The total number of hate crimes in the 10 largest cities in America jumped in 2017, marking four straight years for an uptick in such incidents.
The Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University found a 12.5 percent increase in incidents reported by police last year in Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia, Phoenix, San Antonio, San Diego and San Jose, California.
The number of hate crimes reported in those cities totaled 1,038, up from 923 in 2016, according to the May study. In New York, nearly half of hate crimes last year were committed against Jewish people. In Los Angeles, gay men were targeted most. And in Boston the largest demographic hit by hate crimes were African Americans.
Brian Levin, co-author of the report, attributed the recent increases to greater "incivility" in national politics, citing policies such as President Donald Trump's travel ban from several majority-Muslim countries.
National events can also spur these types of crimes, according to Heidi Beirich, director of the intelligence project at the Southern Poverty Law Center. After the September 11, 2001 terror attacks, crimes against Muslim people were rampant, Beirich said. The FBI reported 8,063 hate crimes in 2000 and 9,730 in 2001.
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