HANOVER, Pa. (WHTM) – The Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission was back in York County Thursday night to support Hanover’s first black mayor, who was the target of racist flyers that circulated around the borough a few months after she took office in October.
“Each day, we get up knowing that hate never takes a day off and neither can we,” said Chad Dion Lassiter, the PHRC’s executive director.
With PHRC on her side, Hanover Mayor Myneca Ojo addressed the flyers that accused her of replacing Christian traditions with “African sloth, thievery, violence and squalor.”
“As an African American woman, and your first African American mayor, I experience discrimination all the time,” Ojo said.
It’s always there, but so is her determination. Ojo said she didn’t want the experience to distract her from her duty to Hanover.
“Do you hate people that look like someone who might have sent the flyer? No. You love them even more,” Ojo said.
Lifelong Hanover resident Nathan Mart said he’s disappointed but not surprised by the flyers.
“As unfortunate as this was, it’s a really great opportunity for Hanoverians to realize this does happen,” Mart said.
He’s finding the good in the bad and the hope in the hopelessness. Mart said he was thrilled that so many people came out to the town hall.
“I know that this town wants to be better. I know this town wants to do better, and I think that there’s just that missing piece of education of how we do that,” Mart said.
They’re doing it with a colorful chorus of voices, sending a clear message.
“The shadow of hate will be met with coalition building, so that’s what they need to know, that hate cannot take up residency. We will evict hate with love,” Lassiter said.