Bulldog Drummond Takes Up Fight Against Hate

LOS ANGELES The San Diego Regional Hate Crimes Coalition today breaks a campaign aimed at battling hate crimes in the community.

The effort, which introduces “Us vs. Hate” as the theme, was created by Bulldog Drummond in San Diego for the nonprofit group. The latter encompasses more than 40 law enforcement agencies and community-based organizations.

The pro bono campaign will include billboards, bus signs, posters, radio PSAs and a Web site, as well as promotional materials such as T-shirts, stickers and a teacher’s tool kit that will be distributed to local schools. TV PSAs are also in the works.

One transit ad shows a woman of Middle Eastern descent holding a child and looking out her front door. Copy reads, “They yelled, ‘Go home.’ I was in my front yard.”

A second transit effort shows a man, also of Middle Eastern descent, sitting on a bed. He has a black eye and a bandage over a cut on his face. Copy states, “They didn’t like my skin color. So they tried to change it.”

Copy in both ads encourages those who have witnessed or been a victim of a hate crime to visit www.usvshate.com. The work also lists a local phone number for people to call to report hate crimes.

The campaign is expected to run for the next four to six months.

The “Us. vs. Hate” platform is meant to convey the notion of “a civilized society of educated, compassionate, intellectual people against hatred,” said Shawn Parr, CEO of Bulldog Drummond. He added that the platform is not specific to Middle Easterners and can apply to crimes committed because of a victim’s race or sexual orientation.

However, Parr noted that one of the SDRHCC’s goals is to pre-empt an increase in hate crimes against Middle Eastern victims in light of the war with Iraq. In 1991, when the U.S. was involved in the first Gulf war, reported hate crimes targeting actual or perceived Arab or Middle Eastern victims in the state of California increased by more than 345 percent, according to the SDRHCC.