NEWTON, MASS. (WHDH) - An outraged man traveling on the Mass. Pike stopped his car Friday morning to rip down a sign hanging from a highway overpass in Newton that read “It’s OK to be white.”
Thousands of commuters on the busy highway got a glimpse of the large white banner that featured bold black lettering, prompting a response from the Anti-Defamation League of New England.
“It’s pretty disappointing to see people in Massachusetts using a platform like that to disseminate a message that excludes people and targets people,” said Robert Trestan, Executive Director of the ADL’s Boston office.
Sean Roche, who was driving with his daughter, got out of his car and tore the sign down before police arrived at the scene.
“It’s a statement that being white is under attack right now and it’s just not true,” Roche told 7NEWS. “Being white is such an advantage in this society. To suggest otherwise is just straight-up racism.”
Trestan says the “It’s OK to be white” campaign was launched two years ago and that it’s a matter that must be addressed.
“It’s important for people not to be persuaded or attracted to a message like this because behind the words is bigotry, behind the words is hate,” Trestan said.
Newton police told 7’s Steve Cooper that they handle incidents like this on a case-by-case basis. Officers would have only urged the person who put up the sign to simply take it down.