first trip to NC State," said a woman named Angie while we recorded video of the tunnel. "We're with a newcomer so, I don't know what's usually here. But yeah, hatred is what I think when I see that."

Who's responsible for the swastika?

"Somebody being antagonistic. Somebody with hate. Somebody trying to get a negative reaction." said Andy Nedwetzky, a visitor from Pennsylvania.

A statement from the Jewish Federation of Raleigh-Cary says, in part:

"We condemn this hateful, anti-Semitic act, and have been working closely with the NC State Hillel representatives to assure they know that they have our support."

The swastika incites violence and can threaten students' sense of safety. We are grateful that the university's student government board recognized the issues surrounding this event and took swift action to address it."

That alert from the Jewish Federation says it happened on the night of May 6. Five days later, on graduation day, it's still here in the tunnel. What should happen next?

As noted earlier, it's visible when you look for it but surrounded by larger, more overt and colorful, sometimes profane graffiti, it's doesn't stand out.

"No," said Nedwetzky. "But I wouldn't have noticed it without you pointing it out."

And while he supports the concept of free expression, in this case, Nedwetzky says, "I think that's just as bad as somebody writing on the trees up there. I mean, if you have an area in here, why are you painting here?"

There's apparently no other comment painted there from the graffiti writer responsible for the swastika.
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