Gov. Jay Inslee called for greater tolerance of diversity after two acts of vandalism against two Hindu temples in the Seattle area in the past month.
“Diversity really is a cornerstone of our state, it’s what makes us such a great place to live work and raise our kids,” he said.
On Feb. 15, someone scrawled the words “get out” and a swastika on an exterior wall of the Hindu Temple and Cultural Center in Bothell. Two weeks later, the windows were broken out of the Sanatan Dharma Temple in Kent and the word “FEAR” was written on the wall.
— Hum_Bolega (@Hum_Bolega) February 28, 2015
Inslee also decried the recent violence against the gay community, including an arson of a nightclub and the murder of two men in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood, which took place last year.
“There are still elements that act as agents of intolerance and hate and we have got to stand up against them every day,” Inslee said. “I am condemning these acts of intolerance, intimidation and violence.”
Inslee also mentioned a recent incident in Pasco, in which a mentally ill man was shot to death by police officers.
“We don’t know yet all the facts behind the shooting death in Pasco and until we do we all will need to remain patient,” he said. “But we do know that some in the community clearly feel marginalized and expressed concerns about whether immigrants who don’t speak English or suffer from mental illness are treated fairly.”
Inslee made his remarks at the start of a press conference that touched a number of topics, including transportation and education. He also spoke with the leaders of the Hindu temples that were targeted and with local Muslim leaders.