As we hear of racially- and religiously-motivated attacks happening across the globe, we also continue to see cases of vandalism targeting religious institutions and minorities here in the United States.
In New York's Brooklyn neighborhood, an arsonist broke into a school bus belonging to a local Jewish school. Once inside, he proceeded to reach inside the glove compartment where he found religious books. He then set the books on fire, causing damage to the front of the bus, the New York Daily News reported.
Since he was caught on surveillance camera, we know the man involved in the crime has a chinstrap beard and appears to be light-skinned. At the time of the incident, he was seen wearing a sweat suit and dark sneakers.
As investigators look into this attack, they say they believe they are dealing with a hate crime. This wouldn't be entirely new considering the series of hate-filled attacks targeting Jewish centers and cemeteries across the country.
Since January, at least 100 bomb threats were made against Jewish Community Centers across America. And in places like Philadelphia, St. Louis, and New York, Jewish cemeteries were the target of vandalism, causing countless headstones to be toppled and damaged.
As Jewish organizations call on the American government to take action against these incidents, officials are still looking for the man responsible for the Brooklyn school bus fire.
Unfortunately, hateful attacks against minorities because of their ethnicity or religion are alarmingly familiar to us in America. Perhaps it's because people give in to "fearmongering" and prejudiced rhetoric, or perhaps it's because racial relations have only worsened recently due to the political tensions we have experienced.
Still, it's incredible that in 2017, we still see these incidents taking place.