New York City Police said around 8:15 a.m. Sunday a male approached a 16-year-old male in a Manhattan subway station and asked the kid for a dollar.
After the teen refused to offer a handout, police said the male followed the teen in the East Broadway Station (F Line), made an "anti-white statement," and kicked the kid in the abdomen and leg.
The NYPD's Hate Crime Task Force issued a notice about the incident on Twitter and urged anyone with information to call 800-577-TIPS.
How did folks respond?
A debate ensued among some Twitter users after one declared that the attack "isn't a hate crime lmfao."
Another replied, "IT'S ABSOLUTELY A HATE ARE U SERIOUS??????? Calling anyone anti-their color then assaulting them is A HATE CRIME. U PEOPLE ACT LIKE NOTHING BAD CAN HAPPEN TO US?????????"
To which the first commenter shot back, "Because it can't lmfao. We're privileged, and we need to recognize it. There aren't even any white slurs. OMG someone got called a cracker, so what."
Others chimed in against the commenter who didn't believe the attack was a hate crime since the victim is white:
- "How you're able to even work a keyboard with an IQ in the single digits, I don't know," one user noted.
- "This is why you never take twitter seriously kids," another commenter quipped. "You forget that if you get assaulted that you are the victim."
- "Praise the white female nobody, here to teach everyone," another user joked.
Others took issue with the language of the NYPD Hate Crimes' tweet:
- "'....made an anti-white statement....' just say they made a racist statement. Ffs," another commenter argued.
- "Made an 'anti-white' statement?" another user added. "Different way to put it when it comes to white people facing racism I guess."
Yet another commenter offered a race-related zinger to the mix: "I'm sure he was just provoked by the victim's inherent white rage."