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Full Version: Hate crime? Vandal chops down cross at Divine Word Retreat Center
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From The Press Enterprise:

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About 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 30, a neighbor called the Divine Word Retreat Center, near La Sierra and Cypress avenues, wondering if gusting winds and rain the night before had unearthed a 20-foot cross long perched on a hill behind the Catholic-run center.

Geoffrey Buyco, the 39-year-old center manager, hiked up the hill to investigate and found wood chips scattered around the base of a roughly 2-foot stump, he said. The rest of the cross was lying beside it.

“It’s really heartbreaking to go up there and see that cross lying there,” Buyco said. “Just thinking about it is – my whole life it’s been up there.”

Riverside police Lt. Carla Hardin said officers were investigating late Wednesday. No one witnessed the crime and there are no common signs of a hate crime such as graffiti or a note, Hardin said.

The center recently saw minor graffiti on its front walls, but the Rev. Jose Goopio, who heads the center, said this is something different.

“It’s very unfortunate people would hate symbols of religion,” Goopio said, adding a prayer for those responsible: “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do.”

A cross has been at the site since the early 1960s, when seminary students lugged the wood up the hill to build it. The current cross was erected in 1975, Buyco said.

Thousands of people make religious retreats at the center. Last week, hundreds hiked the hill to the cross to commemorate Good Friday.
Buyco said the cross-cutting, done sometime Tuesday night or early Wednesday, was a hate crime.

“Obviously there’s a reason for why you’d cut a cross down,” Buyco said. “This is completely out of the blue. It’s such a big thing, it’s going to be tough letting everyone know.”

Employees at the retreat center hope to erect a cross in the same spot as soon as possible.
I'd say it has the markings of an anti-Catholic hate crime. I'll give it a week, and see if the SPLC mentions it on their site. If they don't, I'll mention it to a coworker who keeps touting their "balanced" treatment of hate crimes.
(04-04-2016, 11:09 PM)Sir Charles Napier Wrote: [ -> ]I'll give it a week, and see if the SPLC mentions it on their site.

There's a better chance that President Obama will start attending daily Mass than the SPLC ever even mentioning this.