Parents at N.H. schools targeted with hate message pledge to ‘take a stand'

MANCHESTER, N.H. — Anger and outrage have boiled over in Manchester as a community rallies against a message of hate posted at local schools.

Administrators say last week, someone hung banners about white genocide outside those schools.

School officials told FOX25 those banners were taken down before students even saw them, but organizers of a love-over-hate rally say it's not about who saw signs, but how they're responding.

“We are not going to wait for a hate crime to occur in our town before we take a stand,” community organizer Eva Castillo said.

They want to stand tall against the message of hate. Castillo is also a parent and says those words have no place in her city.

“Fortunately, this is a community that doesn't stand for that,” she said. “This is a community where hatred is not accepted.”

Manchester district officials first notified parents last week, telling them banners reading "diversity is a code word for white genocide" were found duct taped outside Webster Elementary and Parkside Middle School.

“We pride ourselves on the fact that we welcome everybody in this community, we live in a diverse community,” Parkside principal Forrest Ransdell said.

Ransdell says he was shocked his school was targeted by an apparent white pride organization and says he's using this as a teachable moment for his students.

“It's all about learning and it's all about helping everybody be ready for the future, so from that standpoint, that message wasn't welcome,” he said.

While Manchester police investigate the origins of that banner, Castillo and other parents are taking action of their own. They are organizing a community vigil Tuesday night, inviting families to help shine a light against the darkness of that message.

“This is not acceptable, we are not going to stand silent, we are going to stand for one another,” she said.

That vigil is set for Tuesday night at Rock Rimmon Park.